Networking Tips and Tid Bits

June 2, 2011 No Comments

Need clients?  Then network.

Networking is one of the most powerful ways to find a client base.



Go to events, any event, and market yourself.  Massage therapists have it easy in the sense that when someone asks, “What do you do?” and you reply with, “I’m a massage therapist,” their eyes glow with excitement with a usual response of, “Oh, I need a massage!” or “I’m overdue for one of those!”  This is when you hand them your card.  It’s simple.

However, this only gets them into your office and on your massage table a small fraction of the time.

So, read on and learn from some time tested networking techniques that work like a charm.

Referral Program

One way to network is to gift businesses around town free massages if they refer their client’s or employees to you.  For example, for every 3 they send you, you give them a free massage.  You can even tell them that for every 1 person they send you, you give them 1 free massage.   That’s how I approached business owners, managers, or HR departments when I first started my massage career.  I called it my “referral program”.  One Yoga teacher sent me over 25 client’s in a span of 6 months when I used this method with her.

When giving them your card, have a discounted price on it for their client’s, such as, $20 off for their first massage.  This entices them to come and see you.  It works great.

Work it and Work it Well

If you want to take it a step further, find the manager, PR director, or “boss” of a company and offer him or her a FREE massage in exchange of you passing out your business cards or gift certificates to their employees.  This works extremely well with Yoga Studio’s, Architectural firms, Hospitals, Credit Unions, and other companies that have a lot of employees.  If they like your massage, you are almost guaranteed business with them and their clients.

Not the Salesperson Type?

I wasn’t either.

If you are too nervous to approach a company with a pitch to distribute your cards to their employees, don’t worry.  I was one of the shyest massage therapist’s around.  But, after my first time networking, I realized how easy it was.

When I would go into large office buildings, walking from company to company, I’d first talk with the receptionist at the front desk.  I’d always start out by saying, “Hi, my name is Brandon Ellis and I’m a massage therapist.”  Their eyes would light up and they were all ears.  I then would tell them what I was up to, “I’m passing out my cards to all the companies in the neighborhood.  I’m offering a special deal, $20 off your first massage.”  The receptionist would always love that.  I’d continue, “I was wanting to hand these out to everyone that works here and I’d like to offer these to all of your clients, as well.  Would you be opposed to that?”  I don’t remember ever being turned down.

I’d tell them that I’d even be willing to give an hour of my time to come by and give some of their employees 5 – 10 minute chair massages for free.  In some cases, that has even landed me a chair massage business with that company.  I’d end up charging $1 a minute and working for 5 -6 hours at that business once a week or once a month.

Chair Massage?

The best news with doing chair massage at businesses is that you’ll get people who absolutely loved the 10 minutes of massage and who want to book an appointment with you for a full hour or for a full hour and a half at your office.  It’s a win-win every time.  If they liked your massage, they’ll send you their spouse, significant other, relatives, friends, and clients.

Get their Phone Number

In most cases, when you walk into an office with the pitch to give your business cards and discounted rates to them, the receptionist, manager, or “boss” usually take the cards from you and distributes them to their employees for you.  Don’t forget to mention that the deal is for everyone that they know, such as, friends, family, and clientele.  And, the most important aspect of this?  Get the businesses phone number by grabbing their business card.  You need to contact that business within a week to “follow up” and see if the cards have been distributed, which they most likely have, and to remind them that you are around, available, and eager to work on them.

Networking Group

Join a networking group as that’s key when networking.  You can conjure up a lot of business by giving them special deals and it’s easy.  People love deals.

Other Free Chair Massage Ideas

Do a free chair massage event and network while you’re massaging.  Find a non-profit company or other companies, events, and services and donate your time to them.  If you don’t have a massage chair, then bring your massage table.  Create a sign that says, “Free 10 minute chair massage” or “Free 15 minute back rub.”  Whatever works for you.  You can put a “donation” sign and a glass jar where people can put a small donation for the massage you just gave them.  Put the donation sign and jar on the opposite side of the free sign.  Put a couple of $5 bills and a couple of $10 bills in the jar, so people get the idea that they can and should donate to you.

I did a free event at a shoe store grand opening and brought in $300 for that 5 hour event, simply because I created a nice donation sign and a basket where they could put their money.

Again, don’t forget to hand out your business cards to everyone!  You’ll be busy in no time.  :)

I hope this helps!


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