“Feeling like a Million Bucks for Just 70”

By Coach Cary Bayer

Cary Bayer was keynote speaker at the 2006 AMTA national convention. Widely known as The Business Coach for Massage Therapists, for having privately coached more than 225 LMTs, Cary is also a CE provider licensed by NCBTMB and Florida Dept. of Health’s Board of Massage Therapy, and a faculty member of Massage Business University. He also writes for Massage Today, and AMTA publications in 14 states. His 27 publications include 11 specifically for massage therapists. His CE seminar, “Build a $100,000 a Year Massage Business” is very popular among therapists.

Wouldn’t you love to own a business where everyone wanted what you offered? Even giants like Microsoft aren’t in demand by everyone; after all, not everyone owns a computer. But there is a business desired by virtually every adult–it’s called massage therapy.

That’s because everybody has a body. And most of those bodies are in lots of pain and dis-ease. As a business coach for massage therapists, I’ve noticed that very few of the 150 massage therapists whom I’ve privately worked with recognized this when I started working with them. (They’d been so focused on making ends meet that they missed the big picture—that everyone they meet can become a client.) It’s the absence of this insight that causes LMTs many of the financial struggles they suffer. Other jobs are taken to pay bills, and if time and energy remain, some sessions are done part-time. This is a great loss for you and for everyone who never makes it to your table.

Realizing that virtually everyone wants your service makes you enthusiastic and bold. (Enthusiasm and boldness create new clients more effectively than clever marketing.) Thinking this way, you won’t have to rely on gift certificates and discount packages to land new clients. Tell someone at a party that you’re a massage therapist, and she’ll likely express interest. At this point, many shy LMTs laugh and reach for the spinach dip. Others, who might be a little more confident, reach for a business card. The even wiser therapist reaches for her appointment book and asks when she’d like to come in for some relief. Landing a new client can be that simple.

That’s why it’s important to get into conversations about what you do, the second question strangers ask. Don’t just give your card and ask her to follow up. Sadly, many people don’t recognize that they deserve the pleasure of ongoing massage. Try playing a new business game, targeting one new client from your yoga class, or party. Some consider this audacious, even presumptuous. But what have you got to lose? I don’t encourage dropping business cards everywhere, but I do encourage adopting four easy strategies:

1) Recognize that every adult is interested in relief from physical pains and/or desires deep relaxation.

2) Tell people what you do when asked; if they’re interested, wait for them to say they’d
love a massage.

3) Then, take out your appointment book and schedule a session.

4) Stay open to the reality that this can happen anywhere at any time. Goal Setting

On Sunday night, write your goals for the coming week for the number of sessions given; the number of new clients; the number of discount packages sold. The following Sunday night, review the results. If you reached the goals, stretch the next week. If you didn’t, see how you could alter how you spoke and acted. You might also track categories, like the number of strangers you asked if they’d be interested in having sessions, the number of business cards given out, etc. The power of your intention to grow your business and the power of your attention to recording your results stimulate your success.

The remarkable thing about getting clients in this radical new way is that it’s mostly a matter of staying focused and having courage. You can see the wisdom in these ideas, but it’s easy to revert back to being like the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz and let fear stop you. Here’s an affirmation to thwart that: “Since everyone wants what I do, I can get new clients every week.” As this thought grows in your consciousness, it becomes the way you think, speak, act, and expand your business.