As a massage therapist, I don’t spend much time on my computer. At least I didn’t, but now with the boom of social media for marketing I find myself on the computer much more. At least once a week I’m asked, “Are you on Google plus?”, “Join my network on Linkedin.” Or “Do you tweet?” Now, I was beginning to feel a bit harassed from all the invitations to join Linkedin, a bit like the requests to play the popular Facebook game, Candy Crush, so I almost turned my back on social media all together, but I’m glad I didn’t. The social media realm is vast and has the ability to reach customers like no other traditional media stream. But how can you make sense of the social media world? It can seem overwhelming and scary at first, especially for massage therapists. There are so many options! Many times we entered into the massage profession to get away from computers and yet here we are, sucked right back in.
Facebook and YouTube are the two most frequently visited social media sites in the United States, but how can massage therapists use these two platforms for their business?
|You may already have a Facebook account. If not, you can create you very own Facebook account. It is important to keep your personal page separate from your business. If you haven’t already created a Facebook page for your business, please do so soon.|
Typically your personal page is listed by your name and is a great way to stay connected with family and friends, but not ideal for establishing your brand image for your business. Let’s say you have appointments scheduled for Saturday afternoon, but you get a call from a friend inviting you to go to the beach. Sounds great! Call your clients to reschedule and you’re off for a day of relaxing and fun! You are having so much fun on your day off you post pictures to your Facebook account of your fun in the sun. Not only will your family and friends see this post but all of your clients will see this post too. Yikes!! How many clients did you cancel to go off to the beach? What if they see this post? You could lose some clients, be embarrassed and with the speed of social media, word may travel like wildfire that you cancel appointments on a whim. If you kept a separate Facebook account for business you can shield yourself from such oversights. Creating a business Facebook page also allows your business name to be found by search engines and more customers can find you. Tip: Keep your profession professional.
|While YouTube may be the second most visited social media site in the United States, it is predominately visited by males (78%). According to a 2013 survey posted by ABMP, 60% of all massage clients are female.|
So you may be thinking YouTube is out as a social media choice, but YouTube may be ideal grounds for tapping into that seemingly elusive male market. Knowing your audience is important in reaching them to turn them into clients. If you take the time to create a YouTube video, think about the message you want to send to the male audience. You may choose to do a series of videos discussing common problem areas: shoulder pain for example. Perhaps it is better to use a male client in which to conduct your demonstration. Women who see the video will not be turned away and the men who watch can connect with the male client. Please make sure you choose your demonstration client appropriately. We all know how important massage can be for our clients, but men don’t want to hear that it will reconnect them with their inner spirit and make them feel revitalized. Women will key into the emotional appeal of how the massage will make them feel, but not men. Men are not interested in emotions or how the massage will make them feel. So, in the audio of your massage video to men, keep the message simple and include the important elements of how it will solve a problem. YouTube videos can help you get the message out about your practice and give people a glimpse into you, your massage style and what to expect from you. You are pre-populating the business relationship. Tip: Know your audience.
Facebook and YouTube are the two social media platforms that have the highest number of users per month. There are others that are becoming more popular. Which of the other social media sites would you like to know more about?