Thursday, 14 August 2008

In Your Massage Therapy Business Do You Know The Value Of Your Massage Clients?

A lot of massage therapists are unaware of their clients' value, which is something you do need to be aware of. It is vital to know their massage value in order to maximize the effectiveness of your treatments and get the most from what you do and how you operate your massage business. Many massage therapists believe all their clients are equally valuable and are grateful for any business they receive. You need to think in a different way, in order to maximize your business and know which clients are more "valuable" than others.

Ask yourself the following questions:

• Do you have clients who show up late or cancel their appointments at the last minute?
• Do you have clients who never refer others?
• Do you have clients who never tip you?
• Do you have clients who only use your services when you offer a special discount?

If you have clients such as the above, it is essential to know that they might be taking away value from your business, rather than adding to it. If I were to suggest that you might not want this type of client on your books you might think, "Of course I do – a client is a client!" But this is not always the case. You need to look at the bigger picture. Just because you trim down your client base, this doesn't mean you're shooting yourself in the foot. If someone takes away from your business rather than adding to it, this is bad for business. Someone not showing up or only using you when you have a special offer on isn't a valued customer. They are a drain on what you are offering and if they don’t use their booked slot, you could have a valued customer in their place, who will show up, will pay and will probably tip and rebook.

Knowing the value of your clients will help you identify clients who truly appreciate your work and the service you offer. If you have clients who do any of the above negative things, it negatively impacts your business, taking up your energy which you could be spending on more appreciative customers.

If you are aware of the massage value of your clients, this will help you with your marketing tactics. Let's say one of your customers doesn’t show up for their massage because they were stuck in traffic. Do you charge that person for the treatment or not? If you have a client database, you might find out that the client in question visits you 10 times a year (almost always on time), has been using your services for 3 years, has a 60 minute massage each time and usually gives you a $10 tip. You can work out that this client represents someone who spends $2400 in their time as your client. Knowing this, you might let them off payment for the one missed session, in the knowledge they will continue to be a regular client who uses your services. The person will also feel bad about letting you down and delighted that they don’t have to pay for their missed session. This is an example good customer relations. Your valued client will also value you and your services more.

Now, the question is this: would you make the same exception for a client who comes in twice a year for a 30 minute massage, never tips and usually arrives late? Are you going to let a client like this disrupt your schedule and your business? Is this person still a "valued client"? Or would their slot be better filled with someone like the client in the first example?

Knowing the true massage value of your clients will help you to boost your business and attract valuable clients.

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