My Facebook Page Sucks

Well, this is embarrassing!

I’m supposed to be the king (actually the Grand Massage Poobah) of massage marketing and an expert on social media. I hold the record for the most registrants for a massage webinar, which just happened to be about Facebook marketing.

But.. I’ve let things slide.

With all the changes that happened on Facebook this year, I stopped trying to keep up. And now… there’s no other way to say this… my Facebook Page sucks!

So the teacher is going to become the student. I’ve purchased Amy Porter’s Facebook Influence course and I’m going to go through it step-by-step in the new year. Why not pick up this course for yourself and go through it with me? It may be the best purchase you make this year: (affiliate link)

Why take this course?

Let me show you why. I attended Amy’s free webinar a couple weeks ago. Look at this report on activity on my Facebook Page. Can you tell when I attended the webinar?

This was from just one simple idea that I implemented from her free webinar and it probably took me easily less than 30 minutes. (By the way, she probably has a replay of the webinar available if you want to check it out.)

This is why I’ve been sending emails to the BodyworkBiz subscribers about the course and why I think you should buy it. It’s only $99 bucks and if you have a Facebook Page it may be the best investment you make all year.

Pick it up and join me in stepping up your Facebook game in the new year.

Why Social Media Is a Lot Like Sex

I often use dating as a metaphor for marketing, like this for example. But the people at Hubspot have taken it a step further to explain why social media is a lot like sex. I can’t believe that I didn’t come up with this first.

(Note: This slideshow contains imagery and content that may be sensitive to some viewers. If you’re easily offended, get off this page now. Just a heads up.)


How many massages can you do?

I don’t recall ever seeing a survey on how many hours the average therapist is capable of massaging in a week, so I posted a couple surveys to LinkedIn, one in the ABMP group and the other in the AMTA group. The numbers from both groups are roughly comparable. Although they are hardly scientific, the results are interesting:

  • 97% feel comfortable doing more than 11 hours per week
  • The greatest number of respondents, about 40%, say they would be most comfortable doing 16 to 20 hours of massage per week
  • 13% said they would be comfortable doing more than 26 hours of massage per week

So for most therapists, their income is definitely capped by the number of massages they can comfortably do each week. Also, given that most therapists only feel comfortable doing up to 20 hours of massage a week, the question must be asked: What can full time massage therapists do for supplemental income during the hours they are not doing massage each week?

Any thoughts?



Does snail mail beat email?

What’s the best way to reach potential customers? Postal mail or email?

In the old days.. ten years ago… I would actually send letters and postcards to connect with potential clients.

You heard me right: Small businesses like mine, a massage clinic, actually used to send physical pieces of paper through the mail… a walking mailman, mailboxes and the whole bit. It’s hard to imagine, I know.

But now, the Internet has arrived and the use of direct mail has dropped dramatically. You’d be hard pressed to find a massage therapist that uses postal mail as a marketing tool.

But can it still work in the digital age? Are people more inclined to read and act on postal mail than email?

According to the stats released by the Direct Market Association this month, the response rate for direct mail is 4.4%, compared to email’s average response rate of 0.12%!

Wow! So postal mail does cut through the clutter to reach people!

But that’s not the whole story.

You also have to look at the most important of all numbers… your Return on Investment (ROI).

From that perspective email is far from dead. On average, for every dollar spent on direct mail businesses make $7. On the other hand, for every dollar spent on email, businesses made on average $28.50! In fact, email provided the highest ROI of any direct response medium.

So email is far from dead. It should remain one of the cornerstones of your massage marketing efforts.

If you are not using email, then get with the program. Start using email to communicate with potential and existing clients. It’s the most cost-effective thing you can do to get people through your doors.

The great thing is there are great commercial email programs out there that are free! Setting up and sending email newsletters and promotions has never been easier.

If you need help with the whole process, try out the Web Marketing MBA online coaching program where I introduce you to great resources that are available and where I’ll lead you step-by-step through the process of creating setting up your email newsletter. You’ll be watching over my shoulder as I take you through the steps.

Check it out:

For a limited time you can get the Web Marketing MBA coaching program and the eMarketing for Massage Professionals 101, together worth $599, for only $79! You have to check it out.

In these online courses, I’ll show you how to get the get the same email service I use to send my BodyworkBiz newsletter for free. I pay $240 per month! And I’ll show you how to create compelling emails that get both new and old clients coming through your doors. The offer is coming down soon so take advantage today.

And please click one of the sharing buttons below to let your friends know about this time limited opportunity.

How to get your Facebook Fans engaged on your page

If you are trying to get your Fans engaged on your Facebook Page, you may be wasting time by posting the wrong kinds of messages.

Facebook recently ran a month long study that looked at more than 1,200 posts from 23 brands to find out what worked to keep Fans involved. (Keep in mind that these are big brands, but some of the findings may be relevant to you as a small business with a Facebook Fan Page.)

The tendency of many Page owners is to post conversation starters that are not necessarily tied to your massage service. That approach doesn’t seem to work so well. Fans prefer posts that are relevant to your business. They don’t want to have a friendly conversation; they can do that with their Friends. Instead they want to know more about your business, especially as it pertains to them.

Shares and Comments take much more time and effort from a visitor, so Facebook ranks those posts more highly in News Feeds. Getting a “Like” on your post is not nearly as valuable.

Asking someone to “Like” your post does result in more likes, but doesn’t do much for other types of interactions. So ask for “Shares” instead. To get even more shares be sure to use photos and videos in each of your posts.

Asking questions will get more people to comment, but does not result in more shares. Fans are more willing to comment when asked a question, especially if the question begins with “where,” “when,” “would” and “should.” But avoid asking “why’ questions. For some unknown reason “Why” has both the lowest like and comment rates.

And one last point, please be sure to Share this post with others…

Email Beats Social Media

Email beats social mediaIf I were asked at gunpoint to give up either my website or my email list of contacts, I wouldn’t hesitate to give away my website. My network is much more valuable to me. Email allows me to reach out to people proactively instead of waiting until they become so desperate that they come searching for help.

Email remains one of the keystones of successful web marketing. Yes, I know the “gurus” are saying email is dead, but they are wrong. Despite all the hype around social media, people still use the Internet primarily for the job of sending and receiving emails. The Internet is still largely a utilitarian medium to exchange information, just like postal mail was 20 years ago. And email is still the medium of choice. It’s not as sexy as social media, but it gets the job done.

So it’s no surprise that an Ipsos survey last week found that email use far outweighs social media. A survey of 19,216 adults found that 85% used email while only 61% used social media sites.

So if you are not collecting email addresses from your clients and using email to communicate with them regularly, what are you waiting for? If you need help, check out the resources at BodyworkBiz, in particular the “Web Marketing MBA” program, a series of ten video lessons that will lead you step by step through the fundamentals of web marketing, including a segment devoted on email marketing and an overview of two free services that help you get the job done quickly and efficiently.  The live broadcasts are done, but the recordings are available for you watch whenever it’s convenient for you.

Can Google Adwords Triple the Visits to Your Massage Website?

If you’re website isn’t showing up on the first page of Google, then you might want to consider using Google Adwords. A meta-analysis of 390 “Search Ads Pause” studies showed that on average, sites tripled their traffic coming from the Google search engine if their site did not appear on the first page in organic search results by using Google Adwords.

A meta-analysis takes a look a all studies around a particular topic and combines the results from all to get a more accurate picture than by looking at any one study in isolation. Like this meta-analysis of massage studies.

The study goes on to show that even with a top number one or two organic search result, 50% of the clicks to your site will disappear if you remove your ad.

Online pay per click (PPC) advertising, like Google Adwords or Facebook Ads, is seldom used by massage therapists. Given the results of this meta-analysis, maybe it’s time to make use of this type of advertising.

Can chair massage replace psychotherapy?

Stand aside, Dr Freud…

It looks like the massage chair will be replacing the psychotherapist’s couch.

One of the most significant massage studies conducted in the past decade has been a meta-analysis of existing research to determine the true benefits of massage.

They broadly defined massage therapy as the “the manual manipulation of soft tissue intended to promote health and well-being.”

For this meta-analysis, the researchers did and exhaustive review of the research literature and found 144 studies that used massage therapy and that involved adult humans (i.e. no animal or infant massage). They further filtered their results to include only those studies that

  • had a control group,
  • used random assignment to groups, and
  • reported sufficient data on at least one “dependent variable of interest” (i.e. state and trait anxiety, depression, immediate and delayed pain perception, cortisol levels, heart rate, blood pressure, negative mood)

In the end, only 37 studies met their strict criteria and these were used for the meta-analysis.

In simple terms, doing a meta-analysis of data involves combining all the studies together, which results in a larger sampling of subjects, in this case 1,802 participants. By doing this you get a more accurate indication of results than you would get from any one particular study. They looked at the results of a single massage (called “single dose” in the study) distinctly from multiple sessions of massage (“multiple dose”).

The results

Participants in studies who received just one massage were more likely to experience a reduction in state anxiety, blood pressure and heart rate, than participants in the control groups. Cortisol levels, immediate assessment of pain, and negative mood showed no significant improvements. Multiple applications of massage had greater benefits in reducing pain for the long term.

A series of massages brought about reductions of trait anxiety and depression and provided benefits similar in magnitude to those of psychotherapy

What is undoubtedly the most notable finding is that a series of massages brought about reductions of trait anxiety and depression and provided benefits similar in magnitude to those of psychotherapy.

Researchers have known for ages that stress is a key predisposing factor for anxiety and depression have very strong links and biological mechanisms have been recently established (Magalhaes, Holmes, et als. Nature Neuroscience 13, 622–629 (2010)).
Depression is no small problem. The World Health Organization states that in Western cultures, depression has the distinction of placing a greater burden on society than any other disease. In the USA, more than 21 million people suffer from depression.

Given the prevalence of anxiety and depression and considering the fact that massage may be just as beneficial as psychotherapy in treating these disorders, chair massage can have a powerful role in improving people’s lives.

The researchers found that the length of the massage had no significant impact on its effectiveness

The researchers found that the length of the massage had no significant impact on its effectiveness. So there is really no difference in terms of the impact of massage on anxiety and depression between a 15 minute chair massage or a one hour long table massage.

However, getting multiple or frequent massages did seem to be very important. Because the shorter timeframes used for chair massage mean a lower per treatment cost, chair massage can be an affordable solution to those suffering depression and anxiety.

Step aside, Dr Freud: Chair massage is coming.

SourceMoyer, C., Rounds, J., & Hannum, J. (2004). A Meta-Analysis of Massage Therapy Research. Psychological Bulletin, Vol. 130, No. 1, 3-18.

Online ratings and reviews are important

Here is some compiled stats by Bazaar Voice. Check out this post for some mind-blowing facts and figures…

  • 83% of all holiday shoppers are influenced by customer reviews. (ChannelAdvisor “Consumer Shopping Habits Survey”, August 2010)
  • High product rating will increase likelihood of purchase for 55% of consumers. (eConsultancy, July 2010)
  • Availability of product ratings was a factor for 59% of UK shoppers, as was the availability of user-generated or consumer product reviews (57%). (eConsultancy, July 2010)
  • Nearly two-thirds (64%) of the UK population have researched products/services online within the last 3 months.  (European Commission, May 2010)
  • Rubbermaid found that, when they added reviews to their free-standing inserts (ads included in newspapers), conversion for the coupons increased by 10%. (Rubbermaid Case Study, April 2010.)
  • By 2014, 53% of total retail sales (online and offline) will be affected by the Web, as consumers increasingly use the Internet to research products before purchasing. (Forrester, March 2010)
  • Luxury Institute research revealed that, of the customers who shop for high-end merchandise online, 78 percent of them did so in order to find the best price while nearly as many, 77 percent, did so to compare brands (BrandWeek, January 2010).
  • When making purchase decisions, North American Internet users trust recommendations from people they know and opinions posted by unknown consumers online more than advertisements on television, on the radio, in magazines and newspapers, or in other traditional media. (Nielsen Online, April 2009)

The bottom line: You must maximize your online presence if you want to be successful now and in the coming years.

Online Reviews Important for Massage Therapists

I spent a lot of time taking participants of the e-Marketing 101 course through the process of setting up profiles on review sites. These sites are hot and definitely influence consumers’ behavior.

A recent survey was released that confirms their value. Here are some of the key findings:

  • 70% of people have used the internet to find a local business in the last 12 months
  • 67% of local consumers have consulted online customer reviews of local businesses
  • Younger consumers consult online reviews more regularly than older consumers. 60% of consumers aged 55+ have consulted online reviews of local businesses vs. 68% of consumers aged 16-34 have consulted online reviews
  • 58% of consumers trust a local business more having read positive online reviews
  • 79% of people aged 16-34 trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations

If you are not utilizing online review sites as part of your marketing strategy, you may be passing up lots of potential customers looking for massage online.

More information on e-Marketing 101 for Massage Professionals can be found here: