Massage & Bodywork

November/December 2013

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visit LS: I'd say email. Despite the declaration that "email is dead," I'm not convinced. It seems like everyone is either checking email or Facebook. I don't think email is going anywhere. And as a reasonably involved technologist/nerd/ consumer, I am way more open to acting on email solicitation and engagement from trusted sources than checking out anything through Facebook. For me, Facebook is for keeping tabs on what people are bragging about today. KC: Perfect. Let's talk about email marketing. What does it mean? It's more than just sending a sporadic email to your clients from time to time. It's a shift in perspective to view emailing your clients as a marketing opportunity, and it should be approached like any other tool in your bag of marketing tricks—meaning it should be planned, professional, and personal. Start by planning the content of your message and get clear about the action you want people to take. Do you want to encourage people to fill the open slots in your schedule? Do you want them to buy gift certificates? Do you want them to try a new or underutilized service or modality? Even if the focus of the email is client education, include a clear call to action to encourage a response, like sharing your newsletter. email marketing LS: And don't forget to set your "timer." You need to set up your effort to be measured. Let's say you want to upsell to hot stone treatments, because you are awesome at providing hot stone, and you can charge a little more for it. So the objective is "sell more hot stone treatments." When? For the rest of your life? By tomorrow? KC: OK, how about this goal: "After three months of concentrated marketing efforts, average six hot stone treatments a week, compared to my current zero." LS: Great, Kristin. Specific and measurable. Now, we have an objective, and a time frame, and now we just need to prepare a plan to promote this new offering. We can break it down into a few simple steps: 1. Tell them. 2. Tell them again. 3. Give them a reason to do what you want them to do. 4. Tell them again. Email marketing is not stream of consciousness, or blogging, or sharing on Facebook. It should be a controlled burst of information and enticement to get your recipients to take action—in this case, get a hot stone treatment. KC: Right, but there's more to it than that. Here are a few important reminders: 1. Get permission. You can't just blast away to anyone; your recipients have to be willing to receive your messages (and have given you permission). If you collected email addresses for a free giveaway or raffle, then you don't have the legal right to send marketing emails unless you made that clear at signup. 2. Offer an out. Give them a way to opt out of future emails. 3. Create action. Encourage a behavior or response and give them an action step. 4. Plan it. One message every three months doesn't qualify as an email marketing campaign. Strike a balance between frequent enough to stay on their radar and excessive to the point of turning people off. 5. Look sharp. Using an email marketing service allows you to use professionally designed templates, which reflects positively on the quality of your practice in a client's eyes. 6. Read it again. Remember the rule of thumb for all written material: have some extra eyes read your work to help catch misspellings, grammatical errors, or confusing content before you hit send. Also, read up on the CAN-SPAM Act ( bus61-can-spam-act-compliance-guidebusiness), a law that sets the rules for commercial email, to learn more about the dos and don'ts and avoid any trouble. LS: Excellent use of technology! What's another one our readers can use? See what benefits await you. 27

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