Massage & Bodywork

SEPTEMBER | OCTOBER 2015

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SPEAK YOUR MIND How and when do you ask your clients to rebook? I ask my clients to rebook after the massage, after the instruction (if any) of self-maintenance exercises, and while they are paying me for the service. My standard method is to ask, "When would you like to come back?" A new client will typically ask me how soon I think they should come back, and how often. If there is an ongoing problem we are trying to solve, I will give them a clear indication of when I believe they would best be served by rebooking a session. If they ask me how often they should get massage, I'll tell them I think people should get massage as often as they can afford it, emphasizing that research indicates the more often they get a massage, the healthier they will be in the long run. My regular clients know it is very important to book their next massage right away, since I tend to get booked up weeks in advance. Since I am not as young as I used to be, I have limited my availability to four massages per day, five days per week. After more than 25 years in the business, I really don't have a situation where I have to worry about how and when I'm going to get enough work to make a good living. It's more a question of how to equitably serve my very loyal clientele while ensuring my career continues without injuries as I age. I have clients who jokingly tell me that they don't like to recommend me to other people anymore because it is getting too hard to get an appointment. I guess that sounds like bragging, but in reality my experience has been that if you give really great massage at an affordable price, the clients come whether you advertise or not. The only advertising I have ever done was giving my cards to happy clients. ELEANOR R. SMITH LEBANON, MISSOURI Communication is the most important part of my massage business. When I finish the massage, the client asks, "When do you want me back?" This is when we get to discuss self-care. I remind them to stretch everyday; this is when they rebook. There are times when my client wants to set their next appointment before we start the massage. Keeping clients informed about their bodies will keep them coming back to continue to be stronger and healthier. Stress levels are better managed, too. My massages are more therapeutic, rather than just a spa massage. The work we do with our massage time is important for my clients to take care of themselves, and helps keep their mind, body, and spirit in check for happier, stronger days. DEEANNA RODIGER SALEM, OREGON 16 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k s e p t e m b e r / o c t o b e r 2 0 1 5

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