In the past I have written about how choosing a niche will help you book clients faster.
I still stand behind that statement!
However, I also understand that not everyone wants to focus on one specific group of clients. A common comment I hear from massage therapists is they prefer to see a wide variety of clients rather than ‘niche down’. After all, they want to help people, and one of the ways they can do that is by making themselves available to a wider client base.
Plus, let’s be realistic. We might love giving treatments, but variety is good! Many massage therapists tell me they’d be bored if they just saw one type of client all day long.
The trouble with not focusing on a niche as a massage therapist
However, this can lead to some issues when trying to market yourself. As I’ve discussed previously, choosing a niche makes it much clearer to people why they should choose you over some other massage therapist. This is especially true if you work in a city or larger town with several other massage businesses in the area. If you and everyone else have a generic ‘we treat everyone’ website and social media, how are clients going to choose who to see? It isn’t about competition, it’s about having the clients who are the best match for your skills and talents.
So ok, that’s great and all, but what if you still really want to see many different types of clients? How can you possibly find a link between pregnancy massage, sports massage and hot stone relaxation treatments?
The answer is… you don’t.
Or at least, not in the way that many people would try to do.
How to market yourself as a massage therapist without choosing one niche
You need to find a common link that is outside of the conditions, life stages and injuries the client may be experiencing. You need to think outside the box a little!
Let me give you an example.
Say you are a massage therapist and work with two sets of clients you feel are fairly distinctive. One is pregnant people and postpartum/new parents. The others are runners. You truly love working with both and are not interested in focusing on only one of these populations.
How do you create a cohesive practice for your marketing and advertising? How do you make it fit together without having to create two very different marketing messages?
The key is to find a link between the two groups, even if at first it doesn’t seem like there is one.
For example, do you tend to attract active folks as pregnancy clients? People who are still running, biking, and so on through pregnancy and want to add massage as another way to keep healthy? Active in pregnancy or active in general as a runner, there is your common link: folks who are active and focused on their health and wellbeing.
Or, maybe it’s a bit more nuanced than that. Perhaps you are a mom and a runner yourself. Your treatment style — and your overall way of running your business — is influenced by these parts of your life. Perhaps that is the link — busy active parents or parents-to-be are your key target audience.
Or, perhaps it is the skillset you offer that is the link. Maybe you are trained in specific techniques that serve both pregnant and athletic clients, and it is that specialization that you should focus on with your marketing. This one can get a little tricky as sometimes we can default to talking in depth about the techniques while forgetting about why clients are seeing us in the first place — to improve their overall health and wellbeing. So be sure to clearly explain how your specialized technique is of benefit to each client group.
The overall takehome message on not choosing a niche
Hopefully you’ve got the concept now and can brainstorm your own ‘link’ in your business. It is what attracts people to you and what helps them find your business, so it’s good to spend some time exploring this idea.
If you want to stand out from the other massage therapists out there, this is one big way to do it! It is something for you to use as a key point on your website and to help form the basis for your ‘brand’ as a business.
Happy business building!
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