Health and wellness

8 simple yet effective massage therapy marketing ideas to boost your business in 2021

Masseuse giving shoulder massage to a client lying on a treatment table

The number of massage therapists in the United States has more than doubled over the past two decades.

This means that there’s more competition now than ever, and you need to ramp up your marketing game to stay ahead of your competition.

But, this is easier said than done!

Coming up with a massage therapy marketing strategy that can help you stand out from your competitors, generate revenue, and bring in more customers – can be quite stressful. And we understand that you’re not marketers.

Besides, for someone who is specialized in relieving stress and providing feel-good experiences to their clients, getting stressed is not a healthy option.

So just relax! We’ve got your back. Try out these simple yet effective massage therapy marketing ideas to establish your brand, boost your online presence, and get a steady flow of clients:

  1. Get listed on Google and other online directories
  2. Volunteer at local events
  3. Reach out and partner with local businesses
  4. Leverage social media to get more clients
  5. Start a referral program
  6. Adopt Email and SMS marketing
  7. Host open houses
  8. Build a professional website

Before we begin,

There are two things that you need to have a clear understanding of before you start implementing your massage marketing plan:

1. Your niche

Attracting the right audience to your practice is extremely important, and finding your niche helps you market to the right audience.

Identify and set your target market based on your area of expertise, interest, etc., and your prospective client’s demographics, lifestyle needs, interests, habits, or a myriad of other factors. 

This can help narrow down your marketing approach to a specific group of people and build an initial customer base.


2. Your USP (Unique Selling Proposition)!

Your business’s USP helps you answer the question – ‘Why should clients choose you over other massage therapists?’

To set yourself apart from your competitors and to ensure that your customers find you to be a good match, identify and consider your USP as the cornerstone of your entire marketing strategy.


Now that we have the pre-requisites out of our way, let’s take a look at each of the massage therapy marketing ideas in depth and perk up your business!


1. Get listed on Google and other online directories

In a world dominated by technology, having an online presence has become more important than ever. 

Whether you are building your client base from scratch, or you are adopting a more targeted approach of your niche to gain recognition, you should definitely consider employing the right massage marketing strategies into gaining recognition on search engines!

Your prospective clients are online, probably searching for a refreshing and rejuvenating massage after a hectic day. Being present on the below-mentioned platforms is what you need to help those clients experience your gift of touch.


A) Google My Business

Do you know customers are 70% more likely to visit businesses with a Google My Business listing?

Having your business listed on Google is a way to ensure that your leads can find you on Google Search results.

Once they come across your business, your listing shows them where and how to visit your center on Google Maps, along with your web and physical address. 

The example given below shows the Google search results for ‘massage therapy in Chicago’. The initial organic results of this search lists businesses with Google My Business listing.

This makes it easier for the searcher to go to their website, get directions, contact information, open hours, and read reviews of former clients as well.

Google search results for ‘massage therapy in Chicago’ showing massage businesses along with their business details

Once you signup for Google My Business, start accepting bookings directly from your listing using Reserve with Google!

You can convert your Google My Business listing into a booking engine through Reserve with Google (RwG). 

RwG lets Google searchers book online appointments with you directly from Google Search, Maps, and the RwG website. You get a ‘Book’ button on your business’s Google listing which can provide your customers with a hassle-free booking experience, and they can book you anytime, anywhere. 

According to a survey, Reserve with Google has paved the way for 75% of reservations solely from new customers. 

Note: To get listed on RwG, you will need to choose a massage booking software that can facilitate bookings through Google.


B) Yelp

People prefer businesses they know and the ones they can trust. You can ensure this and give your business a boost by getting listed on popular online directories.

Yelp is one such free business directory that can be of use in terms of increasing your customer base. 

From creating and running ads for your business to providing your customers with a platform to post reviews about your business, Yelp offers many features to help your business grow. 

You can also update your business information and include photos of your massage therapy business or services, so that your prospective clients can get all the information they need.

For example, check out Redmint’s Yelp listing that highlights all the business details that a prospective client might want to know prior to booking an appointment with them.

Photos of their services, reviews provided by their past clients, and the appointment scheduling option makes it certain that their Yelp visitors will definitely consider booking an appointment with them!

Yelp listing of Redmint clinic, showing updated massage services, reviews, and booking CTA

Source: Redmint

C) Massage-specific online directories

Online directories like Massage Finder, Massagetique can help you widen your reach.

Since most of these directories let customers search for massage therapists using their Zip codes, getting listed here will mean that you’ll be able to increase brand visibility in your local area.

You can also ask happy customers to leave a review there, and build a positive image for your business.


2. Volunteer at local events 

One of the promotional ideas that can help you in attracting attention to your massage therapy business is – marketing your business at local events. This can help draw the attention of your target audience towards the benefits of massage, and eventually towards your services.

You can volunteer at athletic events by contacting the event organizer. A pre and/ or post-event massage is extremely necessary for an athlete to energize at the beginning of the race, improve their performance, or re-energize after the event. This is where your services can prove beneficial.

You can set up a pop-up booth at the event and get all set to provide your on-site massage services to the athletes.

You can also offer your services by setting up a chair massage service or any other massage services in trade shows, expos, health fairs, etc.

Research a bit on online platforms, look up for events in your local community, and keep yourself updated with any future events where you can get an opportunity to showcase the joy of your services.

While volunteering at events might not help you gain money, it definitely helps you gain new connections in the form of future clients, and an experience that will help you polish your massage therapy skills. 

Apart from the new clients, you can also get an opportunity to form new connections with professionals in other fields who can potentially partner with you in the future.


3. Reach out and partner with local businesses

Two people partnering up for a business

You have the right industry knowledge, so what you need is a terrific way to introduce and amplify the awareness of your services among your target market locally.

You can establish the presence of your services and leverage a wider client base by adopting yet another brand-building strategy, that is, partnering with local businesses. 

Right now, your train of thought must be moving in this direction – “Okay, but how do I achieve this, and even if I do, how do I benefit from this?”

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

  • Reach out to local businesses like beauty salons, hair salons, spas, gyms, yoga centers, healthcare providers, local chiropractors, physiotherapy clinics, etc. by sending them an email describing your business, or visit them at their business unit. Build a good rapport and propose your wish to temporarily partner up with them.
  • You can utilize a little space of the salon or any other local business you’ve partnered with, set up your massage table, service products, and other requirements for a few hours. Offer to provide your services to the customers who visit the local business. 
  • You can also consider giving certain offers or discounts on the services you offer to your customers because this can help boost your brand promotions. 
  • Announce your partnering-up venture on your social media platforms to attract a new crowd, and spread awareness among your existing customers as well.

The teaming up of local businesses coming within the health and wellness field like massage therapy and physiotherapy or healthcare providers tend to pull in those customers who are benefitted from both the services. 

For example, if a customer visits a local psychotherapist clinic to reduce stress or anxiety, they can be referred to your business for additional help like an aromatherapy massage.

This massage marketing idea is mutually beneficial for both businesses as partnering up can help in cross-promotion, saving money by referring each other, acquiring a new customer base, and enhancing business visibility.


4. Leverage social media to get more clients 

Having a social media presence can help in magnifying your business’s visibility and expanding your audience. 

It can help you engage with potential customers, gain insights into what they like, and answer any questions they might have about your business – making it a great massage marketing idea to try out in 2021!

Before you dig deep into the usage of social media, let us give you a quick tip

Do a little bit of research and map out which platform your customer base spends most of their time on, and target those specifically.

For example, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest form the social hub for millennials, however, Gen X is mostly found to use Facebook.


Here are a few ways by which you can boost your social media presence and get more customers:

  • Showcase your brand logo and use your brand-specific themes and colors throughout your profile to build your brand aesthetic and bring you closer to your current as well as your prospective clients.
  • Share content such as self-care tips for your customers (like diet tips, skincare tips, etc.), specials you are running, benefits of massage therapy, etc. You can also share these on your Instagram or Facebook stories and later add them to highlights so that your customers can go through them when they revisit your page. 
  • Run engaging Facebook and Instagram contests, and increase your brand exposure. You can announce exciting offers like free or discounted massage sessions for the winner of the contest.
  • Attractive photos of your pleasant treatment room, special Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year offers, products like massage equipment, variety of oils, creams, candles used, etc. can go up on your Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest profile and provide a visual treat to your profile visitors. 
  • Posting pictures of happy clients post-massage can be added to your list of massage promotion ideas. Take it a notch further by supporting the post with a customer testimonial.
  • Engage with your customers by posting questions. This can help you understand your clients’ views and what they might be looking for.
  • Set up a selfie booth in your treatment room and provide your customers with a platform to click a photo, amidst a relaxing massage. Encourage them to post those photos on their social media handles and tag you. You can repost their content and amp up your presence.
  • Unravel your creative side and utilize reels to make short, attractive videos surrounding your business. Reels and short videos that end up on the Explore page can help you gain a wider audience.
  • Look into your industry-specific community groups where you can be of help, and pitch in your services.
  • You can also generate referrals using social media. The more you grow your circle of connections on your Business page, the more likely it is for you to get recommendations from the ones who’ve enjoyed your services.
  • Add booking CTAs to your social media profiles and convert your profile visitors into paying customers. Adding a Book Now button or the link to your booking page to your social media can help customers book an appointment with you directly. A massage therapy scheduling software catered to satisfy this need can help you add a Book Now button to your Facebook and Instagram Business pages, and your booking link on other platforms. 

Take a look at the Instagram page of Spa Mobile shown below. The brief description they’ve given in the bio conveys a subtle yet pleasant message of their services. They’ve also mentioned the link that redirects them to their website, and the location of their business. 

The overall color coordination of the page is calming and gentle to the eyes. The Instagram action buttons like Message, Book Now, Contact that have been added are extremely important as these can help them get new customers through their Instagram page. 


It doesn’t end here! To ensure that your business is well on its way to being recognized, you should definitely consider using LinkedIn to make business connections.

With over 8.6 million healthcare practitioners, including institutional investors and healthcare influencers, forming an extensive community of healthcare trends, you’d unquestionably find LinkedIn to be an effective marketing as well as an educational platform. 

You can reach out to professionals who match your interests, like health care providers, fellow massage therapists, and build your network. Make yourself more approachable and share content that can connect your expertise in the field to the needs of your potential customers.


5. Start a referral program

Who could possibly be better at helping you generate more leads than your happy satisfied customers who got to experience the soothing joy of your massage services?

A referral program is a type of word-of-mouth marketing, in which a customer is encouraged to refer your business to their family or friends, and avail rewards in return.

Here’s how you can go about creating your own referral program:

1. Provide attractive introductory offers that your customers would definitely want to take up and would propel them to promote your brand to their circles of influence as well.

2. Allow your existing customers to take some time to know and enjoy your services, and then you can pitch in your referral program. 

People trust the opinion of their family and friends, so if you get referred by your client to their inner circle, they are more likely to book an appointment with you.

3. You can offer incentives for customers to introduce your services to their family and friends. 

For example, your referrers can achieve reward points and avail them the next time they visit you. Reward points can include special massage sessions at discounted rates, coupons for massage products, etc. 

These rewards can be introduced to your new customer as well. Hence, a win-win for both the referrer and your new intake. Similarly, you can incentivize new leads by offering discounts and coupons in exchange for their email addresses.

4. Offering massage package deals is beneficial in terms of retaining customers and having a steady income. You can offer discounts to referrers of your services, in these service packages. 

Consider teaming up with local businesses like spa, salon, etc., and offer package deals that include services of both the businesses. 

5. Online reviews can play a pivotal role in a referral program, because nowadays, being seen as a trusted business requires quality reviews. Online reviews are read by nearly everyone who uses the internet. It is this virtual referral of your services that can help you get more massage clients.

Referral programs can help boost your revenue by significantly reducing expenditure on bringing in new customers.

And that’s not just it! At the end of the day, if you get referred by at least one customer, that means you’ve gained their trust, and that’s indeed a splendid job. Happy days!


6. Adopt Email and SMS marketing

Email and SMS marketing is the ultimate low-budget yet effective marketing tool that can help you create a sustainable massage therapy business. 

A simple SMS or an engaging email are the simplest ways that can virtually guarantee that your services won’t go unnoticed. 

Regular usage of this metric would also mean that your clients aren’t going to forget about your rejuvenating services!

Here are few ideas that can help you get started on the email and SMS marketing of your massage business:

  • Leverage social media to get email addresses of your prospective clients, by promoting offers or valuable health-related content.
  • Get contact information – email addresses and phone numbers –  from your current clientele and send them exciting news in the form of discounts or offers. Who doesn’t love a soothing massage at discounted rates? Send your present clients these exclusive deals on slower days and keep your schedule full. 
  • Sharing instructive and helpful content will set you apart as an expert in the field, and your potential customers will grow to appreciate and promote your services. This can also help you nurture your potential clients into paying clients.
  • If you are volunteering in any local event like trade fair or charity marathons, you can get as much footfall as possible by sending an email or a text message regarding the details of the event. You can also offer bonuses for the clients who visit your stall at the event.
  • Along with the contact information, you can also ask your clients about their birthdays. Sending heartwarming birthday wishes on your client’s birthday will not only make them feel special, but this caring attitude will also help you establish a loyal relationship with them.

7. Host open houses 

Whether you have a staff of therapists or you are a solo practitioner, open houses can help introduce the therapeutic knowledge and the exceptionally refreshing nature of your services to the local community.

An open house is an event that can be held at your treatment center, home, or even a park, and can help in marketing your massage business locally. 

While hosting an open house might sound a bit overwhelming, here are a few ways you can go about it and make sure that you don’t miss out on any leads:

1. Promote your event by sending emails to your existing clients and nearby local businesses who can potentially partner with you, like local spa, salon, yoga center, etc.

2. You can also encourage your existing clients to bring a friend along and mention special offers in your emails. 

For instance, if one of your existing clients brings along a friend, you can provide a free service the next time the existing client comes to avail your services and offer a discounted first service to the client’s friend, who is your new potential client.

3. You can announce your event by making flyers as well. Post it at places where it can grab attention like fitness centers, parks where community boards / announcement stands are present, libraries, supermarkets, etc. 

Door-to-door distribution of flyers in the targeted areas is a good option as well!

4. Color and scent are exceedingly pivotal and have a significant impression on your invitees. These are what will create the zen environment for everyone – not just at the open house but at your treatment room as well. 

Make sure you stick to your brand theme throughout your business’s marketing.

5. You can offer demonstrations of a few simple massage techniques; explain the significance of the products you use, equipment like rollers, massage stones, etc. 

6. Sit down with your individual guests, answer their queries, and recommend the best solution for them. This would establish a personal connection between you and your prospective customers, and they will grow to trust your services. 

7. You can distribute brochures, leaflets of your services among the event attendees and uplift your massage therapy promotions. 

8. You should make a social media page of your open house event and invite your Facebook friends to the event. Your brand visibility will soar up when they will share details of your upcoming event.


Note: Due to COVID-19, you may be uncertain about holding an open house, and that thought is definitely justified. 

In accordance with the guidance from the Government and the Health department in your area, and by adhering to the recommended safety precautions, you can host an open house with minimal guests, or divide the total guests into different slots and let them avail the joy of your services. 

While you shouldn’t put yourself and others at risk by hosting a crowd in the present times, open houses can surely be considered as one of the massage therapy marketing ideas in promoting your business.


8. Build a professional website

Owning a professional website is not ‘extremely’ necessary for massage therapists, but having one that showcases your services can bring a lot to the table. 

A website that represents the services in the most professional way is like a shop window that gives prospective customers a glimpse into what your business can offer.

Don’t forget that this is the first chance you get at setting an impression in the minds of your budding clients!

You can make your own professional massage therapy website by starting on some easier-to-use platforms like Weebly and Wix, that come with dozens of relevant features necessary to build out your practice.

Listed below are a few points to keep in mind when you build your massage therapy website:

  • Set a logo that exhibits your brand, and choose a theme that is not just as compelling and calming as your services, but is consistently laid out throughout the website.
  • Maximize the use of elements that have the ability to appeal to your target market. Use alluring images of your services to set the scene for your website visitors.  
  • Ensure your website provides all the details surrounding your business, and that they are able to easily find what they are looking for as well – services offered, location, business hours, contact details, etc. 
  • For your potential clients, the content on your website is the determining factor when deciding to book an appointment with you, so make sure it is informative and displays your professionalism.
  • Once the website is set up, make sure you update the services, look-and-feel, business details, as and when required. This will ensure a smooth customer journey on your website, for your new as well as returning customers. 

Bonus tip – Safely reopen during COVID-19! 

Reopening your massage therapy doors during the COVID-19 pandemic would call for attending to a great deal of safety standards and protocols. 

Be thorough with the disinfecting protocols, transmission-based precautions, and implement those in your treatment room, or at your massage center. The safety procedure should be followed from the time a client enters the treatment room or center, till they are done with the massage session, and leave the room.

These procedures must be followed in accordance with the Government allowance and the safety rules set by the Health Department. 


Final thoughts

Massage therapy is all about connecting with your clients and providing them with a healthier and happier life. This is exactly how your massage therapy marketing should be. The more you understand your customers and their needs, the better the marketing of your business will be.

We hope these massage therapy marketing ideas prove useful and effective in making your business a successful venture. 

All the very best and we wish you continue to reduce the stress in the world around us! 🙂


About Appointy

We at Appointy, help business owners grow and run their businesses with our online scheduling software. This blog was a part of our ‘Manage your Business’ category, where we provide expert tips, resources, or simply talk about the challenges that small and medium businesses face every day. 

If you have any thoughts on this blog, or would like to chat about your business struggles and achievements, let us know in the comments below. 

We love a good talk!