There's no denying this time has been devastating for our industry. We came into this industry wanting to help people, wanting to improve lives and restrictions to keep us safe during this pandemic have stripped us of our ability to help others. We are an industry that supports others though and we are endlessly wowed by the people within the complementary therapies community and how they are lifting each other up and serving clients from behind keyboards and behind closed doors.
We wanted to share some of our favourite ways that we have seen therapists make the most of the down time to improve and market their businesses. So here it is, our lockdown to-do list to help you give your marketing efforts a boost as we prepare to take our businesses off pause.
Keep in touch with your clients
Top priority in this time should be reaching out to our existing clients. There can be no doubt that finding clients takes more resource than keeping them. With the old marketing addage that 20% of our clients account for 80% of our revenue these clients deserve our attention and support during this time. Whether its a simple message, a phone call or an email how lovely would it be if you reached out to find out how they are, making them feel thought about and cared for. If you are new to the industry and haven't yet built these client relationships or don't feel it appropriate then think about posting an update from yourself on your online platforms - be it a photo of you with a message of how excited you are to reopen, or a video of you issuing a reassuring update about your plans for the coming weeks or months.Not planning to reopen for a few months? Why not explain that. People want to support each other and they can't help you to rebuild your business if they don't know when you will be open for bookings!
Ask for reviews
On the subject of people wanting to support you, now is the perfect time to ask your existing clients or case studies to post a review on google, facebook or even just provide you with some kind words you can publish on your website if they aren't tech savvy. This also ties into the idea offering referral schemes or giveaways. You can offer a reward in return for a recommendation to a friend or in the case of a competition it could be a prize for people nominating a worthy winner. We have seen therapists running giveaways for keyworkers. Anything that encourages word of mouth marketing and promotes you as a brand that rewards loyalty is no bad thing! Whilst these activities may be at the cost of your time if you think of it in terms of reaching and engaging likeminded people to your clients it can pay dividends.
Create & share valuable content
Whilst you cannot treat clients think about what you can do. Can you provide client care advice remotely. You will know what your regular clients suffer with so create videos of you demonstrating simple DIY techniques, stretches or foam rolling etc. The key to this is to put vanity or nerves aside and be in the video yourself. Or if it suffices use a photograph demonstrating the stretch. Not only does this show your client that you have truuly thought of them in this time it also creates incredibly valuable content. Your video shared on social media and youtube will garner views now and in the future with people suffering similar issues to your clients. It gives a sense of you as a therapist and gets your brand infront of people in a really positive way. Search engines also love fresh content and video! If you are new to the industry why not create some self help videos or resources for your target market - stretches for desk workers, reflex points on the hand for stress relief, blends for a relaxing bath. Simple self help techniques are extremely popular on social media and resonate really well at this time when we all need a little more care than usual!
Generate a lead list or waiting list
Even if you don't have a set date to open for bookings a simple message asking people if they would like to join a waitlist is a really effective way to get the ball rolling. Be open and honest and just tell your community you miss them and can't wait to be able to start treating them again. We have seen our therapists sharing messages like this asking who would like to be added to a waiting list. It gives you a warm leads call list for when you can reopen and creates a sense of urgency.
Promote gift vouchers
Now is also a really key time to remind people that you offer gift vouchers. You may wish to give a longer redeemable period than usual to give reassurance. Gift vouchers are a great solution for anyone with loved ones celebrating birthdays or anniversaries in lockdown.
Add revenue streams to your business
We have all had to change the way we work and making our businesses more robust will help ease us into this new normal. We have seen our aromatherapists doing some truly beautiful blends and gifting or selling products to key workers. Lotions, sanitisers, relaxing blends for the bath were amongst the most popular being shared out. Gifting these is a wonderful opportunity to support and show care for key workers in your community or allowing clients to purchase blended products whilst they are unable to have treatments. It's made for some great social media content to see therapists supporting their communities whilst having the additional benefits of keeping front of mind with clients, promoting your brand values and enabling you a revenue stream when you are unable to treat clients. For other therapists who aren't able to blend prescriptive products look into potential affliliate links for products you recommend clients. We have also seen our therapists taking consultations online and investigating their current processes and seeing what can be done remotely. It has also been a great opportunity for therapists who have an additional service such as yoga classes which can be promoted and delivered online.
Refresh your online presence
Make a list of all the places your business is advertisied online from your own website and social media channels to your google business listing and any referal sites that link through to your business. Then work through them checking that any contact details and links are current and add new photos or correct any out of date content.
Adapt your message to stay relevant
Who are your clients and what issues might the lockdown have imposed. If you serve a sporting community are they starting to train again after a period of absence. If you typically see desk worker clients would they respond well to a message recognising the strain on neck & shoulders caused by poor posture when working from home. Pinpoint your clients pain points and offer relief for their issues. For those of us who have spent the best part of three months homeschooling and working on a laptop who wouldn't love the sound of a relaxing shoulder massage. Or for those of us who have used our exercise privillges to take up running and are feeling a little worse for wear a treatment tailored to tackle this would resonate. Be creative and have a little bit of fun with any social posts tempting clients to book in.
Keep calm and carry on!
We have all been holding our nerve the past few months, all been experiencing a rollercoaster of emotions with bad days and better days. Whether you try one thing from this list or tackle as many as you can the key is to be visable and be findable. Let your clients and potential clients know who you are, what you can offer and when you hope to offer it. Be creative and enjoy it, we are in a unique position in these next few weeks where we can hopefully take some time to focus on rebuilding and reopening our businesses so lets do that together and hit the ground running. Share your videos, content, posts and plans with us across our social media platforms so we can get involved and support you too.