Occasionally the general public may lose sight of all of the wonderful health and wellness benefits massage therapy can offer. Using easily accessible and inexpensive tools, like social media, offers people the ability to learn more about the specialized education and training licensed massage therapists go through (and maintain with CE courses), as well as the variety of health problems treated and prevented by these skilled professionals. Bolstering general knowledge about the profession makes commitment to a plan of therapy much more appealing once there is a better understanding of the benefits.

For instance, many people might think massage therapy is simply an endeavor in luxury. But as a trained professional, you know that a major focal point of the profession is preventative and restorative treatment. Using your marketing platforms (social media, brochures, e-mails, etc.) to educate potential clients about this aspect of your services will send the message that they don't have to wait until their birthday or a special occasion to enjoy the benefits of regularly scheduled visits with a massage therapy. In addition to restorative treatments, advertising preventative treatment plans on social media offers people a glimpse of how well-rounded massage therapy services are, and provides the opportunity for repeat business and referrals because of the user-friendly nature of these online tools.

Social media sites are amazing (and free!) tools that offer the potential to reach many prospective clients. In conjunction with traditional forms of connecting (like business cards, fact sheets, brochures and mailers), use platforms like Facebook, Google+, and Twitter to connect with the community your practice serves. This gives people who are curious about your services an opportunity to feel connected with your practice before they ever walk through the door. Don't forget to consider popular discount websites like Goupon.com, or venture offline with printed ads packages like Valpak, which can reach thousands of people in the area surrounding your business. Have your business cards and brochures with information about your website, contact information, and your educational information proudly displayed within arm's reach when they walk in for their first appointment, and you've already made an excellent impression.

In addition to creating social media profiles and connecting that way, utilize template-based e-mail blast websites like MadMiMi.com or ConstantContact.com to easily generate e-mails. These websites are inexpensive and are truly user-friendly, and can be an invaluable marketing tool for your practice. Using them to generate newsletters, special offer announcements and holiday oriented discounts gets your practice's information into potential patient inboxes where it can be easily accessed and (even better) forwarded to more potential patients.

If reaching potential patients via online means is not for you, educate and market to your community with mailers, brochures, fact sheets, and business cards. As you know, having your business's information displayed at gyms, offices, medical centers, and other relevant public places around your community increases your impression rate and keeps your business in the forefront of potential clients' minds. In addition to printed marketing materials, teaching courses focused on massage therapy educates the community about the health and wellness benefits your services offer, and can also potentially earn you continuing education credits (but be sure to check your state board's continuing education regulations first to review the guidelines for obtaining hours this way).

Many user-friendly, inexpensive, and effective marketing options geared to your budget and time frame are out there. It's up to you to choose which ones will help educate your community about all your business has to offer. Have a helpful marketing suggestion that you didn't see here? Put it in the comments below! And if you want to learn more about online CE options for massage therapists, head over to MilestoneCE.com.