Early in my career, I was eager to list all the medically proven benefits of massage.
Down the list I would go, laying each one out one by one. Sometimes this conversation occurred before the massage, sometimes it would start during the massage. All it takes is someone asking the simple question, "Why is massage good for me?" Then, away I'd go! Blah blah circulation blah! Man, did I get sick of going down that list fast!
What was I really trying to do? Ultimately I was "selling" massage to the client. The hope was that this person, after their experience with you, will commit in some way to returning or even referring a family member or friend. But was this the best way to connect with this person I just met? No - talking at length about benefits can actually diminish the client's experience or even throw the therapist off schedule.
Instead, I have found that the best way to communicate the benefits of massage is by relating it to another very important service everyone knows well - the dental industry. That's right, the dentist. You might be thinking, "Why a dentist?" Wouldn't comparing massage therapy to a mechanic make more sense?" After all, there all those massage places called The Body Shop, or The Body Mechanic, etc.
Well, here's my answer to that. If we were like mechanics, we could pull a part out and replace it, but we can't. That would make us surgeons. All massage therapists can really do is help people keep what they have healthy and working correctly - just like the dentist does with your teeth. If you brush, floss, and rinse, you can have healthy strong teeth for a long time, right? Well, if you get regular massage, eat right, and exercise, you can have a healthier body for a long time. I like the dental image because we all know what teeth look like that are neglected. Gross right! Who wants to let their body look like that inside?!
So for me, I began selling my massage and my personal training by focusing on "the big three". Eat right, exercise, and get a massage for great muscular health. You can always give them some benefits factsheet, but truthfully speaking, A good therapeutic massage is truly like the brushing of teeth in it's cleansing affects for the body. And that cleansing effect is what keeps so many ailments at bay. Try relating massage to your clients in this way and let's see if we can all come together to show people the true value and importance of massage therapy. Good luck friends!
Roman Roberts L.M.T., C.W.T.