Newsletter: Massage Practice Building excerpts-- Aug 2016

Michelle Burns
August 11, 2016

Here is some of the information I recently shared in my August newsletter. Each newsletter has a specific focus.  This month is focused on business and ethics information. If you would be interested in receiving my newsletters, please head over to my contact page and sign up.

Tidbits, Updates and Resources:

  • 1.  In the article “What are clients typing into Google? 3 Powerful and Simple Keyword Research Tools” at The Practice Academy, Jeff discusses “In order to attract the most visitors to your website and rank high in online search, you need to find out what potential clients are typing into Google searches”

    2.  In "Massage marketing Tip: Set Up Joint Ventures," Carol Wiley describes 2 types of joint ventures: joint marketing venture and endorsed offer joint venture. “One of the best ways to attract clients is to have someone else recommend you. That’s what joint ventures are all about.”

    3.  Carol Wiley, Massage Business Tips, has a great article: "Massage Marketing Tip—In-Person Networking."

    4.  Networking for People Who Hate Networking: A Field Guide for Introverts, the Overwhelmed, and the Underconnected by Devora Zack is a wonderful resource. The book can be purchased on Amazon in Kindle, paperback or audible format.

    5. Do you use Twitter and Instagram for social media marketing? Using hashtags that are relevant can significantly increase your pool of followers. Kim Garst, with Boom Social, wrote a helpful article, How to Find Great Hashtags to Market Your Business. 

    6.  Have you considered bartering massage with other service providers? The IRS defines barter as: "the trading of one product or service for another. Usually there is no exchange of cash. Barter may take place on an informal one-on-one basis between individuals and businesses, or it can take place on a third party basis through a modern barter exchange company". On the IRS website, you can find the legal requirements for reporting barter on your taxes and which forms should be filed.

    7. Nina McIntosh’s book, The Educated Heart: Professional Boundaries for Massage Therapist and Bodyworkers, has been revised by Laura Allen. It now includes a chapter on professional boundaries and the Internet. The book has been released in Kindle and pre-odors are available for the Paperback format at Amazon.

    8.  Do you have questions about what is tax deductible and what isn’t? Margo Bowman and Kelly Bowers have put together a small book that helps answer those questions: Can I Deduct That?: 100 Things you Can (Or Maybe Can’t) Take as Business Deductions. It is available in Kindle format.

    9.  Looking for ways to promote your business but have run out of ideas? 50 Ideas for Massage and Spa Promotion by Gael Wood can give you some new ways of thinking and planning. It is available for Kindle from Amazon.

    10.   My friend, Korey Howell, who is a very successful photographer and business owner, offers “5 ways to establish a professional online identity”.  Not only is the article helpful, but if you need a professional headshot, Korey and her crew are some of the best. And, they can come to you. Check out Korey Howell Photography.

    11.  "A cognitive bias is defined as a pattern of thinking that deviates from norm or rationality in judgment. Inferences about other people and situations are often woven in an illogical fashion, and individuals can create their won 'subjective reality' from their respective perceptions.” Intellectual Takeout posted an article,10 Cognitive Biases that Affect Your Everyday Decisions: We make up to 35000 decisions a day. Try to avoid these ways of thinking,” that includes these biases:

    1. Bandwagon effect—believing or doing something because people around you believe or do it
    2. Availability Heuristic—Overestimating the importance of information that is easiest to recall
    3. Dunning-Kruger Effect—Unskilled individuals overestimating their abilities and experts underestimating theirs
    4. Framing Effect—Drawing different conclusions from the same information presented differently
    5. Confirmation Bias—Seeking and prioritizing information that confirms your existing beliefs
    6. Curse of Knowledge—Struggling to see a problem from the perspective of someone with less knowledge than you
    7. Reactance—The desire to do the opposite of what is requested or advised, due to a perceived threat to freedom of choice
    8. The Sunk Cost Fallacy—Refusing to abandon something unrewarding because you’ve already invested in it
    9. Hindsight Bias—Believing that you could have predicted an event after it has occurred
    10. Anchoring Effect—Excessively focusing on the first piece of information you receive when making a decision

    12.  According to the World Economic Forum, these are the 10 skills you’ll need in the workplace by 2020 (most are needed now):

    1. Cognitive flexibility
    2. Negotiation
    3. Service Orientation
    4. Judgment and decision-making
    5. Emotional intelligence
    6. Coordinating with others
    7. People Management
    8. Creativity
    9. Critical thinking
    10. Complex problem-solving

    13.  "Every day, we are bombarded by attention grabbing headlines that promise miracle cures to all of our ailments -- often backed up by a 'scientific study.' But what are these studies, and how do we know if they are reliable? David H. Schwartz, his TEDtalk video, dissects two types of studies that scientists use, illuminating why you should always approach the claims with a critical eye. Not all scientific studies are created equal.

Regarding Licensing

As rules, enforcement, and oversight changes, you can keep up by signing up for email updates from the Texas Department of State Health Services. You can sign up on the massage home page.

Ethics Situation for your consideration

  • Alice has been your accountant for 7 years. Two years ago, she needed help with a stiff shoulder. Alice was so pleased with the other benefits of massage therapy that she now receives weekly massages from you. Her standing appointing is Thursday at 4 PM. On Monday, you receive a letter from the IRS stating that a mistake was made on your last year’s tax return and you have overpaid by $800. 

    How do you handle this situation?

    What if the mistake was that you underpaid by $800?

    How do you handle this situation?

Practice Tip:

  • Some suggestions for table linen care to help them last longer and be more inviting to your clients:

    1. Using hot water and a hot dryer can set in oil stains and make them smell like a fast food restaurant. Use warm or hot water to wash but cold water to rinse.
    2. Rather than use fabric softener, add 1/4 cup vinegar to the final rinse. Vinegar helps to eliminate odors, reduce lint, brighten colors and removes residual detergent. Once dry, it leaves no smell.

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