Podcast

Episode 363

Jul 9, 2021

Allissa and Michael discuss the benefits of simplifying massage pricing.

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EPISODE 363

Weekly Roundup

Discussion Topic

  • Benefits of All-inclusive Pricing

Quick Tips

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Transcript: 


Sponsor message: 

ABMP is proud to sponsor the Massage Business Blueprint podcast and we are delighted to have them. One of the many, many benefits of ABMP membership is ABMP Five-Minute Muscles and ABMP Pocket Pathology. These are quick reference apps designed to help you quickly find information that you need to make a decision about your massage session planning. The Five-Minute Muscles includes muscle-specific technique and palpation videos for the 83 muscles most commonly addressed by professional massage therapists and ABMP Pocket Pathology can help you sort out contraindications before any treatment. These apps are included with ABMP membership and you can go to ABMP.com/apps to access them and non-members can sample demos as well. Again, that's ABMP.com/apps.

Michael Reynolds:

Hey everyone, welcome to the Massage Business Blueprint podcast, where we help you attract more clients, make more money and improve your quality of life. I'm Michael Reynolds.

Allissa Haines:

I'm Allissa Haines.

Michael Reynolds:

And we are your hosts. Thanks so much for joining us today. Allissa, what are you reading?

Allissa Haines:

I'm not reading anything. It has been a particularly chaotic week or two here and I have, that's not true, I am reading something but I'm just like reading the same cheesy fiction that I usually dive into when I'm utterly overwhelmed in every other aspect of my life. So just cheesy stuff, cheesy like detective fiction and some romance novels, and that's all I got, but what are you reading? It's so interesting and FYI I actually read this too.

Michael Reynolds:

Oh, okay. Yes. I am fascinated by everything I'm reading about this Britney Spears situation, the conservatorship that she is under, I had no idea like I knew there was something going on with Britney Spears. I don't like listen to her music or follow her necessarily, but the situation is fascinating and seems very weird and oppressive and kind of like, I don't know, just depressing. The podcast where I learned the most about it was from The Journal. and I've got a link to it in the show notes and it's called Britney Spears Wants Her Life (And Money) Back.

Michael Reynolds:

It tells the story of how she had this breakdown and all sorts of issues and the courts awarded her father and some other people conservatorship, which means they control her life, basically. They control her money. They control what job she takes and doesn't take, they basically make all life decisions for her and it's been like this for 13 years, I think. So I'm just fascinated by what's happening here and now I understand this whole Free Britney movement, because like I said, it seems like a very weird situation. So I've been reading a lot about this and I'm fascinated it and I'm a little taken aback by it. So that's what I'm reading.

Allissa Haines:

This is a really phenomenal example of when something happens to a regular old white lady, how it finally brings something to light and even that, it took 13 years for this to bring to light, because this is something that happens to disabled adults every single day. One of the things that they are also controlling with Britney Spears is her medical treatments. She has been forced onto a birth control, an invasive birth control implant, an IUD. She has been not allowed to have it removed. She has been forced onto certain psych medications and also forced to work, like to forced to go be on tour and the attorney who is in charge of her conservatorship has been making what, $10,000 a week managing her stuff for 13 years and there's some super shadiness going on. This is something that happens to disabled adults every day.

Allissa Haines:

There are disabled adults who are forced to be sterilized by the courts. There are disabled adults who are not allowed to choose where they live and by disabled, we don't mean unable to be independent, but people who, with mobility issues, people with mental health issues, people with developmental disabilities, but who can be just fine and make independent decisions with varying levels of support and that is a huge, huge thing. Disabled people are not only much more likely to be victims of violence from the general population and also law enforcement, but also more likely to be evicted, more likely to lose their children in the event of a custody issue, even though they are not, in the case of physical disabilities, they are not unable to raise their children.

Allissa Haines:

This is how poorly we treat disabled people in the United States and that ranges from mental health to people with connective tissue disorders that limit how much they can physically accomplish in a day. It's really quite something. So there is a huge awareness that is happening with disability rights because of this situation coming to light with Britney Spears. So that's my, sorry, I guess I did have something I was reading this week.

Michael Reynolds:

No, no. Yeah. I appreciate that. One more way I'm realizing I'm kind of a always need help getting out of my privileged bubble here and seeing what's going on so it's interesting.

Allissa Haines:

Yeah. It's good stuff. Good stuff.

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah.

Allissa Haines:

And I'm glad to see the evolving happening in law and in general awareness.

Michael Reynolds:

All right. Well, before we move on to our topic for today, let's hear more about PocketSuite.

Allissa Haines:

Yeah, man. PocketSuite is an all in one app. It is app-based, that makes it easier to run your massage business and I emphasize it's app-based because I think the app is cool, but you can also just do it from a regular computer. Their browser option is fantastic. You can schedule and get booked online by clients. You can manage all your forms, notes, contracts, payments, reminders, all of the things within this program and it is all HIPAA compliant. You can text back and forth with clients using a business number that has been imported into that app so you don't have to use your personal phone number, but you can still use your personal smartphone if you want.

Allissa Haines:

PocketSuite helps businesses save time and make a great living and a massage therapist can be up and running on PocketSuite in 15 minutes. Our listeners, Massage Business Blueprint listeners, you get 25% off your annual premium subscription, pardon me, for your first year with PocketSuite. It's super affordable. You can check it out. MassageBusinessBlueprint.com/pocketsuite to check it out.

Michael Reynolds:

Nice. Sounds like a great tool.

Allissa Haines:

It's really fun. I played with it and it's pretty cool. I like it a lot.

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah. All right. So tell me more about the benefits of all-inclusive pricing today.

Allissa Haines:

Okay. So this is something that we've talked about in different ways, from different perspectives and I, after reading some threads online about people pricing things for cupping and taping and stones and stretching treatments and all these different things and asking about pricing differences and stuff, I'm just going to beat the drum one more time and I promise this is going to be a short one. All-inclusive pricing is awesome. Having a price for the amount of time you are with a client versus having a price for the techniques that you use with a client, vast difference.

Allissa Haines:

So all-inclusive pricing, you have one price for the amount of time you're with a client. It makes bookkeeping and income projections so much easier because you can look and be like, "I have this many appointments and I got this many hours and this many 90 minutes," or whatever, and you can really quickly calculate a loose estimate of what your income is going to be versus looking at your schedule and being like, "Well, I got one hot stone and one pregnancy and one deep tissue and one, whatever, one hot stone, one Kinesio tape," and doing a lot of confusing math to get a look at how much you just made or how much you're going to make. So it's easier, simplified math brain work for you and for me, that's a big deal.

Allissa Haines:

It is simplicity for the client. You can make your menu of services so much simpler and so much more assessable to clients to understand and choose a treatment if you're just pricing based on time and that time includes all of the things you might do to reach their goal and we'll talk a little bit more about that in a second. This is especially relevant regarding tipping. Sidebar here, all of our resources are aimed towards people who run independent massage practices like they're the owner and they work in them. So of course, if you're an employee somewhere else, tipping is totally standard and I'm not here to argue with that, although that model could be changed. I'm not arguing about that. Of course, employees and such should be making tips. I understand it's a big part of living wage as a massage therapist but right now I'm talking to independent massage practice owners, one owner, one massage therapist, you're doing the work, that's it.

Allissa Haines:

Tipping is not necessary. In the olden days, it wasn't customary to tip the owner anyway so it makes things so simplified when you just charge enough so that when you don't get a tip, you're still making what you want to make. Next, when you have an inclusive pricing, you can use all the tools and techniques that you've learned in any particular treatment. You don't have to say when a client's on the table, you're like, "You know what? I think cupping would be really useful on this shoulder right now. I charge an extra $15 for that. Is that okay?" That is super uncomfortable and borderline predatory to do to someone who is under your care and in a vulnerable position at that moment.

Allissa Haines:

Then I think that ends up with us throwing the cupping in for free, because it's uncomfortable and borderline unethical to sell to a client on the table. You throw it in for free and then you're like, "Oh, I did cupping and I didn't get the full charge for that," or then you got to be like, "If you want the cupping next time, that'll be an extra 15 bucks," which is like weird, like if you want to care for me in the way that I think it's best to care for you, you got to pay me more. It just, it's weird and I think it can limit the care we provide and it can limit our judgment, our therapeutic judgment, like we might feel so uncomfortable upselling that, that we don't offer that treatment that could help that client meet their goals better.

Allissa Haines:

So when you just charge a price for a treatment for a time, then you don't have to make, that gray area gets completely removed and next point, you can focus on the results and meeting the client's needs. There is no one technique that is going to serve all of the needs of all of your clients. We mix it up and if mixing it up involves tools or involves techniques that might be up-sold in other businesses, again, that becomes a therapeutic decision-making process when it shouldn't be. The decision should be, I'm going to use the tools that best serve you if you're cool with that."

Allissa Haines:

Okay, this is my favorite one and we really are almost done. It's the penultimate point here. You can charge more. You can decide, okay, the most expensive treatment I have would be a 90, let's say the most expensive 90-minute treatment I would have would be one that also includes hot stones and cupping. So figure out what that price is and just charge it for all your 90 minutes. Like yeah, you keep the hot stone pot running through the day. You got to be mindful of cross-contamination. So you can use your tongs to pull the stones out and then not put a contaminated stone back in there, okay. Still, yeah, you're going to have to spend a few extra minutes cleaning certain stones during certain treatments. I don't do a lot of hot stone massage, people, so forgive me on the terminology, but you can work this out and it applies to a whole bunch of different things.

Allissa Haines:

But if you're charging for every 90 minutes, what you feel is appropriate for the extra time or the extra supplies you might have to use in that treatment, then even if you were to do your most expensive and time-intensive treatment, you're making the amount you're happy with and when you do a treatment that doesn't have stones and Kinesio tape, you're making even more money off of it. That's a good thing, but you'll never earn less than your comfortable minimum with that most expensive treatment. Michael, did that make sense? Cause it's the first time I've verbalized that clearly out loud-

Michael Reynolds:

Yes, it did make sense.

Allissa Haines:

I don't know how clear it was-

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah, yeah.

Allissa Haines:

Okay. So, and it's the same deal with tipping. People are like, "Well, I won't make as much." Charge for the hour, what you would make with a decent tip. Then every client is going to pay that and you're always going to get that amount that you want to get for the hour. Just charge what you want and need to make, and don't play games with the other stuff. Also finally, my last point here is even if you find this entirely reprehensible and the idea of not including pricing in your, pardon me, including tipping in your prices and not including all of these extra things that might require a little bit more supply or a little bit more time into your, like, if you're not comfortable doing that, you can still look at your menu of services and your pricing and find a way to simplify.

Allissa Haines:

I can almost guarantee you when you simplify your menu, you will get more bookings. When it is easier for someone who lands on your scheduling page to determine what they need from you, they will book it more frequently. You'll find that your conversions, people who land on your page, and the percentage of them that actually book an appointment improve. We have seen this over and over again. That is what I have to say about all-inclusive pricing. I told you it was going to be quick and it really was.

Michael Reynolds:

It really was, yeah.

Allissa Haines:

I know, that never happens.

Michael Reynolds:

It occasionally happens. I love the simplicity of all-inclusive pricing. My favorite example is Chipotle, as you know, like there's a food court in my mall that's in my town and there's a Chipotle and a Which Wich right next to it, and the Chipotle always has a line, like crazy long line of people wanting to order and it moves so quickly and so efficiently and they serve so many people. The Which Wich is like chaos. It's like a handful of people that are desperately trying to figure out how to order and they're all looking confused and it's just a mess and simplicity in pricing is so much better. It just streamlines your business. I love, love, love this so much. So thank you, thank you.

Allissa Haines:

I think that comparison was brilliant because I have been to a Which Wich exactly one time in my life and I liked it. It was like a special occasion, but it was not the easy lunch that I need most days. So if you run a super-luxury kind of massage place with all kinds of extras and stuff like that and real customized stuff and customize wasn't the right word there. But yeah, maybe you're a Which Wich and maybe a more complicated menu with tons of very specific choices is good for you. But if you're the kind of therapist that sees regular clients frequently for maintenance or pain relief, like be the Chipotle. Be simple, be easy, be inclusive and only charge for extra guacamole.

Michael Reynolds:

I still pay for the extra guac because hey it's guac and-

Allissa Haines:

Yeah, of course.

Michael Reynolds:

Of course. All right, good stuff. Thank you for that. All right. Before we move on, let's talk about the Jojoba Retail Starter Kit.

Allissa Haines:

Yay. The HobaCare Retail Starter Kit will get your retail sales off the ground at an amazing discount. You, my friends, can share the love of HobaCare jojoba with your clients and customers today. They launched the HobaCare Retail Starter Kit because they've had so many customers who are massage therapists, who are like, "Oh my gosh, my clients rave about how this feels on my skin and frankly, a lot of us have been giving it out in little tiny sample bottles for ages anyway," and they are making it easier for us to actually sell it and make a little profit and it feels really, really good.

Allissa Haines:

So you can go to MassageBusinessBlueprint.com/jojobakit, there we go, and check out the special offer. You get a crazy good deal on a sample bottle, some four-ounce bottles and eight-ounce Bottles. You can choose between the regular jojoba and the organic jojoba. It's just frankly, even if you're never going to retail it, it's a crazy good deal on this product. It's a great way to just gently get started making a few bucks, not being gross and salesy, but providing your clients with the stuff they want to take home anyway, at a reasonable price. Check it out. MassageBusinessBlueprint.com/jojobakit.

Michael Reynolds:

All right. Quick tip time. Anything from you today?

Allissa Haines:

I got nothing, man.

Michael Reynolds:

All right. I got something. So this is from the AccelaWork Twitter account, which is run by my friend Robby Slaughter, who I've mentioned a couple of times in the past. He has a lot of great productivity tips and sales tips, and I'm going to read the tweet and then I'm going to explain it because I don't want you to get hung up on the word sales, so the tweet is, "The easiest sale to make is to someone who bought from you in the past. Reactivate old contacts." Now, again, that's the literal tweet but I don't want you to get hung up on the word sales because we don't really think in salesy terms as massage therapists. But the point here that I want to highlight is that often we get really focused on how do we find the next new client? How do we get new clients? How do we acquire brand new clients who've never seen us before? And that's all important.

Michael Reynolds:

That's very important to growing your practice, but how many clients do we have in your database who have booked a massage or two, or a handful of massages in the past and they haven't come back for a while and how many of them would kind of sit up and say, "Oh yeah, I do want to get a massage. I just haven't really thought about it recently," if you sent them a postcard or sent them a very polite non-salesy email or did some sort of outreach to kind of "activate them" or to remind them that you're there, or maybe something has changed in your practice, something new you're offering that could benefit them, or just something simple to remind them that you're there. That is a much easier client to get than a brand new client who has never heard of you yet. So reactivating old clients could be a potential source of growing your practice, right under your nose, so to speak. So that's what I got today.

Allissa Haines:

That's great and it's really important [crosstalk 00:19:18] It is. Sorry. Can you not hear me?

Michael Reynolds:

Now I can.

Allissa Haines:

Oh, that was weird. I was talking, sorry. It was even un-muted, I checked. So yeah, no. I mean, it's always easier to retain than it is to recruit and also it's just rewarding and especially now, there's a lot of people we haven't seen since pre-pandemic for many of us and so people have, our regular, our I'm sorry. Words are hard. Our old clients that we haven't seen in a while have gotten out of the habit of massage and they have forgotten what they love about you in a lot of ways so it is, of course, good to reach out and remind them that at one point they loved you and your services and maybe they want to come back and you can do that offer without being gross and salesy. You can do that in a way that emphasizes that you had a great therapeutic relationship with someone and you hope they come back and that's it.

Michael Reynolds:

Cool. All right. Well thanks, everyone. We didn't have a review on deck for today, but a reminder that we are doing complimentary consultations for people who leave reviews for us. If we read that review on the air on one of our episodes, we will invite you to email us and let us know that was your review and we will set you up with a 30-minute complimentary business consultation with Allissa and me both and we can talk about whatever you want, talk about your business, talk about challenges you're having, talk about marketing, money, whatever it is, we will do our best to help you and give you a sounding board for things that are maybe a challenge for you right now in your business.

Michael Reynolds:

So don't forget to consider that, leave a review for us on Apple Podcasts or wherever you, I think other platforms have reviews as well, but we really get them mostly from Apple Podcasts so check that out, leave us a review and we may read yours on our next episode and set that consultation with you. So with that, thanks everyone for joining us today. Have a great day. We will see you next time.

Allissa Haines:

Bye.

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