Podcast

Episode 448

Dec 23, 2022

Is your business in the middle of the cancellation season? Allissa and Michael go over some actionable items you can take for your business.

Listen to "E448: Actionable Tasks to Keep You Busy During Cancellation Season" on Spreaker.
Image for E448: Actionable Tasks to Keep You Busy During Cancellation Season

EPISODE 448

Weekly Roundup

Discussion Topic

  • Actionable Tasks to Keep You Busy During Cancellation Season

Quick Tips

  • If you subscribe to RocketLawyer for one month at $5/month and then downgrade, they will offer you a plan for $1/month
  • To celebrate your business anniversary, give clients a $1 discount for every year they’ve been with you.

Sponsors


Transcript: 

Sponsor message:

This episode is sponsored by The Original Jojoba Company. I believe massage therapists should only be using the highest quality products because our clients deserve it and we deserve it. Jojoba, excuse me, wintertime. Jojoba is non-allergenic so I can use it on any client and every client without fear of an allergic reaction. And it's non comedogenic so it's not going to clog pores. So if you have clients that are prone to acne, Jojoba is not going to cause that kind of reaction. In fact, Jojoba can help clean and clear the skin. Jojoba does not stain your 100% cotton sheets, so your sheets are going to last forever. And Jojoba, a little bit goes a long way. This is super cost effective, folks. You can get 20% off the price of the product when you shop through our link, massagebusinessblueprint.com/jojoba.

Allissa Haines:

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. This right here is Allissa Haines.

Michael Reynolds:

This right here is Michael Reynolds.

Allissa Haines:

And we are your hosts and we're delighted that you have joined us today on this, the penultimate episode of 2022.

Michael Reynolds:

Ooh, nice use of the word penultimate.

Allissa Haines:

Did I use it right?

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah, second to last, right?

Allissa Haines:

Okay. Yeah. Okay. Yeah, I thought so.

Michael Reynolds:

Ultimate would be the last.

Allissa Haines:

I only learned that word a couple years ago.

Michael Reynolds:

Nice.

Allissa Haines:

Anywho, Michael, what you reading?

Michael Reynolds:

I'm reading an article called Seven Signs of Toxic Positivity and What to Say Instead. This is from a newsletter called AllPro Dad, because I'm a dad, I like their newsletter, they have some good stuff. And this was an article kind of just reminding us what toxic positivity means and how to spot signs of it and how to provide more useful and empathetic feedback instead. So I won't read the whole thing, but it's a pretty good reminder of certain things like instead of minimizing other people's experience with feel good statements, that's a sign of toxic positivity, giving others perspective instead of validating their emotional experience. These are signs that some of us are guilty of following prey too, so it's a good reminder to try other things instead and sit with people, honor their space they're in, and be empathetic without offering toxic positivity. So, I liked it. It was a good one. That's what I'm reading.

Allissa Haines:

That's great. I can't wait to read it. My friend Melissa, your friend Melissa too, she is really, really good at this and has taught me that the best support you can give someone is simply to validate their feelings. And she literally does it in the form of, we text a lot where she just texts the word, "validated". I'm like, dang. And the first couple times she did that, I was like, "That is so helpful. Thank you for legitimizing my complaint." And anyhow, that's my little pro tip there, my related pro tip. But I'm really excited to read that article. Thank you.

Michael Reynolds:

Sure thing. Anything on your list?

Allissa Haines:

No, no. I've been reading a bunch of trashy romance stuff and specifically holiday-themed trashy romance, which is a whole genre unto itself, and I didn't really know that. A lot of authors of romance and stuff, they will do short holiday-themed ones. So I'm reading Christmas-themed whatever. There's one called a Merry Little Meet Cute and it was fantastic. So I guess that is my reading list, but I'm not putting a link to something that trashy, so I refuse to do that on our business podcast, but that's what I do to chill out.

Michael Reynolds:

Fair enough. All right, we got a sponsor, don't we?

Allissa Haines:

We do have a sponsor. Let's talk about ABMP. Let's talk about the apps. ABMP is a wonderful sponsor and we really, really, really appreciate their support. So ABMP has two apps, the Five-Minute Muscle App and the ABMP Pocket Pathology app. You can learn about them and see little demos at abmp.com/apps. These are free for ABMP members and non-members can check out the demos there. They are quick reference apps designed to help you find information that you might need to make a decision for session planning on the fly.

The Five-Minute Muscle app includes muscle specific technique and palpation videos, which are super useful. I've used them myself. And the Pathology app super helps you make plans if someone, for a treatment plan if someone walks in and they're like, "I have X, Y, Z ailment," and you're like, I don't know what that is, and you can look it up and you can find pretty quickly what you need to know to provide a safe and effective treatment. Progressive web app technology means it doesn't take up a ton of space on your phone or device. And again, you can learn more at abmp.com/apps.

Michael Reynolds:

Yay. Thanks ABMP, for those apps. All right.

Allissa Haines:

It's all Michael today, coming at us to discuss, ready? I'm going to give the title, Actionable Tasks to Keep you Busy During Cancellation Season. And holy wazoly, is it cancellation season. I had a third of my clients cancel last week because they were sick or a kid was sick or a dog was sick or, oh, it's just December. All right, what do you got, Michael?

Michael Reynolds:

Yeah, there's definitely a concoction of different illnesses going around with kids and adults and winter is just like that sometimes. So as Allissa mentioned, a lot of us are having cancellations pop up, sometimes last minute, sometimes same day. And so I thought about what are some things that we can do to be productive? And not that being productive is like the end all be all, but if we want to be productive and we want to get some things done and have some things planned as a backup when clients cancel, I have a short list of things you might consider.

So here is my list and if Allissa has anything to add at the end, we'll do that as well. But my list is one, catch up on your bookkeeping. If you have a last-minute cancellation, you're sitting in your office, keep your computer readily available with your accounting software or whatever you're using to do bookkeeping and ready to open and just keep it open. And then if you've got a cancellation, you take that hour and go catch up on your bookkeeping. It's end of the year, I'm sure a lot of us have neglected our bookkeeping and have some stuff to catch up on. So it's a really fairly easy, non-creative task to just kind of knock out if you have a short burst of time. So that's something you can do.

Next, work on your three words. Our next episode at the end of the year here will be our three words episode, and if you participate in that exercise, you can work on your three words. So maybe keep a notepad handy. And if you have a spare 30 to 60 minutes due to a cancellation, maybe just break out the notepad, kind of sit in your space for a minute and just kind of think about, what do I want my three words to be? What am I thinking through as my theme for the next year? Just write down thoughts and maybe it'll form into your three words.

Next, review your website, make updates to keep it current. I talk to a lot of massage therapists who haven't updated their website in years and don't realize their stuff out of date, maybe their hours of operation are wrong, maybe the content is wrong on their about page, maybe the services they offer are out of date, even pricing is out of date. All sorts of stuff can be out of date and so if you keep your website editing tool, whatever that is, open and available during the cancellation, you can pop over there quickly, go through your website, say, "Oh, that's out of date. I'm going to update that real quick in a few minutes." And you can keep your website up to date pretty quickly by just having that readily available as a task to fill in those gaps. Things like your bio pricing, services, photos, all those things could be potentially updated.

Next, keep a printout of your last three months of bank statements and look for expenses to cut. I'm mainly talking about business expenses, but it works for personal too. But I'm thinking your business bank account. Keep those printouts handy. Get a pen out. If you have an hour free due to a cancellation, pull out those printouts, look through it and say, "You know what? This thing I'm subscribing to every month, I'm not using anymore and it costs me 20 bucks a month. I'm going to cancel that." You may find things that you just don't need anymore or that you want to cancel and just weren't paying attention to. So it could save you a little bit of money by going through your bank statements and expenses with a fine tooth comb, so to speak.

And then last on my list, update your Google business and social media profiles. Often we neglect those as well. Maybe your Facebook page is out of date, maybe the logo is out of date, the cover image is something you don't want there anymore, or maybe your description is out of date. Maybe your Google business profile doesn't have the stuff you want there. Maybe there's no photos. Maybe the hours are wrong. Maybe there is no link to your website. Go through and just keep those handy, and then if you have a spare time slot due to a cancellation, open those up, see if everything looks up to date. If not, pop in there, make a few quick changes. Get those polished up and up to date and looking the way you want.

So those are a few things. I purposely didn't go through a lot of effort to make a 20 item list. I want to keep this simple. So here's a handful of things you might do to fill in the gaps during cancellation. So, Allissa, anything you would add to this?

Allissa Haines:

I will note that lately I have been cleaning out my office. So I've been in my office space for two years now and I try really hard at least once a year, maybe more often, to just open, I have a lot of storage which is fantastic, but also leads to a lot of crap and clutter, inside drawers and stuff, I don't have a lot of clutter out and visible. So yeah, I suggest you open every cabinet and every door and figure out what you are never going to use again and can give away, throw away, or take home. And that's my tip. That's what I've been trying to physically clear my space in the time between clients or time with cancellations. It also makes me feel really good, like end of the year to kind of purge. So that's my thought. That's all I have.

Michael Reynolds:

I like it. Fun fact, we have a wireless printer, it's right above my head in my office, and my wife is printing something and it's coming to the printer. So if you hear a printer in the background, that's why.

Allissa Haines:

I don't. The whole time you were talking, I thought I was muted and it turns out I wasn't, so I'm sorry if people heard me breathing into the mic and stuff.

Michael Reynolds:

I heard no heavy breathing this time. I think we're good.

Allissa Haines:

We are really, really pros at this.

Michael Reynolds:

How to business

Allissa Haines:

Seven and a half years in. And to just highlight what professionals we are, let me tell you about our ebook, which is How to Get New Massage Clients. Super common question, we hear it all the time online lik, how do I get new clients? And responses from the peanut gallery can be great and they can also be horrible, but the reality is there is no single tactic that's going to get you a ton of new clients immediately. And even when there are tactics that will get you a ton of new clients quick, a lot of times they're not the best clients for you and that's not a sustainable business, my friend. We created a beautiful 14-page guide that's going to help you refocus and determine what activities are important for you to attract the best kinds of clients to your massage practice. You can get your free ebook at massagebusinessblueprint.com/clients. And sorry, I got to flip screens at the same time I'm doing this, which is not my skillset here. Quick tips. Michael, what do you got?

Michael Reynolds:

I have a really specific kind of niche quick tip here. So Allissa and I both have used a service called Rocket Lawyer in the past, which is a nice online service for creating legal documents, and I used Rocket Lawyer to generate a transfer on death deed for my home recently to update my estate documents. I was like, "Oh, Rocket Lawyer has a great template, great." They have a subscription model and if you start out for the first month, it's $5 a month and it goes up to like $30 a month I think. So I was like, "Well, I'll just use it for $5 for the first month, get my document, cancel it, good to go."

And so I went to cancel and they're like, "Oh no, don't cancel," of course I expected that. And they said, "Would you like to continue for $1 a month on our $1 plan?" I'm like, yeah. So I said yes and so a fun fact, if you sign up for the free trial, not free trial, but the $5 a month first-month trial and then cancel, they may offer you a $1 a month plan going forward. Maybe it's just something I noticed, but give it a shot if you want and I think it's worth it to keep their service available for $1 a month.

Allissa Haines:

Yeah, absolutely. I've used it a couple times because since I made my will, people keep dying and I have to keep updating my will. But once you create a document, when you're on a subscription, if you no longer have that subscription, you can still update that same document. So I haven't had to pay to do it, but I'm going to have some other stuff coming up soon that I'm going to need to do that for. So I might check that out.

Michael Reynolds:

Let me know if it works for you too.

Allissa Haines:

Thank you.

Michael Reynolds:

How about you?

Allissa Haines:

And my quick tip comes to me from my friend Carlene and Carlene I've known for a zillion years, I guess 17 or 18 years now. She's a massage therapist, she graduated from the same massage school, she lives in my town, our kids went to school together, and she graduated like six months before me. So we became friends early on in our career and she is the only person I trade massage with. Anyhow, shout out to Carlene, I love you.

We did not trade for the entirety of the pandemic, and I finally, finally traded with her again last week. One, she gives a killer massage. Two, she was telling me about this brilliant thing she's done. She wanted to celebrate her business-iversary, which maybe she graduated a little bit further ahead of me, it might be 20 years this year, I don't know. Anyhow, she was telling me that during her business anniversary month, she was giving clients a discount and that discount was $1 for every year they've been with her.

Michael Reynolds:

Oh, I love that.

Allissa Haines:

Isn't that great? And she's like, "It rewards the most loyal clients, the most longtime clients the most, but everybody gets a little something." And so when clients would come in, she would just look up their first appointment date, I think she's got all of her medical forms, which would have someone's first appointment date. She does all paper stuff, so she would literally just open her file cabinet.

And yeah, so long time clients would get $20 off their massage that month and new clients would get four years off, $4 off or whatever. But I just thought that was such a sweet idea. It's fun, it's easy. Again, she does paper notes, so she would just make a note in their chart that they got that off that month. And I just loved it.

Michael Reynolds:

I love that.

Allissa Haines:

I just absolutely loved it.

Michael Reynolds:

That's cool.

Allissa Haines:

And wanted to share that with you. So there's that.

Michael Reynolds:

Love it. Thanks for sharing that. Great idea.

Allissa Haines:

That is everything we have. Be sure to stay tuned, stay subscribed for next week because next week we will have our three words episode where Michael and I kind of reflect on the last year and think through important themes for next year, which I'm really excited about. And yeah, if you've got a question you want us to answer on the podcast, you can email us podcast@massagebusinessblueprint.com. If you like this show, you can visit Apple Podcasts and give us a review. If you hate this show, you can email Michael at michael@massagebusinessblueprint.com.

Michael Reynolds:

No.

Allissa Haines:

Oh, and have a really great day everybody.

Michael Reynolds:

Thanks everyone.

Logo for Jane
Logo for ABMP
Logo for Jojoba
Logo for Pure Pro Massage Products