We’re excited to bring you this guest post from Margo Carroll. Margo is a massage therapist and wellness copywriter from Seattle, Washington. She runs the show at Your Wellness Website Blueprint and Remedy Writing. She enjoys trail running, spending time with family, and a piping hot mug of tea.
You’re staring at the screen, watching the cursor blink back at you as you try to think of something to write.
Your stomach churns as you wonder how you could possibly write a webpage that will explain your personality, skill, and professional training all in a few hundred words.
Come to think of it, you have gotten some advice on how to throw together your new massage website from people you trust…
What a relief!
But was that advice any good?
Your massage therapy instructor told you to “be yourself”.
Your friend who owns a small business told you to stuff keywords all over the page to get better search engine ranking.
Your Aunt Audrey told you to be sure to include that nice looking senior picture of you with the french braids on the Home Page, since that’s the last time you had a professional photo taken.
Yep, back to the drawing board.
None of that advice is helpful.
Besides, you’re a massage therapist, not a professional writer or web designer.
How should you know the correct way to write a website, anyway?
This may come as a surprise to you—especially since massage therapists hire me to write their websites for a living—but I happen to think that you are the most qualified person to write your own website.
You just need the right tools for the job.
You know your unique talents and value better than anyone, and by the time you’re done reading this article you’ll understand exactly how to convey that value on your website in a way that makes readers want to drop everything they’re doing and book a session with you on the spot.
I’m Margo, and I’m a Massage Therapist who turned my experience in the wellness industry into a second career as a copywriter for wellness business owners like you. I help massage therapists, health coaches and other small businesses launch authentic, profitable websites and I’d like to share with you the lessons I’ve learned along the way.
If you often say, “I love doing massage, but I hate marketing,” don’t worry, I once felt the same as you!
But then I learned the natural, structured system of copywriting and began to fall in love with the process of marketing.
This article isn’t intended only for massage marketing gurus.
It’s helpful for those who need a review of the basics of web marketing and how to write (or rewrite) a website that sells their services to potential clients.
In this article you’ll learn:
- Definitions of the important terms to guide your marketing (you know, the words those “techies” are always throwing around like we all know what they mean!)
- A simple 5-step process for writing the copy on your (new or revamped) massage business website.
- How not to go crazy in the process!
So let’s kick this thing off with some basic definitions of marketing terms to be sure we’re all on the same page (no pun intended).
Definitions of Important Marketing Terms
Copy: text used to sell something via advertising, marketing or publicity.
As in, “Tiffany got a job writing advertising copy for Oakworks.”
Website Copy: words written to sell products or services on a website
As in, “The website copy that Kevin has on his Home page is incredible!”
Copywriter: a writer of copy used for marketing purposes
As in, “The juice bar hired a copywriter to write their email newsletters.”
SEO: Search Engine Optimization, which includes any activity intended to improve ranking of a person or business in search engine results.
As in, “Tina did an amazing job with her SEO on the new site, she ranked #4 on Google for the keywords Cincinnati Sports Massage!”
Call to action: Also commonly abbreviated as a CTA, this is a marketing term that refers to any device used to encourage an immediate action by a website visitor, such as booking a massage appointment or signing up for an email list.
As in, “Even though I need to have one on my site, I always hate pushy CTA’s like ‘Book now!’ when they pop up on the screen in bright red letters.”
Alright, you now know enough marketing jargon to impress your jet-setting corporate friends at your next cocktail party.
But you do have the know-how to get through this step-by-step article on copywriting for your massage website, so let’s get down to business.
The 5-step Process For Writing Your Massage Business Website (Even if you hate writing!)
If you were a fly on the wall in my home office, you would either be impressed or horrified by my love of process and systems.
I’m a detail person, and I sure do love me a good spreadsheet.
My Gmail labels count is somewhere over 30 different labels (That’s how I maintain inbox zero and save my sanity!), and I have workflows, forms and questionnaires for every little step in my business.
So it was only natural that after delving deep into the world of copywriting, soaking up all the knowledge I could from greats like Ogilvy, Kennedy, and Wiebe, I had to crystallize everything I’d learned into an easy to replicate process.
So, without further adieu, I’d like to share with you, dear reader, my simple system for creating website copy that’s both authentic AND profitable.
1 | Learning
I know, I know, you thought this article was going to help you just get the writing done already, not give you a whole explanation of how to learn more about your business.
But stick with me here, because learning as much as possible about the people your business is trying to reach is the ONLY way to write website copy that sounds like it’s written just for them.
In the learning phase, you need to identify your brand “voice,” who your target client is, and where you’re going to seek them out (both online and in person).
You may have also heard this branding exercise referred to as “choosing your niche” or “writing a mission statement.”
Without having a specific target audience in mind, there’s no framework on which to plan the copy you’re going to create.
You need to begin with a profile that outlines what type of client you want to serve before you start your market research, and you need to have it written down in as much detail as possible.
2 | Planning
The planning phase is closely connected with the learning phase of copywriting.
In the planning phase, you put in the legwork to understand your ideal clients’ needs better so that you can match the words on your site (your copy!) to their desires.
You’ll get to know your client’s needs better by using a combination of market research tools:
- Recorded surveys (phone & email work great!) of your current and former clients
- Meticulous combing through your reviews (On Yelp, your website, Google, etc.)
- Internet research on your target client’s frustrations, pain points, and desires
- Studying competitor’s websites + reviews to learn what draws clients there
Now just to be very clear here, I’m in no way encouraging a competitive attitude or that you should swipe your competitor’s marketing techniques.
But it is crucial that you’re aware of what your target clients are saying about your competitors—particularly the raving reviews—because that will give you a glimpse into the struggle that brought them in their door and how that problem was solved for them.
3 | Writing
This is the fun part!
When you think about writing the copy for your site you probably think you’ll have to write, write, and write some more!
But in reality, if you’ve done your research properly in the Learning and Planning phases, you should have very little “writing” to do from a blank screen.
Instead, you’ll just be assembling the pieces of your copy that you’ve been diligently compiling from your ideal client research and niche branding work into a nicely flowing narrative.
I recommend using one Google Doc for outlining and then writing all of your content, so that you can read it all in one place. I prefer Google Docs over Word because it’s easy to write the content, share it via email with collaborators, and then have them add their comments and edits all in one place.
But don’t just start typing the copy into a blank document.
Make sure you create the outline first, with a title for each element of the page (for example: “Heading,” “Sub-heading,” “Body copy + bullet points,” etc.). Then you’ll plug the copy into it’s appropriate subsection.
The screenshot above shows exactly what I’m talking about when I say to use a Google Doc with a subsection for each piece of the copy on the page. This will make your life SO much easier when the time comes to plug everything in to your website, I promise!
Be sure to include page titles, headlines, body text, sub-content, calls to action, buttons, and color/font formatting notes all in this one Google Doc.
Once you’re done writing, you’ll have every piece you need for a killer website!
But you’re not quite ready to hit “publish” just yet…
4 | Editing
This is a crucial step in the copywriting process, and after all the work you’ve put into creating your copy, it’s an easy one to overlook as you skip towards the “Publish” button with glee.
You’ve got to take the time for solid editing and proofreading of your copy before it goes live.
With my paying clients I call this “rounds of revisions,” and it’s the time when you step away from what you’ve written, come back to it, and find all the things that need to be adjusted.
You’ll want to complete ALL of your editing for spelling, grammar, and overall “flow” before you send the content to your web developer for publishing on your site (or click publish yourself on your self-built site).
5 | Launching
Now that you’ve finally hit “Publish,” you can’t kick back and celebrate just yet!
A big part of launching is determining what is working and what’s not.
You’ll need to spend time in the weeks following the launch ensuring that everything is formatted properly, running smoothly, and converting well.
It’s totally normal to need small adjustments to improve the site after testing it out for a few weeks.
If you’ve stuck with me all the way to the end, then you’re really motivated to get your massage website written the right way—good for you!
You’re taking ownership of your web marketing and empowering yourself with these copywriting tools to help your website convert more visitors into clients.
Let me know in the comments if you have any questions, or share your own tip for writing massage website copy that I may have missed.
P.S. Need more in-depth help writing your copy? I’ve created a free, beginner-friendly email course called Wellness Websites 101 for you so you can put this all into practice! Join your fellow massage therapists in the course right HERE.