Massage Business Success Story: Fear Works

You’re not good at all the things needed to sustain and grow your massage business.

Okay, that was a little rude…but it’s true, right?

When I opened my practice I stunk at marketing and a whole lot more.

We’re not talking character flaws here. We’re talking too many hats to wear as a business owner.

And if you’re like me, you’re going to find ways to avoid the things you’re not good at until something really bad happens.

Massage Business Options

The easy fix to all of this is to hire people to do the jobs you’re under-qualified to do. But that comes with a price. Literally. Great if you can pay it. But for most, subbing out all the jobs except for actually doing the massage itself is not an option.

But I have another solution for you. Just a warning: It’s more Judge Judy than Judge Joe Brown.


Here it is:

I’m going to scare the crap out of you.

That way you’ll stay on track and get better at the jobs you’ve been avoiding.

If you’re more of a carrot person than a stick person, check out this post by Michael Hyatt. It will help to keep that carrot in front of your face. (Then come back here and get a shot of fear for good measure:-)

Let’s start with some light scaring.

Contracting Massage Business

The problem with being your own boss is that the consequences of your actions or inactions are not always seen right away.

For example, imagine your massage business has slowly been contracting for the past six months. You know you should do something, but you’re not sure what to do.

Instead of taking action you’re able to push the situation out of your mind because it’s not an emergency.

A few more months go by and things have drastically changed for the worse. Your best client has lost his job and isn’t coming in. Now you have an emergency.

Finally, you work on bringing more clients in, but a month of hard work only nets a handful of new massages. Yikes! You’re stuck in the precarious position of hanging on by your fingernails, hoping your marketing efforts pay off in time.

Another Solution

Now imagine that when you see your massage business shrinking you hire Deana to be your boss. Deana gives you instructions to build an email list with existing and new clients.

One month goes by and Deana asks you how the email list is going.

Well, Deana, I haven’t started it yet.

At month 2 you give her the I had a lot of massages to do this month.

Okay, we can all see where this headed. But before month 3 rolls around, you know you have to do something right now or you’ll be looking for another job, and that’s precisely when you jump into action.

Think of fear as Deanna, the boss who is going ride your ass and/or fire your ass.

The trick is to find the fear that will motivate you.

I’ll do my best to help.

Let the Sh**ing Begin

The Sign Marathon

When my wife, Lisa, and I, opened up PressurePerfect Massage, I didn’t want to put out the money for signage because we had already spent a lot on other start-up costs. Months went by before I contacted sign companies. When I finally settled on a sign company, it took them months to get our banner done and another month to get it from them.

Since they were the worst sign company ever, I decided to make our road sign myself. You guessed it, more months for me to get that done.

By the time all signs were up, a year plus had gone by and by my estimates we had lost over $3000 in revenue.

The Website Debacle

During our early years, I had avoided doing a massage business website myself because the DIY options were limited and you pretty much needed a programmer to build your website.

Eventually, we made a massage for website barter-arrangement with our friend who was a computer programmer but who had never built a website.

The project moved at glacial speed. We missed holiday advertising, gift certificate sales and any Internet presence for six months. We couldn’t fire our friend because we hadn’t hired her. And we couldn’t nag her to death because we might lose a friend.

I estimate that we had lost about $2000 in revenue and 82 of my hairs (pulled out) because Lisa and I gave up control over our website construction by not hiring someone.

By the way, do you think Deana would have fired Wifey and me? Uh-yeah.

A SEO Seizure

If you have trouble falling asleep, say this word Search Engine Optimiza—zzzzzzz…oh, sorry…Optimization, also know as SEO. Yeah, what a yawn.

Years back we were ranking low in Google Places and organic searches and needed SEO big time.

Of course, I decided to do it myself. Me actually doing it wasn’t the problem. Me starting to do it was. I dragged my feet for months because I was intimidated by the process. By the time I actually got it done, months and months had gone by where we didn’t even rank in a local search.

There’s more…

Remember PressurePerfect Massage with no outside signs? Well, in 2014 we had rolled Mark Liskey Massage into PressurePerfect Massage, but I didn’t redo some of the SEO to reflect the change, not out of laziness—out of ignorance. I just hadn’t dug deep enough in SEO.

No outside sign and no web presence because the SEO wasn’t right. Can you say: trying to go out of business.


Just in case you need a little more:

Source: Frances Proctor

Seriously, not having persistent and adequate motivation to do something you don’t want to do is a problem when you’re your own boss. Don’t let yourself get in a hole that you can’t get out of.

This is what you can do right now:

  1. Admit that you’re not good at all the jobs you have to do in your massage business.
  2. Hire someone to do them or do them yourself.
  3. If you decide to do them yourself, do them!!!!!!

Sit down and take the time and learn what you need to know

  1. When you detect avoidance behavior, refer back to my list to scare the poop out of yourself.

This article can also help keep you accountable: A Business Lesson that Hurt: How Not to Fool Yourself.

It Works

Now, I constantly use “healthy” fear to keep me on track to getting better at the jobs that I’m not good at but need to do until I can sub those jobs out.

If you need healthy fear, advice or more information about a challenge you have with massage, jump in my email group. Once you join, you can tell me what you need and I’ll get the right information in front of your eyeballs.

It’s free.

You can unsubscribe whenever you want.

And I promise not scare you anymore.

Sign up below:-)

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