SMS Marketing Strategies for Sports Massage Therapists
Sports massage therapists were once dedicated solely to serving professional athletes and sportspersons. In recent years, however, they have seen an increase in demand from the general public as the nation becomes more and more active and the traditional entry barriers to the world of professional and semi-professional sport have been lowered, making them accessible to a much wider range of individuals. As a result, sports massage therapists have joined the ranks of other medical practitioners and therapists in the highly competitive consumer sector. Whilst personal and brand reputation count for a lot in the industry, it is ultimately marketing that matters when looking to create a sustainable business, and SMS Marketing is a great tool for exactly this purpose.
Why should Sports Massage Therapists choose SMS Marketing?
As a rule, a Sports Massage Therapist is likely to deal with two principle customer groups – professional athletes and serious part-time or semi-professional sports people. Increasingly, it is the latter that form the balance of clients for those setting up their own business, as those catering for the professional sportsperson tend to be directly affiliated with a club or sporting organisation. Given the demands of an intense training schedule alongside a full-time job and other commitments, it is reasonable to assume that a semi-professional runner, cyclist, swimmer, etc is likely to experience huge time constraints – and probably has limited time to sit down in front of a computer. This is exactly where SMS Marketing offers a huge advantage, by allowing to reach your customers wherever they are, exactly when they need you the most. With an open rate of almost 100%, typically within just a few seconds, it is virtually guaranteed that your message will be received and read. It is no surprise then that click-through rates for SMS are also significantly higher than other channels. It is also worth noting that most handsets now in circulation are smartphones, which enable the recipient of an SMS message to navigate directly to your website – although you may never need to send them there – read on to learn more about how to interact solely by SMS.
Free Consultations by SMS
A great way to increase your client portfolio is to offer a free telephone consultation via SMS Marketing. A simple SMS such as that shown should be sufficient to generate a healthy number of leads:
“Pain? Discomfort? Swelling? Prevent and treat your sports injuries with JDFinch Sports Massage. Reply ‘CALLBACK’ to arrange a free telephone consultation now. T&C’s at www.jdfinch.co.uk”
In this example, a shortcode has been used, which coupled with a Virtual Mobile Number (VMN) will allow you to receive and coordinate replies online – and with our out of the box integrations, you can also link everything up with your CRM if you use one.
SMS surveys for client profiling
If you are interested in taking things further by SMS, you could also conduct a quick survey to learn more about your lead. For example, you may wish to ask simple questions such as ‘How would you rank your professional level from 1-10?’ or ‘How many hours a week do you train? A 2-5 B 5-10 C10-15 D15+’. As a rule, limit such a survey to a maximum of five questions and ensure they have a multiple choice format. Be sure of course to ensure that potential customers first have the option to agree before proceeding by sending them an opt-in message specifically for the survey. This could be a powerful way to collect some essential data about your potential clients prior to your first conversation or consultation, helping to ensure that they are of the right profile for your business.
SMS marketing for appointment confirmations and reminders
Just as your active and busy customers are unlikely to spend hours at a computer searching for therapists, they are also unlikely to have a lot of time available for managing their diaries – and that is exactly where SMS Marketing is a perfect fit. As soon as a client has booked an appointment, be sure to send them an SMS confirmation, so that there is no need for them to scribble notes or keep hold of an appointment card – only to lose it on a run, see it rendered illegible by the rain or have it fall victim to the hot wash cycle. Select appropriate intervals prior to the appointment such as lunchtime two days in advance to send a reminder, which may look something like this:
“Hi Chris, I just wanted to remind you about your appointment with me, JDFinch, on Friday 16 Feb at 14:30. Can’t make it? Call me on 07748 434532 and we’ll get a new appointment arranged…”
Using SMS Marketing in this manner not only provides added value to your clients by taking a tiny bit of pressure of their shoulders, it also helps you to reduce the cost of no-shows and manage your diary better. Keep things as personal as possible, especially if you are working as an individual.
Invitations to open days/events
One popular way for professionals such as sports massage therapists to increase brand exposure is to hold open days at your clinic, should you have one. Other ideas include stalls at local sports events such as runs and tournaments, as well as local trade fairs and business events as appropriate to your business. However, you choose to showcase your sports massage business, make sure you get as much footfall as possible by letting all of your customers know in advance with SMS text messaging. To guarantee you draw a crowd, consider adding a special bonus to incentivise customers such as a complementary treatment or a free sports product sample. By generating a buzz amongst your existing clients, you will help to arouse interest amongst those who do not yet know your brand.
Of course, make sure you are ready to collect signups too so that you can build an SMS Marketing list in order to implement all these ideas the next time around.
SMS Marketing to promote your blog / social media, etc
As well as the various strategies outlined above, SMS Marketing is also a great way to help establish yourself as a thought-leader or expert in the field of sports massage by using it to drive traffic to your blog and/or social media channels. If you are creating and publishing content that is of value to your existing and potential clients, make sure that you send regular links by SMS to ensure they have the opportunity to read – and share. This will not only help to keep your statistics healthy, it will increase your potential for direct, word of mouth referral as you become the topic of conversation amongst sports people more and more often.
Ready to unlock the potential of SMS Marketing for your sports massage business? Give our team of friendly experts a call now on 0800 954 5305 and we’ll have you up and running in no time.
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