Massage manEdger System Update Notice

Hello Everyone,

We are pleased to announce our latest Massage manEdger system upgrade. The
upgrade was launched last Sunday, November 28th, 2010, at 9:00 am MST.


The result of our work delivers to you additional practice management
functionality including the following:

New Email Capabilities
We have enhanced the operation of the Massage manEdger’s mass email tool to
include the following:

A New Email Content Editor – The mass email tool inside Massage manEdger now supports the same content editor that is used in the “My Pages” area of the system. This new addition will allow you to create and send sophisticated email messages to your clients; either individually or to large groups. The new email editor will now allow you to include images, document links as well as links to website pages, in your regular email communications to your clientele. For a preview of the operation of this feature visit our support site and review the tutorial.

New email search function – Both the Outbox and Queued email logs now support a Basic and Advanced search function. This new utility will make it easy for you to find specific messages in long lists of email messages.

Searches can now be conducted by:

  • email address
  • message subject
  • date
  • message status
  • New view sent email ability – The email tool now supports a “View” function for sent messages. A new “View” icon allows you to see the message content of emails in your “Outbox.”
  • New message edit function – This new feature will allow you to edit message content that is in your queue of messages to be sent. Content changes can be made to emails that have been processed but not yet sent.

As always, this update will also include other miscellaneous feature
addition and fixes. If you have any questions or concerns feel free to
contact us.

Interview with Beth Barberee

Today we have a Q&A with Beth Barberree, owner of Massage at the Club, located inside the World Health Club in Edgemont, Calgary. Beth has been a practising massage therapist since 1995, and is an active member of the MTAA. (Massage Therapy Association of Alberta, Canada)

Beth’s full bio is available from her website, and you can click here to learn more about her. The Massage Marketing 101 team would like to thank Beth for taking the time to speak with us.

Q: Beth,  can you tell us a little about yourself and your industry activity? How long have you been in practice?

A: I’ve been in practice for fifteen years, five in Edmonton and for the past ten years I have been at the same clinic here in Calgary. “Massage at the Club” is a Massage Therapy clinic located in a local fitness and racket sport club. We focus on corrective and therapeutic treatments.

Q: You have been using Massage manEdger for going on two years now, is having a website important to your practice?

A: Yes, absolutely a website is important to me.

Q: Your Massage manEdger website offers online appointment booking. Do many of your clients book online?

A: Yes, over 90% of my clients book online.

Q: Do your older clients find online booking a challenge?

A: At least half of the older clients use it. We’ve never really had problems with our clientele using the appointment booking. However, only 5% is over 60, and if they truly have a problem they just call in or book their next appointment with us before they leave.

Q: How does that (having online booking) benefit you & your clients?

A: Having online booking means less work for me, and that means I don’t need to hire extra staff. Another convenience was asking your Client Care department to add an online payment option for my clients to pay online through Paypal.

Q: You have been through the process of choosing & implementing a website practice management system for your practice.. what advice would you give to someone just starting that process?

A: Be sure to look at everything that is out there and try all the systems you are considering. I tried at least three different systems before I found Massage manEdger, which turned out to be the best fit for me. When you’re considering a system, also try to make contact with their client care people. I’m not very tech savvy, so to me it doesn’t matter if it looks like the greatest thing at the start. Doing what I do, I could work without electricity! If you’re like me, then you need to know that support is there when you need it. That’s really important.

Q: Aside from the website and online booking features, are you benefiting from the practice management features of Massage manEdger ? How?

A: Being able to do all my client record keeping for treatment and payment transaction information is a big help. It  helps to be able to keep their records and billing history in one place using the product . I use other full accounting software for taxation purposes.

Q: Do you feel Massage manEdger practice management software has eliminated the need for paper records?

A: Almost exclusively. Aside from consent forms that need to be signed and stored and a paper history form to fill out when they come in (which is then transferred into their digital record) we have no paper charting (per visit) at all.

Q: What functions do you enjoy the most about the system? (Real life benefits, support?)

A: Time saving, so I can just work and work and work. I’ve got eight therapists, so having extra time to manage them and juggle their schedules is a life saver. With people working half days here, full days there, being able to figure out where I need coverage is an additional perk. I can maximize my coverage and keep an optimal schedule much faster than I could with paper.

Q: Thank you again for your time, Beth. It was great speaking with you, and we appreciate your taking the time to share the benefit of your knowledge and experience with our readers.

A: Your welcome. I enjoyed it.

Protect YOUR Marketing Dollars with the Art of War.

Growing a business is hard work, but you CAN make things easier for yourself. It’s about what you know.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles.”

-Sun Tzu, the Art of War

Small, wisely made investments can have huge returns, but you need a battle plan, a strategy that outlines what you want and how you plan to get it.

Before you walk away from this article, let me be clear.

It doesn’t have to be complicated, it can be written on a napkin if necessary, as long as it keeps you focused on your goals.

Complicated budgets and plans are great when your going to the bank to ask for money — but unless your looking for a loan you can let go of those formalities.

YOU can decide how long or short your battle plan needs to be. Remember, this is for YOU.

Try this. Get yourself a piece of paper and write down some important questions, like this:

  • What do I want?
  • When would I like it?
  • What am I doing to get it?
  • Is what I’m doing now working for me?
  • Do I want to improve upon, or stop doing any of these things?
  • What else could I be doing right now to get what I want?

REMEMBER: THIS DOES NOT HAVE TO BE COMPLICATED.

Your notes could be as simple as:

What do I want?

More Clients.

When Do I want it?

This month I would like more new clients than last month.

What have I done in the past to get more clients?

Post Card Mail-Out.

How did that go?

Did not see very good results. Only 2 people responded.

Is there anything I can do to improve on that?

5% discount might have been too small. 10% would probably be better.

What else could I be doing to get what I want?

People keep hanging up on the answering machine rather than leaving a message to call back. Should add my website and the booking instructions to my message.

Congratulations. You have just taken the first step to improving your business, and saved yourself a lot of time and money on business consultants. Now all you need is a good battle cry.

Did you find this article helpful? Subscribe Now or Follow Us On Twitter.

Harnessing the Internet

Massage Marketing 101 would like to invite all it’s readers to take a look at our recent feature article in Canada’s leading industry publication, Massage Therapy Canada.

The article is written by our own Jessica Foster, and covers how to enhance your practice with a professional website.

You can read the entire article here.

How to target your advertising to bring in the clients YOU want to work for

Your first step is to determine the type of clients you want to attract. Who are your current favourite clients? What do they have in common?

Take a moment to write a brief description of your ideal client. Be specific, and keep in mind any modalities you wish you could practice more often.

If you specialize in prenatal massage, your ideal client might look something like this:

“New mothers looking for relief from tension in the neck, shoulders, lower back, abdomen and thighs.”

This description offers two very important pieces of information. It identifies who the client is (an expectant mother) and what the client needs. (Relief from the tensions and stress associated with her pregnancy.)

Now that you know who you are trying to reach, and what they are looking for, the next step is to determine how best to reach them.

Read more of this post

Why convenience is important to good customer experiences.

When setting up your waiting area, did you consider customer experience? If you have magazines, music, or comfy chairs, chances are you did.
Clients often show up early before an appointment. Giving the client a place to sit and something to read or listen to will allow them to relax and be comfortable while waiting for their appointment.

Your client’s experience with you does not begin when they enter your practice, and it does not end when they leave.

Customers understand the value of convenience. Shops with longer hours and better selection will often do more business even if their prices are higher than the competition. Customers are often busy, and are in a hurry to get the item or information they are looking for.

Have you ever had someone simply hang up when they get to your answering machine? What happens when your phone line is busy, or after hours? How many clients and appointments do you think you are losing when this occurs?

What about clients who are at work and do not have the time to make a phone call in the first place? How can they find you?

Make it easy for clients to find information about your practice. Often the perfect combo will be a yellow page ad or bolded listing with a link to your website. For much less money than you will spend on a full page ad, you can support a website with as much information as necessary to educate your clients.

Make a checklist with things your clients may wish to know about your practice, such as your hours, services, rates, and modalities. Then make a list of how many places your clients can go to get this information.

Are you listed on Google maps? Does your website appear on a search for your practice name Remember, your website will not do you any good if no one can find it. Clients are more than willing to go somewhere else if it is more convenient for them.

Most major theaters now offer the option to purchase tickets online in order to make it more convenient for people to see their favorite movies and even reserve tickets before the movie is released. People use this service because it is more convenient for them to do so.

Convenience is not intangible to the client who has something else to do. Many people simply do not have the time to call your clinic during regular business hours. If your website allows the client to book appointments online, make sure that you mention this in all your advertising materials, along with your website’s address.

Remember, you and your receptionist are only available during regular business hours. Your website is available 24/7!

Focus On Practice Management: Part Three

Calendar Conundrums

Have you ever double booked an appointment? Do you feel like your rushing from one appointment to the next? Have you ever booked an appointment at a time when you were supposed to be somewhere else?

Everyone needs a little downtime. Managing your schedule can be tricky, and leaving buffer times between irregular appointments is often difficult. To conclude our Focus on Practice Management series, here are a few things you can do to minimize your calendar conundrums.

Pinpoint the problem

Take a moment to think about what’s causing the issue. Are you giving clients the wrong appointment times? Are your own personal appointments and obligations not present in your appointment book? Are some of your appointments running longer than expected?

Once you have identified the issue, consider some possible solutions. Let’s examine some solutions to the examples we’ve listed here.

Misinformation:

Is your appointment book clear and easy to read? Make sure you writing clearly and neatly is a good step, but often the problem is that your appointment book is not very intelligent. Many people now are turning to online booking solutions.

If you already have a Massage manEdger trial account, you will have noticed that the system actually prevents you from double booking.

What you may not have noticed however, is that it also allows you to set the timing and frequency of the reminder emails sent to both yourself and the client prior to their appointments.

Take time to review your appointments periodically. Calling or emailing a client prior to their appointment to verify the appointment time will ensure the client arrives at the correct time, and reduce the number of no-shows.

Inconsistency:

If there is a chance your personal schedule will create a conflict in your regular hours, it is very important to make sure you can see where those conflicts will arise. Find a method of marking down time in your schedule for personal appointments that works for you. If you are using our trial, take the time to set aside time for holidays, personal appointments and regular breaks. Massage manEdger will prevent give you a warning if you try to book after hours, or during any time when the clinic would be closed.

Buffer Time:

Sometimes, a treatment takes longer than expected. Determine what the minimum buffer time you require between appointments should be, and stick to it. If you already have a buffer time but sometimes forget to account for it, find a way of marking this down on the side of your appointment book.

If you are using or have a trial account for Massage manEdger, then the solution will already be at your fingertips. Simply tell the system how much time you would like between appointments, and it will automatically adjust your schedule to keep your book balanced at all times.

Remember, managing your practice is hard work. If your having trouble keeping up with your business, take a moment to look at how you can simplify your schedule and make life easier for yourself and your clients.

If you missed part one of our series on Practice Management, click here to start from the beginning.

Focus on Practice Management: Part Two

Hung up on missed calls

When you are in a treatment, do you feel rushed if you hear the phone ringing? At the end of the day, do you feel the number of calls you have missed is greater than the number of messages left?

If human beings were patient, we would not have drive-thru windows. You cannot change the fact that people do not want to leave a message, but you can make your answering machine message more efficient.

If a client or potential client is calling, it’s because they are seeking information. Ask yourself what information a client or potential client might need. Generally, the majority of clients will want to know about your services, your rates, your clinic hours, and your availability.

Often the majority of your messages will be existing clients wanting to book an appointment. Your answering machine may not be able to book an appointment for you, but your answering machine message is vital.

Let’s look at what makes a good answering machine message.

Read more of this post

Focus on Practice Management: Caring for your clients, and yourself, more efficiently.

What stresses you out? Missed calls? Double bookings? Lost files and paperwork?

Your mental health is just as important and your client’s physical health. To better serve your clients, you must first serve yourself. Improving how you manage your practice can benefit yourself, your clients, and even your family.

The first step towards a better balance in the workplace is to identify your problem areas. The most common problems often have easily solutions.

This is the first post in a three part series that will take your common frustrations, break them down and look at how you can run a better business for your clients and yourself.

Filing Frustrations



Do you find yourself having a hard time locating client records and other important clinic information?

Creating an efficient filing system can often be difficult. Even with a good cataloguing system, important information can be lost. Keeping both digital and print copies of all your client information ensures that only is everything backed up, but it’s much easier to locate.

You might not be able to Google your car keys, but you can make it easier for yourself to search for clients by name, phone, or client number. Keeping good client records and a detailed payment history will also make it easier for yourself to understand where your best revenue sources are, and where you might be losing money.

Most accountants charge by the hour, so efficient records will also save you money when it comes time to do your taxes.

Don’t forget if you’re using our trial to check out Massage manEdger’s offers many reporting tools and comes with several reports already set up to let you view your revenue by date, client, service, or therapist.

Remember, you don’t have to give up your paper filing system. Any good digital solution will offer you the option of printing your information. Just remember, your filing cabinet does not come with a search function, and your filing system only works when the files are in the cabinet.


Bookmark and Share

We’re back!

Welcome back to Massage Marketing 101. Class is in session! The Massage manEdger team hopes you love the new layout, and is proud to announce the arrival a new member on the writing team.

Katie will be making her debut this afternoon with the first of a three part series on practice management.

Stay tuned for new guides, tips, industry interviews and regular updates throughout the week.

Want our blog delivered to your Inbox? Click the link on the right and subscribe to our email updates or follow us on Twitter.


Bookmark and Share

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.