8 Ways to Provide an Exceptional Client Experience

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Getting and keeping clients is by far the greatest challenge massage therapists express about their practices. Seeing clients only once will not create a thriving, sustainable business. We have to bring them back often to make our livelihood stable and truly make a difference in their lives. I’ve written several posts about how to provide an exceptional client experience, but you deserve more than my perception alone. So I reached out to other massage therapists, educators and bloggers to get their take on it. Once again, their insights are spectacular!

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Elefteria Mantzorou, Flow Wellness & Training

There are two key words for providing exceptional services to clients: intention and experience. Once you have the intention to truly offer quality services, you are halfway there. Many therapists merely want to finish their work quickly and get paid. If you love being a therapist, this will be reflected in your touch and your manipulations.

Of course, experience is always important. As you gain more experience, you know how to make clients feel that they receive something really special. Also, your touch becomes more refined and you know how deeply you should press and how slowly you should move. Clients (especially those who have received many massages) understand this at once. Start from intention, and build it with experience!

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Cindy Iwlew, LMT, Co-founder Bodywork Buddy

I think it’s really important to follow the client’s lead as far as talking during their session. If they ask questions, keep your answers short. If they are silent, respect that and stay quiet. Let the client sink into their relaxation without any expectations that they need to chat through their session.

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Savanna Bell, LMT, My Massage World

The key to providing an amazing experience is to think about what your clients want. It may seem simple and obvious, but it’s often not taken as seriously as it needs to be. You need to design the entire experience into something that will wow them at every step. From the way you speak to them on the phone, to what extra amenities you offer, and the ways you say thank you – each stage of their experience with you needs to make them stop and think, “WOW, that’s amazing!”

The way to do that is to give them 100% of your attention in every moment and do everything you can to make them feel like the center of the universe. It’s not about what’s the easiest and cheapest for you. When you design a client experience strategy around what will make your client say, “WOW!”, they’re guaranteed to become a loyal client.

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Felicia Brown, Spalutions

One of my core philosophies to provide amazing client experiences is to target your ideal clients in all your promotions and marketing efforts. This may seem obvious, but I’ve seen many professionals struggle to succeed when they did not apply this mindset.

Start by writing a list or description of the type of client you most enjoy working with, who you best serve, and who will fit your hours, location, pricing, and so on. Once you have a clear picture of your ideal client, reach out to those who fit the description in your current client list and ask for referrals of more clients like them, often their friends and family. If one of their key qualities somehow relates to work or personal activities, ask for their help in finding places where you can meet others with those qualities. For example, if your ideal client is a runner, ask them if they belong to running clubs or groups, work with a running coach, or participate in any specific running events or races where you can make similar connections.

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Jamie Johnston, The Massage Therapist Development Center

I honestly just think it’s all about building relationships, but as far as an exceptional experience…just try to make them feel better than when they came in. Make it so when people think of you or your clinic, it’s an emotional reaction that makes them want to be there.

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Tim Cooper, Wellness Business Breakthrough

Sometimes how to create an exceptional client experience isn’t obvious. When it comes to spa based services, the experience is generally centered on a welcoming, warm environment, peaceful music and soothing strokes.

I come from a remedial massage background where the setting is usually cold and clinical, and the treatments often have an element of discomfort. For many years I believed the client experience was dependent on a good outcome: Relieving people’s pain and helping them cope with injuries.

In the later part of my time in private practice, I came to realize that results only played a small part. We are in fact in the “relationship” business. Welcoming people, making them feel important, being empathetic and demonstrating that you truly understand what the client is going through has in my experience, created a wonderful client experience in my field of practice. After all, everyone wants to be understood and made to feel important.

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Rajam Roose, Grow Your Massage Business

Providing an exceptional client experience can help us stand out from our competitors and keep clients wanting to come back. One of the most powerful ways I found that helped me really stand out was focusing each session completely on the client. It’s harder work than you might think!

No matter what my day was like or how I was feeling, I put that aside to give the client my undivided attention. During our intake, I repeated their words back to them to make sure I understood what they were saying. In the massage session, I kept my attention focused on the client’s breathing, how their body was responding to my touch, how their tissues felt, and so on. It was almost meditative in a sense but enabled me to give each client an individual experience.

Additionally, I was consistent in how I greeted my clients and how I talked about the whole process: getting ready for the massage, moving around on the table, getting dressed, and checkout. People knew exactly what to expect which contributes to feeling safe. People can feel when you are paying attention and even more so during a massage session. Again, it is not as easy as it sounds but helped me keep a 90% re-booking rate with new clients.

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Cath Cox, cathcox.com

Do what clients ask you to. It’s disappointing to spend time and money on a massage that doesn’t address their primary concerns, and leaves them feeling confused, unheard and hopeless. Ask if their priority is a full body massage or more specific work, and then honor their response. Set realistic expectations and explain why you may not reach the desired outcome in just one session. Check in with open-ended questions to verify their needs are being met. As service providers, we are obligated to create an experience that our clients want, not what we think is best.

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Building a practice you love can only be accomplished with satisfied clients who not only choose to visit regularly, but refer others. When we strive to give nothing less than an exceptional client experience from the beginning to the end of each visit, this dynamic is inevitable. Thank you to the dedicated contributors to this post for describing so many different ways to do that!

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How do you give your clients an exceptional experience? If you don’t see a comment box below, please click the Leave a comment/comments link to share. Thank you!

About deepheeling

I'm an Ashiatsu barefoot deep tissue massage specialist dedicated to sharing my journey to creating a successful business that I love!
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