Groupon is a great marketing tool, particularly to market new products and services, which has been around several years. At Salus Wellness we have been working with them since 2011, a few months after we opened. Groupon is great to generate business which would not usually get attracted to our company, simply by offering deals which are heavily discounted compared to the original price for the services being offered. We usually run a campaign when we have a few massage therapists which need to get established in Cambridge and are prepared to work for it. By partnering up 4 or more practitioners it’s relatively easy to handle many new clients while taking care of the existing ones.
Thanks to a Groupon campaign we can easily sell several hundreds treatment within a few months. Like many other business we use Groupon to attract people which would not usually visit our clinic without a financial incentive. We offer, at super discounted rate, the same level of service and quality we would offer at full price, with the aim of converting Groupon clients into full paying ones. In our experience we can group clients we get via Groupon into three categories:
- Bargain hunters; these are people who are waiting for the next offer to get a cheap massage and will never buy a massage at full price, often because they cannot afford it. They are usually the ones with the highest expectations in terms of customer service and reaction time, and historically they are virtually impossible to convert into regular clients.
- Best practitioners’ hunters; these are people using Groupon to try a few new practitioners with the aim of finding a professional who will become their regular practitioner. They are easy to convert for the practitioners who offer the right massage and customer service.
- Gift hunters; many people buy a voucher for a loved one as a gift. In this case the person using the voucher is different from who bought it so conversion is random.
Whatever kind of massage hunter you are, we are here to help and looking forward to meeting you at our next Groupon campaign.
Salus Wellness is by far the clinic with the largest team of practitioners in Cambridge, probably in the whole of East Anglia. Ranging from Swedish massage to various specialised treatments for pain and trauma, we also offer a broad range of mental health therapies from counselling to psychiatry. On a daily basis we have members of the public who walk into our reception, give us a ring or fill up an online form and they are asking us to provide a solution to their health issue which can be physical, psychological or emotional.
We are here to help and our first priority is to ensure duty of care and confidentiality for our clients. We first try to understand the issue they are describing in order to have a high level of confidence about the help we can provide. For that reason we might ask a few questions and clarify the enquiry.
The next step is to identify a suitable practitioner, among our team, who:
- Is qualified to address the issue
- Has experience from having treated similar issues in the past
- Has capacity within his/her timetable to accept a new client within a the time expected
Once the three necessary conditions mentioned above are satisfied, and just in that case, we are connecting the potential client with the suitable practitioner. From that point onward we can assume the client being in good hands and we would just assess how things have moved on, always respecting total confidentiality.
I have been practising Japanese Head and Facial Acupressure Massage for over 10 years.
This rejuvenating massage treatment may provide a natural face-lift and anti-aging treatment which works by freeing up contractions within the facial muscles and connective tissues. It is a combination of gentle massage for the face, lymphatic drainage, acupressure and energy balancing.
People come to see me with various reasons:
- tired eyes
- stress and tension
- …or just wants to have a rejuvenating effect…
The majority of my clients enjoy the benefits of this treatment from their very first session.
One of my regular clients, in her mid 30’s, she has to show her ID to buy alcohols after she started having regular facial acupressure massage from me.
If you ever wanted to experience the benefits and relief of a facial acupressure massage please get in touch and arrange an appointment with me.
Steve Jobs, founder and CEO of Apple, used to say that he did not need market research as he was always planning products and services which people did not expect. I can see his point and it worked out well for him as he introduced to the world personal computers, smart phones and streaming music. I believe that practitioners in private practice, who are usually offering well defined and known therapies, should have a basic knowledge about the market in which they operate. What are the key points of a market research for a private practitioner, e.g. a massage therapist?
Market size and demographic
If you consider the city, town or geographical area (later called just area) where you want to operate you should know or find out how many people live there and their demographic, in terms of age and gender distribution, level of education, income and so on. It’s useful to have an idea about how affluent these people are, e.g. how many of them are already using and can afford services similar to yours.
- How many other professionals in your area offer services similar to yours? You should really have an idea, however approximate
- Who are your 3-5 best known competitors? You should know them, at least by name, know how much they charge and how busy they are
- Where are your competitors? You should know where they work and how do they operate e.g. home visits, working hours
- How active are they with their marketing? You should see whether they spend time and money networking, advertising, using social media, blogging and so on
Where to start
For someone approaching market research for the first time it can be a daunting activity but the important thing is to get on with it and collect some data. You can start by simply searching what a client might be looking for (e.g. massage in Cambridge) and that will give you a basic idea about how the market is, how many people operate in it and so on. The next step is to ask the same 2-3 questions to a number of people in different social contexts (e.g. colleagues, friends, parents of your children school mates) and see what answers you get. Try to be realistic and pragmatic with the results you put together and always test them against new information you get when speaking to other people. It might also be useful to repeat the exercise every 6 to 12 months just to check whether things are changing dramatically during that time frame or just a bit.
Having an idea about the market you are in will allow you to take educated strategic decisions about your prices, your working days, how much money you should be spending in advertising or whether you should rely entirely on networking and word of mouth and so on. It’s always better to take decisions based on data, however imprecise, rather than based on assumptions which are likely to be very optimistic or wrong.