Showcases and health fairs can be a great opportunity to meet potential clients in person and offer them a free sample of your work. The 5 minute chair massage will let them get to know you, know what your massage touch is like, and begin to develop trust. That bud of a relationship could turn into a paying client.
The problem is, most of the people who stop by your booth for the free chair massage or the free pen or candy, are not looking for a massage therapist. They might be there because it’s raining and they are bored, or to visit a friend’s booth, or they just like free pens. So you need to maximize the benefit to cost ratio as much as possible and one way to do this is to reduce the cost.
Booths cost money – a lot of money
Anyone who has ever rented a booth at a health fair or business showcase will tell you they can be very expensive. Booth fees for a small showcase can be as low as $100 or over $500 for a big, local business showcase in a small city. That’s a lot of cash for a massage therapist just starting out.
How to get into a Business Showcase for free
Most business showcases, like the annual ones thrown by your local Chamber of Commerce, attract a lot of different businesses who are all trying to get the attention of the attendees. They have fancy signs, video, games, and giveaways galore. The goal is to get people to stop at the booth so that they get the opportunity to talk to them. I’ve done a lot of booth duty in my days in marketing, and this isn’t as easy as it sounds.
That’s where you come in
You have something better than a free pen. You have a massage chair and SKILLS. Find a business owner you know, like and trust who is going to pay the big bucks for a booth and offer to provide free chair massages at their boot at no cost to them. In return, you want to be able to give booth visitors your card, display your brochures, and be able to contact the people who signed up for more information.
Offer a free 1 hour massage as one of your friend’s door prizes. Then wow that winner when they come in for a massage.
Benefits – the Win-Win-Win
- Your friend gets a great traffic draw that doesn’t cost them anything. You aren’t in a competing business, so you are not a threat. You are providing one of their door prizes for them. And you like your friend so you can both talk about how great the other person is at their business. This is a great, low cost way to help out a friend.
- You get to meet and touch dozens of people in one day. You get to talk to them about the benefits of massage and they get to see that you are skilled at what you do. That door prize could be a potential client. This has cost you no money except your brochures and business cards.
- Other businesses will see what you are doing and think, ‘hmm, that would be a good idea next year’. Offer to provide the service for them for a small fee. You’ve made a great connection with another local business owner where you can help them and they can help you.
- If you want to add corporate chair massage to your services, business showcases are where all of the local businesses are at one time. Take a break, walk the showcase, meet these business people and tell them about your onsite chair massage services. Ask for a follow-up meeting after the showcase and follow up.
So there you have it. Virtually free and win-win-win.
I just added a post targeted at marketing chair massage to businesses for their showcase exhibits. Feel free to copy the information and use it to market your chair massage business to local businesses. I know I will!
Have any of you tried exhibiting at a local business showcase? Did you think it was worth the expense?