One of the most challenging aspects of operating your own business is deciding how and when to invest in growth. Of course, some of your marketing effort should be directed at replacing clients lost through normal attrition. This cycle of client loss and acquisition will always require your attention. But client acquisition isn’t the only route to increased revenue. In fact, there are many other methods that you can use to boost your revenue.
One way to quickly scale your practice’s growth and increase revenue is by focusing on your existing clientele. The cost of scheduling additional sessions for an existing client is usually much less than the costs of acquiring a new client. A few simple steps could make a significant impact on your therapy practice’s bottom line.
Take a Look at the Numbers
Daniel Levine, writing for The Data Point, took a look at the business practices of top performing companies and found a link between the success of these top companies and their ability to woo repeat customers. He noted that the top performing companies were quicker out of the gate than their rivals, gaining new customers rapidly in their first few months after their launch.
However, as time progressed the companies that pulled ahead and stayed ahead gained more revenue from return customers than those who fell behind. Levine’s analysis indicates that by year three, the top performing companies are generating 60% of their revenue from return customers!
Have you analyzed your earnings per client and retention rates lately? Your historical data may reveal hidden opportunities to increase your revenue by improving the lifetime value of your customers.
Levine’s findings also indicate that getting that second purchase is difficult. But investing in obtaining that second purchase -- or in the case of your massage therapy business, a second booking -- is well worth the effort. According to research compiled by CTS, it costs between five and ten times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one.
When the American Massage Therapy Association conducted a survey of massage consumers in 2016, it found that those responding received an average of 3.8 massages over the course of 12 months. That’s less than one massage per quarter. How do your client bookings compare to this figure? Have you considered what your annual revenue would be if each of your existing clients booked four extra sessions each year?
Simple Steps to Increase Your Rebooking and Revenue
1. Plan your long-term relationship at the first meeting.
Your clients will be more likely to book future appointments if you’ve provided them with a reason for doing so. This reason is rooted in the treatment plan you present at your first meeting. Try to find the time to review each new patient’s intake form before your first consultation. Be prepared to present your client with suggestions for treatment and scheduling from day one.
2. Create an atmosphere that draws people back.
Often when a consumer is making a purchasing decision, it is the little things that matter. Each element of your business presentation is important -- from your waiting area to the cleanliness of your bathrooms to the friendliness of your staff.
If your customers write reviews about your services that say, “I liked everything except…” then that “except” may be what is keeping your clients from rebooking. Aim for a customer service experience that has your clients enthusiastically recommending you to their friends.
3. Rehearse your lines.
Many professionals feel uncomfortable engaging in direct sales activities. But if you want something, you have to ask. Think about when and how you want to prompt your customers to rebook. Then, create a few scripts to assist you and your staff prepare. We found some great ideas in this article: Make a Fantastic First Impression on a New Massage Client.
The more you rehearse, the more comfortable you’ll be when bringing up the subject. Preparing in advance also allows you to craft a message that reflects your brand and personality.
4. It’s never too late.
Not every client is ready to rebook right after a session. But that doesn’t mean you’ve missed your chance. Using your practice management platform’s email and marketing tools, you can encourage clients to schedule another session by sending them reminders and incentives via email.
Show your patients that you value them with personal attention. Let your existing clients be the first to know about special promotions or package deals. You can also keep the conversation with a new client going by following up their first appointment with a summary of the session and your customized recommendations for them.
We Have the Tools to Help You Grow
ClinicSense’s suite of massage therapy clinic management tools are designed to help you grow your business. We help you get repeat business by automatically following up with clients that haven't seen you in a while. Often all it takes is a friendly reminder to book again to prevent lost clients. If you’d like to learn more about our suite of services, sign up for a free trial and get started today!