start bodywork business

Powerful Tips for Launching a Bodywork Business

Are you thinking about opening a massage studio, nail care shop, hair styling salon, or esthetics room? If so, take the time to review the most important suggestions that can help maximize the chance for financial success. The industry of body-oriented treatment is a competitive one, but there are countless opportunities for attentive, talented professionals who strive to satisfy their customers. Consider the following suggestions.

Get Licenses and Paperwork in Order

Bodywork pros need to be licensed to do their jobs. At the very least, people like massage therapists, nail techs, estheticians, and hair stylists need a state issued license to sell their services to the public. However, some jurisdictions require a lower-level credential like a certificate, which is usually written proof of a short-term academic course. The latter is common in the healthcare and financial fields.

For bodyworkers, the general requirement is full state sanctioned licensing that includes a written examination. If you plan to open a for-profit operation in the field, check with state boards in your area of expertise to find out what documentation, training, and other requirements must be met before you open your doors. In massage, hair care, facial services, nail artistry, and similar areas, there are usually licensing fees, and in some states, those costs are considerable. The point is that would-be entrepreneurs must verify all requirements with their local officials before the launch date.

Take Out a Personal Loan

Taking coursework to become a massage therapist or esthetician can cost a considerable amount. Unless you have enough savings to cover the tuition and licensing fees, the most efficient solution is to take out a personal loan. It’s the smartest way to pay in advance for coursework. Many bodywork schools offer substantial discounts, up to 15% in some cases, for students who pay their entire tuition in advance. For that reason alone, a personal loan can be an effective way to slice a significant portion of your total cost of schooling.

Work Your Networks

The field of performing personal services like eyebrow work, manicures, hair styling, and massage can be highly competitive. The best way for entrepreneurs to get a solid start is to leverage the power of professional networks and personal contacts. Use your social media accounts to let people know the grand opening date for your company, even if you’ll be working from home doing outcall jobs only.

Email personal contacts and ask them to spread the word on their platforms. Working the network means using everything you have at your disposal, both online and off. Most haircare pros print business cards and hand them out to every potential customer they meet. Others make calls to businesses and institutions in their local area. It’s worth noting that retirement homes and non-profit agencies hire outside service providers who can travel to their locations and do hair styling, massage, facials, etc.

Offer Grand Opening Week Discounts

Consumers love discounts and special deals. Use this universal marketing rule to guide your early promotional efforts. Beyond designing a website that drives more sales, one of the most powerful ways of doing so is to use a grand opening week instead of just one day. Be sure to include your regular prices on all advertising materials along with the discounted pricing. That way, new clients will understand that for the initial week, they’re getting a lower rate than usual. Then, use grand opening events to hand out business cards, collect customer information for email promotions, and give away a few free samples or coupons to those first customers.

Make House Calls

People in the body-related services industry can significantly boost their revenue by doing one thing: offering outcall service. It’s important to put yourself into the customer’s frame of mind. Many can’t drive or don’t have the time to travel to shops and spas. By including the phrase, “I make house calls,” on business cards, you stand to increase revenue by 50% or more. Don’t forget to include a modest additional fee to cover your travel expenses.

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George Meszaros is the editor and co-founder of Success Harbor where entrepreneurs learn about building successful companies. Success Harbor is dedicated to document the entrepreneurial journey through interviews, original research, and unique content. George Meszaros is also co-founder of Webene, a web design and digital marketing agency.