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Wellnessproducts > Massage & Relaxation

What do I need to open up a massage salon?

The first thing you need before you even consider opening a salon is a business plan. This is a critical step that is often overlooked by the enthusiastic entrepreneur, but this is your roadmap to success.

A good business plan includes:

1. Market research: Who are your clients and where do they congregate. What hours are they most likely to seek out your services? How much would they reasonably spend for each of the various massages you plan to offer? What is your competition and where are they situated in relation to your targeted demographic?

2. Financial plan: What are your startup costs for
a. Equipment (tables, linens, chairs, computer, phones)
b. Backbar supplies (lotions, creams, oils)
c. Inventory items (will you sell lotions, creams, oils and therapeutic products for home use?)
d. Office supplies (computer, phones, printer, register, software programs)
e. Furniture & fixtures (décor and decorations)

3. Projected income: What are your targets for the first week, month, year and 2nd through 5th year? These are critical times in the growth of your business and having firm goals right off the bat enhances your chance of success.

4. Budget: How much will you spend on
a. Advertising, marketing, public relations
b. Salaries (when will you add staff to grow your business?)
c. Insurance (commercial as well as professional liability insurance)

Next, consider your funding options. It is never advisable to start-up a business without commercial funding. Most service businesses are seasonal and it is difficult (if not impossible) to keep the doors open through lean times if you're solely relying on cash-flow and your hard-earned savings. And the time to seek funding is before you sign the lease for your space. Your lender will review your business plan and might even provide some valuable guidance to improve your chances for success.

Now it's time to find your space. At the same time talk to everyone you know and everyone you meet. Tell them about your new business … your enthusiasm at this time is your greatest asset. Tell them when you're opening and record names and contact information. A couple of weeks before you open the door send out notices to everyone on your list to let them know that you're ready to serve. Getting those first paying customers in the door is sometimes the hardest part of your new endeavor.

Make the space your own. The colors can be bright and bold or soft and muted. Knowing your clientele will help you in the selection of your palette. Keep it unique, however. You don't want people to walk in and experience the same atmosphere they see everywhere else. Set yourself apart from the competition by creative use of aesthetics as well as exemplary service.

Buy the best tables you can afford. Some masseuses and masseurs do well with manually adjusted tables, but it can be difficult for some clients to get onto a table that is adjusted to the proper work height for the therapist. A hydraulic table allows your client to safely and comfortably get onto and off of the bed and easily adjusts to your perfect working height.

Prepare a selection of forms for your new clients to fill out. Will you be offering therapeutic massage for injury or rehabilitation? Will you accept insurance? Capture as much information about your client and their history as possible.

Decorate the waiting area with copies of your certificates of training, including any specialized training you've had. You worked hard for those certificates and your clients will be impressed.

Gather client testimonials. Have you successfully helped someone manage chronic pain or recover from an auto accident? Ask them for a testimonial and use it … on your website, in your ads, in your newsletters.

With proper planning, solid financial backing, a dynamic marketing program and tons of persistence you will soon be on your way to owning a successful salon.
Published on 17.09. by Eszter Langer