Give More & Get More

“We must learn that doing good is good for business.”Sir Richard Branson, Founder and Chairman of Virgin Group

Philanthropy, love to mankind, is defined as “private goods and services for public wellbeing”. Implementing philanthropy as a key element of your bodywork business plan and marketing strategy can be essential to growing a successful massage practice. Large or small donations of time, skills, massage or spa products and money are positive for not only you and your community but your bottom line. This article will outline many ways to incorporate philanthropy and how to maximize the benefits of using philanthropy to make an impactful statement.

First, how do you choose a charity? Experts recommend basing your decision upon two major factors: your passion and your audience. Consider what you care about - you’ll enjoy it more. What issues are important to you? Passion fuels energy, excitement and enthusiasm. Next, who are you trying to reach? Targeting a niche bodywork market attracts your ideal massage client base. Identifying an audience can support your community, building awareness and funding vested interests like research for less familiar massage modalities.

Now, what can you donate and how can you best help? If you are pressed for time and money, which is a common struggle for many small business owners, know that your contributions are mutually beneficial and can be considered a part of your marketing strategy. Find a way to carve out participation in at least one or two philanthropic efforts in your schedule or budget annually. This will still translate to assets both tangible and abstract. Attend not-for-profit meetings and participate in charity events, athletic competitions and massage conventions. Skill share with other wellness therapists and volunteer at hospices, shelters or retirement homes. Sponsor charitable events, offer special discounts and targeted promotions for a good cause or donate in-kind gifts like massage tools.

Profit and altruistic purpose are not mutually exclusive. Promote your massage practice through supporting good causes. Philanthropy can help you develop a powerful network, strengthening your brand and reputation and broadening your reach. According to Edelman’s Good Purpose study, “87% of consumers globally believe business should place at least equal weight on business and society”. Publicize your philanthropic participation through press releases, your website, newsletter and social media. Emphasizing the event and cause through your marketing tools makes your business appealing and builds goodwill capital. Ask if the charity can recognize your support, will allow direct marketing to its associates or let you advertise your services in their promotional materials. Philanthropy is also a vehicle for marketing new wellness therapies, spa services and massage products. It can be a great forum for educating the public and building general confidence in lesser known, alternative wellness modalities. And finally, donating in-kind gifts like massage supplies to eligible charities can be subject to generous tax deductions. It’s also another way to promote and introduce unfamiliar massage tools to a new audience and even opens up valuable storage space for fresh massage supply inventory.

Working for a good cause not only feels good and creates more joy and wellbeing; there are innumerable opportunities for building your massage business. Whatever your capacity, investing in philanthropy can be an important part of a strategic business plan and powerful marketing tool. Find your passion, identify your audience, commit to a contribution and tell everyone about it. Tying goodwill to your mission is a positive platform for strengthening your reputation, uniting your community and growing a loyal customer base.

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