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Prepare for a rant on a pet peeve of mine.  This is not just for new massage therapists but also for any therapist who cut their prices so low that they actually hamper other therapists' business...and even their own.  It happened to me today.  I called on a corporate client to work their health fair as I have done the last 2 years.  I might add here that my rates are in the mid-high range.  But I've been doing this work for 10 years and my prices reflect my experience and expertise of my craft.  Anyway, I was told by the human resources person that they opted for a friend of an employee who had just graduated and was working part time plus doing massage part time.  And she was cheaper....a lot cheaper.  I thanked him (even though I wanted to say good luck...I've experienced this before and the job performed was never up to the standards the company was hoping for) and hung up.

Fellow therapists.  Put some value on your work.  Whether you are a new graduate or an experienced veteran, your work is VALUABLE!  Do not cheapen that which you have worked for so hard.  Yes, you may get more business with bargain basement rates, BUT....you will have to work harder, your career might not last as long due to overwork, you might not make enough to live on and, you hurt other therapists who might (temporarily) lose business because they find therapists that charge so much less.  I do this work full time.  If I lose a client to lower rates...fine.  I don't really need clients that base where they go on price.  I am not Massage Envy.  But, for every client lost, I have to make up that slot.  It costs me money.  I don't have another job to fall back on.

That's it.  It's happened before and I always make it up.  Just keep this in mind when you think about slashing rates to become the cheapest therapist.   It will cost you in the long run.

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i don't understand why people should think the massage profession should be any different than any other business or service? All chiro's don't charge the same. All pharmacy's don't sell the very same prescription for the same price. and our profession is no different. am i expected to consult with all the MTs in my area every time i need or want to change my pricing structure.

you say it confuses the public. well don't the places like massage envy do as well? you must then also consider that if a massage envy moves into your area it's undercutting you. or perhaps...a more open view point....is that it just opens the field up to be able to provide massage to ALL walks of life. and NOT just those that can afford $50 or more.

my colleagues think highly of me because there is more than just the bottom dollar to them. they KNOW me and know where my heart and intentions are. again...just because someone lowers their prices doesn't mean it's a DELIBERATE attempt to undercut others in the area. sometimes it's because that's what works best for them. and as for the schooling, my school was very adamant about debunking the notion that massage will pay you high dollars. they taught us to be realistic.

i also truly believe that with more experience and education SHOULD come more money. i charge what i do because i am also very new to the field and believe i have X amount to offer. As i grow my practice and begin to take more classes to offer more services, my prices will increase. isn't that normal business practice? if we go with your mindset than MTs straight out of school should charge the same price as someone that's been practicing for 15 years and has several modalities in their toolbox. how is that fair to them?

Julia Morrow said:
Hi! Thanks for commenting. I am surprised that you say your class mates think highly of you undercutting their prices. You say you are trying to survive. Well, isn't everyone? I still say it's disrespectful of your colleagues and the profession as a whole to undercut colleagues. It confuses the public, as they will think that low price is all that therapy is worth.

I think you misunderstood what I said about massage schools. I meant that I wonder what schools are encouraging their students to undercut each other after they graduate. I wasn't saying anything about the quality of schools.

Maybe we'll have to just agree to disagree on a few things!

:)
Julia

Lisa said:
I'm sorry Julia, but i find this mindset to be rather insulting (not you insulting me personally but the mindset behind this)

It is NOT a matter of respect at all. it's a matter of survival FIRST. then it's a matter of knowing your clientele. and then it's a matter of making your practice work within your individual life scenario.

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