What a Massage Therapist Taught Me About Marketing

By: Shama Hyder

A couple of weeks ago, I was looking for a massage therapist in Austin. My back had been killing me, and my physical therapist insisted I find a massage therapist immediately. I know very few people in Austin, so I just did a local search on Google. It lead me to this page. Gilmore Massage Therapy in Austin had 20 five star reviews. None of the other places had anything even close to this. I immediately called the place, and was greeted by a very warm voice mail. I left a message stating my urgent need, and Alexa Gilmore (massage therapist) called me back within the hour. She didn’t have an opening until Friday (I called on Wednesday), but after reading the rave reviews, I didn’t care about the wait.

On Friday evening, I eagerly left the office for my appointment. Her practice was situated in a building with plenty of parking, and her clear directions made it easy for me to find. When I arrived, I was greeted by a cozy room with plenty of coffee table books. Alexa gave me the standard form to fill out, and then escorted me into the massage room. She asked me to describe my back pain in detail, and listened keenly as I laid out my issues. She then asked more questions that clearly demonstrated she had been listening to my five minute “I am in Pain” story. Did I have allergies? (none that I knew of). Had I experienced any sudden lifestyle changes? (more traveling due to business). She was sounding more like a caring physician than a massage therapist. Something wonderful happened during that conversation-I trusted her and relaxed further.

The massage itself was delightful. I was able to relax my muscles, and even fell asleep on the massage table! I left the massage feeling a million times better. Once I got back to Dallas, I was greeted by a hand-written thank you note from Alexa. Tucked within the note, was a magnet with her business information on it. Wow!

It was only in retrospect that I realized Alexa was a marketing pro! First, she made sure that her initial impression was strong. I trusted her even before I met her! Her client’s reviews, her professional website, and quick communication had already established her as a professional in my mind. Furthermore, she stood out from her competitors. In fact, I didn’t even notice them. Second, her service delivered what her marketing message had promised. Her business tagline is “Every Body Tells a Story.” She listened to my story when I went in, and then acted to fix the problems. Third, her follow-up was impeccable. A hand-written note and a magnet with her information so I can easily contact her. This is marketing at its best.


She is the founder & CEO of Zen Media. She has been named the “Zen Master of Marketing” by Entrepreneur Magazine and the “Millennial Master of the Universe” by FastCompany.com. Forbes, Businessweek, and Inc have all recognized her as one of the Top 30 under 30 entrepreneurs in the field of marketing. Shama has built a global audience and is known for helping brands succeed in the digital age. She is a bestselling author, an international keynote speaker, and has been named one of LinkedIn’s Top 10 Voices in Marketing for four years in a row.



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