Do you cringe at the idea of selling? It’s not uncommon that many business owners, including spa and massage practice professionals, are uncomfortable about selling. Yet, the fact is that in order to be successful, you need to be able to sell clients and prospects on your services and your product offerings.  While your professional reputation may draw prospects through the door to convert them to a long-standing clients some element of selling is required.

Before you can adjust your attitude about selling -- and eventually learn how to enjoy it -- ask yourself why you hate selling.  It may be that you think sales people are pushy, dishonest and try to manipulate you to buy something you don’t want. Certainly some salespeople live up to that reputation, but certainly not all.  In fact, many sales people are indispensable in helping their clients and customers find just the right products and services they need.

Here are some things to keep in mind to help you get comfortable selling and eventually learn to love it.

Love your offerings: Everyone responds to enthusiasm. Sometimes selling is just sharing your enthusiasm for massage therapy, whatever type you offer whether it’s aromatherapy, stone, reflexology, Swedish, Thai and more. You also may really be sold on a product for use at home between treatments and convey your confidence about its effectiveness through your knowledge.

Ask questions: In addition to the original intake questionnaire about what clients need, results they expect and likes and dislikes about products and ingredients, ask questions during each session. Your clients may be experiencing some new symptoms that make it very appropriate for you to offer additional treatments and therapies.

Think benefits not features: Think about your offerings from the perspective of your clients. They aren’t looking to buy product or service features; they are seeking benefits. When you talk to clients, emphasize the benefits of what you are proposing, don’t run through a feature list.

Use testimonials: If you are uncomfortable touting your offerings, use examples from other clients. Let their successful outcomes encourage your clients to try a product or service.

Don’t expect an immediate sale: You may recommend a product or service to one of your spa or massage therapy clients but it takes a while before they decide to try it.  Sometimes a client isn’t ready to try something new or their circumstances change so that the offering starts to make sense.  Don’t stop making recommendations. When the timing is right, your client may just say “yes.”

Treat clients like friends: Remember people buy from people they like. Treat your clients like friends and show you have their best interests at heart. They will be receptive to your suggestions and ask for recommendations.

Think of sales as a way to strengthen client relationships.  Your clients have a need and you have just the solution for them.