Why We Don’t Participate in Daily Deals

Truthfully- we just don’t like the model that these businesses are based on.
Those deals of 50% or so off regular prices are certainly nice to the consumer and we understand why they can be so alluring.
Perhaps you don’t realize that in most cases the business only receives 50% or so of the discount price. A $75 massage that you get for $37.50 only pays the massage business $18.75 and at most around $24.
That may work if the “Groupon” is for a product – maybe the company can just sell three or four times as many in order to come out ahead. But it is different if the product is a service, such as massage.
Some service providers can just see more clients – look at what has happened to medicine with managed care – doctors have less time per patient and often have nurses or other assistants doing some of the patient care.
Massage therapists cannot do so – a 60 minute massage takes 60 minutes (at least here at Redwood Massage – watch the franchises and day spas that only massage for 50 minutes and rush you out of the room in order to shoe the next person in 10 minutes later).
Most massage therapists only take 4-5 clients per day, 20-25 per week – especially those who do deeper work, and certainly those who specialize in more advanced techniques that may require research and documentation of what the session involved.
A self employed massage therapist probably spends 40 or more hours in various business tasks for the 20-25 hours for which they get paid – booking appointments, advertising, keeping records, handling laundry and maintaining supplies.
Of the $18.75- $24 the massage therapist seems to be making from their daily deal offers, rent or other facility fees must be paid, liability, health and disability insurance, licenses, supplies and all the other expenses that businesses incur even before paying personal expenses.
Two other factors stand out to us as the worst reasons to offer “Groupon” type deals in which the third party selling the “Deal” is the one making the most.
We very much believe in providing the most high level professional massage here. That means that each one of us must take care of ourselves in order to have the strength, stamina and health to meet the needs of the client. It also means that we should receive massages – do you want a massage therapist who doesn’t believe in the value enough to get massaged? We also believe in continuing to learn, as this profession is evolving with new methods as research teaches us more about the potential of skilled touch to help address a myriad of issues.
We do not believe in a basic “rub-down” done mechanically by routine with no thought for what will best serve the client.
Lastly is the issue of pricing in general. We have tried to set our prices fairly – fair for the market, the amount of work involved, the costs of providing services, and what we would feel fair paying as clients ourselves. We would not want to support businesses that we believe exploit their workers by barely paying them.
Yes, there are always those charging less – look around and think about how many happy employees you see at the cheapest burger place in town, the discount big box store, the shop where you feel like you are on an assembly line.