Desperately Seeking Happy Ending

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Seamless pattern with smiling faces after a massage

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It’s an online world we live in. You have worked hard to setup a website and establish an online presence with any number of social media outlets. Which in my opinion, you need to survive now.  Some things are just out of our control though. That’s O.K

Sitting in my required continuing education credits in Florida, the instructor started the class by passing around a list of massage businesses that were on yellowpages.com when you searched in yellow pages “massages with happy endings”. Included on the PowerPoint slide was the web address of the page with the offending listing and the email address to make a complaint to yellow pages.  As the list made its way to me, sure enough I was listed three times. (I have two locations and it listed my name.) With the way this was presented I was shocked!  Yellow pages is listing your business under the category: “massages with happy endings” I was annoyed this would be another “listing” I had to spend energy on removing. Thank goodness our trusted massage instructor was providing us with this public service announcement…

Then I started to play around. I searched “under water massage baskets” “chopstick massage” “massage empty toilet”.

You get the idea.  Every time I included the term “massage” in the search box, my business, along with those other fifty happy ending massage establishments would show up.   Next, I simply searched “happy endings” at yellowpages.com.  This resulted in a list of local places to dine at.  I think a list of bookstores would be more appropriate, but eating is good, too. Now, if you searched “she who gives a great hand job in Panama City” and my business showed up, that would be an issue. That is not the case here.

Yellowpage’s search engine was performing its job.  “Massage” was used in the search terms and because I’ve listed my business under massage as a category, I showed up in the search results.  This is a good thing!

The same can be said for using Google.  My business will pop up when you search “sexual massage” and I’ll probably be on the front page.  I couldn’t be happier.  It doesn’t mean I perform sexual massage, it simply means search engines are working for my business.  I’m not worried some seeker of the happy ending will show up on my table.  I have a professional website that weeds those people out!

There is a difference between search terms and a category.

Some websites have a category for sexual massage; you may not want to be listed on those sites.  I suggest you search for such sites in your area. I found out about naughty reviews from a prospective client when I asked how he heard about Balance and Peace.  I thought he meant k-n-o-t-t-y.  When I realized my error I blurted out “oh no, I’m not naughty!” Awk.ward.

There is no way to stop every potential client that wants to Google “sexual massage” or “happy endings.  It’s going to happen.  However presenting your business with a clear, professional image on the internet will filter those seekers from contacting you.  Don’t worry about it, and celebrate the search engines finding you!

Rianne Chavez
Massage Therapist, Professional Rubber, Masseuse, and owner of Balance and Peace Massage Therapy.  A West-Coast woman thriving in the South enjoying the sun and beaches.

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  • Hi Rianne, you are making some very good points here. I totally “get” this – I am a “victim” of my own SEO marketing as the keyword “massage” is used and abused by other types of service providers. However, receiving too many of inappropriate calls last week made me reconsider my marketing strategy and quite frankly made me also re-evaluate my long term plans as a massage therapist.

    • Rianne Chavez

      Paola, I’m sorry to hear about the number of calls you received. They are awkward. I would definitely take a look at your marketing strategy. In my area, the therapists that usually receive the most calls have mixed messages on their marketing, advertise in bad places, or are using inappropriate pictures. Do the best you can to have a clear, professional message and a clear plan to go through on the phone to clarify with the caller your services. If I feel like someone is beating around the bush, I just ask them “Are you looking for sexual services?”. They usually appreciate the honesty. Don’t give callers that much power over your life or business! If massage is your passion, do it! We won’t be able to stop every seeker, I just don’t see it happening.