Informing clients of a price change is always something I get a little anxious about, telling folks they will have to pay a little extra is never something they want to hear. However, in this case, it seemed vital to not only tell you when and how much, but also why some of our prices are changing.
Amara is in the midst of integrating some great changes over the coming months and year and I am excited to share with our clients the direction that we are headed. Improvements and changes you will see over the next 3-12 months:
- We will be launching a new online booking system this Fall, this booking system will allow greater ease and flexibility for clients as well as assist our team in greater organization and flow in our work space. We will be sending out more information on this transition in the coming weeks through our weekly email blast.
- We will be renovating and improving our space! Look for exciting updates through out our space over the coming year.
- We will be streamlining our pricing system.
- We will be opening our in house/monthly continuing education program to all LMT’s, not just therapists practicing at Amara Massage Therapy & Wellness.
- We hope to offer quarterly and ongoing apprenticeship positions for interns/externs/new graduates and are excited about what this type of opportunity might offer our clients and new therapists embarking on the field.
As you likely know, Amara currently uses a level system for our pricing based on experience of the therapist as well as the length of time they have worked at Amara. Feedback from clients booking and checking out seems to be mixed, sometimes stating that the levels are confusing, hard to understand and are possibly not well conveyed despite our best efforts. This system has been beneficial in some ways because it has exposed our clientele to a diverse group of massage therapists, with varying levels of education, experience, and specialties. However, going forward later this year, we will dissolve our leveled pricing system so that all therapists are valued and priced equally on our menu of services (only exception would be temporary apprenticeship positions). Our intention is to convey to both current and future clients that no matter what therapist you see you are going to have an excellent massage with a professional, Licensed Massage Therapist that has met all requirements by the state and is fully insured to practice. We will continue, and in some ways highlight even more, our matching process. We will always take great care in placing you with the ideal therapist based on your preferences, always highlighting the experience of each practitioner, ensuring the right match.
Our therapists work extremely hard, and as a semi-retired massage therapist, I can tell you that massage is one of the most physically taxing professions out there. When practiced as a steady career it takes commitment to excellent self care (part of our mission statement), professionalism, and genuine presence and empathy to deliver top quality massage on a day to day basis. I have also found that retaining individuals who I consider to be some of the best massage therapists in the state also means offering consistent pay increases in order to stay in line with what has become an ever increasing cost of living in northern Colorado (as I am sure many of you are feeling as well). I also place a high value on offering in house continuing education as well as subsidies to employees to pursue education on an individual level so that they can be of even greater service to themselves and their clients.
We realize the cost of massage can be somewhat stressful for some, and possibly seem out of reach. I have tried to do everything possible to encourage our success as a business and remain affordable for our clients. My challenge is to balance the costs of the business with paying what I consider to be a competitive living wage to our team members while also keeping our customers happy. Ultimately, I know that the quality and value of our service far outweighs the cost and even though we might not be the cheapest in town (also not the most expensive), our services are second to none.
Our goal is to keep our pricing inclusive, easy to understand and straightforward. As a reminder our services will still include all of the following at no additional charge:
- Hot steamy towels
- Salus Muscle Relief Gel
- Hot or cold packs
- We will NEVER charge extra for our integrative and therapeutic treatment/deep tissue work.
- We utilize natural, organic and vegan massage creams/oils so that you never have to worry about what products come in contact with your skin.
- Full 30, 60 or 90 minutes of hands on massage time.
It also seems relevant to highlight that Amara is locally and independently owned, and each therapist working here is an employee (not an independent contractor) which is sadly no longer the norm for the industry. In recent years massage has become a highly commoditized, franchised and sought after service, which is great for the average Groupon or Living Social consumer, but it’s leaving some LMT’s in situations where they make less than $10 per session and are afforded none of the rights or protections given to a legitimate employee. Please don’t be offended if you are a Groupon or Living Social user, but I do challenge you to ask yourself who the practitioner might be on the other end of that great $29 massage deal and are they getting fairly compensated for their efforts? I would also challenge you to ask yourself another important question, do I want to trust my body and my well being to the lowest possible bidder? As the owner of Amara I am committed to remaining a strong advocate for the health and safety of massage therapists while also continuing to offer amazing services and massage treatments to our guests.
Beginning December 1, 2016 new pricing to see any LMT working at Amara is as follows:
- 30 min $50 (current pricing is $35, 40, 45, 50)
- 60 min $75 (current pricing is $60, 65, 70, 75)
- 90 min $110 (current pricing is $95, 100, 105, 110)
Going into 2017 We hope to offset the price increase 3 different ways:
- By offering our annual Golden Ticket Sale at our current level 1 pricing ($60 per ticket/THREE ONE HOUR MASSAGES for $180), so that all clients can buy in at the current rate. Additionally, Golden Tickets will NO LONGER HAVE ANY THERAPIST UPGRADES FEES! A Golden Ticket voucher will give you access to see any therapist working at Amara for a 60 minute customized massage. No more confusing upgrade fees at checkout!
- Due to high client requests we will start offering bulk individual session packages in 2017 after the annual Golden Ticker Sale has ended. Bulk packages will differ from our Golden Ticket voucher packages; bulk packages will be for individual purchase only, cannot be transferred to another person and are not a voucher. We are still working on pricing details for these packages, please look for updates and further information in the coming months.
- We plan to create and implement an Amara Massage Therapy & Wellness pilot apprenticeship program. Those in the proposed 90 day apprenticeship program would be offering lower cost sessions in exchange for feedback from clients on their work. Similar to a student clinic format, except we will be hosting a mix of therapists; new graduate LMT’s who want to build their skills and get CE, LMT’s who are returning to the field after hiatus and want an intensive practice refresher and skills polishing, and also students of local massage programs who have not yet graduated.
The mission of Amara Massage Therapy & Wellness remains the same, to offer excellent massage and body treatment services in Fort Collins, CO. We will continue to create an environment that is the ideal fusion of a massage clinic and spa atmosphere, allowing our guests the space, time and healing that they need to feel better, naturally. As always, your feedback, questions or concerns are welcome. Please do not hesitate to reach out via email or give us a call if you would like to connect regarding our upcoming price change. Thank you for your continued loyalty, referrals and patronage. We would not exist without our clients, and are lucky to continue to serve you each day!