Shane Evans was 20 years old when she suffered a back injury. After tying many different methods of pain-management, she finally found the relief she sought in massage therapy.
She also discovered that massage therapy was expensive. After a holiday trip to Arizona, Evans decided that $200 was too much money for a lack-luster massage. She began conceptualizing ways to make message therapy accessible to a greater number of people. Evans ended up deciding that a membership concept was the best way to expand this type of pain-management solution.
According to Evans, “Two days later on the ride home, I brought it up again, pulled over, got a legal pad and literally wrote my business plan.”
Four months after her epiphany, Evans opened her first location, calling it Massage Heights.
Evans wasn’t new to entrepreneurship. In fact, she said her “parents were very entrepreneurial and had several different kinds of businesses,” and that running a company is “just kind of in our family blood.”
However, before Evans jumped into the new business, she knew that she must first get a solid understanding of the market. So she began spending lot of time speaking with massage therapists and industry experts to pick their brains and determine how she could apply a membership model to make massage more cost-accessible.
“Basically what we did is we said, 'It's going to be 50% of the normal rate,'” said Evans.
The membership model utilized by Evans allows consumers to cut down on massage expenses while giving the massage therapists a steady stream of clients. Evans’ business was a success and had a high demand from customers.
“We opened the second location nine months after the first,” Evans said. “We knew we had something really special pretty quickly.”
As her business started to expand, Evans began licensing friends, family, and customers so they could open their own location of Massage Heights in her area. A couple of years later, Evans began to offer franchises of Massage Heights to prospective business owners. Currently, there are franchises in 22 U.S. states and Canada.
Throughout her journey as an entrepreneur, Evans has emphasized the importance of remaining grounded in the original values that her company was built on. When she made the decision to open her company up as a franchise, she ensured that the values of the owners aligned with her original vision for Massage Heights. As she says, “We figure out, how are we going to live together the next 10 or 20 years?”
Looking towards the future, Evans talks about plans to further expand Massage Heights into new markets and territories. More importantly, Evans wants to continue pursuing her entrepreneurial passions.
She says, “There's never been a time when I didn't love it. There's been times where it's been very very difficult. But there's never been a time when I just went, ‘Ugh I can't do this anymore.’”
With all of the experience she has gained since starting Massage Heights, Evans offers the following advice for new or aspiring entrepreneurs: "Don't be too proud to take on partners that can bring a background that you don't have, capital and experience.”
Evans says if she were to start back at the beginning all over again, she would not be so afraid of giving away equity. She also suggests reaching out to potential mentors early on and really building up those relationships. Additionally, she recommends joining associations and groups, "where you can get that benefit of people who have experienced things that you haven't done yet."At Massage Heights, we are committed to providing people with professional massage services in an upscale environment, without the big price tag. If you are interested in learning more about massage franchise opportunities and available territories, call (888) 810-3940 to speak with our friendly team today.