How Your Therapy Skills Can Help Build Your Online Presence (Part 1)
This is the first post of a 2 part series of how to best utilize social media to engage your readers.
Developing and maintaining a strong online presence to engage readers employs the same skills you use as a therapist: the ability to foster trust, build rapport, and serve your community.
The internet allows you to expand your therapy outreach in a way that exceeds the bounds of what you could do from a traditional office setting. Here are some specific points to consider when building an online presence.
4 Ways to Build a Thriving Practice in an Uncertain Economy Since the economic downturn of 2008, my practice has experienced significant growth. I attribute that growth to these four strategies.
Our economy took a turn for the worse in 2008, stock market crashed, and many companies were forced to downsize. It was a hard time for many Americans, financially and emotionally. And yet, during this same time frame, my practice Wasatch Family Therapy experienced exponential growth. We steadily acquired new clients. opened two additional locations and grew from half a dozen therapists to over 20 therapists.
So how did I do it? I put time and energy into creating and maintaining a strong online presence.
How to Build Trust with a Client Before the First Session A strong online presence helps potentials clients trust you and choose you when they are ready for therapy.
Clients sometimes have a hard time trusting a new therapist. It’s understandable: who feels comfortable telling their innermost problems to a complete stranger? But trust is a critical part of the client/ therapist relationship if any real progress is to be made. Thankfully, there are ways to build trust before your client even walks in the door.
4 Ways to Repurpose Existing Content for Blog Posts You already have content for hundreds of blog posts. You just don't recognize it yet.
Therapists who are new to blogging sometimes have a difficult time finding material to write about. So where to begin? Actually, it’s much easier than you might expect.
An excellent strategy to finding material to write about is to simply repurpose and repackage existing content. That means that you remake something that’s already been created, either by you or someone else. This of course does NOT mean that you simply regurgitate what has already been written, but instead you thoughtfully craft existing material to serve a new purpose and audience. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel, here!
Get Graphic! Using Visual Content to Build Your Online Practice Presence
Photos, graphics, and memes can help build engagement and grow your online private practice presence.
Visual content is becoming increasingly important to a business’s online presence, and your therapy practice would do well to get on board. Nothing can replace quality written content, but too many words on a page can be overwhelming and/or dull. In fact, visual media networks, such as YouTube and Instagram have more referral traffic than Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+ combined. It makes sense, as studies show that 90% of the information transmitted to our brain is visual and that we process images 60,000 times faster than text. Additionally, information presented visually is much more likely to be retained, so your followers will remember things better than just plain text. So don’t be afraid to put some quality and purposeful images out there to help boost your online engagement. Here are some examples of ways to get graphic and connect with your readers visuals.
My Top Social Media Management Tools
Get organized with these social media management tools. Post to multiple platforms from a single dashboard.
Social media is an important part of building a strong online practice presence, but it can sometimes be a pain to manage. You need to get fresh content out there on a regular basis, but it can be difficult to keep up. Thankfully, there are programs to help you schedule your posts, so you can get . Here are my two favorites:
10 Ways Blogging Transformed My Private Practice Jodie Gale MA built a thriving practice through online presence, blogging and social media. Read about her journey in this inspiring guest post.
When I returned home from the UK several years ago, I was shocked at the state of psychotherapy in Australia. There was, and still is, a lack of understanding about what psychotherapy is and a lack of promotion regarding the benefits of psychotherapy from our professional associations. Frustratingly, it is rare to find a psychotherapist (or a family/play/art therapist) working as part of a multidisciplinary team in private or public health.
There is also a deeply pervasive myth that it is impossible to fill a ‘full fee paying’ private practice as a counsellor or psychotherapist because of the mental health plan insurance system which only provides rebates to psychologists and a small number of social workers. Trying to persuade clients to engage in weekly, depth psychotherapy (without a rebate) literally felt like mission impossible. My private practice reflected this and was sporadic to say the least. Desperate and down hearted after 8 years of Master’s training to become a psychotherapist – I found myself smack bang in the middle of a major career crisis.
Social Media Bootcamp For Therapists Webinar Feb 27
Social Media Bootcamp: Attract Self-Pay Clients to Your Private Practice
Date: Thursday Feb. 27 5:00 pm MST (4:00 pm PST, 6:00pm CST, 7:00pm EST)
Presenter: Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW
Attract more self-pay clients to your private practice by effectively and ethically using social media.
Top 10 Toolbox Posts Of 2012
As 2012 draws to a close I thought it would be fun to look back and to see which posts had the most impact and generated the most interest based on unique pageviews. Included in this top 10 list are posts that published during 2012. If you're new to Private Practice Toolbox this will give you a good overview of the ground we've covered this year.
10) 10 Things I Accidentally Did Right In Building My Private Practice
9) The Hazards of Being A Therapist
8) 9 Ways To Get Doctor Referrals
Boost Social Media Engagement Through Content Curation
I recently wrote a blog post encouraging therapists to start start creating content as a way to boost website SEO, create value, to create backlinks through social media sharing, and to develop your online practice presence. In my consultation and in online forums I've heard private practice therapists express feeling overwhelmed by creating content like blogging or producing videos on a regular basis. That's where content curation comes in.