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5 Key Steps to Marketing Your Counseling Practice in 2021

Recorded Live.

The Best Marketing Tips for Your Private Practice

Whether your practice is brand new or long-established, digital marketing is key to reaching potential clients and getting them through the door. Join Cory Miller as he guides you through the most impactful, inexpensive options available to you right now.

Machine Webinar Transcript

Cory Miller

Cory Miller 0:05
Everybody, welcome back to another AllCounselors.com webinar. Today I’m excited to be sharing with you something that’s key for a lot of the therapists that we talked to, which is five keys growing your practice in 2021. We get it. You know, you spend years and hours and hours, countless hours in a classroom, and then in supervision, only to be told like you want to start your own practice, how do you get started. So we put this together, we do this type of training regulated counselor SATCOM to help her clinicians and our therapy therapist community make steps. So I’m going to be talking about the five key steps and giving you some ideas and plans and things to do to build your practice. My name is Cory Miller, in the past, I started a software company called AI themes, multimillion dollar company over the about 10-11 years that I was part of growing that. And then in 2019, left the business after we were required to do my next endeavor, which happened to be all counselors. But one thing I wanted to note about building that company is primarily my I’m not a developer, but primarily metaphysis on helping people, either entrepreneurs, and digital marketing, like we’re talking about at all counselors. So I want to dive right in. And I want to get straight to practical things you can start doing to build your practice. So the first is start on your ideal client profile. One of the conditions we we talked to, we want to that you come out with all these great, you know, classes that you done, eventually certifications, licensing, all that kind of stuff. But I want to flip it to the people that you’re trying to serve and think about, who do you help most and best? Now, you may say, you know, we I do I work with everybody. But I’m sure there’s pockets of people, groups of people that stand out to you. Do you focus on lgbtqi? Plus community? indigenous people groups? Is it kids? Is it youth? Is it families is it relationships, those types of things. And for you to start thinking about that, because what you want to do on all your marketing materials and all your messaging is attract that type of client show that when they see your site, they see your business card, or they start talking to you that they go I found the right person, right therapist, the right practice for me. And so we always start here at the default Client Profile. So if you got some notes, pad and paper like I usually do, let’s start writing down these. So I want to give you a couple of prompts to think through this about your ideal, ideal client profile. How do you help most and serve best? So think about as you’ve gone through your supervision or whatever practice you’re in currently, think about those people that you’re like, Oh, this is just like magic, they come in for the set of issues. And then they leave. And they’re better for having been through the experience of therapy with you. Think about those blocks, you know, do certain things to certain even locations stand out to you. For instance, my therapist several years ago, was in a North suburb of Oklahoma City. Well, that practice, he had a group of about 1015, I think therapists that region of or that part of the city was a big, great draw for them. But so he could think through he happened to specialize also in Christian counseling. So there’s a lot of big churches up there. So think just start to think about common trends within the clients that you work with. And then let’s start switching over to the issues. I mean, you’re probably here common issues that you talk with your clients about anxiety, depression, probably always there, right. But what are some of the other nuance issues that make you more, I won’t say specialized, but you think this is the type of person and issues type of person first, and then issue second, that I can kind of help that’s all going to be foundational work that you put down on your page? You go Okay, I’m trauma focused. I’ve worked with you know, childhood trauma and but with with adults, okay, we can start with that and start making sure your website and your other materials, your social outposts, your directory listens, listings all share that message, so that when somebody arrives via Google or listing or whatever else they go, that’s the person for me. So we spend this first time on, you know, the the basics, talking about your ideal, ideal client profile. Okay, if you have questions along the way, please post those in the chat or in the q&a button, and I’ll be watching those if I get this around to me. So, I’m here for you and I want to make sure this is very profitable time for you. Say first, ideal client profile should give you some brain some thoughts about starting that conversation.

Cory Miller 5:05
The next is we want you to be found on Google, one of the best ways to get new clients is called local SEO, local search engine optimization. And specifically to that a program that Google has called Google My Business. You’ve seen this likely, if you’ve ever googled, like me, you’ve went over and you typed in therapists, and or let’s see right here, yes, and this is the map pack right here, what they call the map pack. But to be on here, you have to have a Google My Business account profile, you’ve done this, if you’ve also said, plumber, you know, you get the map pack with all these things. That is a free service by Google, and an awesome service by Google, it’s a way to get found people geographically around you. And it is one of the free, there’s hundreds, maybe even 1000s, depending on where you live people looking every day every week for you. And so making sure you one have a Google My Business account, and then have done some work on your profile to make sure people can find you and your work. So second is getting your Google My Business account, and I’m gonna put in the be just Google Google My Business, you’ll find it right here, I’m gonna put a link to that you can start setting up your account, put that chair here and place. There you go. I’ll give you a tip real quick. So as you’re setting up your Google My Business account, and this is something all counselors can do for you as well. But when you’re setting up your account, and you get, you’re going to get a postcard in the mail, after you set up with your office address, you’re going to get a some kind of postcard like this, it’s going to have a number in there that verifies your address. Now, if you’re working at home, you can still do that, use Google My Business, and you can hide your home account. So I know in the era of COVID and telehealth right now, all the therapists are working from their house. And I get that and may give up your office lease, I do say if you do have an office lease you might consider just just consider Google My Business for that because it makes it much easier to have a Google My Business account and to use that prolifically. One way to boost your visibility on Google, my business is getting reviews. Now, we know you cannot ask your clients for a review like this. However, you can ask a colleague for a review. So what you would do is get on give them a link to your account and to your Google My Business profile and ask them to state they are a colleague, and that they they’ve either went to school with you or whatever they experiences with you and give you some descriptors about you. That’s something you can do for them as well. But that’s one way to get reviews. And that helps your ranking within the Google map pack or Google My Business. So client, just going back to number one, draft your ideal client profile asking some key questions. Second is Google My Business gave you a link to that in the chat. Now, third. So a lot of people a lot of clinicians, we talk to you and therapists depend on their Psychology Today directory listens for their entire online presence. Now, I think that should be a part of your marketing roadmap, but not the sole thing. You need something that you own a domain name with a website attached. That is your home. For all you do. Marketing, online and offline, like your business cards need to say your number, how to get in touch with your maybe your email. But definitely your website. Address should

Cory Miller 8:58
be on your cart. It should be the center or the hub of everything you do for marketing. Your practice should be your website, think about it. email signature goes out. It’s got your website, your practice, you’ve got directory listing on Psychology Today, that should link back over to your website. And that’s good to have those type of links back to your main website. But the website is your center of your universe for everything you do marketing with your practice. And here’s some things you need to answer on your website. Who are you? And where specifically because therapists right now at least in the United States, it’s by state by state licensing, as you well know, you need to say where I am Corey Miller and therapist I’m not therapist in Oklahoma City serving Oklahoma City and Edmond, Oklahoma, those type of things, you need to have that primarily primarily on your site. So once the user knows your search, you’re actually a therapist here and not two hours away. But also it’s a signal for Google to know in parallel with your Google My Business account, Google’s getting intelligence about your practice and saying, Okay, look offices located here. We know that from Google My Business, the website that this Google My Business profile links over to also says the same things. They’re their work in tandem those two, it’s like Batman and Robin, who you work with, you’ll notice we came back, pulling that ideal client information back here, how you help, that’s about your, you know, the issue someone may commonly come in to talk with you about, and then your modalities, treatment options that you work with clients on. Now, it’s not enough to say EMDR, or I do Act, or CBT, or whatever you need to share on your website and your Google My Business exactly what those mean. So who do you serve? And how do you help them that all blends in with modalities and things like that, but be sure they haven’t spent all these years in school and supervision. And in the world of psychology, they are a client looking to get their needs met. And how does those if you talk about modalities on your website, in Google My Business, be sure to say I use cognitive behavioral therapy, because that, you know, whatever that reason why you do that. So who you are and where you what areas you serve. And then who you work with. We talked about that, how you help. And what you do, all of that should be on your website. Now, I think you can build a one page website that encapsulates that to give people like, not just a business card, but more so picture of you, maybe your office if you have one, and then some really good information to connect the dots. Now, one thing I’ll add on here, too, is frequently asked questions. You know, one might be Do you do insurance? And what’s your answer to that most common things you get asked by every client, I would include the section more down the bottom of your page, that is FAQ section, because what you’re trying to do with that website, is lower the bar for what it takes to become a client of yours, so that you connect with the right people. Step one we did with the ideal client, and connect those dots there. Okay, so that’s simple website. We do that and all counselors as well, we’ve got a special running right now, actually, that you, we instead of paying a lump fee, we do it over a monthly payment. And so right now we have $67 a month, we’ll get your website up and running for you all with baked in with local SEO, all the ingredients I’m talking about here to be that center point of your marketing universe. But there’s some really good options out there too. If you want to do it yourself, I would encourage you think about what you charge. Think about the expertise and what you want to do. And make sure there’s a line, if you want to do this as a hobby side project, maybe you could do that. But I highly suggest you get someone that understands digital marketing to help you with your website. So that includes a domain name, hosting content, creating the content for your site, and all that and then the optimization for Google. So get a simple website going. If that’s just a one page website, that’s great. But get something because that’s going to be the center of your digital marketing universe. Okay, next is and I want to make sure I leave enough time for q&a. But next is build your referral network. So we’ve talked about who we’re serving best. So we start to think about those things. So if people say what do you do, I’m a therapist who helps youth through these particular modalities, we don’t say the treatment options or whatever.

Cory Miller 13:46
Now we’re getting we’ve got the website and all that we’ve got a Google My Business gives some signals out to the Google universe that this is what I do and where I do it. referral network. Now, this is building on top of that. So we think about the website being the hub. And these things being the spoke that point back to the website, a place to call home online, and referral networks are key, right? So I want you to think about all kinds of different people that could potentially be adjacent to what you do. Or have clients similar to the ideal client profile you talked about, and start writing down a list of all these people, people you already know that you could go back, send an email, send a text message, give him a call. Just say By the way, I’m opening my new practice. here’s here’s my website, maybe you have anybody to refer I’d love to, for you to do so. Supervisors. If you’ve been in supervision, classmates, if you’re out of school recently, colleagues that might be booked up and can’t take anymore. Start your list. One thing I have actually personally asked my primary care physician for referrals in the past, think about Dr. She know, you’re in a setting this way, you won’t have your business cards that have your website and your email address and your phone number and all that ready to go at all times. So that you can build a referral network or your physician, you know, I get a lot of clients from primary care physicians. And, you know, here’s my card, and that kind of thing. So, physicians, I talked to a therapist in New York City, for instance, and they got happened to be getting a lot of referrals from physical therapists, when you start pushing down into his particular practice. He does a lot of Medicare, think that’s how you set Medicare, and then an older demographic, which would lead to physical therapists. So see why this ideal client profile is so big, because find businesses that serve that ideal profile in other ways. So like my former therapist, was a Christian therapist. So churches run this area, you know, getting to know the ministers and the staff at some of the bigger churches, just, Hey, I’m right down the street, just want you to know I have, if you happen to have a similar worldview, like you know, I do these type of things, but it’d behoove him to make sure all the churches in his area knew his practice existed. And it was focused on that. So I want you to do like some brainstorming on this. Think about adjacent businesses, professionals that serve your ideal client profile. And who you could reach out and say, Hi, just wanted to introduce myself, I’m a therapist, I’ve got an office here, here’s my website, do all these things. If I can ever help you or your, your clients, I’d love to help and those type of things. And then you know, maybe it’s a quick email or text pain to those just kind of keep in touch. I think once you start to hear from your clients, as you ask them, How did you find me, they may say website, they may say Google, or they may say a referral. And you start to know, oh, that primary care over there is really refers a lot to it, I should keep in touch, and find ways just to, to keep in touch with that person, keep top of mind, because they’re a good referral partner for you. Don’t neglect the referrals. Word of mouth is awesome. If you can build to that we’re setting the stage by building these foundational things like Google My Business account, your website, then you start building out for those that spokes to those. So be sure and keep the referrals several times a month, you need to be thinking through who who are the people I need to meet or stay in touch with. And this can also mean events you go to. My wife has a marketing agency that serves all other people besides therapists. And she goes to tech events in our city quite a bit, because it’s a great potential referral network for her. It’s starting with building relationships. But when she gets a chance to tell what she does in the world, you know, it’s

Cory Miller 18:02
always good to get that top of brand, Top of Mind awareness. So that’s number four we talked about. So so far, we’ve talked about draft your client profile, Google My Business, third is your website. Fourth is referrals, building and maintaining and growing your referral network. And the next is last but not least, is obtaining your outposts. So what I’m talking about is website is the center hub, and everything that comes out as a spoke, and one of those referrals we talked about, but another big one is, but I put that last one list is your social profiles, social profiles, and also your directory listings. So you have a Psychology Today profile, for instance, that’s an outpost that should lead back to your website, your main home for all you do. But make sure you’ve gone through and done the free ones, there’s one called free one called therapy, then another outpost that it takes you 15 minutes a time to fill out the profile. And then you’re out there you’re putting your seeds out to the world and to potentially harvest and pull back to what your website and you’re practicing and become a client of yours. So all counselors is working on directory we should have that rolled out by the end of the month you’ll be the first to know as part of our community that that’s there and we’ll be doing free profiles for therapists so you want to be sure to have your profile on all our all counselors directory will be sharing pretty soon but there’s us also others like therapy Dan, so I called you today on that was paid. But then also if you want to this is a bonus step is the social profiles if you have you’d like Facebook or tolerate Facebook in some instances, maybe you have a Facebook page out there, an Instagram profile if you’d like to share things. You know those are things you can update your profiles, but they should again what come back to your website. So even if you have a profile if they’re on Facebook and Facebook Page, but your practice should kind of come back to your website address and vice versa. Okay, so taking some time and going updated all those profiles or starting others profiles is the fifth step in this. And then I want to give you a bonus one real quick. And we’ll be here for questions if you have any questions in just a second. But the bonuses let’s say you’ve done all those you’ve mastered all those, you’re continued to take some time, make sure websites, good fleshed out optimized, Google My Business, you’re putting posts out there to your Google My Business account, which helps you stay top of mind on Google. But, and then you’re working on the referral network. And then there’s content creation. So content creation is a is a bonus for this. If you don’t have these five steps down, don’t worry about content creation, stick with the five steps, these are the things you need to do. But if you’re on the bonus level, and ready to go, next level of content creation is a fantastic way to keep your showcase your expertise, demonstrate your credibility. And keep Top of Mind in the community that you serve. I always suggest pick your pick your content type. If you like doing video, you know, you can as simple as take your iPhone, or Android, whatever it is, and start recording a quick video. And then you post that to Instagram or YouTube, wherever you want that But again, it’s connected back to your website too. So think of what kind of content type you’d like to create. Maybe you’d like to write cool, that’s blog posts, or Twitter, or it could be any, you know, LinkedIn, for instance, or Facebook, wherever you think kind of naturally goes with how you like to create, and also where your ideal client is potentially

Cory Miller 21:52
out there. So see, we talked about video written like blog posts, or tweets, things like that. And then another could be a podcast, I typically like to do podcasts in like the maximum version. So I’ll record it with zoom. So I have a video or record it with whatever platform you’re on. I’ll take the mp3 from that recording. And I’ll put that on my podcast feed, and I put the video on YouTube. And so those are two outlets with one thing that you’re recording, if you can find a co host, maybe find another therapist in your area, someone that does something adjacent or complimentary to what you do have a conversation twice a month, sec, the second and fourth Wednesday of every month, we’re going to record and we’re going to post those on a channel, something like that. Instagram is very popular with mental health right now. If it’s something in your workflow of like, going to Canva ca nba.com. And creating a little graphic or a quote you typically use a lot in your therapeutic practice. Maybe you post that on your Instagram, and you develop a following through that. But one of the things, I always give the caution with this content creation takes time, and consistency. And so I say this is bonus round, you get the five steps we’ve already done, mastered and down, and you’re ready for your next thing, content creation, that’s great next step for that. And then there’s the vehicle. So like, it doesn’t have to just be on Facebook, if you posted something on Facebook, like an image with a cool saying that helps some of your clients and or that that can also be reposted on Instagram, your Instagram profile. And maybe it’s tweeted if if your audience is on, you know, Twitter, or Facebook or LinkedIn or whatever doesn’t have to be one channel. I start with content at first and then you can use the various channels to share those. But I’d keep it small and easy to start. It’s just like working out like going to a gym, you got to start small. And the smallest amount you can consistently do and provide value is the absolute key way to build your social outposts and create content. Okay, so now, here’s your homework. Take one step one thing from today what we’ve talked about today, and do that, do that today. Take one step Oh, I need to update my Psychology Today listing Oh, I need to start my Google My Business account. You know, so I can get my little postcard back with my numbers that verifies I have a gig. I have a business at this address for Google. Take one thing, one small step and move forward with your practice and doing your marketing. And as always, we’re here for you at all counselors comm to help you. If you’d like to book a discovery meeting, I want to put a link here in the chat to all counselors. Our contact form that you can hit this little thing and get a free discovery call with us. here for you, our team is ready to help you talk through strategy, how to mark your practice. And specifically, we start with your website, that center of your marketing universe. We have this great package here show that is ideal for therapists just getting started. That really helped take your website, off your mental overwhelm or load. We do all the optimization I’m talking about, we just have to get your information, we start to massage that translate that so your ideal client can look at your website and go that’s the person for me, let me book and so right now we’re doing these for $67 a month, through June’s done for you website, no setup fees, we do the optimization. We work with you on appropriate design for that website. But it’s all intended to help build your practice and get you new clients. So that’s what I had for today. I’d love to if you have any questions, I’d love to answer those today. I’ll stop the recording. This will be posted all counselors calm shortly afterwards. But appreciate you being here today and I’m here for you and look forward to answering questions in just a second.