We’ve all been stuck in a conversation at a dinner party or cocktail hour and found ourselves desperately wanting to escape from our conversation mate.
They drone on and on (and on) about themselves with no end in sight.
We try to get a word in somewhere, anywhere…but at the first sign of our intent to guide the conversation away from the person in question, they quickly seize control and return to talking about themselves.
When this happens in conversation, we get bored, we get frustrated, we might even get angry. And, as soon as we can, we run in the opposite direction.
If self-focus is such an obviously bad strategy in conversation, why does that same strategy become the primary marketing approach most therapists and other wellness practitioners use in their marketing?
Are You Compensating for Your Insecurities in Your Marketing?
If you just read through a given set of therapists’ and other wellness practitioners’ websites at random, chances are you’ll see a predominant theme:
Look at me! Look at me!
Why is this the go-to marketing move for most therapists?
Out of all of the possible approaches someone could take, why this self-spotlighting?
My hunch is that this decision to put the majority of the focus on the practitioner comes from a fundamental confusion about where potential clients are at when they’re seeking help.
Most people looking for a therapist or coach or SLP or bodyworker are dealing with some form of pain or challenge. And they’re desperately searching for a solution to that pain.
However, most therapists appear to believe that prospective clients are scouring every word looking for proof that the professional in question is unqualified.
To defend against this highly skeptical imagined prospective client, most marketing messages put forth by therapists and other wellness professionals are focused on the therapist, their qualifications, and their training and experience.
Believe it or Not, Most Prospective Clients Don’t Care About You
They don’t care one lick about you. Your qualifications. Your certifications. Your training.
They want to know that a) you understand their challenge and b) that you can help them.
However, notice the order there.
A comes before B.
Most therapists flip this order, and their marketing suffers as a result.
If someone arrives at your website or online profile or social media, they won’t be interested in perusing your qualifications if you haven’t first demonstrated that you truly understand the pain they’re dealing with and what it’s like for them to be looking for support and healing.
The #1 Secret to Successful Practice Marketing Is…
…putting your client’s concerns and interests first and foremost in all of your messaging.
Instead of starting with yourself, who you are, what you do, how you work, etc. you start with a deep understanding of your prospective clients’ experience.
You start out by reaching them where they are.
You stay with them in their experience long enough for them to come to view you as a true expert, not in some modality they’ve never heard of, but in what it’s like to have their struggles.
If you do that successfully, THEN they will be ready and willing to dive into your full presentation of who you are, what you do, and how exactly you can help them.
Flip the Usual Script – Become an Expert In Your Clients Fears, Challenges, and Dreams
This is the single biggest secret that marketing has to offer to wellness practitioners.
And, in truth, this is a huge relief. The pressure’s off.
You don’t need to showcase how great you are and puff yourself and your work up for the eyes of skeptical would-be clients.
Instead, you need to demonstrate deep understanding of the exact clients you’re best able to help.
Start there, stay there as long as you need to so those prospective clients truly feel seen, and only then dive into your presentation of your work and qualifications and expertise.
Of course, figuring out how to actually put together a compelling client-focused message isn’t as easy as it sounds. If you’d like support in delving into these profitable depths, we’d love to learn more about you and share how we can help.