Why can’t I make my therapy biz work?

I get this question A  LOT. I want you to know that it’s not something you’re doing or something you’re getting wrong or something that you’re missing. It’s not. It’s because we are never taught to make our therapy business work. We are never told how to market our business, how to attract clients, how to get them to turn up and pay for our services. We are usually missing all that important stuff and that’s why we can find it hard to create the kind of therapy business we thought we’d create.

In this blog I want to walk you through some of the biggest mistakes we can encounter in our therapy businesses and how to stop them getting in the way of our success.

1. We are taught outdated marketing methods

I trained about 5 years ago and what worked in terms of marketing has changed MASSIVELY, but therapists are still being taught those methods. It makes me cross. So many therapists come out of their training and head straight to their computer to order their flyers and business cards. They have a very generic marketing message – telling everyone about everything they can help with. This won’t bring you the client numbers you want. In fact, these techniques will rarely bring you any clients at all.

I know it’s hard when you start but you need to work out WHO you are talking to, WHAT they are struggling with and HOW you can help them. Gone are the days of telling everyone you can help with everything and listing all the things you can help with.

You need to be much more specific to stand out in the sea of therapists out there. If you want to know more check THIS blog out.

2. We don’t appreciate it takes time

I don’t know about you, but when I started I thought the minute I had finished my training (and bought my business cards!) there would be a queue of people outside my office, desperate for my help.

There wasn’t.

No one tells us that it takes time. It takes time to build up your social media following. It takes time to build your website and start to get people to see it. It takes time to build your mailing list. It takes time to build your expertise.

And because we don’t appreciate it takes time, people often throw in the day job before they have started bringing in the money and this can be where the problems start. I’m not suggesting at all that you can’t make it work but make sure you have a financial plan while you are building up your client base.

If you want to find out the the other things I wish I’d know before I started check THIS blog out or if you want to know the things I would do differently if I could go back and start again then click HERE for more.

3. We spend too much

Websites, logos, branding, photos, advertising, printing, registration, insurance…..you can spend £100s or even £1000s before you’ve even started seeing clients, but you don’t have to. Yes, it’s lovely to have a logo and branding and a website but they are not essential to attracting clients. Set up some social media accounts and get talking to your WHO about their WHAT and show them HOW you can help them. As the clients start rolling in you can then start spending money on all the other stuff.

If you want to know more about what to be investing in and what you can do without for a while you can read more HERE.

4. We don’t know how to attract clients

Honestly, if anyone had told me how hard it would be to attract clients I don’t think I would have become a therapist. The thing no one tells you is that it’s never ending. You go through the whole marketing process to attract a client, you help them with their thing and then you need to attract MORE clients. Phew!

But what I know now is there is a process and you need to commit to doing that process every week – otherwise you will find yourself stuck in a boom or bust cycle; one month you will market, gets loads of clients and don’t have time to market, then the next month you’ll have no clients (which is stressful a way to run your business).

So, what is the process- social media (talk to your clients, let them get to know, like and trust you), blog (to help drive people to your website and showcase your expertise), offer a freebie (which will get people signed up to your newsletter), talk to your potential new clients through your newsletter and then selling your solutions (just make sure you’re not sell, sell, selling and are nurturing that relationship with all those potential new clients).

5. We undervalue our talents

Pricing is a biggie. Therapists often undercharge. They compare themselves to other therapists. They lack confidence in their skills. They offer discounts before a client has even commented on the price.

Remember how much you have spent out already – your training, CPD, room hire, travel, utilities……your price needs to cover all of these. But the most important thing to remember is that your skills have the power to transform someone’s life. What is that worth?

Charge what you are worth and the right clients will pay your prices.

HERE are some ways that you can make sure you have a business and not just an expensive hobby.

6. No one tells us about passive income

WOW, this is a biggie and I’ll be honest – this is what turned my business around and stopped me having to get a ‘proper’ job (you can read my real like story of success here).

As a therapist we sell our time for money and we have a limited amount of time, which means there is a limit on how much we can earn. So in order to earn more we have to work longer hours or charge more. But there is another way – you can create online therapy products. Take what you do in a one to one session and turn it into an online course. Once it’s written and recorded and out to sell, you can simply sit back and wait for people to buy which means you can earn money even while you’re not working.

7. We don’t see ourselves as business owners

You’re not just a therapist, you are a business owner. In fact you are the boss! So you need to think like one. Businesses that fail often do so because they are only focused on getting the next client booked in. There is no bigger plan. When you realise you are the boss, you know that you need to be getting those clients booked in but you also need to be growing and expanding your business. You will have targets, you will be up to date on your accounts, you will be securing your income into future months with client payment plans and online products, you will have a marketing plan but best of all, you will be successful and your diary will be full.

You don’t have to be one of those therapists who doesn’t make it. You have the talents, now we just need to create the successful business of your dreams.

Sarah, the therapy biz coach