I was inspired to write this post because of discussions that were taking place in a hypnotherapy forum that I am a member of on LinkedIn. Someone had posed a question about the Hypnotherapy Directory and whether it was a worthwhile source of referrals for the money. For those of you not in the UK the directory is a paid directory where you can add details about your hypnotherapy business and it appears relatively highly in the search engine rankings. Now this post is not about the directory itself but some of the answers that I saw in reply to this question. A number of therapists had answered yes that it was a good source of referrals and that many got most if not all of their business from it. This created a big red flag in my mind because if there is one rule of Hypnotherapy Marketing it is not to put all your eggs in one basket.
You see the people who are getting these referrals have not stopped for one minute to think what may happen to their business if things were to change. So lets imagine that Google decides to change its algorithm tomorrow and downgrades all directories so that they no longer appear on the first page of Google. Suddenly all these therapists who have used these referrals as their main source of income are going to find themselves on the breadline as the calls will just suddenly stop. Or perhaps five new therapists move into their local area and start advertising in this directory and suddenly their leads are massively diluted. Again their business tanks in a matter of months.
Using just one source of referrals for your Hypnotherapy Marketing is business suicide because the nature of the world is that things change. Things are constantly evolving which means that what may work for you today but not be so helpful tomorrow. This means that in order to survive you need to diversify and where possible be in charge of your destiny rather than leaving it to others to decide.
Therapy Marketing Referrals
Don’t just take my word for it there are plenty of businesses that have gone under because they have experienced issues with their main source of referrals. There are tales of Ebay businesses who got some negative feedback and suddenly found that they were banned from the site and suddenly their business went bust. Others relied too heavily on Google Adwords and when they broke the rules they found that they were no longer allowed on the site. Oh and of course there are the infamous stories of people ranking well on Google but because they had bad backlinks suddenly found themselves plummeting down the rankings when the search engine changed their algorithm.
In order to be great at hypnotherapy marketing you need to make sure that you have a diversified pot of referral sources. That means that if one area goes bad you only lose a small percentage of your leads. You need to build strong and sturdy foundations and if possible conduct a risk assessment of your business. Now in the world of trading and business development where I used to work we would look at our portfolio of trades and every day someone would be looking at what would happen in the worst case scenario. You need to do the same with your business because that will help to ensure your survival. Think about where you are getting your customers from and what would happen if that source of income suddenly disappeared.
Marketing a Hypnotherapy Business
Don’t take the lazy way out, you need to become a proactive marketer to really make your business succeed. In order to really take your business to the next level you need to build a business which is pulling in clients from every source available to you. So that means:
- Organic Rankings
- Paid Advertising
- Referral Programs
- PR and Media
- Social Media
- Friends and Family
- Local Events
The list is endless but if you are not doing all or at least half of the above then you are never really going to build a business that gives you the income that you deserve.
I know that as a therapist it can be difficult initially to understand or even take an interest in marketing but sadly the whole structure of a therapy business means that you need to attract people in through your door. With hypnotherapy marketing it is made even more difficult because the people that you are attracting tend to only stay with you for six to eight sessions at the very most. That means that your turnover of customers is huge and that puts more pressure on you to constantly get more people in to your business every day to replace the people who have finished successful therapy. This business model is very different to that of a hairdresser or beauty therapist because in those businesses you will always get a certain percentage of your clients coming back to you time and time again.
Therapy Marketing & Coronavirus Update
Although I wrote the wrote this post way back in 2015 I thought it was so important to update it in light of Coronavirus and what is doing to therapy marketing. This post is more relevant than ever because although it is five years since I spoke about diversifying your business and marketing therapists have not listened and many chose to niche in one topic. If that is you currently you may be having a big problem. Not so much is you specialise in anxiety and stress but hell if you ware running weight loss sessions or help children in schools they you are seeing the bottom falling out of the market as we speak.
It is always so important to insulate your business by having a number of strings to your bow. This means on one website you may specialise in weight loss but in another it may be OCD. You don’t need thousands of different sites but having two or three in different areas could help you to mitigate your risks. Plus make sure you have a passive income strategy because that can help as well. Start thinking out of the box and create a proper marketing plan. Ask yourself what would I do if things changed with this tomorrow? How would I be able to react quickly to changing marketing conditions? How can I maintain a resilient business model?
If you don’t understand how to market well then you need to invest the time and the money in yourself and your business so that you get to grips with how you can make this happen. That is why I offer a large number of different marketing and mentoring sessions to fellow therapists to help them succeed in business. Don’t allow your hypnotherapy marketing to be a side thought. Make it a priority and when you do watch your client numbers and revenue soar.