I built a beautiful website for a client. It is gor-geous. It has amazing information, and it even pops up for keywords in her area that don't have high competition.
However, it doesn't get as much traffic, and convert as many clients as it could. Why? There is no blog.
Well, there is a blog, there is just no content in it. When people ask me how to improve their SEO, or become more findable, the first thing we talk about is writing, aka blogging.
Therapists and Blogging
What is interesting is that many therapists I know are beautiful communicators. Whether it is in a spoken or written format, they have a beautiful way of talking to people.
I mean, they are therapists... a lot of the job is communicating and exploring ideas with people. If I was to ask them to develop a worksheet to help their clients, they might jump at the chance. If I asked them to do a 5 minute educational chat with a group of ideal clients (especially if it was a small group)- they would be excited... but blog...
Blogging is just communicating ideas.
I hate to burst everyone's bubble, but before the word blogging, it was just called writing. In some cases, it was just called "journaling." And therapists- aren't you the ones trying to get everyone to "journal?" (Couldn't resist tossing in a silly therapy joke). As therapists, we get to stop elevating the idea of "starting a blog" or "launching a blog" and just call it what it is... we need to write.
Why do Therapists Need to Blog?
Because our world would transform if it could take in even .5% of what you have stored in that noggin of yours! There are things you know, do, and teach that you take for granted. Our world needs guides, mentors, sherpas, people to help them see things from a new and different perspective.
However, if you are determined to never blog, we can help!
Here are some great tips to make sure that you never get that blog started:
1. Overthink your blog.
Sit down and spend hours, weeks, months researching platforms, options, tips, tricks, etc. If you spend too much time thinking about this endeavor- it will start to feel like a bigger deal than it actually is.
2. Strive for blog perfection.
The perfect title, the perfect tagline, the perfect biography, the perfect article to launch... It is so easy to go down the rabbit hole of trying to make each detail perfect, and never make any progress forward. Yes, we want your blog to be wonderful- however, we all start somewhere. Odds are, no matter how much planning or perfection you begin with- you will continue to tweak and refine over time.
3. Aim to impress colleagues
Yes, you should have a little process you go through to make sure you aren't doing anything illegal or unethical. Thinking about what colleagues would or wouldn't do, or seeking consultation can help you avoid ethical or legal issues. However, most of the time- I see therapists terrified of being judged not for doing something unethical- but for not being "good enough" in the eyes of their colleagues. Newsflash: Almost every therapist feels this way about blogging (and private practice marketing). The people who might actually judge you the hardest are often the ones that are overly critical of themselves.
Remember: Your colleagues probably aren't your audience- your potential clients are!
4. Focus on all the possible horrible things that could happen.
I hate to break it to you, but you don't hear about many people's lives ending over a blog. In fact, you hear more stories of healing, redemption, and community building based on blogs. It is normal have anxiety about something new. It is good to think briefly about the "what ifs" and make some informed decisions. But, if you find yourself coming up with nightmare scenarios: my practice will close, no one will refer to me ever again, this will trigger a stranger's suicide- take a moment to regroup. Get an outside perspective from someone who knows blogging that you trust.
5. Surround yourself with negative nellies.
Mari A. Lee, LMFT, CSAT talks about Negative Nellies, Fearful Freds, and Envious Ermas. It makes me smile every time she says it out loud. If you find that every time you feel energized or inspired, you have people around you that are telling you everything you can't do- you might need to dig a little deeper. Explore whether you might just be running with the wrong crowd. Surrounding yourself with ethical, successful individuals is powerful, motivating, and inspiring. If you aren't feeling inspired, motivated, or powerful- take a good look at who you spend your time with.
I hope today you feel inspired. If you feel inspired to never blog that is great. If you feel inspired to let go of the barriers to blogging as a therapist- that is wonderful too!
One more word about blogging and therapists
If you believe you are incapable, have nothing to say, and can't overcome the technology fear- you will make that your reality. The truth is, the technology isn't much more difficult than tying a letter nowadays. And, I very rarely meet someone who doesn't have an amazing, inspiring story. (Of course- we tend to attract awesome therapists so my sample might be skewed!)
There you are! if you never want to start blogging- there are your easy steps! If you find yourself stuck in those steps and really do want to start blogging as a therapist-post your commitment below! We want to hear from you!
Did you know that posting a comment, and having your commenting account link back to your private practice website can improve your SEO? Crazy huh? It is considered a "link-back" and a completely legit one!