5 Awesome Social Media Resources for Therapists

5 Awesome Social Media Resources for Therapists

We had over 300,000 people see our information on Pinterest alone. Can you imagine how that kind of exposure could impact your counseling practice? 

The truth is, you aren't advertising your counseling practice, you are just making it easy for people who desperately need you - to find you! Have you ever run into the store for 3 quick items only to get lost in a maze of poorly marked aisles or items tucked away on end caps? It is frustrating to know exactly what you want, and what you need- and not be able to find it! 

This week as our Spring 2015 bootcampers are completing their JumpStart program, several of them are already scheduling clients from a few simple exercises on LinkedIn- without paying a dime for ads, or doing anything crazy. Social media is a powerful way that you can make it easy for clients to find you! Here are 5 resources on social media to get your social media plan on track! 

Read More

Business Planning for Therapists and Funny Cat Videos

What funny cat videos can teach you about business. 

I was listening to NPR the other day and was stunned when I heard this statistic: "15% of all Internet traffic is cat related." I thought for a second that maybe they were wrong... and then I stopped... I thought about my husband telling me about" I can has Cheezeburger" and trying to explain cat memes to me over the years. 

Read More

4 Tips to Make Technology Easier for Your Private Practice

Yesterday, Miranda and I were in this gorgeous park, filming some kick ass videos for a new free training (Oooo I am so excited about it!). We were on a roll, laughing and chatting and really conveying some clear messages for our peeps. We were in the flow.

This morning, I rolled out of bed to find Miranda on my couch, looking at the camera. "I've got some good news and I've got some bad news." Uh oh... "The video was awesome, beautiful, and looks great!" "But there is no sound." 

Over an hour of content - rockin' content - gone. 

I had a choice. I could throw my camera out the window and stomp my feet thinking about how technology sucks. OR I could figure out the issue, get help if needed, and try again (and still punch a pillow). For the record, we are not immune to technology woes. In fact, I think Miranda has a few less hairs after trying to figure out our website issues this morning. Send her some love, willya? :) 

If you run any kind of business, you are going to need some sort of technology. For private practice owners that can include a smart phone, a computer, an electronic health record, online messaging and video programs, bookkeeping software, a website, social media tools...well you get the idea.

So how do we make technology easier in our business. Here are 4 tips just for you!

1. Do what is necessary, not what is popular. Everyone has apps they love and computers they recommend. Before you start downloading every app your friends recommend or signing up for all the latest social media platforms - how does this help you achieve your business plan? Does it serve your client? Does it make your life easier in the long run? If your ideal client is a 20 something that is artistic and creative - instagram might be cool for your business marketing, not facebook. There is nothing wrong with stopping and researching before you bury yourself under a ton of technology that just isn't what you need. Go back to your business plan, then research tools that will help you achieve your goals. 

2. Use the help desk, YouTube and Google. People may think I am some whiz kid with tech, but I am self taught. I watch videos, read help manuals, speak to customer services reps and practice until I really "get it". If I pay for a service and they have support, you bet I am going to use it. That is why I pay!! I want another expert to teach me and guide me. Did you know YouTube is the second biggest search engine after Google? It has so much information AND it is visual which is awesome for those of us that need to see it to learn it. Think about this. When you started grad school, did you know how to do therapy. Sure, you had your preconceived ideas, but you could never anticipate how scary or difficult it could be at times. So what did you do, you studied and learned from others. When you graduate you aren't done learning. New research comes on the scene and we adjust our interventions. Learning technology is the same kind of thing. New tools come out all the time. You will never be done learning. Simply use the resources around you to make the adjustment easier.

3. Stop the negativity. The script in your head of "I'm not tech savvy," is informing your perspective on any technology you touch. You are capable of learning. The worst thing I see coming out of the negative beliefs are bad choices and trusting people that take advantage of naive business owners. I spoke with a therapist the other day that just trusted a person who said they could make all their internet marketing dreams come true. Instead of researching their reputation, asking questions until they fully understood what that person was going to be doing for them, and getting clear on the expectations, they got completely taken advantage of. You have done many things in your life that no one taught you how to do them. Sure, you have made some mistakes, that is how we learn. But you don't have a limited capacity for growth and understanding. By tech savvy we mean that you know when to ask for help and you don't let shame and fear stop you from finding a solution.

4. Be patient and persistent. If you are pissed off and frustrated, take a break. Come back and ask for support. Know that you won't figure it all out at once. People that go through our bootcamp and other programs amaze me. They struggle and at the end, they use new technologies that they would have previously believed they could never had understood. Have some compassion for the learning curve. Know that adding technology to your business is an investment in your business and should elevate the services you are providing to clients. 

Those are my tips. Notice how the title isn't "how to make technology easy." This is about coping better for the sake of your success. 

Oh and the reason we didn't have sound in our videos - the battery in the microphone died.

A battery.

Gah!

Social Media for Therapists: When NOT to Use It

Social Media for Therapists

Social Media for Therapists

I've got to tell you something really important. I need you to listen. 

  • A Facebook page will not save your private practice.

  • A website will not save your private practice.

  • Social media will not save your private practice.

Social Media for Therapists

Social media isn't a magic bullet. I teach therapists how to use social media and websites everyday to transform their practices. They are powerful ways to attract clients. however, they have their limits.

Here are 5 signs that social media is not the next step in your private practice marketing journey: 

  1. You struggle with setting your fee. You aren't sure what your fee should be, and haven't developed a business plan that ensures that your fee will cover your salary, expenses, and taxes.

  2. You feel guilty when you charge your fee, so you slide all around. While your full fee is $120, if you were too look at your average hourly fee that you are charging clients, it is closer to $60-80.

  3. You feel frustrated that you've tried a lot of different things to transform your income- but nothing seems to really stick and make your practice profitable.

  4. You pursue high level trainings and certifications, and are great at helping people. However, you find that people don't seem to perceive your value, and you constantly question whether you are good enough.

  5. You imagine what it would feel like to have someone come in and take care of all of the technology, social media, marketing, and website hassle. You don't feel like you can really be successful until your website is perfect.

If you struggle with all, or some of these issues- your first task- before you focus your energy on social media or website development is to work on your business confidence, and clinical confidence. 

An awesome website that gets the phone ringing of the hook won't make you profitable if you aren't confident at charging your full fee.

Seeing 30+ random clients, getting reimbursed poorly, and running at a million miles per hour won't make you a better therapist, and lead to a healthy, balanced life. 

Business Fundamentals for Therapists

Before you invest time and money in transforming your web presence- focus in on the foundation of your business-you. Develop a clear sense of who you are, why you are valuable, gain confidence in charging your full fee, and start setting a clear limit for what clients you do your best work with. 

Feel free to join us for our next free training where we will focus in one how to set fees in private practice. Click here to grab your free live spot, or sign-up for the recording. 

Yes, social media and websites are AWESOME ways to build a practice, but they build on a foundation of you! Go forth and be amazing, set yourself up for success! 

p.s. If you want more nitty gritty, step-by-step help beyond our free live webinars, get on the information list for the Business School Bootcamp for Therapists

Miranda Palmer

I have successfully built a cash pay psychotherapy practice from scratch on a shoestring budget. I have also failed a licensed exam by 1 point (only to have the licensing board send me a later months later saying I passed), started an online study group to ease my own isolation and have now reached thousands of therapists across the country, helped other therapists market their psychotherapy practices, and helped awesome business owners move from close to closing their doors, to being profitable in less than 6 weeks. I've failed at launching online programs. I've had wild success at launching online programs. I've made mistakes in private practice I've taught others how to avoid my mistakes. You can do this. You were called to this work. Now- go do it! Find some help or inspiration as you need it- but do the work!

Top Social Media Mistakes Therapists Make: Part 2

Wow. Such a great response to our post about top mistakes therapists make when using social media! That is inspiring, especially when one of our most popular posts is “Social Media is Worthless.” Did you miss Top Social Media Mistakes Therapists Make Part 1- read it here.

Today we are going to continue the conversation and explore some of the more technical mistakes therapists make when delving into social media.

Mistake #1: Therapists don’t look or play with the settings on social media

Many social media platforms want you to get in and “start playing” with social media as quickly as possible. That means that they will try to get you engaged, and they often skip taking you through advanced settings or preferences. As therapists explore using social media as part of their professional work, the settings are incredibly important to us!

How I learned that therapists don’t play with their social media settings

I’ve been consulting with therapists about how to market their private practices since I started my private practice in 2008. My blog for pre-licensed therapists helped people learn about me, and they started reaching out with private practice questions.

Since 95%+ of my referrals came from the Internet, the first thing I would check was the findability of their services and their online reputation. Often, I would find that therapists had started playing with social media (good) but didn’t understand the settings (bad) and their personal information was easily findable on Google. Within 5 minutes, we would have the issue resolved and the settings tweaked.

How to use social media settings effectively as a therapist

When you create a new account, or next time you log into your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. account- go take 5 minutes and click through and read each of your account settings. Pay special attention to anything related to “privacy” or “security” settings. While, you are in there- make sure your account actually has accurate business information. If your account links to an old website, the wrong phone number- what is the point?

Mistake #2: Giving social media your professional e-mail address

Social media is all about building community, which is AWESOME! As health experts, we know that connection is important for mental and physical health. Of course, we hope that social media leads to offline connection (and it does/can). Social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc) try to connect people the same way we connect in real life. They look for people who know each other and introduce them in the online world so they can stay in touch. Unfortunately, this feature that is meant to make things “easier” for the general population- makes things tricky for therapists!

How I learned therapists don’t understand how, whey, and when to use (and not use) their professional e-mail address.

Intuitively, it makes sense if you are getting on social media for your business, that you should use your professional e-mail address. At the same time, therapists often don’t want to use social media to connect with current or past clients. We are using social media to connect with new referral sources and let new people know we exist.

However, if you add your professional e-mail address, if your past or current clients let social media into their address book (so they can easily find connections), the social media platform will suggest that they add you as a friend, add you as a LinkedIn connection, etc. Even if you don’t give social media access to your address book, you will be suggested- and you will be presented with all the tricky questions about what to do when clients try to connect. While every therapist should have a social media policy- even if they aren’t on social media, avoiding these situations makes our lives easier!

How to fix the issue of knowing when to use your professional e-mail address

In general, when exploring a new social media platform, consider using your personal e-mail address, or even getting a separate or “special” e-mail address just for social media. E-mail services like Gmail, Google Apps, and Hushmail all give you the opportunity to create “aliases.” You will still receive e-mail in the same place, but it won’t be connected in the same way.

Benefits of using a personal e-mail address is that you can connect with personal contacts who may be good referral sources, or who might just make this social media thing “more fun” in the beginning! As you determine how to use this particular platform for business, you can set-up a forward facing e-mail address that is your professional e-mail so that people see your professional contact information (not your personal).

Mistake #3: Therapists allowing Social Media Services to Access Their Address Book

Notice above, we talked about how social media tries to help you connect. One of the ways they do this it to offer to “find connections.” They ask you to sign in to your e-mail account so they can search through and tell you who is already on the social media service so you can easily connect. Unfortunately, if you don’t read the information carefully you can easily send out invitations to hundreds of contacts inadvertently, including clients!

How I learned that therapists often incorrectly let Social Media into their account(s):

I see panicked, confused, or angry questions on LinkedIn, Facebook Groups, etc. for therapists ALL. THE. TIME. In fact, in our Business School Bootcamp we had therapists going through the process do a little “pre-work.” We sent out short 5 minute videos with really specific homework.

One of our bootcampers decided to do extra credit! Whoops. Usually extra credit and playing in social media is AWESOME! In this case, our client let LinkedIn into her address book and then was really confused by the feedback that her spouse, friends, family, etc. were all getting LinkedIn requests.

How to not inadvertently let LinkedIn, Facebook, or other social media send a message to all of your clients and contacts. 

Any reputable social media platform is NOT going to try to mislead you. However, it can be easy to just click through when we are excited about doing something new! So, take a quick breath, slow down a bit and be SUPER careful if you are doing anything address book related. There are times to use it, and it can be helpful to get connected, but if you are nervous, unsure, etc. this would be a feature to SKIP!

Mistake #4: Trying to do/learn/be everything, everywhere, all at once

When I train therapists or other business owners on social media, they are often shocked to realize that there are hundreds of social media platforms. Remember, social media is any service that allows us to create online communities.

When you are using social media as a way to connect for business purposes, often people read blogs, listen to podcasts, and attend trainings to learn the process. Each of these trainings often tells you all of the benefits of why you MUST use a certain platform to grow your business. So, it is easy for therapists to go to a training, get a bit fired up to try something new, and then attend another training telling them to do something else. Each of these social media activities becomes a “check this off the list” activity.

How I learned that therapists practice the feast or famine method social media strategy: 

I’ve met therapist after therapist who tell me “I started a ____________ account and a _____ account and a ________ account but then it just became too overwhelming, so I stopped. Social media exploration can be exciting, but it is also easy to get “sucked down the rabbit hole.” For most therapists, sustaining several social media accounts isn’t sustainable, at least not in the beginning.

How to avoid social media overwhelm as a therapist in private practice

Slow down. I know it sounds crazy coming from a private practice marketing expert who LOVES social media, but slow down and be intentional. How much time do you really have to spend on social media? Where are your ideal clients most likely to be? Where do you enjoy meeting people online? Start there. Get your “social media legs” and get comfortable with that platform before moving on and adding in something new. In other words, don’t try to run a marathon if you’ve never run a 5k. (And yes, I did do a 14 mile mud-run without ever doing a 5k race). While you can do it- it can be a recipe for hating running and getting injured! 

Mistake #4: Therapists don't use social media tools to simplify social media

Did you know that people who use social media effectively aren’t necessarily sitting in front of their computer all day? I know some are, but I’m not. I don’t want to be. Before I had Facebook as a mobile app on my Smartphone I was lucky to log-in once per day. I really didn’t understand how people could be “there” so much. It wasn’t until I got an app and could do a quick perusal and post in about 30 seconds that I “got it.”

How do I know therapists don’t use the best social media tools?

When I train therapists how to market a private practice using social media, I always highlight a few cool tools. Often I see this huge sense of relief when they realize that they really can manage their social media in 5-15 minutes a day using some free tools online.

How to use apps to manage your social media as a therapist:

Just about every social media service out there: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, has an “app” to make it easy to manage it from your smartphone. Be careful about allowing “push” notifications. If you are like me, you don’t want your phone blipping at you every few minutes to log in, try this, etc.

One of my favorite social media management apps for text-based updates is www.bufferapp.com It allows me to set-up a “drip” of posts. That means I can log in every few days and type several short messages, or links to blogs I’ve written, and let them drip out during the day. This keeps me “active” on social media without me having to be “on.” I know other people who love Hootsuite, I’ve always found it a bit overwhelming visually. Check out a few cool tools, ask around, find out what others are using, play, and notice what makes the process easier for you!

Well here we are again… Another four pages on social media mistakes therapists make. We are thinking about putting together a basic social media 101 for therapists e-course, like our website 101 course. An e-course would allow us to present more videos tutorials... We've honestly kind of shied away from recording videos because things in social media change so rapidly- but it is such an important area- we are torn! (Maybe you can convince us one way or the other below!) 

Post in the comments below if you’d be up for that. We definitely include social media for therapists in our Business School Bootcamp, so click here to get on the interest list for that program if you aren’t already! 

Are you getting our weekly e-mails yet? If you aren't, chances are you will miss a great free training or private practice article that will inspire you. We get messages every week from people telling us their private practice is rocking just by soaking up the free information on our site! How cool is that? Just click on the free trainings image to get signed up! 




Miranda Palmer

I have successfully built a cash pay psychotherapy practice from scratch on a shoestring budget. I have also failed a licensed exam by 1 point (only to have the licensing board send me a later months later saying I passed), started an online study group to ease my own isolation and have now reached thousands of therapists across the country, helped other therapists market their psychotherapy practices, and helped awesome business owners move from close to closing their doors, to being profitable in less than 6 weeks. I've failed at launching online programs. I've had wild success at launching online programs. I've made mistakes in private practice I've taught others how to avoid my mistakes. You can do this. You were called to this work. Now- go do it! Find some help or inspiration as you need it- but do the work!

Top Social Media Mistakes Therapists Make: Part 1

Top mistakes therapists, psychologists and mental health professionals make when using social media.

Top mistakes therapists, psychologists and mental health professionals make when using social media.

I’m not sure when it happened. I thought it was odd when I received a copied message from the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists recommending someone contact me to understand social media for therapists.

Somehow, despite the number of trainings I’ve done for therapists related to social media, I didn’t really see myself as an expert. What I have learned has happened out of pure need, curiosity, trial, and yes, some error.

So, this morning I thought it would be fun to highlight the top mistakes therapists make when using social media, how I learned them, and how to correct them.

Top mistakes therapist make in social media

Mistake #1: Letting anxiety take-over

I’m not a digital native. I didn’t have access to a computer in my home until I was in college. In fact, I didn’t realize I would need a computer until a few weeks into the semester!

I honestly didn’t even know the Internet existed until I got my first computer. Logging onto AOL that first time was mind-blowing. Initially, for me it was a way to chat with people all over the country. I was 17 years old (I was a young college student) and I didn’t have a clue.. I didn’t even know what to be concerned with- which can be a problem.

At the same time, it was a bit of a blessing. I didn’t have a lot of anxiety about the process- so I went with it.

How I learned about the anxiety take-over:

I learned about how anxiety can takeover from other therapists. In fact, if I was to be completely honest, I learned it while giving a training on social media to therapists at a CAMFT leadership conference. I wasn’t prepared for the fear and anxiety in the room, and didn’t properly manage the anxiety experience for the participants. While the feedback was great overall- I knew I messed up. I knew I could do better.

When the anxiety takes over it leads to looking at questioning minutia of social media. You can’t really fully delve into minutia until you get the big picture. And, the nitty gritty details are hard to comprehend when your brain is rapid firing question after question.

How therapists can manage the anxiety:

We manage the anxiety about social media the same way we manage anxiety about everything. We check cognitive distortions by getting information, but ultimately we breath. We settle our bodies. And, we take things that are new in bite-sized chunks. If you are a therapist looking into social media understand the big picture, take care of the anxiety, and then read on!

Therapists who go through the social media training in our Business School Bootcamp are often surprised by how much fun social media can be. When they learn to let go of the anxiety- the opportunities open up to use social media wisely

Mistake #2: Not trusting your professional judgment

Many therapists are fearful that they are going to make a major clinical error if they start exploring social media. So, they avoid social media altogether due to fears related to all of the “what ifs.”

How I learned that therapists don’t trust their judgment about social media:

When I do trainings on social media for therapists, I hear example after example of “what about psychotherapists who are doing unprofessional things?” “What if I do something unprofessional?” “What about coaches doing unprofessional things?” “What do I do if a borderline client uses social media inappropriately?”

How therapists can learn to trust their clinical judgment as it relates to social media:

I might be in the minority here, but the majority of therapists I come in contact with have excellent professional judgment. Maybe I’m just lucky, or only awesome therapists read this blog and come to my trainings. Yes, there are nutballs in our profession (that is the clinical term), but you aren’t one of them, are you?

Yes, it can be tricky initially to understand how social media works so we can apply our professional judgment in this new arena. I have faith that great therapists will manage this transition with grace and make great choices. I also have a bit of faith that the really unethical people out there with poor judgment will make poor choices no matter what.

Learn to apply the same process to your social media presence as you do to anything you do in the community. I find for most therapists thinking about social media in the context of giving a professional training helps them orient. Just because there could be a borderline who tests your boundaries in a community presentation doesn’t mean we avoid ever speaking in the community.

Just because someone could ask a question publicly that might compromise their confidentiality, doesn’t mean we stop speaking in public. At least in social media, if someone posts a question to a professional Facebook wall or YouTube video we have the option to delete it or hide it.

Same thing if someone approaches us in the grocery store asking about therapy, we set a clinical boundary in an empathetic manner and move on. Yes, develop a social media policy, check out Keely Kolmes policy as a starting point.

Mistake #3: Not being curious and playful

The anxiety around social media, and the fear of making a poor clinical judgment lead to therapists not being curious and playful. If a therapist was out in the world and met someone who had a similar passion, they might naturally find ways to connect and do something fun together. However, when it comes to social media, many therapists have a very small box about what can happen.

My first professional experience with social media was starting a free online study group for California MFT exams. In short, it was ah-mazing. I don’t mean I was amazing. I mean the group, the community was amazing. Yes, I connected with a few negative people, but the bulk of people were absolutely awe inspiring and I feel ever blessed by that Yahoo group. It has now transitioning to a Facebook group. (If you know a pre-licensed therapist taking licensing exams anywhere in the world- give it a share).

How I learned that therapist struggle with being curious and playful

I was lucky. So many therapists don’t get to have fun on social media. This issue was actually recently highlighted in the Business School Bootcamp for therapists. We had the best group of therapists in there- they were ready to rock and roll! We taught them skills for using social media to connect in their community and build their professional reputation.

And, we recommended that they focus on using social media to build actual, real relationships with people in their community. Honestly, if social media doesn’t lead to real connection- if it is just about “advertising” what is the point? When we asked them to talk to people, many of them felt frozen. How do I do this “social media thing?”

How do we teach therapists to be curious and playful when using social media?

We helped them realize that social media was not really any different than any in person networking you might do. Just because you met someone on social media doesn’t change how you get to know them. And, your agenda can simply be getting to know people, and allowing them to know you and letting that develop in a way that feels right. When you start to see social media as simply a type of community event- it becomes a lot more fun!

One of our favorite parts about the bootcamp community we've developed, is we get to see therapists blossom over time. Social media can lead to your website being more findable, opportunities to present, writing opportunities, more clients, and so much more! 

Mistake #4: Not seeing the beauty of social media

As therapists, we get an amazing inside view of what happens in people’s lives. Some days it is awe-inspiring and other days it is terrifying. It is pretty difficult to do this work for even a year and remain “naïve.”

For me, one of the biggest shifts was a birds-eye view of why not to judge people. The truth is, most of what people do- even if it is terrible, confusing, and hurtful makes a certain amount of sense in context. When I see/hear/experience terrible things I try to keep my judgment in check- I don’t know that person’s story. Or when someone irritates the crap out of me, I remind myself that I irritate the crap out of other people!

How did I learn therapists often don’t get to see the beauty of social media

To be honest, my first experiences with Instagram were clients sharing their trauma over being un-followed by ex-partners, or slammed in comments. Many of you hear about social media in relation to pain, stress, or relational concerns. That is the lens through which we work, people primarily bring PROBLEMS into the therapy room, they won’t tell you about how social media is helping them unless you ask.

How can therapists learn to see the beauty of social media?

The first step may be including assessment about social media in our clinical work. And, instead of asking or waiting for the negative pieces- focus on finding out if our client is connected with pro-social groups, inspiring groups, whether they get reminders to meditate daily, etc.

I think the next step is looking for those experiences ourselves. Look for communities that are powerful and transformative. If you are pre-licensed join this Facebook group or LinkedIn group. If you are licensed, join this LinkedIn Group and connect with Kelly on LinkedIn (Kelly@zynnyme.com) and Miranda on LinkedIn (Miranda@zynnyme.com) or connect with us on Facebook. Our main rule in both groups? Be nice, be helpful. You can post whatever types of materials you would like, but if you are demeaning or rude, your out. Yep, we said it, we might give you a tip about online tone, a gentle reminder, or we might just not have time.

Ok, so this blog started getting REALLY long. Today, we talked primarily about mindset issues related to mistakes therapists make with social media. Tomorrow we will delve into nitty gritty, technical mistakes therapists make with social media.

Time for action: I want to challenge you to post a comment below. Did you know that commenting on blog posts, and including your website can help your search engine optimization? Share a question that comes up for you related to mindset mistakes therapists make when using social media below. Include a link back to your website, and maybe even include a tagline that includes your specialty and the city you help in. I'll post an example comment below. 

Did you like this article? Check out Social Media is Worthless. Ready to dig into some more nitty gritty technical recommendations? Check out Top Social Media Mistakes Therapists Make: Part 2. 

Miranda Palmer

I have successfully built a cash pay psychotherapy practice from scratch on a shoestring budget. I have also failed a licensed exam by 1 point (only to have the licensing board send me a later months later saying I passed), started an online study group to ease my own isolation and have now reached thousands of therapists across the country, helped other therapists market their psychotherapy practices, and helped awesome business owners move from close to closing their doors, to being profitable in less than 6 weeks. I've failed at launching online programs. I've had wild success at launching online programs. I've made mistakes in private practice I've taught others how to avoid my mistakes. You can do this. You were called to this work. Now- go do it! Find some help or inspiration as you need it- but do the work!

Facebook Tips for Marketing a Therapy Practice

I wanted to give you some quick tips on how to use facebook as a private practice owner. 

  • When you create a business facebook page, fix your privacy settings so you can post from your personal page, but it looks like your business. It keeps your personal account private and makes your business page easy to access from your personal account.

  • If there are other therapists or referral resources you want to network with, contact them through your business page by posting on the wall of their business page or by sending them a private message on their page.

  • When networking with others on facebook - get to know the person. Sending a message "Hey I liked your page, please like mine" doesn't mean much. In fact it feels as though all you care about is how many likes you have. We always want you to pursue quality over quantity when it comes to likes.

  • Evaluate your goals for facebook. Facebook is a great place to build relationships, tell your story, share information and provide support to others.

  • Facebook is great when you have a sales funnel. For example - your facebook ad or post links to a free offer on your site and that free offer connects to a consult. Facebook might be the first place you get introduced to your next client or referral resource.

  • Paid traffic is easier than free. It's true that facebook would rather you pay them to get your posts noticed. Only pay for posts that are part of your sales funnel.

  • If you want to do paid traffic and have a funnel, start off slow and test your targeting before you dump a lot of money into it.

  • Look at your timeline for your business page - is it visually appealing? Use things like canva.com or integrate your instagram account to add visuals to your timeline. People are more attracted to and process images more easily than text.

  • Share relevant content and support your colleagues. We are all in this together and if someone else has something that is great for your audience - share!

  • Follow the 80/20 rule - 20 percent should be straight clear call to actions, the other 80 percent should be you connecting to your clients pain and offering value and support.

Social Media is a Worthless Time Suck

bigstock-Many-straws-close-up-isolated--56717540.jpg

I got invited to talk about social media to a group of psychotherapists. Guess what the majority of therapists think about Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Social Media in general- that's right: Time Suck!

And I will be honest- for many business owners I see using social media- it is a time suck and a distraction from running their business. While for others, it makes them hundreds of thousands of dollars. Are some business owners just lucky?

No. While they may have stumbled on to how to do socially media effectively- it isn't luck. So what is it?

I have the secret that turns social media from a time suck to business building. And it isn't rocket science. Any business owner can do it! How cool is that?

#1. Know Your Client

#2. Be Intentional

Let's tackle "know your client" first. I know on the surface this sounds simple. However, I talk to business owners everyday that are stumped. Why is all this time I'm putting in not doing anything?

Again and again, I find passionate, inspired business owners being bland online. They want to be as inviting and inclusive to everyone- so they speak to no one.

Do you really know why your clients choose you when you get them on the phone or in person? Do you understand what makes them call YOU in the first place? If you don't, it is hard to be authentic and "you" when using social media. And bringing that authentic, professional out to the community is what people need to see. 

Second thing that gets missed? Be intentional. It is really important for you to understand your potential client's experience and make the process as easy as possible for them. In other words, you need to understand deeply the "conversion" process. What takes someone from "looking" to "buying" or from "maybe" to "scheduling?" 

I have done trainings for years. I have a great reputation as a speaker. People remember me. Sometimes years later those people purchase my services. Years. Later. 

At the close of a session with 38 people registered this last Saturday- I had  about 33 people sign-up for my newsletter- over 25 signed up an upcoming free training. Twenty asked for information about a free consultation. 

As people came forward to hand me their "sign-up" sheets an attendee came up and said "so this is what you mean by conversion?" Yes. Yes it is.

While my training style has probably improved over the years- the most striking difference is that Kelly and I have been more intentional about understanding the conversion process and making it easier for us to get to know potential clients.

Getting potential clients calling us and wanting to work with us is really fun. And, it means we get to pick the best and brightest clients to work with. We don't feel like we are desperate or chasing- and that means we only work with people we absolutely adore! 

Do you know what that translates to? Clients who are passionate, ready for change, and who get intentional with getting their vision out there fast. 

We just started one of our 8 week marketing bootcamps- and 4 days in we have clients signing up full fee clients and one selling an amazing program at the pricetag of $3,000-something this person hadn't even dreamed of being possible. How cool is that? We are so proud of the way our clients dig in and are ready to rock- and that isn't an accident! More than half of the people in our current program found us through our social media strategy! What would it mean for you if you could have twice as many clients? Or, if all of your clients were awesome and passionate?

It is in these moments that the vision of my life becomes more and more clear. Who are you passionate about helping? And no, "anybody who will give me money" isn't a good answer. Or at least, it isn't an answer that is going to make social media worth your investment of time, energy, or money. ONLY use social media if you are truly passionate, have a clear audience, and you are ready to be intentional. 

Social media is as powerful and effective as the person who is using it. Tap into your power! Share below who you are truly passionate about helping. Share the most important thing you can teach these individuals. 

Before you log into facebook..read this first

bigstock-Social-Media-Icons-Set-In-Doll-24488042.jpg

Social media for your business - if it isn't making you money then there is a problem. No one wants to flush money down the toilet. But I for one, and hopefully you too, don't want to be flushing my time either. Whatever I invest in, I want to see a return. And if I don't, I learn my lesson and move on. 

Facebook, twitter, pinterest, all those fun social media sites are great for your business. In fact, I talked to a client today who has used Linkedin to generate an extra 20k in income. Nice! But I find a lot of business owners are doing social media blindly and unsure if it is making them money. Not so nice! 

What do you need to make sure social media works for your business?

  • Know what you are selling - be really clear about what you do/offer and don't be shy about it either.

  • Know who you are selling to - know your audience and connect with them. Show them you understand what they are going through and that you know how to help. This is important too for choosing the platforms you want to use. Not all platform appeals to the same people.

  • Know where your leads are coming from - there are numerous ways to do this, but "I found you on the internet" only goes so far. There are ways to track leads if you do ads or track links that you use in your social media. (something we love teaching our clients). When you know where people come from then you can invest more time and money in those spaces.

  • Know your funnel - Posting for someone to sign up for your program - eh, not very effective. Posting to invite someone to download your video, then invite them to your webinar, then invite them to a consult then offer them your program - much more effective for you because you have a process by which you can choose who you work with.

  • Know it takes time and money - paying for ads will generate leads for your business faster. But places like LinkedIn - that is just frankly more time intensive. While very rewarding, if you think you can just automate your social media on hootesuite (like we used to do) that won't work if you are selling something. There has to be some live component. I still automate some stuff, but not everything and not the real important stuff.

Social media can generate business for you. Hands down. I don't doubt it. You just might need a plan. And having someone else do it for you is not a plan (just in case that thought entered your mind). Getting serious about your purpose and putting it into action is essential. How about you? Has social media made you money lately?

Weekly Tip: How to have a great day- every day...

Today was a great day for me (and for Kelly)... We rolled out a new webinar, one that we put our blood, sweat, and tears into- and people really responded. Within 9 minutes of the start of the webinar, comments like this starting flowing in: 

"I feel inspired and focused."

"opens my creativity and makes me want to jump into my business more..."

"feel energized and excited about day" 

How did we get a group of business owners to make that kind of progress in 9 minutes? Well, because we know our stuff seems like the "right" answer for a business coach. But truthfully, it is because we provided a safe space for these amazing people to tap into what they truly want in life. 

Also, today we allowed ourselves and the awesome people who attended time to slow waaay down! We need that. We need to stop sometimes and be purposeful. Have you allowed yourself still time to explore your business in a positive way- today? This week? This month? This year? 

It is important to slow down and listen to that still, small voice. But, the time will NEVER create itself. you have to put some time on the calendar- and keep it sacred! So you challenge today: put some time on the calendar to sit down, explore, and be still. Get a cup of tea, light a candle, or play some music, and just explore what  you love! 

Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a Fabulous New Year! 

Lost on facebook?

Got a direct message from a twitter follower sayin' they were lost on facebook. What's the point of all this social media stuff anyhow? So I thought I would share my thoughts on facebook for business. Personal is different then business, because of the strategy and purpose. 

What can facebook do for your business? 


  1. You can stay in touch with people that like what you do! People take their personal or business account, like your page and keep up with your updates and offerings.

  2. You can reach out to new people. Whether it be actually contacting people that are aligned with your business or posting an ad, you can reach people across the country in a way you never could do before.

  3. You can give back. Facebook is a great place to give tips and information for people that need your help.

  4. You can make money. WHAT? Seriously? Yes! Facebook is a definite part of our sales funnel. We reach people on facebook that end up purchasing our services - how awesome is that!


So you know what facebook can do for your business, but how???

It all comes down to planning and purpose. If your purpose (which means, this should be your purpose) is to generate more income - either by selling a product or your services - what you post will be different then if youe purpose were to inspire or brand yourself. We recommend our clients get out a calendar and use tools to schedule out their social media. It shouldn't be that you are on facebook all the time for your business. Once you get your plan and content in place, you just need to check your account daily.

Not sure how to set up your business account? Check out some you tube videos. Not sure what tools to use to make it simple? Check out Buffer, Hootesuite and facebook app for your phone. Not sure if you really need to do this at all??!!! Go back to your business plan and marketing strategy. But just know, people can't get help from you, if they can't find you.

You can search our blog for more tips and tricks for facebook. But I hope this clarifies just a little bit on what facebook is all about. Feel free to let us know what you would like us to write about or post questions on our facebook page!

Social Media Class Upcoming

Our fabulous friends Dr. Keely Kolmes and Clinton Power have put together what we know will be a fabulous training on all things social media. Both Kelly Higdon, MFT and myself have been using (with permission) Dr. Kolmes social media policy and have found it to be an absolute necessity in the digital age. 

I think it also models for our clients ways to set boundaries with social media (as many of them struggle with how to set those boundaries with children, spouses, and friends).