In this webinar replay, Cory Miller walks us through the steps needed to create a strong marketing plan for your therapy practice.
Speaker: Cory Miller
Everybody welcome back to another AllCounselors.com training and live event. Today we’re gonna be talking about something that’s near and dear to my heart, your 2021 marketing plan to grow your practice. And I’m really excited about this because I want this is going to be highly interactive, highly practical. So I need you to hit the chat button and dialogue back and forth with me I’m in fact, I’m gonna have a couple polls here, just so we can, I can figure out where you’re at and give you the best help. And as always, at AllCounselors.com we want to be very practical. So post questions whenever you want, where I’m going to be watching that throughout the webinar.
So let’s get started. So my name is Cory Miller, I’m founder of–co founder of AllCounselors.com. My past is I have a multimillion dollar started and grew to a multi million dollar software company in 2008. Until 2018, we were acquired by a bigger company. And this is chapter two, for me helping out therapists and counselors and clinicians. I love to talk about entrepreneurship and I love to talk about digital marketing. So that’s perfect for today’s webinar. And then, you know, part of doing this for counselors is we at all counselors want to help eradicate, obliterate the stigma around mental health so that others like me, (I’m in counseling, I have a counselor I meet almost every two three weeks) can get help and begin their healing journey with professionals like yourself. I’m also married to a budding counselor, she’s graduates this month, and be studying for her tests and certifications and all that in 2021.
Thanks to Integrative Life Center, you can go check out integrativelifecenter.com and integrativelifenetwork.com. They’re our gracious sponsors for today’s webinar.
Okay, some real quick outcomes I want, I wanted to put this webinar on the schedule, because if you’re like me, wait till the last minute and then start thinking okay, marketing, I need to grow my company like, I’m just trying to get, you know, things going and finish 2020 strong. And now Cory, you’re talking about my 2021 marketing plan. But I’m really excited that you all have registered for this and come to this. And if you’re watching the video later, that you’re interested in the subject, I want you to get inspired. And I want you to have just two to three ideas that you’re going to put into place for your practice to grow it in 2021. But as I said in the beginning, this can be highly interactive, I need you to hit the chat there and share some answers. And I’ve got some interactive polls to make it even easier, because I want to help.
I need to know where you are, what you’re interested in what lies ahead for you What problems and obstacles are in the way to give you the best help. And I’m going to reserve a ton of time This isn’t just going to be me talking to you but ton of time to get to specific questions that you have in this webinar today. So I hope you’ll open up the chat button at the bottom of the zoom app and get ready
Okay, so first question is, you know, how do you want to grow in 2021? What I mean by that is, there’s something that you want to do you’ve arrived here today something you want to achieve and if I boil it down to it all it’s all that mostly all of us want to make more money well and I put revenue here but you know, we have a philosophy at all counselors which is do good in the world, and you should do well in the world to do good. So it’s what you all do every day in your practice. And I believe you should be very well compensated for it you should make great money and awesome money. And so is that more revenue? Is it more clients is or referrals? Or is it you know, I put it up here even start to potentially start publishing or something like that. I’m going to put a poll up now. Real quickly, just fill that poll out and tell me what you’re looking for. To do in 2021. So click that real quick and we’ll go on and this is these polls are trying to help you as a group to get more focused from my experience and expertise to give you tips and strategies that you can use.
Alright, so we get more revenue and more referrals.
Okay, thank you so much for doing that. And more clients more revenue in the top one was more referral was definitely go back to that. So great, great, great stuff. Thank you all for doing that.
Okay, now, I know and by the way, hit the chat. And if you want to add more context of this, please do that and share it to panelists and attendees if you could. So we can all see that but Okay, so more referrals. Absolutely. So, I always think through, okay, you take your plan, and you go, this is what I want to do in the next 365 days. And there’s typically something in the way of that. And so I like to talk about obstacles because they are the keys to actually getting things done. So here, here’s my question for you. What are the obstacles in your way? time? skill, knowledge, money, energy and effort? Sometimes that’s mine. Like I might have time, I just don’t have energy. You all are with clients. Likely, I’m gonna guess doing a lot of telehealth right now. probably tired at the end of the day, so I get that. So if you could answer this poll for me, and then we’ll keep moving on to so No, okay, too. Yep. All right. Energy, I totally get that. Okay. With that in mind, we’re gonna, I’m gonna try to help. Do the thing. share things that maximize your time and energy? Okay, skill, knowledge, money, energy. Thanks so much.
Okay. All right now. So real quick, I’m just trying to get to this so I can get you better. Better? Help. The third one is, what do you have more of? So I just asked, the opposite of it is what don’t you have? But what do you have? Some of you said energy, but what do you have more of? Okay, skills, knowledge. And also put time, money energy.
Okay. All right. The skills and knowledge, I’m curious about you that have said skills, knowledge and time, that the skills knowledge, we’re talking about therapeutic practice, or do you know, specific marketing skills? If you could put that in the chat? That’d be awesome. But thank you so much for that.
Okay. Now, now, this one I don’t have a poll for but I’m kind of curious. So most things in private practice, come back to clients, you know, one on one clients, or maybe you have a group, group product or something service that you do. But I’m curious, how do you get new clients? now from the work we’ve done at All counselors and discussions we’ve had with many counselors is you built your business probably at the beginning through a lot of referrals. Maybe there was a psychologist or another therapist that was booked up and needed to refer work your way. And that’s how you got started. That’s the one we typically see I didn’t put a poll up for this. But if you want to put that in the chat, that’d be awesome.
The reason why I asked the How do you get new clients question is because if you want to grow your practice, I boil it down to you want to make more money. That is fairly simple right now: it’s more clients, you can either charge more, or you can get more clients, right? Those two options. But so it’s key for me to know or to you to know more so is how do clients get to you in the first place? Can you track those sources back? Is it one therapist in your city or hometown? Is it directory Listen, listings? Do you get a lot of people coming from your website? And even with your website? Maybe somebody has unless you’ve done search engine optimization? Well, somebody has referred you and you know, given your email or their website or something like that, if you could share that, that’d be awesome. But I’m going to go with it. Probably it’s referrals, which is going to make some of the suggestions I have in this webinar. I think even better for that.
Okay, thank you she. Maria. Nella says I get referrals from diverse sources. That is awesome. That’s a bedrock I think of any business, it’s word of mouth or referrals from good trusted sources. Okay. So I just want to mark I just want to cover the base and not assume that you’ve been doing this or you know, these things I don’t want to assume anything for now. I want to help you grow your practice and so carpet covering the, the essentials, the foundation are these things. Now, some of these I’ve heard some of these just know as a business person in the world, referrals or word of mouth is huge. And then know that specifically for private practice in mental health, for sure over and over. I hear that at number one and word of mouth, or referrals is absolutely key in almost every business that I can even think of that you want people to recommend you or refer you to others. I do that quite a bit.
So building that network, I think should be, especially if you’re early on always be building relationships and networks with other professionals in your area. And so, you know, just to say on your plan is like, reaching out and growing, or starting new relationships with people that do what you do in the world, you might even know, a certain psychologist or therapist, clinician is super, super swamped and busy, might be time just to reach out, Hey, I know you’re busy, you’re taking any, if you’re not taking any clients, you know, I’ve got a little bandwidth over here. But just starting those conversations, I know is absolutely huge directory listings. And in fact, I found my counselor through psychology today. So are you listed on those directory directories that you know about that you’ve gotten, you know, clients from?
And then I talked about this in another webinar at all counselors, but do you have your Google My Business profile listing setup, one is set up and two does have enough information to be updated, it went in there and link that and now the Google My Business thing is just basically that is that, you know, if I type in plumber, I can type right? You know, I’m gonna get this little map here. The same same goes for therapists, your Google My Business profile is basically that And the best news of all is free. Now, you can see like, this one has some reviews, this one has some reviews, you need to keep your Google My Business profile up. And I’m gonna give you a link in the chat right now. But if you just say Google My Business, this is where you can go get that free profile. And now I know, you know, because of the there’s a stigma already out there. And the sensitivity and confidentiality is, you know, clients probably won’t, aren’t maybe reluctant to give you reviews. But I’ll tell you, these reviews. It’s part of Google’s algorithm currently, that if you have reviews, yeah, that’s part of their ranking strategy to its geographic based, specifically. But if you get reviews, that definitely helps you.
Okay, so, Google, my business listing, if you just didn’t have it’s just table stakes, even in the era of telehealth and COVID, by the way, Google is updated Google My Business to include COVID updates. So if you’re doing telehealth, one, you know, they can book through your site, make sure you’re linked, and all that is updated on your Google My Business profile.
And then the last is a simple website, you know, I just did a training on a one page website, just to get you started. It’s in the AllCounselors.com vault. So you can go back and look at that, look at the slides and everything. But I share some tips about that. But making sure you at least have some semblance of a website. So whatever your name is, you know, for instance, I own my own domain name, or whatever your practice name is, making sure you at least have something on the web, that’s going to be your digital headquarters. Now you might have a social profile. But I never tell people to only have that. Those are what we call social outposts. Having social media profiles out there. Maybe you have a Facebook page for your practice, that you need an online home on your own domain name. And the difference is rent versus owning. you own your website, your domain, your hosting, all that kind of stuff if you use WordPress, or Squarespace or something like that, but you rent your profiles on your social media networks. So just know like, things can change algorithms could change in fact, that ad paid advertising person I work with got his facebook account disabled last week, and it’s blowing everything up in his his world. Because you’re you’re renting over there, you own your website.
So those are some of the covering the marketing basis. Now. So I’m gonna do this next poll poll before Well, let me share, I’ll just share you this here. I think one of the best ways therapists can get your name out there and grow your practice is to press publish. Now, I asked earlier about your you know, do you have Do you have time? Do you have these type, you know, skill sets, all that kind of stuff? Do you have the energy and things like that? Now, this, this cost time and effort, a little bit of money, but it costs time and effort for you? So here’s some of the things I’m going to say I’m gonna put a poll up and right after I kind of unpack these to see which one’s interests you most. And if there’s another area you’d like me to go to and talk about, please post that in the the chat or the q&a button right below the zoom on the bottom of the zoom app here.
But I say press publish. I’m actually that’s part of my story, why I’m here today. In 2006, I started a blog that was in my area of expertise at the time, which was basically communications work for a nonprofit. And so I started a blog started pushing publish, I got past that the perfectionism and also the worry about the trolls and the critics online. And I pushed publish. And I’ll tell you, I, most of my career and business success has come from that bold step of just pushing, publish and keep pushing publish. Now, I think it’s one of the best ways to establish your name, your credibility, your authority by doing it consistently. So you might say, I want to be interviewed by the media I want when they talk about a mental health subject, I want my local TV station to be to think of me. if you’re pressing publish, consistently through these different channels that I mentioned, that I’ve listed here, you have a more, you’re out there, you know, in the world, pressing publish, and I’ve been on the other side of this where that particular news outlet is looking for someone that they know can be coherent and share their expertise on the subject. Well, if you’ve been publishing regularly at, let’s say, a podcast, they can go back and go 30 40 50 podcast episodes, oh, man, this person knows what they’re doing.
Same thing with online video, I put Instagram or online videos. So for instance, like, you’re just good at, you know, you talk all day with your clients. But if you’re good at just the spoken word, and you’re it’s a little bit tougher for you to write, then cueing up, you know, you could actually do this with zoom, I’ve done YouTube videos with them, or zoom or I pull zoom up, start a press record, start, start talking, and then stop and upload that to YouTube or whatever, you know, channel you want to go on. But doing publishing consistently in all these different specific areas, I’ve got blogging here, talking about my own story, writing an E book, doing a podcast, all those type of things are just and if you do them consistently are the ways to get your word out there. Now, think about this. in year two of my business, my software business, we were very early in, in WordPress, actually, it was a WordPress product company, software company. And we helped build add ons for WordPress. Well, in year two, we put all these products out, people started saying are these are these guys and gals still in business kind of thing. And it hurt us because we were working. But they didn’t see us working every day. And so what we did was we started publishing, and we did a live show every Tuesday at 11 o’clock. And we just turned on the live stream, started talking about what we’re doing. And that was our way to just say we’re still here and relevant in so many ways.
You know, blogging, posting on social media, let’s say Instagram, or Facebook or whatever venue, you choose podcasting, all those things, just continue to share the world, to the world that you’re out there and still doing good stuff by offering good tips, good, things that come out of your practice, maybe you see themes consistently within your practice. Publishing through any of these scenarios can be a great way to just multiply your expertise. And what I love about the internet is just like today, we do this once you get the recording, get the slides, you can do all kinds of stuff with that. So you might like to do webinars too. I think I put that in here presentations. We’ll be doing more on writing an E book, and then building to the writing a book book. But I’m just kind of curious. I’m gonna launch this poll. What should these stand out to you? And I’m asking more questions than I’m entering right now. Because we need to get I want to help you all think through what things interest you with things you might areas might be great, impactful when for you to do.
So I’ve got the poll up there if you’ll just real quickly press and record whichever one you’re interested in. So I see podcasting, building my network of referrals. I love that that one I think needs to be absolutely base for sure. Okay, okay, I’ll leave that up for a second. So let’s get okay podcasting and being interviewed. So I probably should have broke being interviewed out but I’m sure you’re used to in your practice speaking and sharing that doesn’t come that’s not a surprise to me. Okay. Thanks for sharing that. So podcasting or being interviewed that is excellent. Okay, so if you want to nuance and tell me is it you know, you really intrigued by doing a podcast or if you want that the biggest Interview part out, let let me know in the chat here so I can help really focus in.
But here’s some tips, I think well, you know, as I mentioned, I built my entire career continued to do it on developing great content and pushing publish. And all counselors, you see that too. And we’ve got, we’ve got our engines working for writing, sharing presentations like this, and, and actually doing podcasts, too. So we’re doing several of the channels we’re building to that I should say we haven’t done just yet.
So here’s some tips on publishing. Since a couple of you were interested in podcasting, in particular. So first, you know, you’re probably in this you don’t recognize this and think, unlike some of your strengths, you may gloss over another No, you’re actually the expert on that you just are so good at it. You don’t, you know, interface with a lot of people that, that you might see that this is a strength, but you know, what are the areas of expertise in your practice? You know, do you focus on young adults? Do you focus on married couples, or relationships? What are those areas of expertise? Are you you know, really, really, you know, deep in trauma work, or depression or anxiety, or eating disorders? What are those areas of expertise, and you’re welcome to put those in the chat here. But this is when I started, when people were interested in publishing, particularly online, I asked some of these questions. And then actually, what do you want to be known for? So think through, you know, the Channel Four has called you. They want you to speak about this subject that you’re very passionate about, what would that be? you’re a subject matter expert, and you’re experts on things that are always part of our life, mental health, but even more exaggerated and exasperated as a part of our pandemic we find ourselves in. But so if that, you know, TV producer is calling you what is the thing that they want you to come talk about. And that probably those are two quick questions to just think through and find an area that you might be interested in, to keep publishing consistently enough to be found.
just a quick sideboard by doing these type of things. One time, I think I wrote about social media and narcissism, quick blog posts, and basically said, I leaned into it a little bit, because people want, it’s the air of personality, you know, internet personalities. In particular, I didn’t even know that was the thing. But so I did that. And then cnn producer from CNN called me and interviewed me live on the air. And then, you know, just putting things out there about specific topics, especially if it’s a form of something like, you take depression, but it’s a here’s a subset that, you know, those specialty areas within a specialty, are pretty key to because you might end up on somebody’s doorstep. I actually interviewed a psychologist earlier this year, who really works with school counselors in school psychology. And so I interviewed her because we had this phenomenon going, where it’s all these, you know, kids that are typically in school, in traditional in home seats, and desks, and all that kind of stuff. And then the pandemic hit, and now it’s all remote learning. And so we talked to some of those things. That’s exactly what you want to be positioned. When something happens, you want to be that subject matter expert for, for your area.
And one, the third question I’d ask is what frustrates or even angers you, like what gets you just fighting mad about mental health. Whatever your area of expertise for all those things. And if you find yourself with all of these, like you talked about it quite a bit frustrating things you want to change. That’s a great thing to champion in a podcast or a blog, or a video series, maybe through Instagram.
But I’ll tell you publishing is just like working out just like exercising, start small and consistent. So think through what is the minimal consistency I can do. Let’s say you start with a podcast is that once a month or twice a month, and then back it up from there, but think realistically and start small and graduate to bigger and more. But just know like, there’s no such thing as an overnight success. You’ve heard that 100,000 times but everybody starts somewhere and start where you are now. Like maybe you only have five people on your email list or what you know, your website traffic is, you know, 150 people a month. That’s a great place to start from you but start where you are and know that you have all of these, you know relationships and contacts. You start putting things out in the world don’t build from there. But again, again, I say consistency is key. But passion and interest. That’s why I started with the questions I did. Keep you consistent. And always, always, always This is the biggest trap every professional and just mental health therapists and clinicians make. It’s It’s my own, I have to fight with is perfectionism, that, that you’ll think you start recording your first episode. And you’ve got to be, we’ve got to be perfect. That’s why I like doing live stuff. You can be perfect. You can practice, you can rehearse, you can prepare, but you can’t be perfect, you’re gonna mess up just like I have today.
So, I want to switch gears for a second, I’ve asked some of the questions here to kind of formulate, but I want to, I want to make the next part of our webinar, really highly interactive and answer your questions. There’s some good questions put into the the forum said, What do you want to learn today, and I want to get to those and make sure I cover as best as possible. But these are some things I’ve just thought about how to help you think through your own marketing plan. But I highly suggest for 2021, pick three, pick 1 to 3 things that you can work on. Don’t eat the elephant, take it one bite at a time. And don’t try to do every single thing. Pick the top three, most effective and tactics to help build your your practice and employ those and participate through Don’t try to do everything. And as always, please share this with with us at AllCounselors.com we’re here for you. We’ve dedicated this company, this business of what we’re doing the community membership to you. Real quick before I start taking some questions. You can sign up for your free membership today at allcounselors.com/join. We’re going to be putting out more live events and training like this. We’re here for you, you hit our contact form. And we’re here for our members to help you grow your practice in yourself. And on that note in 2021, early 2021 we’re working on CEUs for all counselors. So be sure to sign up for our free membership today and we thank you for doing so.