The beginning of a new year is as good a time as any to take a step back and assess your private therapy practice to see what’s working and what you could improve upon. While you’re in the business of helping clients overcome their challenges, you’re also Business — which means you have to be committed to continuous improvement if you want to keep your doors open and your clients happy.
As you begin thinking about how you can build a better business in 2022 and beyond, here’s a private practice checklist of tactics you should consider as you formulate your strategy and develop a plan.
Focus on a niche
When you’re starting a private practice, you might be tempted to treat any client that comes your way, and that’s perfectly okay. If you want to take your practice to a new level this year, it might be a good idea to narrow down your focus to a particular niche.
By Choose a niche to focus your practice, you can offer better care, improve your SEO rankings, and enjoy your job even more by choosing an area that particularly interests you — a field where you can be most helpful to clients.
You might, for instance, be focused on Services to members of the LGBTQ+ community, self-employed and freelance workers who worry about finances, members of the entertainment industry who face unique pressure, military and law enforcement personnel who’ve seen a lot of trauma firsthand, or divorced adults who are trying to start their lives all over again.
Enhance the Client Experience
Impressions are important. If clients show up to your office and it’s cluttered and outfitted with older furniture, they might not get the best impression of your practice — and they might share their opinions with folks in their network, which will make things harder for you.
You can think of ways to improve the client experience in 2018. In addition to remodeling your office and upgrading your furnishings, you might also want to incorporate other small gestures into your business — like sending clients digital thank-you cards periodically throughout the year and wishing them happy birthday.
What’s more, you can also increase your email marketing efforts to keep your clients engaged and share helpful content with them to add more value.
Modernize Your Digital Tools
Are you the type of therapist who’s still managing your practice manually by relying on notebooks upon notebooks, sending invoices through the mail, and all that jazz? If so, it’s almost certainly time to upgrade your business infrastructure by investing in digital tools.
It’s easy to invest in accounting tools, practice management platforms and collaboration software to make your business more profitable and efficient. This will allow you to communicate with your clients and colleagues better.
Invest in Digital Marketing
Digital marketing is essential to growing your business. It’s that simple.
People began to search online for therapists after the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, One study found that searches for “counseling online” increased 124 percent between June 2019 and June 2020.
If you want them to find your business online when searching for therapists, you must start. Blog posts on your website and getting more active on social media to attract new clients. You will increase your online discoverability and provide more value to existing clients.
Use an online directory
If your goal is to grow your practice, you may want to consider signing up for an online directory service like GoodTherapy. This will increase your chances of a client looking for your services finding you through a quick Google search.
You can get up and running on GoodTherapy in three quick steps. Sign up, create your profile, and then wait for someone to search your services in your local area.
Your professional network should be built
You can also grow your private practice by actively building your professional network. The bigger your network is, the easier it will be to refer clients to the most capable therapist when your plate is too full — and the more likely you’ll be to receive referrals from other peers who don’t have any room in their schedules.
You can increase your network by attending events in person, strengthening your presence on social media and joining virtual events.
Prioritize Professional Education
You can always improve your skills as a therapist.
Professional development should be your main focus in 2022. By making it a habit to routinely expose yourself to new ideas, new resources, and new strategies, you can continue to sharpen your therapy skills and deliver more and more value to your clients — which, in turn, helps them lead more fulfilling lives.
If you’re interested in making professional development a priority this year, you should keep tabs on industry trends by subscribing to trade publications, searching for conferences and networking events in your area to attend, and reading articles like these to find tips and tricks that can help you increase your effectiveness.
You should also take into account Continuing education (which is likely a license requirement anyway, depending on where your practice is located). By doing so, you’ll keep pace with the latest industry developments, meet new people, and expand your reach by learning new therapy modalities.
GoodTherapy’s Continuing Education department provides accredited courses for therapists like you. Check out our upcoming live events and our Archived courses to accelerate your professional development efforts while improving your skills and delivering more value to clients.
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