Blogging is a great way to talk to potential clients about your private practice services and specialties. You can set up a blog account for free at wordpress.com, blogger.com, and many other blogging sites. Since blogs are search engine friendly and blog posts are easy to share on social media sites they are a great tool for attracting new clients to your therapy practice. In addition to reaching potential clients, blogging is also an avenue that allows you to provide valuable resources for current clients. In spite of the many business benefits of blogging, many therapists are hesitant to venture into the blogging world. This hesitation or anxiety about blogging is known as "blogophobia."
When I first started blogging a couple of years ago, I suffered from self-doubt and nagging questions. What if I spend all of this time writing a blog and no one reads it? What if I sound dumb? What if I get mean comments about my posts? Where do I start? What should I blog about? How often should I blog? If you're a therapist wanting to start a blog, or you have a blog that is rarely updated, here are some quick tips to help you gain the confidence to blog consistently and reach more potential clients with your practice message.
1) Keep it short and sweet
Blog posts are generally between 300-500 words. Blog readers want quick and easy information, not long discourses. You've probably written emails that are longer than 300 words. Compared to the length of papers, thesis, or a dissertation, blogging will be a piece of cake.
2) Let go of perfectionism
Read your post aloud to catch any errors and to make sure that your writing flows. It may also help to have a colleague read through it before you publish to proof for errors you may have missed. If you find mistakes after your blog post is published you can always edit them after the fact.
3) Use your authentic voice
One of the reasons why blogs are so popular is that you get to "know" the blog writer. Unlike professional papers, blogs are often written in first person. Write about topics that you're passionate about in your own voice so potential clients can get a feel for your therapy style, your strengths, and your theoretical orientation. Authenticity will draw your ideal clients to your therapy practice.
4) Set a schedule
Blogging regularly is an important part of overcoming your anxiety, of gaining confidence, and of keeping visitors coming back to your blog for new information. Build time into your schedule to blog as part of your private practice marketing strategy.
5) Recycle content
Start blogging on topics you've already researched and written about. You likely have dozens of research papers, articles, or special projects that you've written during graduate school or your professional career. Take those topics and repurpose them for blog articles.
One final note...make sure you have your contact information on your blog site and at the end of every post so potential clients can visit your website, or contact you via email or phone.
I'd love to take a peek at your blog posts and see what you're blogging about and share them on social media to help you spread the word about your private practice. Feel free to post links to your articles comment box below.