What’s up everybody? So you see the other
therapists out there with their fancy looking blogs and you’re thinking, “That
looks like a lot of work! And what good does it even do anyway?” Let me tell you:
starting a blog is totally worth it in private practice, but it doesn’t have to
take up all of your time. In this video I’m going to show you how to work
smarter, not harder when it comes to starting a blog to market your private
practice. Welcome to Private Practice Skills. I’m
Dr. Marie Fang, psychologist in private practice. I post videos offering tools I
learned the hard way about starting and growing private practice so that you
don’t have to. When I first started in private practice, I was an intern in a
group practice with 15 therapists. We each needed to write a blog post once
per year – just once a year! And inevitably whenever it was my
turn to write my blog post, I would be sitting staring at a blank computer
screen thinking I need to come up with the most impossibly profound thing to
say in this blog post. And often I never even got it done. I mean, who can relate
with that? But blogging does not have to be so tricky. Over a few years I figured
out a system where I only spend an hour at most writing my blog, and that
includes the process of sharing on social media. I’m going to show you how
to do it. But first let’s talk about why it’s worth starting a blog. I mean, why
does it even matter? There are so many reasons why it’s worth starting a blog!
I’m going to share just a few of my favorites here. Number one: more ways for
potential clients to find you. Every time you post a blog post, Google sees that as
a new web page affiliated with your site. The more web pages affiliated with your
site, the more opportunities potential clients have to find your website in a
Google search. Number two: boost your SEO. If you’ve watched my video about SEO
then you know how important SEO is to showing up in search engines. Every time
you post a blog post, not only will that same keyword research make it easier for
someone to find that post in a google search, but the more web pages you have
tied to your primary therapist business domain the higher that website will show
in search results, Google thinks you have more authority. Number 3: build trust both
with clients and referral resources. Whenever I meet with a new client, I like
to ask why they decided to choose me amongst the plethora of therapists in my
area. And more often than not someone will say that they were looking at a few
different therapists but they saw that I had a blog post and maybe that was just
exactly what they’re dealing with and needing to come into counseling for, or
maybe my tone in the blog post helped them build a sense of trust with me and
that’s why they chose me. Number four: offer
resources for current and past clients. In seasons when clients aren’t meeting
with me at the moment, blog posts create a way for them to stay connected and
also make an easier on ramp for them to return to therapy if they ever choose to
return in the future. Okay this is the part that you’ve been waiting for: I’m
going to share my tips to get you started with your first blog post. Number one:
Make sure that your blog is connected to your therapy business page. Most web
service providers like Wix, WordPress, Squarespace, and others have a blog
platform built in. You’re going to want to use that rather than creating a separate
domain name. The benefit of this is that having the blog tied with your main
domain name helps boost that domain’s SEO. Number two: Write what you know. We’re all
an expert in something, so rather than try to focus on being like so-and-so
over there who’s really awesome at whatever, be yourself. When you are
yourself and you bring that into your blog post, it’s going to help save you time
in writing that blog post and it’s also going to help potential clients see who you
are. Number three: solve a problem. What kinds
of problems do you see your clients experience in the therapy process? Think
about those problems and see if there’s any little tips or tidbits you could
offer in a blog post to help address that issue. Now the idea isn’t to squeeze
an entire therapy session in your blog post, it’s just to be able to send
somebody away with a helpful tool to solve that problem. Number four: do
keyword research. I go over this in an earlier video, but you can see here that
all the same tips from that video apply for each blog post. This is an important
step so be sure you check out that video and apply it to your blog. Number five:
keep it simple. Sometimes when I find myself getting stuck in the middle of a
blog post it can be a sign that I’m actually trying to cram in like five
blog posts into one, and that just doesn’t work. So if you come into that
issue try to parse out those separate blog posts, save them for another day, and
just work on one simple item for now. Number six: Use copyright-free photos
with the keywords in the title and the alt tags. I like to use unsplash.com
to discover beautiful photos and credit the Creator when possible. When you save
the photo to your computer, change the title of the photo to your keywords or
blog post title. Once you upload the video into your website editor, also
include those same terms in the alt tags. Every website editor has a space for you
to include an alt tag in your photo. Number seven: Include keywords in your
URL, title, meta-description, headers, and tags, as well as organically throughout
the post. This will help people find your post when they do a Google search.
Make sure those keywords are an authentic reflection of what information
exists in your post. If your keywords are misleading, people will click away from
your blog post almost as soon as they arrive. This is called a bounce rate and
Google keeps track of this data and will cause your site to rank lower if people
are clicking away from your page within a few seconds of arriving. Number 8: bonus
if you can embed your own video utilizing the same keywords. More on this
in a future video. Number 9: consistency is key! If you’re
finding all of these tips completely overwhelming, it’s better to just go
ahead and write a blog anyway, see what comes out, make mistakes, learn from the
mistakes, and keep going. I’d rather you start a blog and do it imperfectly and
grow then wait till you have the perfect blog together and potentially never do
it. I hope you found this video helpful as you start your blog in private
practice. Until next time, from one therapist to another I wish you well.