If you are looking to attract self-funding clients to your therapy practice, you need to know about the Know/Like/Trust factor (or KLT). So, what is it?
The Know/Like/Trust factor is a marketing concept that’s becoming more and more important. The goal is to get potential clients to understand and eventually believe in your brand. To do this, they need to get to know the ‘you’ behind the brand, which in turn drives connection and familiarity. Once this familiarity sets in, they begin to trust your brand and therefore choose you over any competitors.
Let’s Talk About Marketing Your Private Practice
That’s right, KLT is a marketing concept. Before you click away or squirm at the thought, I’m not talking about tricking people into using your services. Marketing is about ensuring your business attracts the right clients for you to work with. It’s also about presenting potential clients with the best information so they can make an informed decision on the therapist or service they choose for their care.
As a therapist in private practice its important you understand a little about marketing and getting the know/like/trust factor right is a great first step.
Why is Effective Marketing Important?
When people are choosing a therapist, they are choosing a person they will feel safe with. It needs to be someone they can trust with their inner struggles. There’s still a lot of stigma associated with the need for mental health care. As well as overcoming this, people have to decide how to address this need. It’s your job to clearly communicate the service you provide so people can make an informed choice about how they meet their mental health care needs.
Effective marketing allows people who would not be a good fit for you to move on to another service. This way of marketing saves everyone time and ensures the right clients find the right therapist or service as quickly as possible.
Whether you’re working on your website or social media presence, the question you should prioritise is how do I enable people to get to know me? How can I demonstrate my values and beliefs? How can I help them understand my training and certifications? By weaving these things into your marketing, potential clients will grow to like you and trust you to be the person that supports them at this time in their lives.
If you want your future clients to get to know you, you first need to know yourself. This starts with a business plan. Although it will always be evolving, having a clear plan means you have a clear understanding of your values, goals and mission. These things serve as a compass that guides your brand messaging on your website and social media.
Your brand values are the values your therapy practice lives by. They should be present in everything you do, everything you say, and the way you connect and engage with current and potential clients. They align your core beliefs with your brand story, messaging, behaviours, and actions. What’s more, brand values help define who you serve, and how that audience views your business.
This narrative is what will drive the connection with your potential clients. For example, if one of your brand values is to empower women, others who feel passionately will connect with your brand over that similar value. Remember, you must infuse it into everything you do to make that connection.
Here are some questions to help you get clear on who you’re talking to. Because when you try to talk to and appeal to everyone, you talk to no-one.
– What’s the key message of your therapy practice?
– What do you believe in or stand for?
– What are your personal values and your practice values?
– What are your hopes and goals for the clients you work with?
– How are you helping others while also achieving your goals?
– How are you different from other therapists in your field?
To be known you need visibility. When you’ve identified your ideal client or community, think about where they are online or in the community. Narrow this down to no more than three areas. Prioritise one and then share any content you create across the other two.
On a basic level, we need to like our therapist. It’s an important attachment relationship. Sometimes it’s as simple as liking the look of someone. You might not like photographs of yourself, try to put this to one side and at the forefront of your therapy practice should be a clear professional photograph. Never use a holiday snap.
The about page on your website is also important. If you have interests or hobbies you enjoy, share them. This type of connection will build a lovely therapeutic foundation for your work together. Learn how to write an engaging about page here.
When it comes to helping people like you, you don’t need to try hard, you just need to be yourself. Don’t try to be like someone else on social media – your natural uniqueness is your superpower.
Demonstrating trust is aligned with how you respond and demonstrate your professionalism from the first point of contact. This includes things like having a secure website, having clear policies, and delivering quick, professional responses. Testimonials and reviews are also important for demonstrating how others have found working with you.
The care you take in your marketing demonstrates a lot about you as a person. Blog and social media posts demonstrate your knowledge, but consistency also delivers trust, so you should do your best to keep up to date. Even if you only post once a month, don’t neglect your marketing.
It’s OK to Promote Yourself
Remember, when you’re marketing your private practice by building the KLT factor, you’re supporting people to make the right decision for their well-being at a time when they’re probably vulnerable and stressed. Keeping this in mind can help if you ever feel you’re over-promoting yourself. Remember, you know everything you are doing to market your business, but only a fraction of your followers will notice.
I know it can feel uncomfortable, but I’d encourage you to lean into overpromotion. People’s attention spans are short. If they’re not looking for you or the service you provide, they can just scroll on by. But for some people, seeing you in their feed will be exactly what they need. They may have just found out they are on a 12-month NHS waiting list or perhaps have a family member who needs them to be at their best. Maybe it’s time for them to deal with their grief so they can support their children. Maybe 20 years of OCD is one year too many. It can be as simple as making someone feel as if they have a choice. The people who move past your marketing don’t need you today, and that’s ok, but the people who do will be so glad they’ve found you.