Therapists tend to first think about 50 or 60 minute sessions when they think about what service they provide.
From marketing perspective, we need to look at the services we offer in terms of how to get a complete stranger who is having a mental health issue to graduate from searching online for a solution, to paying you for services.
As is explained in other tutorials, word of mouth and referrals from other professionals are the most effective means of gaining new clients. The reason for this is simple. Whether the client is being referred to a therapist by an acquaintance they have trusted enough to share their issue with, or they are being referred to a therapist by their doctor, they already have a pre-existing relationship with the person who is suggesting the therapist. They already trust them. It is an easy step to say “I trust that the person who referred this therapist is right, and I will book a session with this therapist.”
Yet, most often, people in need of mental health services are searching the internet for solutions. When they find your listing (profile), they know nothing about you except for your picture and whatever short bio you have posted.
Asking someone to book a session with you when knowing so little about you is simply too big a step for most potential clients to take.
This is why we always recommend the “Ask A Question” feature to our therapists. A potential client finds your profile, asks you a question, you answer and offer to provide more assistance to them via a paid service.
Yet, it may be too big a leap for many potential clients to go from the question you answered to a $100 to $250 session with you.
This is where intermediate services can be offered that don’t cost quite as much as a Therapy Session.
Here is the most effective intermediate services that have been proven to be effective in going from an answered question, to a paying client.
Email / Text Therapy. Here are two Email / Text Therapy service packages that are effective:
- One email or text message per day / week for $40 per week
- Seven emails or texts messages for $35.
Pricing is up to you, $40 and $35 are example rates that have been proven to be viable price points that are acceptable to a new client.
Example #2 is a flat fee for a set number of email / text exchanges – there is no “recurring” charge. Recurring charges will usually result in less people purchasing. We recommend you create a set package of emails / texts for a set fee, as described in example #2 above.
As a therapist, you will know best when to recommend that they book a session with you. As you get close to completing the course of emails / texts is the time to either suggest another course of emails / texts, or booking an online therapy session.
The critical business aspect of this is that you bridged the gap between a potential client who knows almost nothing about you, who then asks you a question, then purchases a short exchange of emails / texts/ with you, and finally begins to book sessions with you.
You are graduating them from a FREE OFFER (the Ask A Question service) to progressively more expensive PAID OFFERS.