Every day I see talented healers in my practice who have real and unique skills who for various reasons are not succeeding in their healing practice. Massage therapists, energy workers, and even fellow counselors with special talents to offer are having to either stay with or go back to the careers they were so desperate to leave that they started this crazy thing called a business.
Since most of them are making the same mistakes over and over again let’s look at the most common.
- Treating their healing practice as a mission rather than a business: One of my hypnotherapy teachers told us that the best way to fail was to forget that doing this work is a business. To be a healer means being a business owner and a healer but a business owner first. Sometimes you have to make difficult decisions such as hiring a company rather than your good friend to do your website. No matter how good you are, if you fail to make a profit you have no business, you have an expensive hobby. Be a business owner instead.
- Relying on “magnetizing” clients rather than advertising: I get plenty of clients who just watched The Secret and have decided that their best bet is to meditate and energetically draw their best clients to them. This is great; I believe in that approach too, but I also believe in Yelp advertising and Google ads and going to networking events. It doesn’t matter how great your ability to energetically broadcast your healing talents if your best clients can never find you because you didn’t search engine optimize your website. Get someone to help you with this if you need to, but your main job is to be found. The healing is secondary to that.
- Not following up with clients: A follow-up e-mail is an invitation to continue to work together and be friends. It reminds them that you enjoyed working with them and would love to meet again. It makes a client feel loved and valued but also it helps them remember you. People are busy and even the best healers’ names get forgotten. Create a newsletter and send it out once a month, or better, every two weeks, to get your name in front of them reminding them what a great experience they had with you.
- Not returning phone calls and e-mails: One of the easiest ways to get a bad Yelp review is to not return phone calls to perspective clients. I won’t lie. I have done this one too when a client left me a message asking me about something I didn’t do, but honestly you would be surprised how often the client will book a session anyway for some other issue when I tell them I don’t do smoking cessation.
- Not using enough technology: Your clients are on the Internet, and they are using their phones to find websites that can help them with their problems. That means you need a good website and blog, and they need to optimize for their phones so you can be found while they are in line at the grocery store. Get help in this area if you need it, but don’t make the mistake of thinking a business card is all you need. These days a good website is far more important. I can’t think of the last time I gave out a business card. Technology is your friend.
Know this: in almost all cases, clients I work with have businesses that can succeed; they just need to make a few changes. With all that’s going on in the world, we need people doing good work in the healing arts more than ever. Do the work to create a viable business and healing practice so you can be part of the solution rather than working as a waitress at a pizza place (one of my old jobs). Remember it’s not just about you. Namaste.
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