Why do you need to think about how to brand yourself as a therapist? Just because you’re a therapist, it doesn’t mean you’re exempt from the amazing perks of branding to market your private practice. In today’s article, I break down what branding is and how you can use it as a marketing strategy for your therapy private practice.
What is Branding?
It’s easy to get lost in the weeds on this one. Is branding about fonts, logos, and colors? Is it about the message you’re sending to potential clients? Is it your advertising materials?
Technically, branding is all of these things. Put simply, branding is the umbrella of everything that distinguishes a product or service from others.
How Does Branding Apply to a Therapy Private Practice?
When I first started out in private practice, I felt fearful that anything that was “branding” related must be too sales-ey and not aligned with my values as a therapist. After all, I’m not in the business of selling, I’m in the business of helping.
I know many other therapists feel the same way. And this is a great place to start! We want to uphold client care as our top priority.
Branding Helps Potential Clients find the Right Therapist
So many therapists shun branding like the plague because they don’t want to come off as a sleazy salesperson. And I’m right there with you: I don’t ever want to come off as sales-ey.
But, I do want potential clients to easily find me and to identify what sets me apart from other therapists in private practice.
Have you ever been in the situation where your marketing materials are live, yet no potential clients seem to reach out? I know what it’s like to feel like days are wasting away while I twiddle my thumbs waiting for potential clients to contact me – I’ve been there!
This is where branding comes in. If we want to help people, we need to help people find us first. And if we want people to find us, we have to be clear on who we are and what we’re about.
How to Brand Yourself as a Therapist: Be Consistent
Another way to think of branding is to reframe it as consistency. We want who we are and our marketing materials to be consistent across the board so that potential clients immediately know that we’re the same person on our website as we are on social media, in the initial phone call, and throughout the therapeutic journey.
How to Brand Yourself as a Therapist Step-By-Step
So here are my top tips to help you build your brand in private practice. Notice how these tips start deep before getting into the more surface level items like fonts and colors:
- Know who you are. How do your passions overlap with the work that you do? Be sure you’re clear on this so you can convey it in your marketing materials.
- Know your ideal client. This overlaps with finding your niche. If you want some tips on honing in your niche, check out my article all about finding your niche.
- Know how you want your client to feel when they successfully work with you. Another way to think of this tip is to consider your “hospitality vibe.” For example, if you run a coffee shop, maybe you’re passionate about serving high-quality single-origin fair-trade coffee, and maybe your ideal client is someone willing to pay a little extra to get that amazing cup of coffee to savor. But how do you want them to feel throughout that process? This is where hospitality comes into play. If the coffee shop is a huge industrial space with free wifi, that might feel one way. Whereas if the coffee shop is a small cozy space with armchairs and no wifi, there is a completely different vibe going on there.
I encourage you to really take your time on these first three steps. Write down your answers and consider rewriting them until you hone in on a complete “vibe” for your practice before diving into the next steps of how to brand yourself as a therapist
Choose Visual Representations of your Brand
- Choose colors. What are two to three colors that reflect the vibe you’re going for? Be mindful that bright, contrasting colors are more energizing while cooler colors are more calming. If you want some help, check out this Canva article about how to select colors for your brand.
- Choose Fonts. Select one to two fonts that you’d like to be consistent across your brand. The main goal of this is to foster consistency so it’s easier for potential clients to identify your brand when they encounter you.
- Create a logo. Whether you pay a professional to do this or if you DIY one using a platform Canva, it’s important to have the same logo appear across all marketing materials. Consider how you can incorporate your colors and fonts into your logo.
- Develop Content. From here, the content you produce should reflect your brand as well. Feel free to check out my article all about developing your website content in order to get you started.
You can do this!
In summary, branding is about identifying what sets you apart from all the other therapists and finding a way to consistently convey that throughout all of your marketing materials and interactions with clients.
When done well, branding doesn’t feel sales-ey at all, it simply allows your ideal client to find you so that you can do what you love most: care for your clients’ needs. Your branding simply reflects who you are and what your clients can expect from you.
If you’d like to go more in-depth in the branding and marketing process, my dear friend, therapist, and branding expert Dr. Therese Mascardo of Exploring Therapy has an amazing course teaching you everything you need to know about branding from top to bottom. Check out her course here: DIY Your Brand in a Weekend (this is an affiliate link).
I hope you found this article helpful as you learn how to brand yourself as a therapist. And until next time, from one therapist to another: I wish you well!