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Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to join Simple Practice. Please understand that I only recommend Simple Practice because my wife uses it and we’ve seen how their platform has truly simplified her processes. Please only purchase them if you truly feel that they will help you achieve your goals.

Coordinating your schedule with your clients schedule can often be a headache. It often involves a lot of back and forth and wasted time communicating. But with the rise many online scheduling systems have helped many a therapist simplify their process.

Coordinating your schedule with your clients schedule can often be a headache. It often involves a lot of back and forth and wasted time communicating. But with the rise many online scheduling systems have helped many a therapist simplify their process.  In this article I’ll share a glimpse into my wife’s journey with Simple Practice and how online booking has helped simplify her process and book more clients.

In this article I’ll share a glimpse into my wife’s journey with Simple Practice and how online booking has helped simplify her process and book more clients.

Why My Wife Chose To Go With Simple Practice

There’s nothing like owning your own business AND being a mom to cause you to really identify what’s not efficient in your life.

For my wife, she was getting increasingly frustrated with back-and-forth emailing or texting with clients to figure out time slots for them to book sessions.

Another time-suck in her practice was the note-writing process. Since she was not on an electronic, HIPAA compliant system, she had to write each therapy note, print it, delete it from her computer and then file the hard copy.

Talk about a process!

Because of these time-sucking tasks and the fact that the world is moving to electronic records anyway, she knew she had to find a system that would work for her well into the future.

After looking into a few electronic client management systems, she decided that the features and, well, the simplicity of Simple Practice would best suit her needs.

While the process of switching her current clients at the time over to electronic records took some time and could probably fill its own blog post, getting her forms and schedule integrated in the system was rather easy.

One feature we were eager to get her using was the online booking functionality.

We’re both obsessed with efficiency and we knew this would help her save a ton of time and possibly even help her book more sessions.

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Integrating Online Booking With Her Website

Simple Practice offers two ways you could integrate online booking into any website:

  • Link directly to a client portal mini-site
  • Or use their booking widget and have the booking feature popup on your website

Linking Directly to The Client Portal

A client portal is a link that you can send any current or potential client to.

It’s their ground-zero for interacting with your process and doing business with you. They can book appointments, fill out intake forms or access their current information if they are already a client.

It looks like this:

simple practice online booking scheduling portal

Once you’ve turned on your client portal and activated online booking for your services, the feature will be part of your portal.

You can set it do only existing clients can schedule with you, or allow new clients to schedule appointments as well.

Simple Practice lets you customize part of the URL for your client portal and once you do that, this will be the link that you can then use on your website or send to clients in an email or text.

 simple practice help client portal url

To connect your client portal and give your website visitors access to it, you can simple use that link throughout your website.

You could create a button in a call to action section that says “Schedule An Appointment” and send people over to your client portal.

Or include the link in your website’s menu so it appears in the same spot on each page and users can easily navigate to it.

Using Simple Practice’s Booking Widget

The other option that Simple Practice gives you to integrate online booking on your website is what they call the “Booking Widget”.

What this is is a piece of HTML code that you can copy and then paste into the code on your website.

What your visitors will see is a button like this:

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And when they click said button, a popup appears with your services to allow clients to book:

simple practice booking widget popup

This option works great for those who don’t want their website visitor to leave their website but be able to stay right there and book an appointment.

While copying and pasting the code into your website is mostly straightforward (Simple Practice gives you instructions in their support documentation) it does get a bit more complicated when you want to customize the button’s color to match your website.

So some basic knowledge of HTML or having someone help you is ideal to make sure it works and looks good.

Which Option Worked Best for My Wife’s Practice?

When my wife and I looked into integrating online booking into her website, we tested out which way would work best: sending visitors to the online portal, or having using the booking widget that pops up on her website.

We decided that just sending people to the portal was the best way to do it.

The reason we went with this approach was because we liked how, when a user goes to the client portal link, they are first asked whether they are an existing client or new client.

My wife prefers to talk to people on the phone before their first session, so she offers a free phone consultation.

When a user chooses “I’m a new client”, the online booking will default to that initial phone consultation so they can book a time to have their phone call.

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People can still book an appointment without ever talking to my wife, which does happen, but she prefers to have the first connection.

If they’re an existing client, they’ll sign in and they can schedule their appointment.

When using the Booking Widget popup however, there is nothing to indicate whether the user is a new or existing client, so the widget defaults to a standard counseling session.

If a new client sees the popup, they’d have to know to click the dropdown and find that initial consultation call option and choose it.

Knowing that she converts well on those phone consults meant that we didn’t want to lose potential clients to this extra step.

So, sending people to her client portal link made the most sense to my wife and how she operates.

So you’ll want to think through your own onboarding process and decide what makes the most sense to you.

How Online Booking Has Helped My Wife Save Time and Book More Clients

Using Simple Practice’s online booking has been a game changer for my wife.

Before, she’d have to email each new or existing client to work out a date and time for them to work together.

Now, it’s as simple as saying “go to my website and find a time that works for you.”

It’s helped provide a better service to her clients because it saves them time as well and eliminates all the back and forth communication.

Now, because her clients have the power to schedule whenever they like, my wife has been able to book more sessions.

She’s had many clients want to see her before their next scheduled session as things come up in her life.

So they’ll just go to her website and book away!

It’s been exciting for my wife to see more sessions get booked on her calendar without having to do any extra work.

Conclusion

Online booking may not work for everyone.

It really comes down to how you like to communicate with your existing clients and how you onboard new ones.

For my wife, her move to Simple Practice has been wonderful.

While it took some time to switch everything over, it now saves her tons of time and has allowed her to book more sessions and keep track of everything going on her practice.

Online booking has been one of the many benefits of using Simple Practice.

If you’re curious how Simple Practice’s online booking and other tools can help you streamline your entire business, they offer a free 30-day trial that you can check out here.

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By Jesse Hallock

How well do you know yourself? Simple question. Often, it is an elusive answer. The reason I ask is that knowing yourself and your practice (in many ways an extension of yourself) is a KEY to how well you market and grow your practice.

By Jesse Hallock  How well do you know yourself? Simple question. Often, it is an elusive answer. The reason I ask is that knowing yourself and your practice (in many ways an extension of yourself) is a KEY to how well you market and grow your practice.   There are many things to know about your practice, but without a doubt one of the biggest questions that faces private practice owners is “Should I take insurance?”

There are many things to know about your practice, but without a doubt one of the biggest questions that faces private practice owners is “Should I take insurance?”

Should I Take Insurance?

You have probably been asked, asked yourself, read blog posts, followed social media discussions and more on whether or not you should take insurance for your practice. I’ll spare you exhaustive discussion.

Here are just a couple of reasons to take insurance from our experience:

  • You want a larger pool of clients to offer your services to.
  • You want more networks to connect through or get referrals from.
  • You feel drawn or called to a specific demographic.
  • You are willing to figure out the billing system on my own or hire someone else to.

There is also another option which is sometimes a little less known: Out-of-network.

Now, the advantage of being out-of-network is that you don’t have to go through the credentialing process to be on a panel.

In some ways, this is the middle ground between a full cash-pay client and an in-network insurance client.

You can charge your full cash rate – but since the client does have insurance they will often get reimbursed for part of it so they don’t have to pay the full cash rate.

How Do I Pick Insurance Panels for My Therapy Practice?

We’ll keep this short and sweet.

There are a ton of options out there for panels. Our company has worked with successful practices that are in-network with about 40 insurance companies.

And we have worked with successful practices that are in-network with 1 insurance company.

Here are some things to consider as you think through this:

  • Which insurance companies have the most members in your area?
  • Which insurance companies reimburse best?
  • If you are called to a certain demographic, what is the most common insurance they use?
  • Are there large companies or industries near you that all offer the same insurance to their employees (this would include military bases and Tricare)?

What Does This Mean for My Private Practice Marketing?

What your specialties are, what your niche is, who your ideal client is, whether you take insurance at all, whether you’re in-network or not – all of these and more come together to make up who your practice is (yes, who).

Knowing and being intentional about who you are and why will make a ridiculously huge difference in how you market your practice.

Your marketing should be an extension of yourself and your therapy practice.

It is the part of you that reaches out into the world as says, “This is me.”

Successful marketing happens when the world reaches back and says, “That’s me as well!”

It’s when who you are, what you offer, and how you offer it connects with who a potential client is, what they need, and how they best receive it.

How Will My Therapy Website Help?

Every tiniest detail of your website can work for you as you work to connect with your ideal clients.

The color scheme, the fonts, the pictures, the layout – all of these, and more, are the ‘non-verbal’ communication, and we all know how important that is!

Then of course there is what is written, how it is written, and even what is intentionally not written.

The better you know yourself and your practice, the better and more clearly you can show “This is me” through your website (and the easier it will be for your designer to fit together all the tiniest details to make that a reality).

Here’s where insurance and website intersect.

What insurances you accept or don’t are part of who your target audience is.

The better you know yourself, the better you can market yourself.

The same is true with your clients – the better you know your ideal client, including their insurance experience, the better you will be able be able to connect with them through your marketing!

Part of knowing you target audience is knowing what questions they are coming to your website with. Everyone has questions they want answered before taking the next step. Remember that clarity builds connection.

So one of the best things you can do is foresee these questions and intentionally answer them on your site.

Here are some questions they are probably asking:

“This looks really great, but do they take insurance?”

“Are they in-network with my carrier?”

“How will I know if my plan covers this?”

“What do I do if they aren’t in-network?”

There are many ways to answer these questions for clients and maintain the connection: you can have a section of a page that explains your network status, a separate page that talks about insurance, you can have an FAQ format to address questions, or something else.

Find a format that works well for you and provides clarity and confidence for your ideal client and you’re set.

Remember, you want to bring together the real you and the ideal client.

You can “non-verbally” communicate through pictures, fonts, layout, and color scheme as well. You can communicate it SO WELL that when your ideal client visits your page, they will already feel and know – “This is me, this is what I have been looking for!” and the “verbal” communication that they read read through then serves to reinforce what they already feel.

Conclusion

Is there a right or wrong answer for taking insurance?

No. Definitely not.

But whichever direction you choose – you can make intentional decisions about how you will connect with your ideal client that will either work for you or against you.

Know yourself clearly, put yourself out there strategically, and make the difference you’ve been wanting to make!

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About Jesse Hallock

Jesse Hallock is the Sales Director for Practice Solutions – a billing, credentialing, and consulting company for mental/behavioral health private practices. Practice Solutions serves practice owners around the country by working with them directly and also by openly collaborating with the top influencers in the industry to share our knowledge of, and experience with, the insurance billing world. To learn more or contact us, go to www.practicesol.com

Have you ever heard someone say how you need a ‘marketing funnel’ in your private practice? If you’re confused as to what that means, please read on.

Have you ever heard someone say how you need a ‘marketing funnel’ in your private practice? If you’re confused as to what that means, please read on. In this article I’ll break down what it means to have a private practice marketing funnel and how it can be applied to your business.

In this article I’ll break down what it means to have a private practice marketing funnel and how it can be applied to your business.

The Private Practice Marketing Funnel Explained

When someone talks about having a marketing funnel, they’re actually referring to a series of steps a website visitor would take to go from a general prospect to becoming your next client.

For example, someone who doesn’t know you may land on your website for the first time.

Then, perhaps they join your email list and receive some more information from you.

They get to know you over time and get more familiar with you.

Then they click a link in an email and schedule that first session with you.

That’s it! That’s what a marketing funnel may look like in a private practice.

To help you visualize, here’s a great depiction of a marketing funnel:

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Source: Vendasta

Let’s break this down a bit, shall we?

Lead Attraction: Increasing Traffic Made Up Of Potential Clients

The first phase of any marketing funnel in your private practice starts with attracting new potential clients, or leads.

These are folks that are new to your world.

They may be doing a bit of research for a therapist so they visit your website and view your content in an attempt to learn more about what you do and if you can help them.

So your first step in creating a marketing funnel is to provide content that serves your ideal client.

This could be in the form of relevant blog posts on topics your ideal clients are concerned about.

It could also be an informational page on your website that focuses on your areas of expertise.

Whatever it is, it should be jam-packed with helpful info that speaks to the type of client you want to attract, as that’s your best way of growing more traffic from those most likely to work with you.

This type of content can help you grow your SEO potential too, which can increase traffic to your private practice website over time.

So, once all that traffic shows up to your website, then what?

Let’s continue.

Lead Engagement: Turning Traffic into New Leads

Ok, so you’ve got some great content on your therapy website and people are showing up to read it.

The next step is to give your visitors a chance to go a little deeper with you and receive even more value from you.

This is where you ask them for their email address in exchange for some high-value content related to what they’ve already read on your website or something you know would really benefit your clients.

What this does is it allows people to put their hand up and say they want to learn more from you.

It serves your potential client in a deeper way.

On your end, it gives you a chance to follow up with them later via email.

Think of some extra content you can create that would help a potential client solve a specific problem.

It could be a PDF guide or maybe a link to an instructional video on YouTube.

This is what people call a “lead magnet”. You may have heard the term.

Most email service providers, like Mailchimp, allow you to create a form you can paste into a page on your website where people can put in their name and email address.

Then, once they sign up, you can send them the free special content.

Here’s an example from another CMTW blog post:

private practice marketing funnel optimized

Once someone fills that form out, they’ll get an email confirming their subscription and giving them a link to download their free checklist.

Onto the next phase!

Lead Nurturing: Staying Connected to Potential Clients and Converting Them Into Paying Ones

Ok, so someone has visited your website and decided they’d like more from you so they join your email list, then what?

Well, the first step is to welcome the new lead (potential client) to your email list and deliver the content you promised.

If it’s a PDF, you’ll have your email service provider send out a link to the file so they can download it.

Your next goal is to stay connected to this person so they not only get to know you but – if they’re your ideal client – educate them on how you are uniquely qualified to help them overcome their challenges.

They showed enough interest in your work that they gave you their email address so let’s not take that lightly. You want to serve them well!

You’ll want to continue to provide them with great content on a regular basis to keep your practice top of mind as they’re deciding whether to work with you or not.

A great way to do this is to create a sequence of emails that continues to provide valuable content.

This would be your “welcome series” or “onboarding” email sequence.

Here’s some ideas of the types of emails you can send them, starting with delivering your lead magnet:

  1. Welcome them to your email list and give them the link to your PDF download or other free content you promised
  2. Send an “about me” email that tells your story and how/why you help your clients get results in their lives
  3. Expand upon the free content by diving deep into how they can apply it to their situation
  4. Send an email that showcases your best blog posts
  5. Use your most-visited blog post as content for an email
  6. Send an email that reminds them of the services you offer

The number of emails you send is up to you. I’d recommend not overwhelming the recipient with too many emails though.

Space them out a bit and give more time in between emails as time goes on.

What’s great about this method is that you can send 6 emails over the course of 3 months, which allows you to serve your ideal client, educate them on your services and get to know you on a deeper level.

Going Forward: What To Do With Your Email List

Beyond sending an onboarding or welcome series of emails to your email list you’ll want to keep in touch with them consistently over time.

If you’ve got upcoming workshops, classes or webinars that you’re offering, you can send an email to your list to let them know.

Maybe there’s a book that you’ve seen greatly impact your clients’ lives. You can write an email about it and send them the link.

Or maybe you’ve found or created other great resources that may help your clients. Share that with your email list.

If you’re writing blog posts on a regular basis, you can use that as a way to send new and relevant content to your email list.

If you’re on the CMTW email list, you’ll often get emails that let you know about new articles to help you with your private practice website.

This approach is great because you don’t have to come up with ideas for both blog posts AND emails to send.

Remember: your services and content CAN help people. Use your email list as way to generously give to your ideal client.

Do this and you’ll hopefully remain top of mind so that when they’re ready to start therapy, you’ll be the one they call.

Conclusion

Creating a marketing funnel for your private practice can be a great way to serve your ideal client beyond just visiting your website.

To recap, there are three main steps to any marketing funnel:

  1. Lead Attraction is where you get traffic to your website by writing great content aimed at your ideal client
  2. Lead Engagement is where you offer that traffic some extra valuable content, such as a PDF
  3. Lead Nurturing is where you continue to connect with your potential clients by sending them relevant emails

Since many people may not reach out to you the first time they visit your website, having them go through these steps is a great way to stay connected.

You can use a marketing funnel in your private practice to serve your potential clients so that when they ARE ready to begin therapy, they’ll be able to respond to your emails and get started right away.

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A quest post by Katie May

So you have an idea for an awesome group and you just KNOW it’s going to benefit the clients that you serve. In fact, a few of them may have even mentioned that they wish something like it already exists.

A quest post by Katie May So you have an idea for an awesome group and you just KNOW it’s going to benefit the clients that you serve. In fact, a few of them may have even mentioned that they wish something like it already exists.

You create a flyer, open enrollment AND… Crickets.

Why does it feel so hard to fill a group when you know your clients will benefit from it (and they’ve even expressed interest and excitement?)

It’s because group enrollment actually starts way before you open the doors. There’s pre-launch work that needs to be done.

And what’s cool about this is that you actually get to offer a LOT of value and content to help your local community before they even connect with you for a group screening.

Step 0: Your Therapy Group Pre-Launch

I like to think of the pre-launch as “step 0.” It’s what prospective clients can start to do to help themselves before they decide they know, like and trust you enough to reach out for help.

Think about it… that first step of asking for help (or admitting you need help) can be the hardest one.

When you follow a process that moves your prospective clients through a journey, you’re moving the relationship with them from complete strangers to one where you position yourself as the go-to expert that they NEED to see.

You’ll want to give yourself about eight weeks prior to the start of your group to set yourself up for full group success.

This gives you enough time to be able to effectively market, but also to recognize that life happens and that work, family and/or sickness can get in the way.

You want to plan for hiccups so that you’re not scrambling at the last minute to fill those last few seats.

Start by really fleshing out your ideal group client, even if you think you already know them.

Understand what their pain points are and what relief they are looking for by reaching out to you. This should be easy for you if you work with this specific type of client in your practice already.

You’ve likely fielded tons of calls, had tons of intake sessions and serve multiple clients per week on this very issue that you can use as your “market research.”

Make a List of Potential Group Clients

Make a list of clients that you already see that could be a good fit for your group. You may even want to think about “pre-selling” them. This is easy peasy!

As you wrap up a session (or in an email between sessions) you can simply say, “Hey, I’m thinking about running a group for women with anxiety in the next few months. If I run it, would you be interested?”

This will give you a good idea of the potential for your group and whether clients like yours will be interested in it.

You want to be sure that those who are interested have a place to get more information. Create a page on your website that is fully dedicated to your group.

Be sure to talk about who it’s for, what this person experiences and have specific and bullet-pointed outcomes that this person will achieve when they join your group.

You don’t even need to have a specific date or time for group yet.

Create a Contact Form For People Interested in Your Group

The most important part of this group page is having a contact form for those who are interested to fill out their name, email address and phone number.

This will allow you to follow up with them further in the launch process to share more about the group and invite them to connect with you.

Create a flyer using the same information you used on your group page.

Be mindful to not overcrowd the flyer with details and understand that the goal of the flyer is to drive people to your group page to complete a contact form so you can gather their information for further use.

Share this flyer in your waiting room and with any colleagues who support a similar population.

Formulate Your Therapy Group Goals

Finally, start to formulate some really concrete goals for your group.

How many clients would you like to ideally have signed up to start the group? What is the minimum amount of income you’d like to make to run the group successfully?

When you can set clear goals to know exactly what you’re working towards, it will motivate you and guide you in the whole group filling process.

Write down your goals and really visualize that full and profitable group every single day.

Once your ideal client and group goals are clear, the rest becomes a numbers game.

It’s about driving targeted traffic to your group web page and using a phone conversation to screen members to enroll those who are a perfect fit.

For more information on how to market and fill your group once you’re clear on the who and what, visit ​www.becomeagroupguru.com​ and watch the free webinar to Fill Your Therapy Group in 6 weeks.

​Stop wishing and waiting to get enough clients interested all at once and learn the 3 step process for creating group clients on demand with a fool-proof marketing process that brings group members to you in 6 weeks or less.

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About Katie

Katie helps therapists market, fill and run group programs so that they can make a massive positive impact on the world (and their bank account) at the same time.

Visit www.becomeagroupguru.com to learn the fastest and most effective way to go from zero to full group, even if you hate marketing and you have no idea where to start.

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A guest post by Sarah Leitschuh

As many therapists do, I found the leap into private practice to be an overwhelming experience. I built my clinical skills in an agency setting where I felt so confident. But, in the early days of private practice I found myself doubting even my most foundational skills as a therapist.

 

There was so much to learn, so much to do and so much to keep track of! I tried to do it all and found myself pulled in a million directions.

As you can imagine, this left me exhausted and frustrated.

Eventually, I realized that the practice I had been creating didn’t meet my needs and wasn’t in alignment with my goals for going into private practice.

Although I was building a profitable practice and doing good work with my clients, I wasn’t showing up in the way that I wanted to in any of my relationships inside or outside of my office.

I gave myself permission to slow down and re-vision my approach to my work and how my work would fit with my life outside of work.

As I’ve worked on fine tuning the way in which I approach my work, I have also supported other therapists in doing the same.

After reflecting on my conversations with therapists from across the country, I found that most often issues that contribute to therapist overwhelm are often linked to therapists’ struggle to maintain boundaries around their time.

4 Ways Therapists Can Reduce Overwhelm By Maintaining Boundaries

1. Clearly Define and Communicate Your Work Schedule

First and foremost, it is essential to clearly define your schedule for yourself.

You must be committed to the schedule that you create, so you can avoid the temptation to create regular “exceptions” to your schedule in order to accomodate to others’ wishes.

When you have a clearly defined schedule that you are able to commit to, you are able to confidently communicate this to your clients and let them know when you are available to see them and what they can expect from you in terms of timeframes for returned calls/emails, written reports and any other information they may need from you.

When you know exactly when you will be working you are able to map out the tasks that you need to do and avoid the spill-over of work into your personal time.

A clearly defined schedule with time blocked out for all practice related tasks allows therapists to feel less anxious about finding the time needed to see clients and complete administrative tasks.

2. Create Systems and Set Aside Dedicated Time For Regular Tasks.

Clearly defined systems help therapists complete their work in an efficient way and eliminate the uncertainty of not knowing when or how tasks will be completed.

Systems address the who, what, when, where and how of the work we do as therapists, specifically as it relates to tasks we do often.

Therapists should look at creating systems for many areas in their practices including; welcoming new clients, communications, documentation, billing/financial matters and scheduling.

Additionally, I suggest that when possible, therapists batch similar tasks together.

For example, designate set times/days for routine tasks such as checking email or writing session notes instead of randomly doing them whenever you have a few minutes to spare.

Avoid temptations to frequently deviate from the systems and structures that you create.

I love the flexibility of private practice as much as the next person, but know that too much flexibility leads to incomplete work and the spillover of work into my personal time.

3. Say No To Opportunities (Including Potential Clients) That Are Not In Alignment With Your Practice Goals

In our eagerness to start seeing clients and build our practices, it is easy to accept almost every opportunity that presents itself to us (think things like new client inquiries, invitations to speak to a group or a potential collaboration with a colleague) without really considering how the opportunity fits with the ultimate vision for our practice.

This is a habit that can carry into practices that are decades old.

Unfortunately, I’ve seen many therapists (including myself) inadvertently end up saying yes to opportunities that suck time and energy because they are not in alignment with our practice goals or vision.

Therapists need to allow ourselves the space and time to reflect on and evaluate opportunities before saying yes.

Ultimately, we want to save our time, energy and focus for the work that we are most passionate about.

I’ve found it helpful to build in a buffer of time before I officially respond to opportunities that present themselves by saying things like “Let me think about that and get back to you.”

4.  Create Rituals and Routines to Turn Off Work at the End Of The Day and Week

As a therapist and entrepreneur, I find it is important to be intentional in planning for how we wrap up our work at the end of the day and week.

The tasks that we need to complete will never be 100% complete and we need to be able to tolerate tabling unfinished work for the next day or the following week instead of pushing ourselves to work unreasonable numbers of hours each week.

Therapists who struggle to turn off work tend to find themselves more overwhelmed and burnt out.

The therapists who I have spoken to who are the least overwhelmed by their work are those who have made the time to reflect on and consistently implement the rituals and practices that they find most effective to turn off work and allow themselves the time and space to recharge.

About SarahBaby Love Sarah 2 S 1 768x509 1

Sarah Leitschuh is a Minnesota-based therapist and coach who is on a mission to help reduce therapist overwhelm. Sarah works with therapists who are ready to find a way to approach their work that leaves them energized at the end of the week instead of burnout and depleted.  You can learn more about Sarah’s work at www.sarahleitschuhcounseling.com.

The Overwhelm Assessment for Stressed Out Therapists is a tool that allows therapists to take inventory of all the areas contributing to their overwhelm and develop an action plan to reduce their overwhelm today.  Claim your complimentary copy of the Assessment.

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Psychology Today is often the go-to directory for most mental-health therapists when they launch their private practice. Because of its high Google rank and searchability, having a profile can help you get found by more clients.

In this article, we’ll go over how you can add your Psychology Today Verification badge to your website.

Psychology Today is often the go-to directory for most mental-health therapists when they launch their private practice. Because of its high Google rank and searchability, having a profile can help you get found by more clients. In this article, we’ll go over how you can add your Psychology Today Verification badge to your website.

What is A Psychology Today Verification Badge?

Simply put, the verification badge is a graphic with a link that Psychology Today provides to you.

It looks like this:

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You can place this graphic on your website as a way to further connect your website to your Psychology Today profile.

You can use it as a small token to boost your credibility with website visitors looking to vet their new therapist.

Also, linking to credible websites, such as Psychology Today, can also have a slight benefit to your search engine optimization.

Where to Put Your Psychology Today Verification Badge

My personal opinion is that you’re going to create far more connection with your potential clients on YOUR website and NOT your Psychology Today profile.

Plus, because of Psychology Today’s high Google ranking, many visitors will see your profile first, and then go to your website to learn a little more about you.

Because of this, I like to make sure we’re keeping visitors ON your website, reading your blog posts and getting comfortable with you and CONVERTING into clients.

Not just sending them away from your website.

So, where do I recommend you put your Psychology Today verification seal?

Well, there’s no “one size fits all” for this and it really depends on the design of your website.

First and foremost, I usually relegate the graphic to my clients’ about pages.

There, you may have a section toward the bottom of the page that lists your credentials and trainings. It’s here where you can put the seal, along with other organization seals you may be affiliated with.

This creates one area of the website that a visitor can see your credibility.

Another place I may put the graphic when I’m designing private practice websites would be the website footer.

And if I do, it’s usually small and probably the last thing on the page.

Like I said, we want to keep your visitors on your website and lead them to contacting you through your calls to action.

While they could still convert off your Psychology Today profile (which is great), to me, your website provides a better representation of you and your personality and a better chance at converting.

That’s just my opinion!

How to Embed The Psychology Today Verification on Your Website

Ok, so how can you embed this nifty little badge on your own website? Just follow the steps below:

1: Log into your Psychology Today profile

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2: Under your name, in the top right corner, click on “Link and Share”

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3: Choose a size and theme that will work with your website styles

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4: Click on the “Copy” button at the bottom of the page to copy the code

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5: Paste the code into your website

This is where things may get just a little bit tricky.

Each website builder will be a little bit different, but you’re going to look for your builder’s way of adding HTML code to your content.

For example, in WordPress, you can add it right inside any text on a page by click the “Text” tab (as opposed to “Visual”) in your text editor:

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Once you’re in the “Text” or HTML view, you can paste your code:

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Most website builders work in the same way, allowing you to add code into any text block.

Once your Psychology Today code is pasted into the page, you can save or preview it:

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If you’re having trouble getting the code to appear, it’s possible that the code is conflicting with your theme or some other code going on.

It’s always best to reach out to customer support for your theme (if using WordPress) or your website builder (such as Squarespace or Wix).

There you have it! Now your website will be cross linked with your Psychology Today profile.

Get your first six months of Psychology Today for FREE.

You can get started with Psychology Today and get your first six months absolutely free.

My wife has graciously made this referral link available to my audience. (thanks Honey!)

If you’d like to get a free six months, just send an email to daniel@createmytherapistwebsite.com with the subject “Please send me the Psychology Today link” and we’ll send it right over.

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Rhythm is a pivotal part of our bodies, our relationships and our lives.

Rhythm is more than a drum beat, more than a conversation – it’s in the way we walk, talk, breathe, interact, push ourselves, and soften into stillness.

In many ways, therapy is about rhythm – helping people regulate, helping them communicate, and helping them slow down meaningfully.

Private practice can keep you in your head a lot of the time – figuring out technology, putting systems in place, blogging, networking, tracking client numbers and income, and much more.

All of this is important. All of this matters.

But so does rhythm.

Rhythm is in the packed client days, and the empty hours to fill. It’s in the days when you do too much, and the days when you get mad at yourself for not doing enough.

Internal vs. external rhythms

Tuning into rhythm is a way to come back into your body, to re-inhabit your breath, to ground into yourself a creative being.

As rhythmic beings, we are constantly being influenced by both internal and external rhythms.

Internal rhythms are those that originate within ourselves and affect how we show up in the world. These include: breathing, walking, talking, energy levels, our thoughts and so many more.

External rhythms are those that originate from outside ourselves and affect our internal state and rhythms. These can include: other people’s energy levels, seasonal shifts, the news cycle, collective stress/trauma and much more.

Take a moment and notice one internal rhythm and one external rhythm that’s present in your life, right now.

Try to notice without judging or criticizing. Rhythm is information.

Do your internal rhythms tend to be slow, medium, or fast? Do the external rhythms that surround you (including clients!) tend to be slow, medium, or fast?

Take this opportunity to get curious about the rhythms that both surround you and are expressed through you.

Rhythm and self-care

You may already have self-care practices in place that connect you to rhythm. Yoga, meditation, exercise, art-making and so many more can connect us to rhythmic flow, to a give and take energy.

These (and other) self-care practices are an important way to come back to yourself and back to your own rhythms.

Remember that connecting to rhythm through self-care can also look like going out with friends, a group hike or other collective experiences.

Find what self-care practices work for you – remember that rhythm can be both an exuberant and subtle experience, so your self-care practices can mirror that range.

Tuning into your practice, right now

It can be easy (too easy some days!) to just power through without slowing down. My personal experiences and my work with helpers & healers has taught me how deeply helping, hustling and doing are ingrained in many of us.

There’s nothing wrong with any of those qualities.

But I bet there’s some part of you that wants to feel a different way. To find the sweet spot in between hustling/pushing and checked out/burned out.

Either you’d like to feel that building your practice could be just a teensy-bit less hard, or that you’re finally where you’d like to be practice-wise, but you’re feeling a little tapped out.

In order to shift anything, tuning it has to come first.

A quick mindfulness exercise

So, pause. Take a moment to tune into your breath, your body, and your thoughts.

Notice anything there may be to notice, with as much gentleness as possible.

Now turn your attention to your practice. Notice how your body feels and if anything has shifted.

The rhythm of your practice

Ask yourself – what’s the rhythm of my practice? Of my days?
You might tap out a gentle rhythm, tune into a body sensation, or think of a color or image.

Notice anything that may have come up – in thoughts or in physical sensation – when you get curious about your practice in this way.

The rhythm of your ideal practice

Now, tune into the rhythm of your ideal practice.

Notice if that pragmatic voice comes up inside with protests over how many more clients you need, or how you’ll pay this month’s office rent, or some other practical concern.

Kindly ask that voice to step aside for a moment (while still honoring that it showed up).

How would you like your practice to feel, rhythmically?

Lean into how it would feel in your body, in your breath, in your schedule.

Think of a song or piece of music that expresses the way you’d like your practice to feel.

There’s really no right or wrong – you might think of a song that helps you feel energized, one that connects you to a specific memory, one that relaxes you.

Allow your choice to “bubble up” spontaneously, rather than being a purely cognitive exercise.

Take time to listen to it – feel the rhythm of the song in your body, let it sink down to your bones. Invite your body and breath to shift into a different way of being. Songs can be powerful touchstones, so revisit it often. Let it be a reminder that reconnects you to the rhythm of your ideal practice.

Conclusion

Mindfulness and rhythm go hand in hand with private practice – and life.

When we can drop in the present moment and notice what is, while also holding/embodying the rhythm of how we would like things to feel, we give ourselves permission to build our practices in a way that feels nurturing and satisfying.

Ultimately, this allows us to serve our clients – and ourselves – so much better.

Maya Benattar build a practice that feels good

Maya Benattar, MA, MT-BC, LCAT is a music therapist and psychotherapist in private practice in Midtown Manhattan (NYC).  In addition to her clinical work, Maya offers online and in-person Reclaim Your Rhythm workshops for helpers and healers and individual Reclaim Your Rhythm consultations. She loves supporting helpers and healers in showing up for their clients – and themselves – in bold and clear ways.

For more information about Maya and her work, visit www.mayabenattar.com/professionals/

You can also find her on Instagram and Facebook.

{Instagram}: www.instagram.com/mayabenattar

{Facebook}: www.facebook.com/mayabenattarlcat

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“Niching down” is a term you may often seen thrown around when it comes to marketing a private practice. Focusing on very specific populations of people or services is a great way to be the go-to expert in an area of therapy you love. But what if you’re just starting out or enjoy working with many types of people? How can you reflect that in your website and still attract clients?

“Niching down” is a term you may often seen thrown around when it comes to marketing a private practice. Focusing on very specific populations of people or services is a great way to be the go-to expert in an area of therapy you love. But what if you’re just starting out or enjoy working with many types of people? How can you reflect that in your website and still attract clients?

In this article, we’ll talk about ways to approach your website marketing when you haven’t yet found your niche.

Do I Even Need A “Niche” In My Private Practice?

When it comes to any type of marketing, I truly believe that each business is unique.

What works for one therapist, may not work or even feel good to another therapist.

I encourage you to try new marketing approaches, test them for a time and see what works for you.

And it’s not just about the number of clients. If you’re doing anything in your business that drains your energy or doesn’t feel right, I encourage you to drop it.

I think that also applies to niching as well.

I’ve spoken to many therapist that work with all kinds of people in many different modalities and their practices are doing just fine.

The place where finding your niche can be so powerful for your marketing is when you want to really focus your practice and attract more of a very specific type of client.

When I started my website design business, I had many conversations with friends and family that thought that focusing ONLY on doing websites for therapists meant that I was limiting my growth.

But I knew that if I wanted to really help people, I needed to understand the challenges of my clients, inside and out.

If a restaurant came to me and said they’d love to work with me, would I turn them away?

Probably not – I’d love the challenge – but my understanding of what a restaurant needs in a website is much more limited than what a therapist would need.

For me niching has helped my provide a better service and product to my clients.

So what’s the point?

If you want your caseload to be filled with a very specific type of client, because that’s the work you love to do and you want to grow your expertise in that area… then go for it. Niche down!

But if you’re still finding out who you like to work with or just enjoy seeing all types of clients, then don’t try and force it.

How To Handle Your Private Practice Website Copy When You Don’t Have A Niche

Ok, so you’re not yet ready or feel the need to niche down in your private practice.

How can you use your website to get more clients?

While you may not be able to have an uber specific headline on your homepage like “I help new moms cope with anxiety and become the moms they’ve always dreamt they’d be,” I think there are still some strategic things you can do to make sure you’re connecting with potential clients.

1: Get to The Core of What You Love Doing

My wife went through the same struggle of wondering how/if she should find a niche in her private practice and market toward it.

She loves seeing a number of different types of clients – male, female and couples.

She also loves helping them with various challenges such as anxiety, family of origin and discovering their identity.

So when it came time to write copy for her website, we were a bit unsure where to begin.

But the more we peeled back the layers of what she loved doing – the more she listened to what made her feel alive in her work – the more she realized it all boiled down to one thing: relationships.

My wife loves helping her clients have better relationships.

So on her homepage, we created this title:

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It’s broad enough to attract many types of clients (individuals and couples) but just specific enough to connect with any potential client who is struggling in their relationships.

So I encourage you to pay attention to the type of work you love doing. Think about the common denominator and use that as a headline on your homepage.

You’ve only got a few seconds to entice someone to stay on that page, so give them something to connect to.

It doesn’t have to be calling out a specific population (i.e. dads in their 40s who own a business) but it should give a sense of what you do.

2: Focus On The Types of Services/Specialties You Offer in Your Private Practice

Another way to attract many types of clients and work in your private practice is to give each potential client they need in order to feel comfortable reaching out to you.

To do this, you can create individual landing pages for all the services and specialties you offer.

If you enjoy doing some couples therapy, then create a specific page just for that. Really give them all they need to know about what therapy will look like.

Take them from a place of struggle (the reason they’re looking for a therapist in the first place) to a place of hope.

Another thing you can do is focus on the various specialties you address in your practice.

For instance, if you learn many people are coming to your for help with anxiety, create a specific page all about that.

These pages can help convert all sorts of clients. Plus they’re great for search engine optimization (SEO).

Check out this post to learn more about creating specialty pages that Google loves: How I Used SEO to go From Zero Clients to Too Many Clients

Tips For Discovering Your Private Practice Niche

I’ll be honest… having a specific niche makes marketing a lot easier.

It allows you speak directly to people and really connect with them.

You can use the tips above to get started creating website pages and copy, but if you think you’d like to eventually narrow your niche, I’ll leave you with a few tips:

  1. Think about the clients you’ve been working with that you REALLY love. What is it about them that you love so much? Write it down.
  2. Think about the types of challenges you love helping your clients with and what really excites you. Make a list.
  3. Identify how the type of client intersects with the challenge you really want to be known for.
  4. Keep a spreadsheet of notes on how your favorite clients describe their challenges so you can use it in your marketing copy.
  5. Practice writing some headlines that capture who you help and what you help them do. You can use the best one on your homepage.

Conclusion

Having a niche can certainly simplify your marketing message, however, you can still be successful with your marketing without niching waaaay down.

If you don’t have a niche or even want a niche, I hope the tips above give you some direction as you think about the copy and marketing on your private practice website.

At the end of the day, you have to do what feels good and what works for you!

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Writing great copy for your private practice website is one step toward attracting more clients. But the other step is presenting that information – through your website’s design –  in a way that’s easy to read. This is why the size of the font on your website is so important.

Writing great copy for your private practice website is one step toward attracting more clients. But the other step is presenting that information - through your website’s design - in a way that’s easy to read. This is why the size of the font on your website is so important.

In this article we’ll talk about a few things to consider when choosing your website’s font size and answer the question, “what size font should I use on my private practice website?”

Some Things to Consider

Like the colors you choose for your website, your fonts and font size have an impact on the way your brand and practice are viewed by the end user.

If your practice is geared toward the parents of young children, your brand may be more bold and upbeat.

So, you may use larger, more creative fonts for headlines and brighter colors as compared to a website whose primary audience is, let’s say, older adults over 60.

And as a general rule, it’s best that your fonts be too big than too small.

Research has shown that small font sizes & low-contrast are the #1 complaint for web users as it relates to reading online. (Source)

This means that you’ll definitely want to take into account your ideal client.

Example:

I recently worked with an amazing client, Karen Midyet on her new coaching website www.coachingagingadults.com.

Because her practice is focused solely on aging adults and their caretakers, we had to make sure that fonts were easy to read.

This meant bolder headlines, a larger font for body copy and high contrast design.

coaching aging adults font size blog

If we didn’t know her ideal audience, who she wanted to reach and how they’d be using her website, we wouldn’t have gone with such large fonts.

So, step one to deciding the size of your fonts is to know who will be using your website so you can create the best user experience possible.

Headline Fonts vs Body Copy Fonts

There are typically two main categories of fonts on your website: headers and body copy.

Header Font Sizes

You’ll have a font for various headers (these are your H1, H2, H3, etc.), which help to create organization and a hierarchy for your page content.

With headline fonts, it’s best to stick to what’s called modular scaled font sizes.

What the heck are those?

“[Modular scaled font sizes are] a series of harmonious font sizes that have the perfect proportion that the general public view as “beautiful.” (Source)

This includes the following font sizes: 8, 16, 24, 32, 48, 64, 95

So when you’re setting the font size of your headers, you can use a hierarchy, like so:

  • Your H1 (usually the page title will be in an H1 tag so it’s the most important): 48 pixels
  • Your H2: 32 pixels
  • Your H3: 24 pixels
  • Your H4: While 18 is not in the list above, if you need a subheader slightly larger than your body copy, you can use 18 pixels here.

Body Copy Font Size

The next category of font that you’ll have on your website is the body copy.

This is the main group of text that will make up the content on your website.

It’s the meat and potatoes. The bulk of your blog posts, informational pages and will carry most of the important details you want to communicate to your clients.

With body copy, you want to make sure the size doesn’t hinder your visitor’s ability to read it.

On average, the ideal size of your body copy font, according to our modular scaled font sizes above, is 16 pixels.

This size is not too big and not too small for the average reader.

It’s the font size I use on 90% of the websites I design.

But, like with most things in design, rules can often be broken WHEN it makes sense.

In the case of the Coaching Aging Adults website I mentioned above, we knew that the audience for this site would be aging adults that may have vision challenges.

We made the body copy size a whopping 18 pixels to make sure that the target audience would have no trouble reading the content on the website.

Again, knowing your audience will help you make the right design decisions on your private practice website.

Conclusion

There you have it! A simple guideline for setting the font sizes on your private practice website.

The best thing to keep in mind is who your ideal client is, how they will use your website.

Take them into account with any website design decision to ensure you’re making it as easy as possible for them to read your content and use your website.

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A guest post by Jo Muirhead

Have you noticed that there is a lot of talk about being an Entrepreneur when you are the owner of a private practice?

If you are a clinician in private practice for yourself, do you think of yourself as an Entrepreneur?

I certainly didn’t.  I initially thought of myself as self employed and over the past 7 or so years I have thought of myself as a business owner, but an Entrepreneur, hmmm I didn’t think that fit me.

Isn’t an Entrepreneurs someone who is on Shark Tank, aren’t they people who make a gazillion dollars and have investors? Don’t they take massive risks with other people’s money, time and lives?

Health professionals by training and practice, and because of the incredible importance of the work we do with people, are by nature risk averse and process oriented.  We have many checks, balances and compliances to ensure we maintain standards of patient care.

 

A guest post by Jo Muirhead Have you noticed that there is a lot of talk about being an Entrepreneur when you are the owner of a private practice? If you are a clinician in private practice for yourself, do you think of yourself as an Entrepreneur? I certainly didn’t. I initially thought of myself as self employed and over the past 7 or so years I have thought of myself as a business owner, but an Entrepreneur, hmmm I didn’t think that fit me. Isn’t an Entrepreneurs someone who is on Shark Tank, aren’t they people who make a gazillion dollars and have investors? Don’t they take massive risks with other people’s money, time and lives?

Entrepreneurs are risk takers.

To be successful in business there must be a level of risk taking which means a level of being ok with failure and making mistakes.

Make mistakes as a clinician and people can be harmed.

Make mistakes as an Entrepreneur and you may end up changing the world for good.

Health professionals and Entrepreneurs appear to be on two different ends of the mindset spectrum.  Being both an Entrepreneur and a clinician at the same time is difficult.  The health professional who is a business owner must bring these two conflicting paradigms together.

We know successful Entrepreneurs and business owners are all risk takers; often throwing caution to the wind and making decisions and taking opportunities quickly.

Successful Entrepreneurs can change in a split second and turn on a dime when new information is presented to them.

Further, successful Entrepreneurs make decisions with maybe 65% of needed information and just work the rest out along the way. This somehow feels incompatible to clinical decision making when we are talking about our client’s. I don’t know about you, but I want a whole lot more certainty than this when making recommendations for my client’s.

What happens when the health professional (the clinician) and the entrepreneur collide?

This appears to be at the core of why some health professionals can become successful Entrepreneurs and business owners and others get so stuck in the process of trying to build a business.  How do we manage the internal conflict between?

  • Risk averse and risk taker?
  • Caution and courage to make change quickly and often?
  • Being conservative and being radical?

This is where I see many health professionals give up and get it wrong – they apply their clinical decision-making model to their business, to Entrepreneurship.

It simply can’t work for long.  It will get them so far, but it’s terribly limited.

They will be limited to selling time for money or training sessions for a fee.  They will be stuck in transactional service delivery.  I don’t want this for you, because you have more in you than that!

How do you learn to be an Entrepreneur? 

To get good at this you need to practice.

You need to hang out with people who think differently, who don’t make clinical decisions all day long.

You need to place yourself in an environment where you can learn to take risks in your business; where problems can be solved as they arise, because problems will come. It’s just what you do to solve them is the difference between success now and success later.

You need to learn to take risks and learn that risk taking is not bad. However, you need to know what you can risk and what you shouldn’t risk. This is where having the right supports around you is imperative.

Myself, and many of my clients are examples of how health professionals can become successful Entrepreneurs and business owners.  Now, I will admit not all my clients have made it.  There have been a couple who have become stuck in the need to be safe – and that’s OK.  Being a business owner or in private practice isn’t for everyone.  But there are a lot more of us who could be successful in business.

It’s time for us to stop thinking old school.

Like the old school clinician. I am NOT saying it’s time to stop practicing clinical decision making, nor am I saying it’s time to stop being professional or ethical. No in fact we need to be all these things, AND more.

We need to understand that Entrepreneurial thinking in western workplaces is a new literacy.

Just like reading, writing, clinical knowledge and the use of digital technologies, Entrepreneurial thinking is now an expected mindset for employees as well as business owners.

Entrepreneurial thinking is not just for those internet business owners’ who dream of a laptop lifestyle.

I’ve been working through the concepts of being a clinician and an Entrepreneur as I write my Book, The Entrepreneurial Clinician (working title?).

Here are 5 of the 10 mindset shifts I think we can make to help us be more Entrepreneurial while maintaining our clinical integrity.

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When we engage in entrepreneurial thinking we will notice some incredible results:

  1. We will become confident in differentiating ourselves in the market, allowing the client’s we are best suited to work with to find us and engage with us.
  2. We will feel happy and fulfilled in our work because we are doing work we love, the way we love to do it, while helping the people we are best positioned to serve.
  3. We will start to experience the FREEDOM and flexibility that we have dreamed of for so long.

If we are going to be different and make a difference in the lives of our client’s and their communities, we all need to start thinking differently. We can’t solve the problems we are facing, with old thinking.  What is exciting is that all of us know how to think and think critically. That was one of the most powerful gifts we received through graduation.

It’s time for the change, and you can do it, one mindset shift at a time.

Go back over that list of five I’ve included in this blog post, choose one, and have a go at practicing it for the next month. Just 1, for a month. You won’t always get it “right” and you won’t always get it wrong, that’s way we call it practice.

If you’re keen to be one of the first people to know when my book is completed and available, head on over the JoMuirhead.com and sign up for the guide “ How to Find Freedom in your private practice”. Once I have your email I will be able to let you know how you can be one of the first people to get your hands on this book when its done.

As always, here’s to your success!

Jo

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Who is Jo Muirhead?

Jo is a Consultant, speaker and business mentor for the health and wellness industry. As the owner and principal rehabilitation consultant at Purple Co (www.PurpleCo.com.auhttp://www.purpleco.com.au/), Jo understands the challenges and obstacles faced by health and wellness business owners first hand. She applies the learnings and successes she has had in her own business to that of her clients, showing them that they can effectively market their business, increase their revenue, and enjoy the work they do. For more information visit www.jomuirhead.com.

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