3 Strategies to Boost Your Private Practice Brand
By Adam Benton, Ph.D.
Branding is not just a term for marketers or large companies. If you’re a psychologist, especially one working independently, you should be thinking about how to brand your psychology practice. A brand is like a niche, a reputation, or a characteristic for which you are known. It’s the image that comes to mind or is associated with your practice. Brands are constantly in flux. They are influenced by many factors whether intentionally, or accidentally. If you are building a strong practice, taking control of branding means creating the professional image you want consumers to see. Here are three strategies that will help you brand your psychology practice, intentionally.
1. Become the expert. This may sound intimidating, but don’t let it be. Local experts are needed in all communities. You see them everywhere. In every field, someone holds the reputation as a local leader in their niche. Make this be you by presenting at local conferences, providing training for other health care professionals, writing blog articles and in other ways getting the word out that you know your stuff. You know you have a great skill-set, but unless you have a voice, few others will know it. So get out there and be heard. Being seen as an expert will boost your private practice brand.
2. Get involved. Community involvement can range from your local Rotary to your state psychological association, or national organizations like the American Psychological Association or the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Attend walks, sport logos, get involved in leadership, list serves and online forums. Remember, every interaction you have in this informal yet, professional context contributes to your brand. Get involved in a good purpose, get to know people and share about your practice. Then rest assured, not only will you be giving back to the community and your profession, you’ll also boost your private practice brand.
3. Go digital. For some, this may be challenging although if you have an artistic or tech bent, you may find it exhilarating. Going digital does not require you to be a tech superstar, but it does require a willingness to learn a few things. So what are we talking about here? For starters, everyone in private practice needs three digital products, a website, a logo, and a personalized email account. There are companies that do this for a reasonable rate and without them a practice can look antiquated or obsolete. These products are a must have and are not hard to obtain. They broadcast your brand to everyone who sees them, which if managed skillfully, could be thousands of people. Companies like Godaddy, Square, and Google for Work can help you develop these products on almost any budget, so you can venture into the digital world with style and intentionally brand your practice.
With these tools, you can begin creating the brand, or image you want for your practice. A strong brand will help drive your referrals, your reputation and eventually your income. Establishing your brand intentionally, is a crucial step in creating your ideal, dream practice. Happy Branding!