Skeptical About the Benefits of a Facebook Page for Your Therapy Practice?

FB

In a recent article, “Which Social Media Platforms Should You Use for Your Therapy or Holistic Practice?”, I recommended that if you don’t already have a Facebook Business Page, you might want to start one.

Even though Facebook has been getting an increasing amount of flack for showing fewer and fewer posts in the newsfeed (Facebook’s algorithm controls which followers/fans see your posts based on whether they “Like”, “Comment”, or “Share” your posts.), there is still a lot of potential to use Facebook to help increase exposure for your practice –*if* you use it effectively.

Furthermore, with increasing online competition amongst therapists and other health practitioners in most cities, unless you want to focus exclusively on community (offline) marketing, there is a need to expand your online marketing beyond simply having a website and listing on counseling or healing directories. Having a Facebook business page can be one more way to acquire more exposure for your counseling or healing practice online.

This article gives 5 reasons why you might want to have a Facebook business page for your therapy or holistic private practice.

1.  Facebook has the largest number of users of any other social media channel.

Because of its popularity, there is a good chance that you already have a Facebook profile that you are using. If so, starting a Facebook Page will help save time that you might otherwise spend on learning the basics of a new social media platform. This is not to say that you might not want to use other social networks, just that Facebook might be the place where you want to start.

Moreover, because of the high number of active users on Facebook (1.28 billion as of March 2014), there is a good chance that many in your therapy or holistic target audience are on Facebook. Because people use Facebook to keep in touch with friends and family, to keep up with what’s happening in the world, and for entertainment purposes, it is likely that your audience is there. With some of the other social media networks, you may have to do a bit more research to discover if your audience is using them.

Here are some other amazing Facebook statistics: as reported by Grosocial:

  • Facebook users spend an average of 20 minutes on Facebook per visit, and 8.3 hours per month
  • Facebook users check their accounts 5 or more times per day
  • The average Facebook user posts 36 times per month
  • 47% of Americans say that Facebook has a greater impact on their purchasing behavior than any other social network.
  • 93% of small businesses say that Facebook is an effective marketing tool.

2. Gain exposure to new potential clients, increasing the size of your network.

It takes a large network of people to build a practice and to keep it full. The more people that know about your therapy or healing practice, the more clients that will come your way.

Facebook allows you to expand your network by gaining followers/fans. In addition, as you acquire new followers on Facebook, you can also direct them to your website to sign up for your email/newsletter list — or you can create a sign-up form to your email list right in Facebook (if you don’t have an email list, I’m hoping this illustrates one of the reasons why you should).

You can also you increase the size of your Facebook audience by asking your email subscribers to “Like” your Facebook page.

Integrating email marketing and your Facebook page can be a very effective strategy for growing the size of your network.

3. Facebook helps to build relationships with your existing target audience.

Research shows it takes several contacts with prospective clients before they buy something from you. Some research states it takes on average 5-7 contacts, but in many cases it can take as much as 20-30, or even more.

Facebook helps you to build rapport with your current followers by posting helpful content on your page on a regular basis. This helps you stay top of mind so that if, and when, your followers need healing or counseling services, they will think of you.

Likewise, you can also strengthen your relationship with your current email subscribers by asking them to follow you on Facebook so that you have even more contact with your email subscribers.

4. Facebook can help boost your search engine rankings. When you post on Facebook, you’ll need to get people to engage with your posts (“like”, “comment” on, and “share” them) to help ensure your followers see your future posts.

Getting more engagement on Facebook can also help improve your search engine rankings. Increasing your organic rankings in Google is something most people want, and yet, it’s challenging to do considering there are over 200 factors involved. Getting “likes” “comments” and “shares” on your Facebook posts is just one way to work at getting your website ranking higher in the search engines.

So, how is your skepticism about having a Facebook page after reading this post?

Facebook isn’t for everyone, and it certainly isn’t an easy marketing strategy for therapists and healers. But, it can be effective. If you are looking for more ways to increase your audience, which in the long term leads to more clients, Facebook can be one ways that you do this.

However, simply creating a Facebook Page and posting there once in a while is not going to make much difference. To use Facebook effectively, you’ll have to have a strategy for posting, post useful content and ideally have your own blog content to share so that you drive traffic to your website, post regularly, work consistently at increasing your Facebook Page likes, and have a plan for getting people to “like”, “comment” on and “share”, your posts.

By the looks of things, Facebook (and social media in general) is not going away anytime soon, so it may be something for you to consider using. If you already have a page, but it’s not performing for you as well as you like, maybe it’s time you got more serious about using it.

I’ll be sharing more information in the coming months on how to use Facebook to grow your holistic or counseling practice, so stay tuned…

Have you Liked my Facebook Page yet?

If not, go ahead and click the button below:

FBLike

If you want to read more articles on marketing, sign up for my newsletter. You'll also receive these 2 free resources:

  1. A 22 Page Report: 67 Surefire Ways to Attract Clients
  2. A Video Review of a Client-Attracting Website
ecover

video

Like it.

Tweet it.

Share it.

+1 it

Pin it

facebook
0

  • emmjayess

    How do mental health professionals protect patient confidentiality with a Facebook business page? I have one but, if a client or prospective client posted, not considering their privacy, I would delete the post. So, I don’t understand how we can encourage people to visit, “like” our stuff, and interact with Facebook.

  • http://www.julietaustin.com Juliet Austin

    Good question. There are different perspectives on this. First, check with your professional association or licensing board to see if they have developed social media guidelines.

    Second, you should have a social media policy for clients stating whether they can be a follower/fan of your page, and any other social media guidelines. (I recommend that you not allow clients to become your Facebook “friend”, which is different than following your Facebook page). Some therapists have a policy that says that clients should not become a follower/fan of their Facebook Page as well. Other therapists, are more lenient and allow clients to “like” their page, but state that the client should not be disclosing any personal/confidential information on that page or disclosing that they are a client, etc. I personally think that if you are clear on the boundaries and have a social media policy that it is impossible to have clients “Like”/become a follower of your page. You, or your governing body may, or may not, agree. :)

    Here is a resource to help you in thinking about a social media policy:

    http://onlinetherapyinstitute.com/ethical-framework-for-the-use-of-social-media-by-mental-health-professionals/

  • Suwawute

    How do you think about using Facebook’s chat for online counseling?

  • http://www.julietaustin.com Juliet Austin

    I don’t think Facebook’s chat service is encrypted to help protect privacy.There may be way to make it more secure with added technology. A lot of people use Skype–Skype says they are encrypted which should provide more security (not sure if it does). This isn’t really my area of expertise. The people at the http://onlinetherapyinstitute.com/ would know the best chat services to help ensure security.