Now if you create a niche and focus on specific keywords (lets use eating disorder for example), your site becomes very relevant. You can then add a blog section where you write small articles (posts) about eating disorders. You can link to important articles and research that comes out. You can add professionals in your area that also work with eating disorders to help build a community. You can do a workshop or speaking engagement on eating disorders. You can meet professionals who also work with eating disorders and who will refer to you because they have come to trust your expertise. When a potential client searches with eating disorders as a keyword, your website will be very relevant and has the potential to be found.
I had a new client say something like this to me recently: “It was so hard to pick a therapist. I googled therapists in nyc and thousands of people came up. Most of them say they work with all kinds of problems. How does a therapist specialize in 10 things? I chose you because you clearly say you work with couples and relationships and anger and that’s what we need”.
There are a few therapists I know who have developed full practices by creating solid professional relationships with others and most of their referrals are word of mouth. They don’t need to focus on niche marketing because their marketing style is relationship building. Its for therapists who seek to get referrals from online… something has to make you stand out from the pack.
I made my first website in 2001 and focused on anger management because at the time no one in NYC was advertising for it. My phone started ringing and it was this niche that provided the excess of clients for me to start hiring people and build Midtown Marriage and Family Therapy.
Remember that there are no absolutes. Meaning… if you focus on a niche 100% of your clients won’t fall into that category. It is just a way for people to find you from the masses and you can still focus on other ways to present yourself and market if you want to treat clients struggling with other issues as well. Its not a black and white issue even though fear tells most therapists it is. Its simply a marketing tool.