Yes I know that’s an odd question, but we often miss the obvious when it’s an absence.
So many people say ‘I can’t afford to advertise’, but seem content, week to week, with empty spaces in their diary. What’s the actual cost of that? Feeling a bit uncomfortable with that question? If so that’s a feeling that should highlight how important this question is.
Think about it. People who do work get paid. Plumbers, IT professionals, Estate Agents, Builders, Insurance Salespeople, etc. It's OK to work and earn a living. It's even more valuable when the work you do makes such a great difference in people's lives.
But, we have to recognise that if we’re expecting to earn a living, money is involved. You didn’t get your skills for free, you invested in them. At that point you were a long way from seeing a return on that investment in yourself.
Now that return should be available. However, we often have difficulty seeing the big picture about earning a living.
Let’s take three real world examples: a Psychotherapist, a Physical Therapist, and a Business Coach.
The Psychotherapist has 3 a week giving 210 in income and leaving 17 slots empty.
The Physical therapist has 8 a week giving 400 in income and leaving 22 slots empty.
The Business Coach has 5 a week giving 750 in income and leaving 20 slots empty.
Most people struggling will look at those numbers and think the empty slots are unfillable, but that’s not the case. When we don’t know how, it can seem daunting, but here’s where these numbers can help us.
The Psychotherapist has 17 slots empty. That’s 17 hours a week available to work at getting the message out. That’s a lot of powerful opportunity to see more clients the next week. And the value of the time they can fill is 1,190 per week!
How much time and effort is it worth putting in to build towards an extra 1,190 per week?
The Physical therapist has 22 slots empty available. These are half hour long slots so she has 11 hours a week free to get the word out, and 1,100 in sessions every week that she can take on board, all she has to do is reach the clients who need her help.
The Business Coach has 20 slots empty. That’s 20 hours a week available to look for how best to fill them, and an extra earning potential of 3,000 every single week!
The potential income based on a 46 week working year (which is already ticking by), is:
Psychotherapist: 1,190 by 46 weeks = 54,740
Physical Therapist: 1,100 by 46 weeks = 50,600
Business Coach: 3,000 by 46 weeks = 138,000
Even filling half those slots would yield:
Psychotherapist: 1,190 by 46 weeks = 27,370
Physical Therapist: 1,100 by 46 weeks = 25,300
Business Coach: 3,000 by 46 weeks = 69,000
When we look at the potential, it’s much easier to build motivation and focus on the things that can help most. Now, does it seem more worthwhile advertising?
I really don’t know where we get the idea that our businesses should be able to run for free. Each year I meet loads of people who complain that they have to spend money on newspaper advertising, Facebook ads, online listings, etc.
The reality is that if you’re looking to earn money, you’re in business and that realisation can let you be successful and help a lot more people.
The really good news is that it gets easier as you go. When you invest in putting the word out, you will get clients. That begins spreading word of mouth when they are happy with your service. You also develop more experience, which gives more confidence. It’s a win for the person who finds help, and a win for us as therapists who both earn an income and grow our abilities.
Sure, it is scary at the start. We usually have less money starting out and the cost can be felt keenly. But until we see clients, we’re not using our skills, not helping people, and not earning an income.
However, we have to recognise that we can only help people when they know we exist, can understand that we can help, and can find us.
That means putting ourselves out there into the world. That is going to take some money, but it can easily be just a small amount.
Starting and getting income coming in, makes it much easier to grow and continue. Consistency is key. A small amount of advertising on a regular basis is more successful than a lot all at once.
My advice is: be professional with your time. Use the time that’s empty of clients, to find the people who need your help.
Pick a budget and keep going using that budget to grow the number of people you help. This method also grows your income making it easier to afford to keep getting the word out.
There are many booked-out therapists and coaches out there. It is possible.
You have to build that success. It doesn’t happen by magic.
One way to consider your budget, that I recommend a lot, is to set your weekly advertising at the cost of one client session.
So a therapist who charges 50 a session would only risk one client session in getting the word out each week. After a few weeks, as that advertising builds awareness and action, you should see more clients and it should be paying for itself.
Consider how much you spent on training. How much have you spent getting that training to the people who need your expertise and skills?
I’ve spoken to counsellors who spent 20,000 on their degree, NLP practitioners who spent 6,000 on their diploma, and Reiki practitioners who spent 1,200 on their qualifications.
What percentage is balanced against that, in getting it out to the world?
I’ve seen Hypnotherapists spend 1,500 on a chair but not spend anything on advertising and not understanding why they were poor and not helping people.
I’ve seen a Business Coach pointing out they had no money for advertising and then spend thousands on a Tony Robbins retreat. (I’m sure it was great, but there must have been money available to do it).
In short, I’m hoping you will take a look (perhaps an uncomfortable one I’ll grant) at how you look at your business.
Please choose to help, be professional with your time, and do what works to make your dream of helping people and making a difference, a reality. When you do, you also get to earn a real income.
Every best wish for success,
Let us know if you want to stay up to date:
John Prendergast is an award-winning Success Coach and and Psycho-Trauma Anxiety Therapist.
He is also the Founder of Therapy and Coaching Success that specialises in helping Therapists, Coaches and other Wellness Practitioners, connect with those in need, build their diaries and earn the income they need.
Why you need Therapy and Coaching Success Training
If you are:
Make the Improvement, Impact and Income, you were trained to make!
Monthly Training Program
Great monthly training at a Tiny price!
In this program you get €1,200 worth of training for just €19.50 a month in the first year alone.
Sign up below and get your first month’s training: a 3-part course on how to craft your bio. Mine brings me €10,000+ a year!
Some Subjects Tackled in the Training:
Here’s a list of the subjects tackled in the first 6 months:
- Getting your Bio right and working for you
- Business cards: how to get results
- Getting and using Testimonials
- Newspaper advertising made easy
- Getting your price right
- Optimising flyers and leaflets
For more information click HERE