Podcast #9: How to Eliminate “Price Shoppers” in Private Practice

A few months ago, I asked you, “What’s your biggest frustration with online marketing for your private practice?”

I must admit, the #1 answer surprised me. I explain what I found and why it surprised me in this podcast episode.

In this podcast, I  also invited you to attend a free training I have coming up, which you can register for here:

download a copy of my 4-step online marketing process here

See, I thought the biggest frustration psychotherapists have with online marketing would be “not getting enough clients calling”. But, nope, I was WRONG. The most common answer was “not getting calls from ideal clients”. Turns out that many of you ARE getting new clients to call you online, but they’re the wrong clients.

You know the type, right? You probably get them calling you as well. I call these clients “price shoppers”. They’re the ones that are calling through a list of psychotherapists, just looking to see who’s the least expensive. They aren’t calling you because of your expertise or your specialty. They’re calling you because they’re hoping you’ll be $5 less than the person they just spoke with.

Here’s the deal, this is a positioning problem. If you’re getting the wrong clients calling you, it has to do with they way you are positioning yourself online.

But you can breathe a sigh of relief, because this is an easy fix. Just a few simple tweaks to the way you position yourself online and the way you handle new client inquiries can make a world of difference.

First, you need to re-position your private practice away from any notion of “affordable”. This is a magnet for low-end clients, and even worse, it repels high-end clients. High-end clients don’t want affordability, they want expertise, quality, and value. Does your online marketing convey that message about your private practice? I recommend you read through your website and your directory listings and make sure you aren’t inadvertently inviting the wrong clients to call you.

Another key for attracting more of your ideal clients is to remove any mention of pricing and fees. Here’s why: when someone first finds you online, they have no idea how good you are and what you have to offer them. Therefore, they MUST make a decision on price, they have no other criteria by which to decide. When you list your price online, it can only hurt you, unless you are the cheapest around. (Which isn’t a great place to be. But if you ARE the cheapest around, then you want the price shoppers, don’t you?)

The second tweak to eliminate price shoppers comes when you answer the phone. Expect that your clients will want to talk about your fees right up front. Remember, that’s the only criteria they have for making the decision. It’s up to you to steer the conversation AWAY from price, and start to develop a relationship with the client.

As you start to develop the relationship, you begin to build value with the client. And that’s what they really want. They want someone who really gets them that they can trust. The absolute best way to do this is with a client consultation. In just a few minutes, the client starts to know, like, and trust you, and then pricing becomes much less important.

Of course, pricing will always be the most important factor for some clients. That’s okay. They just aren’t your ideal clients. You need to invest your time positioning yourself properly so you can resonate with your ideal clients, those that select a therapist based on quality and expertise, rather than lowest price.

You’ll find that just these two simple tweaks will make a world of difference in the quality of psychotherapy clients you attract online.

If you’d like to learn my complete 4-step process for attracting more clients online, join me for my FREE upcoming training class where I’ll teach you the whole process.

download a copy of my 4-step online marketing process here