Marketing a private practice

Why Most Practice-Building Efforts Fail…

Most of the things you try won’t work.”

This little “success” nugget comes from one of my favorite speakers, Brian Tracy. He’s usually a very inspirational and goal-oriented guy, so this advice took me by surprise. In fact, my first reaction was, “Hmm, Brian’s losing it a bit.”

But as he went on to explain, it made perfect sense…

Most of the things you try WON’T work. That’s okay. It doesn’t mean you’re making a mistake.

Getting things wrong is part of the process of practice-building for psychotherapists. It’s how you learn to get it right. It’s not limited to practice-building either, it’s how we succeed in life.

20151121_094626When my son first started building with Lego’s, he would inevitably end up frustrated and angry. He couldn’t get the pieces to fit together, he couldn’t get the pieces apart, he couldn’t understand the directions. We’ve had more than one Lego creation thrown across the room in frustration.

But now, 4 years later, he can design and build anything he can imagine. (This is a picture of him with a Ninjago dojo that he created to fight off the evil Lord Garmadon.)

What I’ve found is that many therapists don’t understand that this same process applies to marketing a private practice: NO ONE gets it right the first time. You may have to try something 10 or 20 times before you finally figure it out.

Some psychotherapists tell me they aren’t even sure WHAT practice-building activities they should be doing. If you’re one of them, have no fear. My FREE practice-building checklist details all the elements you need for a thriving 6-figure practice. You can get your free copy here:


Psychotherapists who are struggling to market their practices often get very frustrated when they don’t see results. I will often hear this: “I’ve tried EVERYTHING to get clients, and NOTHING works for me.” Maybe you’ve even had that thought yourself. (Believe me, I spent a LOT of time consumed with that thought when I was still struggling to build my own practice.)

Whenever I hear that, I always ask: “How many times have you tried each of those things?”

The answer is usually once, maybe twice. This creates a pattern of trying something new, not getting the results you want, trying something else new, not getting the results, and it just keeps repeating. My best advice to you is to try one thing AT LEAST 17 times before you can really decide whether it’s going to work or not. So choose one private practice marketing strategy and stick with it for a while. By the 17th time, you WILL have figured out how to make it work.

Why 17 times? In the Brian Tracy speech I referred to earlier, he said on average, self-made millionaires fail in 16 businesses before they find the one that becomes wildly successful. That’s 16 failed businesses (and these are millionaires we’re talking about).

Were these really failures? I don’t think so. The business might have failed, but the entrepreneur kept learning, growing, and figuring it out. You can certainly take a lesson from these millionaires’ playbook and apply it to your own practice-building strategy. Each time you get something wrong, you’ll be that much closer to getting it right the next time.

So rather than trying everything and getting frustrated, commit yourself to trying one thing until you are successful with it. Then, once you have that working, commit yourself to one more thing until that becomes profitable as well.

What exactly should you commit yourself to working on until you become successful? Click here to a get a FREE copy of my Practice-Building Checklist which will show you all the elements you need to create a 6-figure private practice: DOWNLOAD THE “6-FIGURE PRIVATE PRACTICE CHECKLIST” NOW