Q: How do I get more clients into my private practice when it is located in a small town and serving rural areas?
Donna W. Wimberly, MSW, LCSW
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
A: Hi Donna — Great question, as I also live in a rural area as well. I’ve taken a quick look at your web site, and here’s are a few online strategies that might help you get more local clients from your web site:
1. Too many calls to action. You’re asking people to subscribe to your newsletter, schedule an appointment with you, follow you on Twitter, and check out your Facebook page. Pick one and stick to it. Use sidebars to insert other calls to action. Your primary call to action should be on your home page, as well as in the upper left-hand corner of your site.
2. Add a video. Visitors will want to get a sense of who you are, since they will be telling you their deepest, darkest secrets. 🙂 Adding an introductory video where you tell visitors about yourself and how you work will quicken the like, know and trust process.
3. Geographic SEO. I notice that none of your pages are optimized for local searches. Use your town name and other geographic names to optimize your site for the kinds of things for which your clients might be searching. You’ve got a great listing of services on your site — you need to optimize your site better for those, i.e.
Eunice LA therapy
Eunice LA stress management
St. Landry Parish counseling
St. Landry Parish marriage counseling
It may be hard to believe that anyone goes online to search for help in a small town, but you’d be surprised to discover that it’s happening more than you think!
4. Google Places page. I see that you have claimed your Google Places page. I would encourage you to go in and add your free consultation offer, some photos, and some additional information about how to work with you.
5. Additional citations. Another thing that will make your site show up higher in local searches is through the process of local citations, or having your site listed on other credible sites in your industry (without requiring a link back to your site). Two examples of this are https://www.theravive.com and https://local.mental-health-matters.com
6. Blogging. One way that visitors “size you up” is by looking at the content on your site. I noticed that you haven’t entered a blog post since May. Get in the habit of blogging regularly
7. Referrals. Word-of-mouth marketing is very popular in small towns, so connect with other professionals who can provide referrals for you, including teachers, day care operators, police officers, physicians, other mental health professionals, family law attorneys, life coaches, etc. Check to see if any of these professionals has a Linkedin profile or Facebook page and begin to connect with them online. Offer to do free workshops for their clientele or offer content to them for their publications.
8. Offer virtual learning. Introduce your clients and referral partners to virtual learning by inviting them to a workshop that you do via teleclass or a webinar. Once they discover how easy it is to host an event, they will become more open to you providing virtual workshops to their client base, as well.
If you would like more information on how to better optimize your site for local searaches, I encourage you to schedule a FastTrack2Clients session with me. You can do so here
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Best-selling author Donna Gunter works with successful business owners who are experts in their fields and established in their industry and are seeking a way to stand out from their competitors. Using her Ideal Clients on Autopilot System©, she helps them determine the exact strategies to generate more qualified leads and better-paying clients with automated systems. This proven system makes all their marketing easier and more effective and they find themselves positioned as the only choice for their clients.
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