The winter holidays are a unique season when people’s lives and schedules tend to get far busier – and more stressful – than the rest of the year. While there is ideally much happiness and excitement to be had as well, all that extra activity in November and December can create holiday-specific struggles and needs for your potential clients.
By tailoring your therapist marketing content and methods to reflect these unique and timely needs, you can really take advantage of the holiday season to capture even more of your ideal clients.
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Before we talk about marketing methods, let’s look at some of the more common concerns that your potential clients may have around the holidays. These are topics that would be great to address in your holiday marketing campaigns, or in some timely website content (such as blog posts or videos).
Classic Winter Holiday Season Concerns
There are many materials trappings of the holidays that it can feel we’re expected to purchase, like gifts for others or decorations for our home. It can be very stressful when you feel you can’t afford these “mandatory” luxuries.
In addition, the end of the year is a time when people look forward to their plans for the next year. They may even take the time to review their yearly subscriptions for everything from health insurance to a gym membership, which brings to mind their financial situation.
All of these financial exacerbations – and many more – can create greatly increase levels of stress during the winter holidays.
Sometimes it seems like having conflicts or issues with your family members is practically akin to being human. During the holidays, people all over the country travel to visit their family during this special time – and as a result, deep-seated family issues can be forced to the surface and conflicts result.
Not to mention, many people suffer distress because they don’t have the ability or choice to visit their family members over the holidays for some reason or another. Maybe they don’t have the means to travel, or maybe they don’t have living family to visit.
Whatever the reason, the winter holiday season is prime time for any family issues to come to the surface, and you can offer sufferers in your local area the help they may need.
Travel can cause your potential client stress from many different angles, from the money and time involved, to having to be in such close quarters with strangers, to being back in a familiar place for the holidays and having to face unwanted memories while they’re there.
Traveling by plane is also a common phobia and can greatly impact a sufferer’s whole holiday season if flying is their only travel option.
Of course, these are just a few of the more common genres of issues people might struggle with around the holidays. There are many other relevant reasons that potential clients might seek your help, such as difficulties avoiding temptation and staying on the wagon.
Now that we have an idea of some common issues for your potential clients, how do you turn those into powerful holiday marketing messages for you and your practice?
There isn’t one simple answer, since the solution to everyone’s problem isn’t always to offer the perfect fix right at the start. Sometimes people just want to feel like someone understands what they’re going through. As a therapist, only you can know what will best help and appeal to your ideal clients in a therapeutic sense.
The only real key is to make sure to offer something valuable to your potential clients, whether that’s a patient ear or a free blog post of advice on dealing with estranged parents.
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Let’s look at some great ways to get out your therapeutic message through some holiday marketing.
Holiday Marketing Ideas for Your Practice
Offer Free Holiday “Pocket Therapy”
As you may know, one of the best possible ways to market yourself and your services nowadays is to find a way to give people a free sample. Lucky for you, this is much easier for a therapist to do than, say, a hot dog company.
Creating and offering original blog posts, “holiday survival guide” pamphlet PDFs, 1-minute motivational videos, or any other type of dime-sized advice centered on holiday-specific concerns can be a wonderful way to draw in new clients. It lets people acclimate to your therapeutic style while building your own reputation as an expert and specialist in your field.
For example, you could create a holiday pocket guide for plane travel, written specifically for people with a fear of flying. Or you could create a short blog post series where, once a day, you post a piece of actionable advice on positively interacting with difficult family members.
Just make sure that the advice and content you’re offering is genuinely valuable and doesn’t try and push your services or products too overtly.
Simply by letting your potential clients know that you’re a therapist who’s happy to help, and then demonstrating how good you are at it through your free “pocket therapy” content, you’ll start snagging clients before you know it.
Advertise Unique Services
This is a particularly potent marketing tip for therapists who offer teletherapy services, but it’ll prove effective for any practice around the holidays.
With so many people traveling to see family, it can frequently be the case that there are many people in your local area during the end of the year who won’t be there in January. That’s a big boost in local potential clients!
It’ll be more important and valuable than ever to stand out from the crowd, and one great way to do that is by offering unique therapeutic services around the holidays. (Here’s a hot tip: your services don’t necessarily have to be “out there” and wacky to be considered unique – sometimes it’s just about branding!)
For example, maybe you decide to give a special rate on therapy sessions for new clients and advertise them by inviting your clients to get their “Mental Health Booster Shot!” Or perhaps you are in the position to create a group session geared specifically towards people struggling with loss or grief during the holiday seasons.
As long as the creativity translates to actual value for them, your potential clients will appreciate and reward your unique offerings.
Rev Up Your Social Media
One of the cheapest and easiest ways to do your holiday marketing is through posting on your practice’s social media accounts and advertising on social media. To make the most of people’s increased time to browse social media during their holiday vacation, increase the frequency with which you post during the latter half of December.
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Social media is also a great place for you to get a little more personal with your marketing messages or content. Take advantage of the direct line it gives you to your potential clients during this time of the year by using more conversational wording than you would in other marketing methods to connect emotionally with your audience.
For example, on Facebook you could ask your audience to comment with what stresses them out the most during the holidays, and then encourage them to “Like” the ones with which they agreed. A passive community interaction like this doesn’t obligate you to provide any direct therapy, but you still get the credit for providing a tiny therapeutic space in the comment section.
Another example of holiday-specific social media marketing you could use for your practice is by posting motivating or even commiserating images and memes about holiday struggles (like the ones we talked about at the beginning of the article).
Since social media makes your potential clients feel like they can get up close and personal with you, they want to get the feeling from your social media that 1) you’re a human and 2) you care & understand.
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