Hi, this is Dave Kats for Therapist consultants and I have a tip for you.
Most therapists eventually find a niche. When you're first in practice you're eager to get every new patient that walks. If there's a new patient that comes in, you want to take them as long as you feel like you can do a good job with whatever their situation may be. As you get more involved in your practice, we find that the practices that really grow and the therapists that have the most fun are those practices and those therapists who have a niche, who have found a niche.
Now, I don't care what your niche is. I talked to one person recently whose niche was PTSD with Vietnam era veterans. That's a fairly small niche but she was in a base where she could take advantage of that as a good niche to have. Maybe your niche is adoption, maybe your niche is marriage counseling, maybe your niche is affairs. I don't care what your niche is, but you'll find that you have more fun and attract more patients if you concentrate on your niche.
Now, your practice won't be 100% your niche in most cases. It may be only 30 or 40%, maybe 60% of your practice will be that niche, but at least it'll give you fun in practice. Now, how do you decide what the niche is in your area? Well, the first thing you have to look at is at the need. If you're in a geriatric area, then the need might be for geriatric care. If you're a place where there's an Air Force base, an army base, it may be more service person oriented. You've got to look at where the need is at. The second thing you have to look at is what you're interested in. It's always more interesting to work in something that you're interested in.
If you are really interested in children, if you're really interested in people that are struggling or children that are struggling to fit in, then your niche may be struggling children. The next thing you have to look for is any talent, particular talent, that you have. If you had some past talent that made you a specialist in one area, you may want to create a niche in that area. Then of course you have to look for your history and your experience, what you've done in the past, so that you know what you're good at and what things you don't want to form as a niche.
Anyway, you have to decide. A lot of times people start out generally but they don't really grow rapidly until they find a niche and start working in that niche. Then advertise that niche. On Psychology Today, make sure it's in your first three lines. When people see it they come to you because of your niche and that way you'll build your niche practice.
This is Dave Kats, thanks for listening.
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