How to Get Referrals (Part 4: Psychology Today)

During the first 4 years of being in private practice, I think I had 4-5 clients who originally contacted me via Psychology Today (PT). That averages out to about 1 client per year. At a monthly membership fee of around $30, I still came out on top financially. But I did debate whether I should just cancel membership

altogether at many times. I thought, how in the world do people get referrals through Psychology Today? All that changed in mid 2018. 


Starting mid 2018, I felt confident enough in my sex addiction training to market myself as a sex addiction specialist. The copy that I wrote in my PT profile was laser focused on sex addiction. I knew I had a word limit in the fields so I maxed out the sex addiction language. In addition, I advertised sex addiction groups, and betrayed partner groups, in PT. Guess how many people contacted me once I made the focus switch in PT? 17! This is 17 in less than 1 year! Not all of these 17 became my clients due to reasons such as insurance, cost, availability, etc. But still, this is a dramatic difference in initial contact.

People Seek Specialists

Sex addiction has been around for a long time, so I don’t attribute this increase in contact with some sudden rise in sex addiction. My theory is that those with specific problems want to see a specialist. I was tempted to check all the boxes in the specialty section. But then I realized that if I specialize in everything, then I specialize in nothing. So far, my ultra-narrowed focus has tripled or quadrupled the amount of calls/emails I get through PT. I no longer debate whether to keep my membership!

Let’s Dialogue

I’m very curious about your experience. I don’t want to assume that my experience is the same for everyone. When have you found an increase in your contacts through PT? What is your theory about why it increased? How do you feel about specializing

Office Update

I most likely have to pay double rent (Fullerton and Diamond Bar) for 2 months in order to secure this new office space in Diamond Bar, but it’s a decision I had to make. On the brighter side, it’s always exciting thinking of how to design an office space! Though it’s a small space, it feels airy because of the high ceilings and huge windows. I want to keep it feeling airy by not putting in too much furniture. So I’m selling much of my current office furniture and streamlining. I also cut costs by bringing in some armchairs from home!

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