The fabulous Sarah Lyon is an occupational therapist and founder of the OT Potential Club, an online membership site dedicated to helping all occupational therapists implement evidence-based practice.
Since Sarah and I recorded this episode only 2 short weeks ago, so much has changed. The COVID-19 virus pandemic resulted in the cancellation of the AOTA conference, followed by a “shelter in place” mandate in my area. At this time, we are only allowed to leave our homes for essentials (like groceries or medicine) or to recreate outdoors while practicing social distancing. There is just so much uncertainty, in our families and communities and especially in our businesses. If you are a business owner feeling uncertain and anxious - we are all in this together. Don’t do it alone! Reach out and find community- it is so important during this time!
I believe this episode is the positive boost you need right now. Sarah is such an optimistic person and it’s so interesting how serendipitous it is that this is the episode I had previously scheduled to release in the midst of all this. Sarah has so much optimism for our profession and for the potential of our profession to do such great things in the world. The world needs what we have to offer as occupational therapists. We will survive this and we will emerge stronger than ever!
Sarah and I discuss:
● Sarah shares how OT Potential started and how it looks today.
● Starting her blog and monetizing it.
● The resources that are available in the OT Potential Club.
● Surprises she has found out in her research.
● How OTs will be more valued in the future.
● Sarah shares the critical things she did to replace her clinical income with her website in a span of 5 years.
● Why affiliate marketing is not passive income.
● Why it’s important to use evidence-based practice.
○ Recommended Video: OT Potential Club
● Why being a business owner is not for everyone
● The importance of being members of our state and national (AOTA) professional organizations.
● The biggest failure she has had in her business and her advice about working with contractors.
● Things that are going well in her business and what she recommends for others to have the same success.
Connect with Sarah and all her resources at:
Want to discuss this episode? Join us on the new Mind Your OT Business Group on Facebook for discussion on topics from this episode! Let’s support one another through these unprecedented times.
In this solo episode, I share some BIG announcements + 10 surefire ways to get new clients…and you’ll get 2 more here in the show notes. :)
First for the announcements!
We now have a FREE Facebook group now for Mind Your OT Business listeners to interact and discuss content from episodes! I would love to meet you there and welcome you to this community. JOIN HERE!
The OT Entrepreneur Summit is coming May 11-20! Trish Williams and I have curated a highly-qualified list of speakers who have agreed to take you “behind the scenes” of their success as OT entrepreneurs! Interviews will be sent via email to attendees (so you can watch on your own schedule) and we will have a FB group open till the end of May for us to discuss topics. Interested? Join my email list here to be notified!
Finally, I just opened registration for the 2020 dates for Therapy in the Great Outdoors- A Training Retreat for Pediatric Practitioners. Early bird rates till April 1!
OK- Now for your list of 12 sure-fire ways to get more clients!!! We talked about 10 on the podcast and there are 2 more for you here in the show notes…
Make a list of everyone you know and send a personal email letting them know about your services. Make sure to make it EASY for them to send referrals your way by including relevant content in the email to allow them to simply forward to a friend.
Give a discount or other incentive to get people to sign up for new services by a specific deadline, and advertise this heavily in social media and in paper flyers/postcards locally.
Do a brainstorm about where your ideal clients hang out locally and then leave postcards in all of those locations.
Offer 15-minute inquiry calls or consultation calls to interested clients (then OVER-deliver and spend 30 minutes talking to them). During the call, simply aim to HELP in some way...not necessarily get them to pay you for services...but really it will be people who are a bit interested. This builds “know, like and trust” value with people in your community. Even if the person doesn’t become your client, they have had a good experience with you being helpful...which means they may mention it to others in your community.
Offer free or low-cost one-time sessions for interested people, and then have a specific offer for them if they sign up by a certain date for an assessment or services.
Share relevant and helpful content (NOT just info about your services) on social media. Aim to HELP people...NOT sell your services. Every now and then, have a special offer for people who take advantage of the offer by a specific deadline.
Do research on Facebook and other social media about where your ideal clients hang out online, and offer meaningful and relevant comments in these forums. (Again, aim to be helpful, not sell your services. You are building your expertise in these communities, and by helping, you will get people to know, like & trust you as a provider.)
Face-to-face networking and personal connections are the BEST way to find new clients….this also takes the most time. Put yourself out there! Offer free in-services for people in your target market, or attend networking events that are NOT just for therapists.
Ask your current or past clients to refer their friends, or leave online reviews of your business. Send a very specific email asking them to send new referrals your way. Make sure to make THEM the HERO! Emphasize how they will be helping others by leaving a review, as it will help people find the services they need. Provide links directly in the email so they can easily click and write a quick review.
Build an email list! Most of the people who visit your website are NOT going to purchase services right at that second! You MUST have a way to capture their email to stay in touch with them because they are potential future clients! Make a short list of valuable tips or advice for your clients’ problems and give it away for free to people who sign up for your email list. (Do some research on how to make a great “lead magnet” online. Also make sure to be GDPR compliant with your emails...I’ll let you research that piece online.)
After you have an email list, start a drip email marketing campaign to help potential clients and stay top-of-mind in your clients’ and interested parties’ minds. This is NOT to just bombard your audience with a request to purchase your services; it IS a series of helpful emails you send to your list on a regular basis to give them FREE helpful tips or advice to serve and care for them and their needs. Mine are set up once-a-month and I simply add an email every 30 days. When someone joins the email list, they get the first email, then the 2nd 30 days later, and so on. I have about 6 in the “bank” now that auto-send to new subscribers… this automatically allows my business to provide value to people every month for 6 months after they subscribe. (I’m aiming to get at least 2 years of emails in the bank...adding one a month right now.)
Learn copywriting. Honestly, this is my one best tip for therapy practice owners. Most therapy websites are SO BAD at communicating our value to clients. Learning basic copywriting will COMPLETELY change how you write your marketing materials. My favorite resources online are Neville Medhora’s Kopywriting Kourse and (Sign up for Neville’s emails. They are HILARIOUS and you’ll love reading them every month, all while learning how to write your own advertising / marketing / website content in an engaging way that your clients will resonate with and understand!) Building a Storybrand by Donald Miller is the BEST book resource I have found related to this topic. A must-read for all business owners.
Have you tried any of these? What has worked for you in your business? Come to the Mind Your OT Business FB group to hang out and discuss!
Until next time….Mind Your OT Business! :)
This episode is unlike any of my past episodes because it’s the first time I’ve done an on-air coaching call! Abilgail Wool-Biringer is the owner of Kids Empowered for Life. She had some questions on focusing, growing, and scaling her business. This is a behind-the-scenes glimpse into what business coaching looks like. I love Abigail’s vulnerability to talk publicly about her business and the way she is already thinking like a boss! I hope this episode shows how working with a business coach can not only be a fun conversation, but can help you gain clarity, solve problems, and forge a path forward to grow your business on your own terms!
Abigail and I discuss:
- Abigail’s work and business background.
- Identifying the top 3 issues that Abigail has in her business.
- The good things Abigail is doing on her website: parent Facebook group and email marketing to capture and nurture her potential clients.
- Why no one can help everyone! (Remember: “The riches are in the niches.” Focus on your specializations- start small and grow from there.)
- How to make your website effectively speak to your potential clients: make it clear how you can solve their problems!
- How to take control of inquiry calls from the beginning by using a clear system (This is also discussed in previous MYOTBiz episodes here:)
- Systems and structures to put in place to ensure your business has a strong foundation to scale and grow.
- Abigail’s main takeaways from our coaching session and changes she plans to make.
Connect with Abigail at:
- Kids Empowered 4 Life
- Abigail’s free Facebook group for parents: Facebook Group for ADHD Parent Support
Do YOU need business coaching to help you get un-stuck as an OT entrepreneur? Click here to work with Laura to launch or grow your OT business!
Melissa LaPointe is an occupational therapist who is an expert in online business and entrepreneurial leadership. After running a brick-and-mortar practice as an occupational therapist, Melissa successfully transitioned to full-time online business ownership and is now location independent.
We discuss online business ownership, business systems, online course design, WHY OT SCHOOL SETS US UP TO FAIL AS ENTREPRENEURS (a VERY interesting conversation!), money mindsets, thinking like and BEING CEO, business coaching, selling our services, and minimalism as business owners, and how to attract your ideal clients.
One of my favorite takeaways from this episode is that getting business coaching does NOT mean you’re admitting “weakness” or failure. It actually means the opposite…that you’re thinking like an entrepreneur and wanting to thoughtfully grow your business!
Along these lines: I am offering a FREE Business Coaching Session to one lucky OT-entrepreneur. Interested? Go to the show notes at www.mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/18
Find all of Melissa's fantastic resources at www.melissalapointe.com
In this solo episode, I review my 2019 goals achieved, share my audacious goals for 2020, and share inside-the-books of my business finances for 2018 and 2019.
Holistic entrepreneurship means that we bring our WHOLE selves to our businesses, just like we treat the whole person as OTs. Physical, spiritual, personal, relational, professional, educational goals are ALL relevant to our entrepreneurship. So I’m talking honestly about them all in this episode. :)
Find cool photos and show notes at mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/17
Online business ownership is rapidly expanding opportunities for OTs to share our expertise with the world. Meg Proctor, MS, OTR/L is an occupational therapist and autism specialist who has taken her passions and formed a successful online business: Learn Play Thrive. The Learn Play Thrive Approach to Autism helps occupational therapy practitioners (and others!) understand the unique learning styles of autistic people. (Listen to the podcast to learn why we say “autistic people” and not “people with autism” now! This is new language widely preferred by the autistic community to illustrate that being autistic is NOT a negative thing.)
Besides that, Meg and I discuss:
How she got started and tested her ideas.
The set-up and platform for offering online courses.
Potential ways to structure your online course.
Why freebies may be realistic to offer at first launch of a course.
Why working with a business coach is essential (even at significant cost!).
How she decides how to price her consultative services for therapists
Social media management
Working as a mother of 2 young children
How becoming an expert in a specific niche will give you the ability to meet other practitioners’ needs in your online course.
How you can start small without breaking the bank or wasting a lot of time.
Trish Williams, BA, BHScOT(c) is the super-savvy CEO of Spring OT a multi-disciplinary practice in Calgary in the province of Alberta, Canada. In this value-packed conversation with Trish, we discuss how OTs can lead in business, systems you must have in place to run a profitable business, strategic planning, developing online revenue streams, social media marketing, and ascension models of service delivery for maximizing profit. Listen to the end for a big announcement that you'll want to hear! Find the show notes and resources at www.mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/15
In this episode, I pull back the curtain on how we respond to constructive criticism as business owners, using my own honest reflections on the anonymous feedback I gathered after the Therapy in the Great Outdoors Training Retreat. This was my first in-person training for therapists to learn the nature-based therapy approach I developed in my business. You’ll hear REAL feedback from attendees at the retreat…both the positive AND the negative, cause that’s how I roll on this podcast (and in life and business in general). :) Share your thoughts by visiting the show notes here: Mind Your OT Business episode 14 show notes.
In this action-step filled episode of MYOTBiz, we learn SO MUCH from Rafael E. Salazar II, MHS, OTR/L about his consulting work and his business Rehab U Practice Solutions. Rafael is a true OT, a fount of wisdom about entrepreneurship, and an expert on how to make your business truly serve and KEEP your customers. And best of all: how your business should serve YOU and allow you to create the life you want!
In this episode, Erica Schuppe of Wild Roots Therapy in Billings, Montana shares how she has grown her successful multidisciplinary trauma-informed pediatric practice, even with 80-90% of her practice's caseload consisting of Medicaid clients. We talk about finances, entrepreneurial mindset, business growth, managing a team, and getting un-stuck as entrepreneurs! Check out the show notes at www.mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/12
Kelly is the clinic owner of Occupational Therapy Consulting in Frederick, Maryland & the author of the Ovis the Sheep books for children that teach families about sensory processing in a FUN way! Kelly shares about the process of creating services and products that meet the needs of clients AND practitioners, as well as rock-solid business tips for managing intake calls effectively, structuring your time as a business owner, having an entrepreneur's mindset, and sustainable business growth. She's also got some telehealth services and online courses in the works! Check out the show notes at www.mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/11
This was an unplanned, impromptu solo episode based on a recent conversation I had with my sister in which I had a business epiphany to share with you all. :) I talk about how growing a business sometimes requires sacrifice but it doesn't have to feel like a BAD thing if you keep the right mindset...
In this episode, Bradley Williams, occupational therapist and owner of Naturally Gathered in Adelaide, Australia joins me on the podcast to talk all about nature-based therapy! We talk all about starting a nature-based practice and HE interviews ME with a ton of great questions about logistics, mistakes made, and best practices in nature-based therapy provision for children. Get the show notes at https://ww.mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/9 and check out Brad's business (and his fabulous blog) at https://naturallygathered.com.au
In our first interview episode of Mind Your OT Business, Mandy Chamberlain, MOTR/L shares the ins and outs of how she started the Seniors Flourish podcast and the Learning Lab Membership Site where she shares a wealth of information with occupational therapists who work with older adults. We talk about building a website, marketing, mindset, why entrepreneurs often overwork, and what is most important to keep in mind when starting and running a business. Connect with Mandy and check out the Learning Lab at www.seniorsflourish.com!
In this episode, I spill the beans about a $10,000 spend I made early in my business that I don't think was worth it...and a bunch of other fail-learns I had when starting out. I hope this will help you avoid the same mistakes when starting YOUR business!
Today we talk about designing a LOGO for your business! A logo represents your brand to the public and the process of creating one is super fun...but lots of people don't pay attention to best practices when creating their logo. In this episode, I share lessons learned from working with (expensive!) graphic designers to create my logo and website... to save YOU from having to spend big money, too.
Make sure to listen to episodes 3 and 4 for the first two parts of this series on Time Management Tips for the Entrepreneur. Today we have our final installment in the series with 4 more tips, so let’s jump right in!
Make sure to listen to episode 3 for Time Management Tips #1-3. We’re diving right into #4-6 on our Time Management Tips list this episode! Get the show notes at mindyourotbusiness.com/podcast/4
This week's episode starts a 3-part series on how to manage and MAXIMIZE your TIME as an entrepreneur. Learn tips and tricks to become more efficient in managing all the to-do's as you manage your business.
In this episode of Mind Your OT Business, we discuss 3 ways you can make your business stand out in a crowded and busy market. You'll learn how to establish your unique SERVICE proposition to customers and how to ignite your passion for what your business is uniquely gifted to offer customers.
Welcome to the Mind Your OT Business podcast! In this first episode, I share why I’m starting this podcast FOR and BY occupational therapy entrepreneurs. We talk all about what it means to be empowered and equipped to be a savvy and successful entrepreneur as an occupational therapy business owner, and what this podcast will be all about. Visit mindyourotbusiness.com to jump in and take action!