The most important question you should be asking every client

Before I talk about the most important question you should be asking every client, let me start by saying this: Being smart in your marketing is identifying what works and doing more of it – no point in keeping doing something that doesn’t bring you any results.

And something most therapists struggle with is to find the answer to “Where do my clients come from?” It’s so important to know the answer to this question, because once you know where they come from, you’ll know where to concentrate your marketing efforts. You’ll know where to go looking for them.

Which brings us to the most important question you should be asking every client:

Where did you hear about me?

Before I explain what you can do with the answer your clients give you, I have to give you a small piece of advice: Do not ask this question on your contact form. First of all, research confirms that the more fields you have on your contact form, the less likely people are to fill it in. And this question is just another obstacle you’re putting in front of potential clients who just want to send you an enquiry.

First of all, research confirms that the more fields you have on your contact form, the less likely people are to fill it in. And this question is just another obstacle you’re putting in front of potential clients who just want to send you an enquiry. They’re not interested in filling out surveys on your contact form. When they’re filling in a contact form, they just want to get their questions answered. They don’t want to be answering yours. And if you’re lucky and your unnecessary questions don’t put them off filling in that contact form, they’re just going to fill in anything random to get past the question – most likely the first option you give them (“Have you heard about us in the radio?” Sure thing.) Therefore the responses you get will be useless.

And secondly, if you’re smart enough to ask them this question IN PERSON instead, you’ll have a wonderful opportunity to ask further questions, depending on what their initial response is.

So what if they answer…

“You were recommended by a friend”

– Ask who it was so you can thank them for recommending you.

“I found you through google”

– Ask them: What exactly did you google? What words did you type into google to find me?

It’s very important for every business owner to know what keywords their clients google, so that you can optimize your website with these keywords, which will give you a higher chance to come up in search results when other clients google these keywords.

“I found you through facebook”

– First of all, you’ll know that your facebook marketing works and you have to do more of it. You should also ask them which post in particular was it that made them pick up the phone and make an appointment.

Why is this question important? Because you might have said something in one of your posts that struck a chord with your ideal clients, something that made them realize they NEED your services right now. If your client tells you which post it was that made them ring you, you’ll know to post similar stuff in the future.

“I saw your ad in the paper”

– Great, now you know that your ideal clients actually read this paper and you should run these ads again.

“I saw your leaflet at the doctor’s” or “My doctor recommended you”

1. If it was a recommendation from the doctor – you should cultivate that relationship with the doctor. Bring them a bottle of wine, let them know how much you appreciate their referrals. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to cultivate your business relationships.

2. If it was a poster or leaflet they saw at the doctor’s waiting room – again, thank the surgery and show your appreciation that they let you display your promotional materials in their office – it’s not their duty, they’re doing you a favour, so show them appreciation. In this case it will probably be the receptionist who decides if your poster or leaflets will stay in their waiting room. So the next time you come in to bring more leaflets, bring a nice box of chocolates and thank her for letting you display your stuff there. She will love you for it, it’s amazing what an unexpected gift does to people. People like people who bring them unexpected gifts – if you’ve ever had a client who brought you something you probably know what I’m talking about – I’ve had clients who brought me a cake when they came for their session, or box of chocolates, or a gift set – it makes you feel really special when it happens because you don’t expect it – and the power of reciprocity means that if you do something like that for them they will remember you and will try to pay it back. So this receptionist will make sure your leaflets don’t end up in the bin as soon as you close the door behind you.

And again, do more of what works – print the same leaflet and put it in other doctor’s waiting rooms. You’ve already done it once so you just replicate what you’ve done the first time and approach another surgery in your area and do the same thing – same leaflets, same chocolates etc. Rinse and repeat.

It’s amazing how much you can find out from your clients about your marketing – so you can do more of what works. Because there’s no point in wasting time, energy (and money – if you’re doing paid advertising) on something that doesn’t work. And the best way to find out what works and what doesn’t is to ask your clients “Where did you hear about me?”

 

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Olga Klofac

is the founder of MastermindTherapist.com, helping complementary health practitioners and holistic therapists get more clients with smart marketing.

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