You see (and you know this), setting up your practice is only the first part of the equation. The second, third, fourth and all subsequent parts of the equation revolve around you letting the world know that you exist. Repeatedly. And that does mean again, and again, and ... again.
But for many therapists and coaches, that's the bit that they struggle with. Marketing? When do therapists or coaches ever get taught about marketing? It is rarely part of your core training, and, if you've been part of a public sector service before going it alone, you've never had need to think about this alien concept. The very idea of marketing your caring, therapeutic, touchy-feely client-focused services ... I mean, really! It's bad enough having to ask clients for money, isn't it!
Making sense of marketing may not necessarily be high on your list of priorities when you start out ... but it needs to be. And it is not just about a once-only activity that will then mean that you've "done" the marketing bit, so the work will roll in. It won't. Marketing is about getting your message out to the people who need to hear it, via several channels usually and with sufficient frequency, to ensure that you remain on their radar, so that, when they do need services such as yours, you are one of their first points of reference.
It requires research, planning ... and commitment to regular action. A one-off letter to potential referrers or the initial launch of a website is not enough. You need to draw up a plan of action that will ensure your business maintains a high level of visibility with those who might need what you have to offer.
Without regular, focussed action on your part, your services will remain a well-kept secret ... is that what you want?
I doubt it. So ... why not take a moment now to write down three things that you could do in the next week to promote your business. For example, think of three potential referrers you need to make contact with; identify a directory that you need to be listed in and find out what's involved in getting that listing; attend a networking meeting that will put you in front of colleagues with whom you can develop cross-referral links. Write them down - or better yet, add them as a comment below, so you've publicly committed to them, and then come back here soon to let me know how you got on.
And if you need some support in moving this forward so that your secret is out there, well you know how to contact me ...