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Discover why you absolutely have to specialise

If you know that your soul purpose is to help others and yet you're having difficulty finding the right clients, then you're being given a gentle spiritual nudge! The invitation is that you must learn to focus on a specific target audience. It's really easy - especially when you first qualify as a therapist - to feel that you can (and that you want to) help everyone. But when you do that, you become one of the crowd - and there are so many people already in the crowd that the only thing that distinguishes you is price. And it's not a big leap to go from selling on price to finding that you're in the middle of a price war.

Soon, everyone's trying to undercut everyone else - and before you know it, you're working really hard for not very much money. And that's if you're actually working at all. So what's the solution? The key is to establish yourself as an expert - and you can only do this when you specialise! It's not only about specialising in the "what you do" - but you also need to think about "who you do it for". There are two key elements to consider: 1. Which target audience can you best serve? 2.

What is your unique selling proposition? Choosing your target audience. Deciding on which audience to dedicate your service is of paramount importance. Research shows that coaches and therapists who specialise in - and market to - one specific audience are seven times more successful than those who don't. Listen to your heart and feel who you most intuitively feel called to help.

It can help to narrow your focus in "bite-sized" chunks. Some therapists feel more at home with children, while others prefer working with women only - or the elderly. Only once you've established your general audience can you start to be more specific. For example, if you know that you prefer having female clients, ask yourself if you'd rather encourage pregnant women, working women, full-time mothers or elderly women to your practice. Your next questions might be around the time of day that you work. If your target market is working mothers, then you may want to offer your services in such a way that they fit comfortably around the school day.

But if you're intending to work with corporate high fliers, then you'll do better to make yourself available in the evenings and at weekends. Creating an effective USP. Your USP tells clients what you offer that's different to what other therapists offer. With thousands of therapists in practice - what makes you different? As well as any speci*al 0ffers and guarantees you make, your USP should include the specific target audience that you serve. And remember, the more niche your target audience, the better.

You'll know you've got a great USP when you have no - or very few - competitors! Finally, it's important to recognise that it's only when you specialise - and tell everyone that you specialise - that you'll benefit from being seen as an expert. And when you're an expert, you'll more easily be able to build your personal profile within your chosen community, with the result that you'll not only attract more clients but you'll also be able to command higher fees! In order to run a successful practice you'll need to: 1 Make sure that you specialise rather than generalise. 2 Focus on creating a niche market for your services in which you can be perceived as a specialist. 3 Ensure that you have a Unique Selling Proposition, which sets you apart from others in your industry. 4 Create a sales message for yourself which incorporates both your USP and your target audience - and use this in your public relations activities, when asking for referrals and on all your stationery!.

Author & Coach Olivia Stefanino is Principal of "The Quantum School for Therapists". Join today and receive 500 worth of free gifts ' including a 9 CD audio library, 9 workbooks & a 2-hour coaching session! Visit http://www.thequantumschool.com



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