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5 Ways to Emotionally Connect with your Clients

Updated: Jun 16, 2019



Dave Ake, the Editorial Director at GoodTherapy.org, absolutely loves his job. This online therapist directory has the mission of helping people find good therapists and advocate for ethical therapy. With a degree in political science, army combat veteran, Dave found his calling in the therapy field.


Before we start, we want Startup Nation know about these three incredible opportunities!


  1. Join our exclusive Facebook group. Here you can interact or collaborate with all of our podcast guests and experts, colleagues, and K2 team! Simply request to join!

  2. We are offering our A-Z Cheatsheet: The Essentials for Building a Private Practice. Text ‘ESSENTIALS’ to 44222 to receive this amazing resource!

  3. We have culminated our favorite resources and created a page on our website! Be sure to check that out!

“So Dave, what led you into working for GoodTherapy.org?”


  • Dave never saw himself working in industry he is in now, and he had always wanted to write for a magazine.  After studying journalism, the dream imploded due to huge competition and so many journalists being laid off once he entered the field. Dave had student loan debt and was competing with other experts with ten years of experience. Fortunately, he had an opportunity to work for a web design and marketing company who was looking for someone to write content. Combining his writing skills and technical skills, he ended up at the company he is at now, and “leaves everyday knowing that the work that he does may have contributed to saving someone’s life”. What an amazing opportunity!

Before we jumped in, Dave steered our attention to Simon Sinek’s video on the power of WHY. He explained that it is not about what you do or why – what DOES differentiate you from others is the emotional connection you create for clients. This ultimately helps increase client referrals and a more successful outcome in your practice.


Alright Startup Nation, are you ready for Dave’s 5 Ways to Make an Emotional Connection with Your Ideal Client??


  1. Photos -Dave highly recommends photos on your profile. *Why? -After numerous case studies, people who have a ‘nice picture’ get more clicks! -So, have a good and professional photo taken every few years!

  2. Goodtherapy.org even creates a space where members can add up to 10 photos in their gallery! -With this tool you can upload pictures of your office letting clients know they’re walking into a space where they can feel welcome. It also helps people know what to expect and ease their anxiety and decrease their stigma with going to see a therapist. -And of course, don’t forget to be authentic in your photos!

  • Language -Therapists tend to forget that the people they are trying to market themselves to, may not understand the psychology lingo we throw around! Cut out the psycho babble and connect with them on a human level. It’s okay to let them know that ‘it comes from the CBT model’, but help them understand what you mean by them! -Use simple terms. Your academic credentials will not impress them, but your journey will. -Dave’s tips: -When you’re writing about yourself, don't speak third person but first. -Consider your use of diagnostic labels. People don't like being placed in a box. You are not defined by your condition. -Avoid making promises or guarantees in your profile. You might not be the right therapist for that person!

  • De-emphasize the Business Relationship -As you write your profile bio and description, leave out the word ‘client’ – that's what GoodTherapy.org does! Use these words instead: people, person, person in therapy, person seeking therapy. -We believe therapy is all about people helping people through the hardest parts of the human condition, so stick to that human to human level. -Answer Optional Questions – Practice Narratives *Writing about yourself is the toughest thing that we do professionally. Personal narratives help tell a more complete story of the way that therapists help people. Stories are powerful, they help us understand and help us learn. The best thing you can do to stand out is to tell your story – remember, authenticity! *This can help your clients get a sense of your empathy and desire to help.Dave’s tip: The more complete of a story you tell, you can actually help your SEO and show up higher in the search results. *Proofread, Proofread, ProofreadReread through your profile for clarity, voice, and tone.Remember to look for grammatical errors, that it makes sense, and has a consistent voice (in the first person).Make it warm, welcoming, and engaging! *Dave’s tips:Get a friend to read through it. Ask them to tell you what they think about it and how it made them feel. Get a colleague to read through it who is savvy in marketing. Don't forget, you need to have thick skin to be open to editorial criticism! *One of the best pieces of proofreading advice – when you’re finished, read through your writing out loud at least one time. You’ll spot where the reader might get stuck, and you’ll spot grammatical errors!

“Dave what do you want to make sure our listeners get from your message today?”


Dave wanted us to truly understand the power of the initial impression our profile has on someone who is looking for new therapists or trying therapy for the first time. That emotional experience that is created when you are searching for a therapist makes a huge impact on those looking to reach out. It could literally save their lives.


The giveaway Dave is offering is truly incredible. It is a free TWO MONTH trial for GoodTherapy.org! Use this code: “trial602016k2” and you will receive this amazing offer. Check out our resources page for more information!


CLICK HERE to listen to Dave’s podcast, and be sure to check out his recommendations! Assure you subscribe so you can stay in the loop of ALL the podcasts we release. The Private Practice Startup would also be super grateful if you could rate and review our podcasts.  Thanks again for allowing us to Inspire YOU from Startup to Mastery!

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