There is only one thing worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.” – Oscar Wilde

Over the past episodes, I have been speaking with hypnotherapists from South Africa and from around the world. I have found it extremely interesting and enlightening, especially how they market themselves. It seems like word of mouth is the way to go.

I usually follow the same general set of questions. Sometimes I go off track as an interesting fact is highlighted. In this way, I have learned much about Past Life Regressions (PLR), an aspect I have not really explored in my practice. I have heard how some people use social media differently to the rest of us. I have also been learning about fields such as Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

Understanding the business of hypnosis

One aspect that is of great interest to me, is the business side of hypnosis. It is not something covered to any degree in the training I underwent. Much of what I know I learned from a few books and through trial and error.

I used to depend a lot on Google AdWords. Great was my surprise to learn from Sharon Dill that Google no longer allows hypnotherapists to use this effective marketing technique. I used to get many clients by advertising my business this way. It was disheartening to learn that they are refusing ads from hypnosis practitioners.

The reason why Google is not accepting our ads is very odd. Apparently, we fall under “Addictions”, and they do not allow any advertising for addictions. How they got to the conclusion that hypnotherapy = addictions beats me. We will probably never know why they have decided this.

So how do my colleagues advertise themselves? All of them have websites, and a good website with enough content will organically rank highly. Even if it does not feature on page one of Google results, a person who is interested in hypnosis will keep on searching until they find a site that interests them. Google searches don’t seem to discriminate against us (yet.)

Word of Mouth

What I found most interesting is that every single person I have interviewed so far have told me that they are almost 100% dependent on word of mouth (WOM). Past clients who have achieved their goals using hypnosis have been talking to their friends and family about it. They have stopped smoking, reduced their weight, solved their phobias, released past traumas, or have achieved other kinds of progress using hypnosis. They are happy to share their progress. This is organic WOM and is the best kind, because it means people are happy enough with the service to recommend it.

(I got two referrals in the last month through clients that saw me more than five years ago!)

Up to 92% of people have a high level of trust when somebody they know talk about and recommend a service provider. Brands that make a big emotional impact on their customers have a three times higher chance of being recommended by WOM.

It is no surprise then that so many people who are in business, including hypnotherapists, are planning to spend more on both online and offline WOM awareness.

How to increase word of mouth

One way of increasing online WOM is through social media. It has become a staple of most people’s online media diet. Getting reviews is a great way of doing it, and some 88% of people will trust these. Another way of doing it is building campaigns that will amplify WOM. These include writing articles and posting videos. This is termed Amplified WOM.

We live in a world where most people no longer believe adverts but rather accept the opinions of family and friends. It is clear that WOM is the most valuable marketing any hypnotherapist can get. The only problem is what to do if you are just starting out and have nobody to talk about you yet?

Getting an article in a local paper or magazine might help kickstart your WOM. You might consider going on a radio program and talk about what you do. Podcasting is another great way of doing it.

The absolutely best way is to give your clients a “wow” experience, one that they will share with the people close to them. It might take some time, but as long as you keep providing an excellent service, the word will start spreading. Soon you won’t be able to keep up with all the clients!

Need some clever content to help kickstart your WOM campaign? Let Baird.Media help you. Contact them today.

To book a hypnosis session with me, visit my website.