There is a lot of talk about “passive income.” You read about it all over the place, hear therapists talk about being able to be on vacation or walk along the beach and the money just comes in, no matter whether they’re seeing clients or not.
While this is definitely possible, and something everyone would aspire to (hey, passive money, bring it on!) That said, what I never hear answers to, and what I do question is WHO is buying the stuff, HOW therapists are finding them, and WHERE the line is set between being a therapist and being a salesperson.
Ran across this line which basically articulates what I’ve been wondering. “My concern is finding the right therapist and someone trying to sell me video tapes.”
I’ve talked at length with my father (Bill Doherty) about this topic. He has a few opinions that I find useful.
One: If you are asking your existing client to read something you wrote, you give them your book, no charge. Making a recommendation and then profiting off it is not a healthy boundary between therapist and client.
Two: If you offer “free consultation”, but are really trying to build the “close” for a sale on your therapy or products, transparency is key. Otherwise you end up spoon feeding their wishes and desires and then telling them you are the solution. You are likely doing OK if you do tell some people you are not the best fit or they don’t need what you offer. You have to measure what is your internal goal of free consultations/products and how likely are your clients to understand the silent sales pitch.
Three: if you are an author and someone comes to you because they LOVE your work and REALLY feel like they know you, all that “stuff” may get in the way of good therapy and those people may be better off referred on. In other words, a therapist who is also an author can be given a lot of emotional baggage from the client before they even walk in the door. That baggage can interfere with good therapy if you are viewed as a “celebrity.”
If you successfully sell stuff on your site, I’d love your comments and recommendations for other therapists. I’ve been getting questions about how I can help people sell products, but I’m not convinced there is a huge market place with highly affordable advertising for therapists to actually earn a ton of money. Prove me wrong!