When it comes to social media, LinkedIn is often overlooked in favour of Facebook and Twitter. However, from a professional point of view, and as a therapist, LinkedIn can be a highly useful tool when looking to build your practice.

LinkedIn provides you with a professional and easy-to-use platform for making your professional qualifications, achievements and contact details available to new business contacts, as well as fellow therapists.

It is, of course, not a place to connect with individual clients, either current or potential. However, LinkedIn can be a great way of establishing new business contacts, such as solicitors or rehabilitation companies, who will potentially refer new clients to you for treatment. LinkedIn can also help you to connect with other companies of interest, such as training providers and therapy associations.

As well as connecting with individuals, you can now “follow” the profiles of companies in whom you are interested (such as the Private Practice Hub), giving you an additional way to introduce yourself and make connections.

LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn groups are a great way to meet and network with other therapists, allowing you to learn about and share useful resources, articles, news and developments in your field. They can also be a handy way of keeping up to date with upcoming conferences, seminars and talks relevant to your practice. Groups provide a useful space for discussion about important issues relating to your field, allowing you to gain insight from other therapists and establish yourself as a knowledgeable member of your profession. You can find groups of interest by carrying out a search using appropriate keywords. Take a look at Geoff Simons‘ (founder of Private Practice Hub) profile, and you will see the groups that he belongs to. Do feel free to send a connection request!

Beyond your specific branch of therapy, LinkedIn could also help you to develop connections with other useful types of businesses, including accountants and business planning. In addition, it can help you to find articles and links to useful software that could potentially help you to develop and manage the financial/business side of your practice.

How to use LinkedIn responsibly

As with all social media, LinkedIn could prove problematic for therapists if clients attempt to connect with you. However, LinkedIn is a two-way process, with users having to accept connections before they are made. This allows you to look carefully at who you choose to add or decline as a contact, ensuring that only businesses, professional companies or colleagues are added to your list of contacts.

Despite the potential ethical concerns, with careful attention paid to the profiles you connect with, LinkedIn can open your practice up to a wide range of business, learning and networking opportunities.

Join our LinkedIn group!

We’ve just created a new LinkedIn group for UK therapists in private practice who wish to discuss business issues – it already has 400 members. You can view it and join here.