Social media can be daunting for anyone. But as a mental health professional, you may not feel like you have anything to post. Or you feel like you don’t know what to say.
The first thing to identify is who your audience is. Are you speaking to other mental health professionals? What about potential and current clients? What messages are you sending to the people who read your posts?
What Social Media Platforms Should You Be Using?
There are many social media platforms to choose from, and that can seem overwhelming. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn- it can feel like a lot!
One question I get a lot is “do I need to be on all platforms?”
The short answer is: “no.”
The important thing to do is find the platform that works best for you. Your posts are going to look very different on Twitter than they will on LinkedIn. You need to decide where you should direct your time and energy.
I’m going to break down for you what platforms you can be using and how you should be using them. Since writing social media posts is writing copy, which is all about regularly updating your content, you need to, as always, be consistent with your posts.
LinkedIn is the most professional social media platform that exists. It was built originally as a Facebook for professionals. But over time, LinkedIn has taken on a life of its own, and many people post things the way they post on Facebook.
LinkedIn is great for networking. You can find lots of other mental health professionals on LinkedIn and connect with them. Often there are a lot of therapists posting a lot of great material that can be helpful and informative. People share articles they’ve written or books that they have coming out. Others post videos they’ve made speaking to their target audience. As with all social media, the possibilities are endless.
Mostly mental health professionals use LinkedIn to connect with other mental health professionals. But occasionally you might find yourself reaching out to someone like me. Many mental health professionals have contacted me after viewing my profile. They want to know more about me and what I offer. Or I asked to connect with them and they got curious and sent me a message. Maybe they saw a post I wrote and were interested in my services.
LinkedIn can be used for lots of different reasons, but your posts on LinkedIn should reflect a more professional tone than on other platforms.
Instagram has become really popular. There are so many ways you can interact with people on Instagram.
You can post pictures, graphics, or short videos on your feed, which people can interact with as they scroll. When you take this route, you want to make sure your posts are valuable and also interesting. They need to be eye-catching.
When you make an interesting post, other people can share it and repost it. They can also post it to their story and tag you in it so you become more visible to a wider audience.
Stories are also useful tools. You can do the same thing others can and put a post on your story to boost others’ visibility. The more you engage with other people on Instagram, the more followers you’ll get. The more connected to the community you’ll be.
As I mentioned before, it’s super important to know who your audience is on Instagram. Are you targeting other mental health professionals? Do you want to impart wisdom to people who don’t know anything about therapy or the work you do? Maybe you want to connect with clients or prospective clients.
Whoever your audience is, you need to be intentional about your posts. You should also be consistent.
Twitter is, in my opinion, the social media platform that is the most difficult to manage. This is because of how often you need to post and repost in order to stay relevant.
I don’t usually suggest that my clients use Twitter because they simply don’t have time.
There’s also a lot of noise to get lost in on Twitter. I personally don’t use it because of how time-consuming it is. I find it overwhelming.
A lot of times people post a tweet on an Instagram story that has gone viral but rarely do most of us get that kind of attention.
Facebook is becoming a little outdated. It’s another great place to network, though. Join groups of like-minded people, such as other mental health professionals in your niche. There are plenty of groups just for therapists in private practice, for example. You can’t join unless you have your own practice.
Facebook can be a useful tool and a good way to connect with other therapists.
But the thing about Facebook is that people write stream-of-consciousness posts that don’t mean anything to anyone but them. And then people get into big discussions on Facebook about whatever that person decided to rant about. It’s like long-form Twitter, with pictures.
Personally, I’m on Facebook only to check on the groups I’m in. I’m in a bunch of copywriter groups and a few creative arts therapy groups since I’m a dance/movement therapist. Otherwise, I stay away.
How to Deal With the Overwhelm of Social Media
Whatever platform you decide to use, social media can be overwhelming. That’s why it’s important to decide which ones you want to use and how.
Maybe you use Facebook solely to connect with people in groups. You might focus mostly on Instagram. If you’re up for the challenge of constant posts, Twitter might be for you. And if you want to use social media for networking, LinkedIn is the way to go.
However you decide to use social media, you must be consistent. The people who are most successful in reaching broader audiences engage with others by liking, commenting, reposting and sharing.
For information on how I can write the best copy I can for your business, schedule a free consultation call. We’ll go over your goals, pain points, and figure out how we could work together.
Happy social media-ing!