What does it mean when we say something is “salesy?”

For me, something feels salesy when I’m being pressured, cheated, convinced, or fooled into needing something that I actually don’t want, don’t need, or isn’t of benefit to me.

It can also feel salesy when the results sound too good to be true. You know, the “It slices, it dices…” shpiels with gratuitous hyperbole thrown in for good measure.

“It does everything you could ever want!”

When the results sound too good to be true, it feels like the salesperson is just trying to make a sale by any means possible, including through lies. Instead of keeping it real, they start saying things that aren’t even true, and that feeling of untrue claims is what feels salesy.

What Would Make A Therapist Website Salesy?

Many therapists feel as if even mentioning what they do or how it can help people is salesy. But if we really consider what salesyness is, it’s not when people share how they can help us that feels salesy but rather how they share how they help.

Here are some things that could make your website feel salesy:

  • Misleading someone to believing they need therapy when they don’t
  • Pressuring someone that they need the benefits that they didn’t already want
  • Cheating someone
  • Hyperbole like saying everyone needs therapy all the time or you’re the best fit therapist for everyone
  • Guaranteeing results
  • Being very pushy with the number of times you tell someone to buy or reach out. (Every other paragraph shouldn’t be a call to action)

From this list you can see how extreme you’d need to take your copy to even go into the realm of being salesy. So step 1, is really seeing that your copy is unlikely to be taking things this far.

But this brings us to an interesting question:

If most you aren’t being salesy on your websites, why do you have fear that you are being salesy?

Do You Have Sales Guilt?

Selling is simply sharing about what you do and how it can help people. The sales process, like getting a potential client on the phone, may also include helping the potential client see if you would be a good fit for their needs.

Sales is a discussion about the value that you provide with those that need your valuable services.

And selling what you do shouldn’t feel any more guilt-inducing than having a conversation about being a therapist.

Here’s the key to not being salesy:

Keep it real. And don’t pressure anyone.

Also, You’re Not Responsible For Making Up For The Uncool, Unethical Therapists

Some therapists seem to take on the responsibility for the ethical situation of all mental health everywhere.

But it’s not your responsibility to represent all of mental health.

Does it suck that uncool “therapists” are out there scamming and pressuring and convincing people? Undoubtedly.

But if you are not one of them, why are you holding yourself back from offering your help confidently?

You are not the bad guy. Stop trying to compensate for the bad by holding back your offer to help. It’s ok to confidently communicate how you help.

In fact, please do so and connect with more people. We need the cool, ethical therapists to be a bit more present in how they offer their help, not less.

You are not pressuring anyone if you open up about how you help. You are helping people find their best fit for the help they need.

Are You Being Too Salesy? No. Not If You Simply Make Offers That Reflect The Truth

“I am a therapist who can help you if you are struggling with depression” this is a sales statement but it is not salesy. It’s true.

“Therapy can help you start feeling more in control of your life” this is also a sales statement but it’s not salesy. It’s true.

The question isn’t how to avoid being salesy on your therapist website but rather asking,

  • What truths about my services am I holding back?
  • How can I be more open about your unique approach?
  • How can I help website visitors match themselves to you if they are your best fit client?

I don’t have data to back this up but therapists that are concerned about being salesy are typically the ones that are the least likely to be salesy. So open up! Tell us how you can help us. And we are grateful for your ethical approach to sales, which is simply sharing about what you do.