I am trying to define one of my three niches (I know three can be a lot…lol), but can’t figure out what to title it on my website. I am looking to work with the successful professionals who are on top of things and rock it at work, but in their personal lives not so much. They may be dealing with imposter syndrome and/or struggle to connect with others due to a sense of negative self and they may be adult children of alcoholics. Any suggestions on what to call this as a niche???? TIA!
Excellent question Gwen.
It’s so important to clearly communicate who we help on a therapist website isn’t it? Naming a therapy niche, then, is super important as well.
The name of your niche might be used in headings and subheadings around your entire website. And for the titles of the specialization pages you’ll write just for them. You may also be considering creating content for them as well. So it can be a lot.
For those website visitors who could become clients, a clear niche name can help them identify where to go on your website. Where to read more about how you help. And get that, “yes, this is the right fit therapist for me!” -feeling.
And for the website visitors who become your best referral sources, a clear niche name helps them know and remember exactly who to refer your way.
Successful naming helps you forge real connections with your best fit clients and referral sources. Feeling seen and understood, you’re calling them towards the spaces on your website that you’re speaking directly to them.
Below I’ll share what the types of naming for a niche, the two steps you should take to name your therapist niche, and some further insights to help you find that right-fit niche name.
The Four Types Of Therapy Niche Names
There are four common ways that therapists name their niches. They are as follows:
- Named after the issues the clients face. E.g., anxiety, depression.
- Named after the client’s identity or stage of life. E.g., trans, veteran, child, teens.
- Named after circumstances and life events. E.g., divorce, pandemic, loss of child.
- Named after the desired modality. E.g., EMDR, Movement Therapy, Art Therapy
Each type of naming can stand alone or be combined. So you might have a therapy niche for “anxiety therapy” or you might have a therapy niche for “anxious teens”
Different types of naming will speak more to different types of people. So keeping these naming options in mind can help you stay open to all the possibilities as you move through naming your niche.
Step #1. Look For The Pain
Gwen, not everything in what you describe is painful, right? Like being successful or being good at work are not typically seen as painful.
But when someone is seeking therapy services, they tend to seek help with a specific pain. So, ask this important question:
What’s the most painful aspect of what your best-fit client is struggling with?
From what you mention, here are some quick ideas of things that might fit:
- Therapy for Adult Children Of Alcoholics
- Therapy for Imposter Syndrome
- Relationship Therapy
You might also find this niche commonly struggles with a certain aspect of emotional dysregulation: low mood, depression, freeze state -or- high strung, anxiety, flight or fight states -or- both.
If that’s the case, you might actually be after something like “Anxiety Therapy for Professionals.” Or it could even be “Therapy for Anxiety” and then described throughout your messaging as, “I help successful professionals that feel in control at work but worried and stressed in their relationships…” Right?
(More on this later but keep in mind that not everything has to be contained in the name. It’s also about reflecting what they are struggling with in spaces that allow for more words – like a specialization page of your website).
Take Step #1 Look For The Pain:
Grab something to write with and write on and brainstorm around the question, “What’s the most painful aspect of what your best-fit client is struggling with?”
Once you have a list of pains, go back and put a star next to the painful experiences that you hear about most during that first contact with best fit clients. What is driving them to your door? What distress is leading them to ask for help?
This exercise can help you get ultra in-tune with what your best fit client is really distressed about and therefore seeking your help for. Hold on to the list because next you’ll want to take…
Step #2. Ask Someone Who Is From That Niche To Name The Therapy Niche
A great way to name a niche is simply to ask someone who is from that niche.
Effective naming is simply a reflection of what your ideal client is already experiencing and seeking. So perhaps we shouldn’t be asking “how do I name my therapy niche?” and instead ask, “how can they name my therapy niche?”
In my many years of experience helping therapists, I’ve noticed that what a therapist names the niche is not always the same as what the client would.
But the client’s naming of themselves is far more important when it comes to marketing.
For instance, I was coaching a therapist who was helping clients with what they were calling “Grief & Loss” therapy. And most therapists reading this right now will probably say, “Grief & Loss” makes sense as a niche area.
The problem was that the therapist didn’t mean “someone you love died” – what they meant was, “you’ve lost something you had or thought you would have and therefore are experiencing feelings of loss and have a need to grieve.”
After digging in, we realized that their ideal clients within this niche were people who had a loss in their relationships. Either they were freshly divorced or maybe decided to cut off a toxic family member.
From the therapist’s perspective, “grief and loss” made sense but what about the client perspective?
In this case, we landed on two possible new niches with new names that would be more appropriate, “divorce and breakups” and “family conflict” because that’s how the clients were describing these particular types of grief and loss.
So step #2 is to do the same type of investigation into your niche. Who are these clients and how would THEY name the service they are looking for?
Take Step #2 Ask Someone:
If you know anyone from the niche, perhaps a family member or a friend or acquaintance, ask them for naming help. It works really well to give them a list of options – circle back to your Step #1 results and the list of types of niche names to brainstorm and narrow down some suggestions to 4-5.
Next, ask your contact if any of the names could be something they identify with. Or if not, what they would use instead.
This step is truly the golden step. Don’t name a niche yourself but with the full perspective of those who are the niche.
When In Doubt: Go Broad Or Go More Specific
If you’ve taken steps 1 and 2 and still feel unsure, here are two further approaches that may help you make a selection.
Go More Broad
Zoom out. Not sure if “Anxious Single Working Parents” is too specific? Try “Anxiety for Parents” and flush out descriptions of pains in your copy and further marketing messages.
Go More Specific
Our favorite client might have a lot going on for them but a human is not a niche while one aspect of their life certainly could be.
For example, Gwen, I’m seeing “Children of Alcoholics”, “Working Professionals”, “Impostor Syndrome” and maybe also something around relationships too.
How would it feel to be more specific into just one of those items? Are you most aligned with and excited about one of the mentioned items? Explore if being more specific feels ok!
Also Keep In Mind Your Best Fit Client’s Level of Healing
If you follow naming steps 1 and 2, I’m confident you can arrive at right-fit naming.
That said, successful niche names are successful because they reflect where the client is in their healing journey. So staying aware of where they’re at can also help inform how you name your niche.
Let’s take me for example:
Earlier in my healing journey, I would have wanted “to stop having so many life crisis moments and feel more in control” or “stop feeling suicidal.” So the niche I would have seen myself as would have been niches like “Therapy For Suicidal People” or maybe “Depression Therapy” or maybe at one point “Therapy for Sexual Abuse Survivors”
Many, many years later and those are not what I would identify with as much. I’ve done a fair amount of personal development and healing work. I know some basic neurobiology, I am familiar with polyvagal theory, have gone down rabbit holes researching advanced IFS techniques.
So I am at quite a different level of healing than I was earlier meaning that what I would most identify with has changed.
Today, I would moreso identify with and get excited by niches such as, “Nervous System Healing For Trauma Survivors” or “IFS and EMDR” or “Healing Complex Trauma”
As you move through naming your niche, pay attention to where your best fit client is in their healing journey and see if what you are coming up with is aligned with where they are and what they know. Doing so will help you avoid missing the mark – being too far ahead of where they are at or too far behind.
All This Said, Don’t Get Too Caught Up On The “Perfect” Therapy Niche Name – You Do Have Space To Elaborate!
Luckily, while important, the name of your niche isn’t the only way you can communicate about your services in your marketing.
You also have opportunities through how you show up to demonstrate and elaborate how much you know, how much you care, and what transformations you offer to what types of people.
Here are some of the key places you’ll have space to elaborate:
- Home page sections that lead to a specialization pages or blog post
- About page where you can highlight alignment between how you show up, what makes you different, and how that helps who you help
- Specialization page copy can get more specific or share more broad examples
- Blog content is also a huge opportunity where you can actually show how much you know and how you can help
The space you can take to elaborate also goes far beyond your website and actually makes up what we would call your “brand identity.”
How you show up on social media, who you network with and what types of conversations you’re having, what items you highlight on your directory profiles…
These all are spaces to discuss who you help! And with more words than a niche name could ever contain.
So proceed mindfully and carefully. No need to put all the pressure on your website to do it all. You can create many opportunities to share about who you help in your marketing. So develop some clarity and confidence and then get out there. Your message will come through.
Look For This Sign To Know The Naming Is Working
To find your name, get familiar with the four types of naming and also some of the best steps you can take to name your niche. If you go this route, I’m confident you’ll find a fit.
That all said, don’t hesitate to limit your time with these exercises. Don’t over think it. Keep it simple. Decide on something, try it out, and see how it goes.
When you’re in the “see how it goes” phase, look for this sign to know the name is landing where it ought to be: incoming clients start telling you that your website spoke to them.
It’s working when you get totally unsolicited feedback. When new clients are *excited* to tell you about their experience on your website. When they want to shower you with compliments about how your website made them feel.
Look for that as the best sign to know you got the niche name, and your further website copy, right.
Hope this has helped. You got this. Go out there. Name those niches. And keep doing the important work you do.