Business Practices

Using A “Tickler File” To Fill Up Your Calendar And Serve Your Clients Better

If you’re a working hypnotherapist, you’ve probably had the experience of looking at the calendar and realizing it was way too empty in the weeks ahead. When an open time-slot passes by without a client in it, that’s earning potential that’s gone forever. But it’s natural for there to be lulls in business.

How do you combat the dead spots and at the same time, do a better job for your clients?

One answer is a tickler file! It’s a practical solution with an interesting name. Tickler files are used to increase productivity in any industry where following up with people is important.

What’s A Tickler File?

A tickler file is simply a system for putting reminders in the future. It’s a system for following up with clients.

Many of your clients will have had great results from your work together. Some will have had some results but could use a follow-up. Some will not have made the progress you’d hoped. All three of those scenarios are opportunities to book additional sessions and serve your clients better.

  • Clients who’ve had outstanding results may want to book sessions to take care of other issues or give you referrals.
  • Clients who’ve had some results may wish to book sessions to finish the work.
  • A conversation with clients who haven’t made the progress we’d like may reveal a sticking point that we can work on with further sessions.

It’s a chance to serve your clients better. So, get those dead spots out of the calendar and follow-up with past clients regularly!

Suggested Schedule

Here’s what I’d suggest, as a minimum.

  1. Follow up 2 weeks after an initial appointment.
  2. Follow up in 6 months.
  3. Follow up in two years.

Now, you can use any calendar or reminder system you like to follow up.

To see a couple of no-cost or low-cost options, log in to the members area for the full article. If you’re not yet an IHA member, go here to apply.

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Business Practices

How To Network

Recently, I interviewed several hypnotherapists about how they get clients. They had various methods of getting clients, but there was one thing they all did. They networked. Networking is the #1 marketing tool for hypnotists.

For some people the word ‘networking’ means pushy, “salesy” or bothersome. So, how do you network effectively, maintain your comfort level and still get clients? Well, it breaks down into these simple steps…

  • Get your “elevator pitch” down.
  • Gather your tools.
  • Live life.

Your Elevator Pitch

The term “elevator pitch” comes from the idea that you often have limited time to interest someone in what you do. The length of time you have riding in a elevator with someone, for instance.

Your elevator pitch is a short summary of what you do and how you can help people. ‘Short’ is the operative word and having some mystery helps. You’re not trying to explain the entire history and science behind hypnosis. You’re looking for 5 – 30 second statements that will make those interested in your services ask you questions.

The mistake most people make in the elevator pitch is trying to sell themselves. I look at the elevator pitch as a tool for quickly eliminating those people who aren’t interested and arousing the curiosity of those that might be. Your job is to get them to ask you more.

Gather Your Tools

Business cards, brochures, flyers, T-shirts, buttons — develop marketing tools and keep them with you at all times. There are many times when you meet someone who’s interested in what you do, but you don’t have time to chat. You can hand them a business card — but only if you have one on you!

Depending on how outgoing you want to be, a button or a T-shirt that calls out to your ideal client and gets them to approach you can be helpful. You could have a button that says “Tired of Nail Biting?” People who bite their nails might be intrigued by your button and ask you about it. That’s when you give them a brief elevator pitch and hand them your card.

Live Life

Some successful hypnotherapists I’ve talked to have joined professional networking organizations. But many of them have simply networked in their daily lives. When they go to the grocery store, the gym, the library, their weekly knitting group. They network wherever they usually go.

If you’re a member of the International Hypnosis Association, there’s a more extensive tutorial on how to network in your member’s area. It’s a benefit of being a member. Log in and look for the “Networking Tutorial” page. You can join the IHA here.


Keith Livingston

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