All Things Private Practice Podcast for Therapists

Episode 104: Mastering Social Media Marketing as a Mental Health Professional: The Game-Changing Syllaby Solution [featuring Austin Armstrong]

Show Notes

Are you a mental health professional struggling with creating content for social media? Well, I've got some exciting news for you! πŸ’‘

In this episode, I talk with Austin Armstrong, social media marketing master, content creator, influencer, and founder of SocialtyPro and Syllaby.

We talk about social media content creation strategies, including:

  1. How can AI technology help mental health professionals with social media marketing?
  2. What are some common barriers that mental health professionals face when creating content?
  3. Why is consistency important in social media marketing?
  4. How can the use of keywords and artificial intelligence enhance content creation?
  5. What are the benefits of using a digital avatar in video marketing?
  6. Why is it important for mental health professionals to share their expertise and wisdom on social media?
  7. How can social media marketing help mental health professionals grow their practices?
  8. Why do some mental health professionals struggle with social media marketing?
  9. How can the All Things Private Practice podcast help mental health entrepreneurs in the social media world?
  10. What are some tips for mental health professionals to overcome their discomfort of being on camera?

But why should mental health professionals bother with social media, you ask? πŸ€”

Every post you make has the potential to reach someone who needs your support. By sharing relatable information, you can cut through the noise and touch the lives of those struggling with mental health issues. 🌍

Don't underestimate the impact of your expertise. You have life-saving and life-changing information to offer, and it's a disservice to not share it with the world. 🌟

Remember, your business is valuable, and social media is a powerful tool in promoting your services. Let's make a difference together! πŸ’ͺ

Check out Austin's services and tools to help mental health professionals with social media: 

  • Done For You Vertical Video Marketing Agency: SocialtyPro
  • Video marketing agency with AI: Syllaby


πŸŽ™οΈListen to more episodes of the All Things Private Practice Podcast here


πŸ—¨οΈ Join the free All Things Private Practice FB Community 

A Thanks to Our Sponsors: The Receptionist for iPad & Heard!

✨ The Receptionist for iPad:

I would also like to thank The Receptionist for iPad for sponsoring this episode.

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✨ Heard:

I would also like to thank Heard for sponsoring this episode.

Doing your own accounting as a self-employed therapist is stressful. I get it because I've been there. When I first started my private practice, I wasn't sure how much to save for taxes or how quarterly taxes worked. I didn't want to fuck up and get in trouble with the IRS. That's why I'm so glad I found Heard, the financial back office for therapists.

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PATRICK CASALE: Hey everyone, you are listening to another episode of the All Things Private Practice Podcast. I'm your host, Patrick Casale, joined today by my friend and colleague Austin Armstrong, who is the owner of Socialty Pro, a social media management company that is just revolutionizing the way that, especially, mental health entrepreneurs are being seen in the social media world. You also have a podcast, I think it's called Pod Talk? Is that it?


PATRICK CASALE: BusinessTok, all about TikTok, and really being able to create more exposure on TikTok, and just gain, and grow your audience. You've been on before to talk about social media marketing. And today, I know you're really excited to talk about something that you created to really help mental health professionals with AI, and being found, and just being able to get more comfortable creating content.

And I think, as you and I talked before, that's a struggle area for a lot of mental health professionals because of lack of business training or lack of know-how. So, take it away, man, and congrats on everything that's happened since the last time you were on.

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: Yeah, Patrick, thank you so much for having me back, man. It's always wonderful to chat with you and talk. And I love this industry. I've been working in the behavioral health space as far as marketing nine years professionally now. My business partner is a clinical psychologist, we had an awesome company, and YouTube Channel Nine years ago called Therapy Cable that we gave a platform to many behavioral health experts to, basically, give them shows to talk about their expertise online.

Ultimately, that company's not around anymore. But I've still continued to work in this space because I really care about it. My sister is in recovery. And I've had my own struggles with mental health and who hasn't? That's why.

But it's been a wonderful journey and experience. I got into short-form vertical video marketing about four years ago when TikTok came out, and leveraged that to grow my brand. And we've had some amazing examples of clients that are just kicking butt on social media on all these platforms. We've had the privilege and pleasure of working with you twice now on a couple campaigns and on social media for yourself. And really, this experience has led me to creating Syllaby, which is an AI marketing tool that helps you streamline video marketing for social media.

And we really launched this with therapists and behavioral health experts in mind because it's tough to create social media content. It's not intuitive. You're not taught it in school, right? I mean, you know, you need to do it to get clients, and build your practice, and build your brands. But you don't know exactly what topics to create, you don't know what to say on camera, and then videos that actually works online. Sometimes you just don't like being on camera. And that's totally okay too. With all this technology, you need help staying consistent and accountable. And sometimes you just don't have the budget to hire an expensive social media or video marketing agency or even have an in-house team to do all of that work for you.

So, we've taken our expertise and our processes that have really worked so well for this industry and turned it into this streamlined tool. And so, what Syllaby does is it shows you the top questions that your customers are searching for in any industry. So, you could type in, example, EMDR therapy, or if you're in the substance abuse space, you can type in heroin addiction, or any type of disorder, or any ailment that someone would come to you for in the first place. And it'll show you all of the questions that customers are searching for with data behind that? What is EMDR therapy? How does EMDR therapy work? How much does EMDR cost? Does EMDR actually work? EMDR versus DBT? EMDR versus CBT? You know, all of these things that people are curious about online.

And then, it will actually generate a video script for you with the click of a button. So, if you select EMDR versus DBT therapy, it'll generate a script for you for social media so you know exactly what to say. You don't have to figure out social media, we've already done it for you with the power of AI.

And then, we actually take it to the next step, so you don't need to be on camera anymore if you don't want to. So, we've incorporated a really cool AI technology, we dub it Digital Twin. But basically, it's a virtual avatar that looks and sounds like a real person. And we actually have the capability of sort of digitizing yourself. So, it's a digital version of you. So, it reflects you, it reflects your brand, your practice, your voice, even. We can actually clone your voice. And I know this is going to sound a little scary, but the technology is pretty incredible.

But the reason we've incorporated that is because the digital avatar will actually read that script that we've generated around the question that your customer is asking for. And we have a built-in content calendar and social media scheduler that we're working on actively right now.

And so, really, we want to streamline the entire process of ideation to creation, all with one app for 1/100th of the cost of hiring an agency.

PATRICK CASALE: It's pretty remarkable because what I was going to ask you before you started talking is where do you think the barriers are in creating content? But you just addressed almost all of them. And I think that just having the ability to have these keywords already built out for you through search and artificial intelligence, it eliminates the stress of thinking because I know I get into this routine too. Like, if I'm not spontaneously creating content, I can't create content. Like, I get in these ruts, and I'm like, "Fuck, I don't know what to talk about. I don't even know what my audience is asking." Even though they're asking the same questions all the time.

But what will happen is, then you start forcing it. And you can't think of like basic questions that you can just speak about for 30 seconds to a minute and easily. And that also creates a barrier. But then the further barrier for most people is what you just mentioned, being on camera, scripting it out, and posting consistently. You talk about consistency is more important than quality, a lot of the time because of how often the algorithms change, and how people get used to seeing your stuff coming out there.

So, I know for so many people, they've really struggled with the consistency piece. And that may look like a burst of energy, a bunch of content is created, but then because it was an overwhelming process, they don't ever come back to it. So, they may like, put out a ton of content for a little while, and then, nothing, crickets. Like, and what does that mean for a business?

And I always associate this when I'm talking to therapists to frame the perspective of like restaurants. So, if you're looking on your favorite restaurant's social media, and they haven't posted a new menu, or an update, or anything about their hours, or specials, your instinct is that they're closed, or maybe they're no longer open at this time, or like, something's happened here. There's no difference in between mental health businesses that are open and promoting themselves on social media.

And I think a lot of mental health professionals struggle with social media still because it's like, "Yeah, but I'm not really selling my services." And it's like, but if you are charging a fee for your services, you are a business, and the social media component and the marketing component is just such a massive piece of what you're missing out on.

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: Yeah, and, you know, to drill in a little deeper there, I mean, you know, to just push everybody that's listening right now, you have life-saving and life-changing information in your head. And it's almost a disservice to not talk about it, in my opinion. I'm not a therapist, but I think just by sharing relatable information that is going to cut through the noise and resonate with the problems and the struggles that your potential clients are dealing with or people are just going through such an emotional time right now, we're still barely coming out of the pandemic, right? You know, this has been such a taxing time for so many people all around the world, not just in your state, not just in the United States, in general, but all around the world.

And so, if you don't share your wisdom and expertise, and who cares if anybody else has talked about it before, all information's repeated, all people are looking for is a voice that they resonate with. And so, you are doing people a disservice by not talking about your expertise because even if they don't come into you, even if they don't pick up the phone, you might have just saved their lives.

We see these comments online all the time, like, "Hey, Patrick, you don't know me, but I just want to say I've been watching your videos for six months, anonymously, and you've saved my life, here's why." And these are the people that you don't think about, you know, in any business, right? There always needs to be an ROI, of course, when you're, you know, working with marketing or an ROI on your effort, right? But these are the stories that aren't told enough that you can literally save people's lives in your industry just by talking about what you know.

PATRICK CASALE: I couldn't say it better myself. I agree 100%. And, you know, for a lot of our listeners, I know you're established in private practice or growing your practices, but some of you are still in the beginning infancy stages. And I know that there's this ethical quandary/dilemma of like, "Can I really make money in the helping profession? That feels unethical to me." And I've had plenty of conversations on that topic and I'm not going to go down that path right now.

But what I will say is, Austin just mentioned something that is really important, if you're putting out constant, consistent content that is helpful that is giving information, that's educating, that's supporting, that's validating, that's normalizing experience for human beings who are struggling, even that person who's lurking or anonymously watching, you have a trickle down and ripple effect because if you're struggling with, "Can I charge X amount for a therapy session because then I'm no longer accessible to people." When you're putting out free social media content, there's no better way to be accessible to people. You're putting out content where people can digest it in 30 to 60-second chunks of time, implement something you've said, feel heard, feel seen, feel validated, learn something new, incorporate into their day-to-day, they may never even come to therapy, but that can have a lifelong lasting impact. And it can create positive momentum and change.

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: Yeah, absolutely. So well said my friend, yeah.

PATRICK CASALE: And it's just one of those struggle areas, you know? Where I think a lot of therapists and mental health professionals are considering leaving the profession for a multitude of reasons. And I understand a lot of them because, like you said, it's been a hard couple of years. And therapists are bearing that burden and carrying a lot of that weight a lot of the time without an ability to really express it in a healthy way because our job is to absorb, and listen, and affirm, and attend to.

And I think that when you start to think about growing, whether you're growing into a group practice, whether you're wanting to attract private pay clients, you want to add a coaching program, you want to start a podcast, whatever the case may be, you have to know what your client avatar and audience are looking for. And if you don't know what they're looking for, it's really impossible to create content that speaks to their pain points, and what they're searching for, and what they're coming online to consume content for in the first place. So, then it becomes like, this uphill battle of I shouldn't even try because I don't even know how to get started.

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: Yeah, I'll use that as a shameless plug set up for Syllaby, again. But you know, there's great strategies that I've learned to remain consistent as well, another point that you that you had brought up. If you don't know where to begin, just start by answering the frequently asked questions that you get. There's a million tools out there, Syllaby, or ChatGPT at this point, even Google. Look at your peers that are already creating content online, look what's performed best for them. But you could also just start with the frequently asked questions that your clients get. And, of course, don't, you know, say, this is John Smith's question, right? You know, you don't want to violate HIPAA or anything like that, of course.

But, you know, if one person has that question, the vast likeliness is that so many other people are going through that same thing, right? And so, you know, a great structure to content online to help you get started is just start that video off by addressing that question, and immediately going into providing value, and answers, and hope, and relatability to that question. And then, you can tell them what to do next, leave me a comment if I can help you, contact me in my bio, or anything like that.

You know, and, and I know it's difficult to press that record button and record by yourself. So, one of the tricks that we've learned as well is, if you just set up a camera and tell therapist go, they freeze up, right? If you're not comfortable being on camera, it's very stressful staring into the soulless black eye of the camera lens, right? But you spend your whole day talking to people, right?

So, a quick fix for this is just have somebody that you trust behind the camera, and ask you the question, press record, ask the question that acts as the opening hook of the video, which is arguably the most important thing because our attention spans are terrible, so you have to stop, scroll and stop them immediately. And then, just answer the person. So, you're talking to the person.

And if you have the camera set up, and the person is almost eye level with the camera lens, right? You can just talk to the person, you can ignore the camera, and just do what you're an expert at, which is talking and understanding people. And that has really helped.

Another quick hack, and this is going to sound silly, but if you are even self-conscious to the point that you don't want to record with someone else in the room, print out a photo of somebody's face that you love and do the same thing. Just put photo of somebody that you like behind the camera lens, and talk to that person, talk to that photo. Like, these are these are just great ways to get started. You don't have to be perfect.

You know, perfectionism is procrastination and consistency leads towards quality, to go back to your other point as well. I'm team consistent because the more consistent that you do something, it leads to better results faster, you fail faster, and you learn to succeed faster so that you can double down on what works.

And so, if you have these spurts, or if you can schedule these spurts of creating content, batching, as we like to call it, where you spend one day, biweekly, one day, a week, one day a month, and you just knock out 30 videos, or as many videos as you can, if you don't have the energy to record new content every day, which not many people do, schedule something out on your calendar, do it over your lunch break, wake up an hour earlier, stay up an hour later, make that time, record as many videos as you can, and then, schedule them out one a day. I love to do one a day.

And what this also does is once you build up that library of consistency, you can always go back and repost one of those older videos. This is a key thing of consistency that nobody seems to talk about is that the only person that sees every one of your videos is you. That's not how these algorithms work. The algorithms constantly want to put your content in front of new people. Now, a couple people will watch a lot of your videos, right? Your true fans that you develop over time. But the vast majority of the time it's really only you watching every single one of your videos because you're recording every single one of your videos right?

And so, there's no harm in going back three months, two months, whatever, of a video that performed really well for you or a post, a text post that performed really well for you, an image, quote, whatever that performed really well for you. Download it and repost that video again. It worked well before, it's likely to perform really well again. This is one of my secret sauces to remain consistent because we all go through life, right? We get sick, we're on vacation, we don't feel creative, we get COVID. Anything can happen, right? Where you're just not in the headspace to record content. Well, guess what? Because you put in that prep work, because you've stayed consistent, now you have a back library of content that you can pull from.

And you know, just to quickly end on this, my most viral video I've ever had was the third time that I downloaded and posted that video. The first time it did 100,000 views or something, which was great. I downloaded it a month and a half or two months later, and it didn't do as well, I think it did a couple of tens of thousands of views, which was great but… And then, the third time I posted it, it's now at 11.4 million views on TikTok, and it's about to hit 20 million views on YouTube. And it was the third time that I downloaded and reposted the same exact video file. Nothing different, didn't rerecord it, didn't re-edit it. I just downloaded it and reposted it. And sometimes that's what it takes. So, sometimes, if you even think you have a winning piece of content that just didn't get the traction, wait a month and repost that sucker because it might just take a couple uploads for that message to reach and resonate with the right people.

PATRICK CASALE: So many good points right there. I was like, "Oh, I want to think about that. Oh, I want to think about that." So, I think-

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: And I bring more of it up in Italy if any wants.

PATRICK CASALE: Yes. Well, that's what I was thinking. That was actually one of the things I was thinking. It's like, "Oh, this exact conversation is what you should absolutely frame your speech on in Italy."

A couple of things real quick, like, the comfortability behind the camera, I love those hacks because for so many of you and myself included at times, especially, when I'm feeling frustrated with myself or just like in a headspace where I don't feel creative, it's much more likely you're going to have resistance to the camera. So, having these abilities to make it easier to be on camera, super smart idea, and something that I highly recommend encouraging you to do.

Now, the premise of like asking the basic questions to get started the frequently asked questions, so important for you all to hear this because I think so many people assume you have to create new content. And by new content, I mean, like, brand new to the fucking world content, not like coming out of your mouth for the first time new.

And most content is recycled, or just repeated, or said from a different vantage point, or a different perspective. Remember that your audience is going to be attracted to you, and want to follow you, and work with you because of how you talk about what you're talking about. It's not about the topic, it's about how you show up. So, that's really important to know.

The consistency piece is fucking huge. I cannot highlight that enough. And something Austin talks about a lot of the time because I follow your content, that's how I found you in the first place. But like, is the 80/20 concept or really giving away most of your information for free. And I think that is so, so important because you're just establishing and building trust and rapport with your audience. It's not about what comes next. The what comes next can't happen if your audience doesn't trust you, if they don't like you enough to pay you, or work with you. So, it really is about giving most of your information away for free because, again, you're not the first person to give advice on A, B, C, D and E your answer questions, you know, that you found. So, really important stuff here, and really an easy, easy way to get started.

And with Syllaby, I think this is a really fantastic resource for those of you who "Okay, I'm going to commit to doing this, this is going to be my strategy." Let's do this consistently for the next couple of months. And let's see how the growth starts to kind of trend in the right direction. Get yourself on some of these platforms, really be consistent about it, and test things out. Some things are going to work really well, some things are not.

The things that don't work well, like Austin just said, like 100,000 views for most of us is like, "Oh my God." 20 million views is insane. So, like, just the ability to create that type of organic growth is out there. And that just means more opportunities for you for podcast appearances, speaker presentations, book deals, coaching programs, leveraging reputability. I mean, there are so many opportunities for you as mental health professionals, your skill sets are so applicable and transferable into so many arenas, and like Austin said before, truly doing a disservice when you're not able to speak about these things because it is helping normalize the human condition. And that's what we're doing is we sell relational work. We're also highlighting and showcasing that healing matters and it takes place and it is trans formative. That can't happen if we're not willing to talk about it.

So, Austin, I just want to thank you for sharing all of these wonderful resources, tips, tricks, strategies. Austin is actually going to be one of our keynote speakers at the Doubt Yourself, Do It Anyway summit in Italy next September 2024, which is going to be amazing. And just talking about everything that you just talked about to an enormous audience about how to get out of your own way. That's really the theme of the event. Like, doubt yourself, do it anyway. Get it out of your own way because you all have the ability to start this today.

Austin, thanks again for coming on and just being an awesome force in the industry, sharing your wisdom and your knowledge constantly. If you're not following him, Socialty Pro on all the social media channels. I highly recommend it. But please tell the audience where they can find Syllaby and anything else that you all are doing today.

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: Yeah, thank you so much. I'm so looking forward to meeting and seeing people in person in Italy. What an incredible event that that's going to be. I'm just blessed to be able to be there, man. So, thank you for that.

Yeah, if you want to try Syllaby, it's S-Y-L-L-A-B-Y-.-I-O. I'm sure there might be a link in the show notes of this episode. But yeah, you can try a free trial of it to see if you like it before you actually sign up and use it. But we've built it with you in mind from repeatable processes of working in this industry for the last nine years. So, if you just don't know how or where to get started, we built this for you.

PATRICK CASALE: Love it, love it. Thank you so much. And thanks for coming on. Congratulations and all the success, and continued success, and really looking forward to meet you in person and have a really awesome kick-ass summit in a small medieval village in the middle of nowhere in Italy.

AUSTIN ARMSTRONG: You know, I sent a picture of the stage to my mom and she's jealous. I'm like, "That stage looks so cool. I am so looking forward to speaking at that stage."

PATRICK CASALE: I think the stage could have sold the event without the views and without the constant like, "Oh, this is where the talks are going to be. Also, we're going to host karaoke on this 18th-century broke theater." Like, yeah, it sounds [INDISCERNIBLE 00:26:57].


PATRICK CASALE: So, for everyone listening, all of Austin's information will be in the show notes for easy access. And to everyone listening to the All Things Private Practice Podcast, there are new episodes out every single week on all major podcast platforms and YouTube. Like, download, subscribe, and share. Doubt yourself, do it anyway. See you next week.


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