300 episodes

With 1.81 million+ downloads, Selling the Couch is an Apple Top Career podcast for current and future mental health private practitioners who think differently. Psychologist Melvin Varghese interviews successful therapists in private practice about how they built their businesses as well as top entrepreneurs, business/marketing, and social media experts.*

You'll learn how therapists get referrals, grow their practices, work through fears, find their enough, and stop "trading time for income." Melvin also shares the lessons as he grows his impact + income beyond the therapy room (podcasting, YouTube, writing, online courses, masterminds, investing, etc) and the tips and tools he uses to grow STC from a single-person business to the CEO of a 6-figure business.*

Featured in Psychology Today, Good Therapy, and Psych Central

****Get show notes and even more good stuff at sellingthecouch.com/stcpodcast*

Selling the Couch Melvin Varghese, PhD

    • Business
    • 4.9 • 327 Ratings

With 1.81 million+ downloads, Selling the Couch is an Apple Top Career podcast for current and future mental health private practitioners who think differently. Psychologist Melvin Varghese interviews successful therapists in private practice about how they built their businesses as well as top entrepreneurs, business/marketing, and social media experts.*

You'll learn how therapists get referrals, grow their practices, work through fears, find their enough, and stop "trading time for income." Melvin also shares the lessons as he grows his impact + income beyond the therapy room (podcasting, YouTube, writing, online courses, masterminds, investing, etc) and the tips and tools he uses to grow STC from a single-person business to the CEO of a 6-figure business.*

Featured in Psychology Today, Good Therapy, and Psych Central

****Get show notes and even more good stuff at sellingthecouch.com/stcpodcast*

    ENCORE: How To Make Money From Your Podcast Without Just Relying On Sponsors with Melvin Varghese PhD

    ENCORE: How To Make Money From Your Podcast Without Just Relying On Sponsors with Melvin Varghese PhD

    Podcast sponsorship is often seen as the “golden goose” of podcasting. We started working with sponsors on STC a few years ago, and they have generated over $95k to this point. However, I’ve learned that relying solely on sponsorships is not the wisest stance because your success rides the ebbs and flows of another company’s marketing budget. I’m very grateful for the sponsors who have worked with us, but I don’t want to depend on them for the main source of income for STC. Today, I’m sharing three ways you can make money from your podcast from Day One, without having to depend on securing sponsors down the road. Join me for a closer look!
    You’ll Learn:
    The increasing responsibility I feel to be a good steward in today’s podcasting environmentThree ways to make money from your podcast from Day One:One-on-one work–I share how to use analytics to pinpoint your niche and impact to specialize your focus and offerings. (I use and recommend Fathom Analytics.)Scalable work–This includes things you can continue to do for the next 8-10 years, like paid speaking engagements, coaching groups, therapy groups, writing books, and establishing a “private podcast” feed. Online courses–The time and energy investment comes on the front end, but they become an asset into which you can invite others.It’s best to view podcast sponsorship as “the cherry on the top” that may come to you, but not as the financial foundation to depend on from month to month.Our free podcasting workshop can help you launch your podcast! 
    Resources:
    Want to launch your podcast?
    Check out our free podcasting workshop for therapists (and therapists turned coaches and consultants)
    https://sellingthecouch.com/podcastingworshop
    Want to launch your online course?
    Please check out our free 7-Day Course Creator Starter Kit For Therapists: https://sellingthecouch.com/coursekit

    • 20 min
    ENCORE: Low Risk Ways To Host Your First Retreat with Megan Gunnell

    ENCORE: Low Risk Ways To Host Your First Retreat with Megan Gunnell

    Hosting a retreat sounds like a great idea, right? When you stop and think about all the logistical and financial details, that’s when many fears and questions come to the surface. Perhaps the biggest fear is whether enough people will pay for your retreat to make it a success. Join us as we dive into this topic with today’s expert guest!
    Our Featured Guest
    Megan Gunnell
    In addition to being a business owner, author, and triathlete, Megan Gunnell is a Clinical Social Worker who has been hosting 1-day retreats, workshops and weekend/week long retreats for 20+ years.
    She hosted her first one at a local community center–complete with harp music! From these humble beginnings, Megan’s retreats have evolved into weekend retreats and international retreats that started in 2012 in Costa Rica, Italy, France, and other places around the globe.
    In this episode, we discuss why therapists find it so appealing to consider hosting a retreat, along with common fears related to the risk of hosting your first retreat.
    Megan explains how to find suitable venues that offer 100% refund options and points out the important legal and logistical considerations. We wrap up our conversation by discussing retreat marketing, which is vital to the success of your retreat. Megan shares what she has learned along her journey as a retreat host. 
    Megan's Website and Thriving Therapists ® Facebook Group
    You’ll Learn:
    Megan’s inspiration to expand beyond private practice into hosting retreatsMegan’s #1 lesson learned: Start small and grow later.The attraction of retreats? They are transformative spaces for people to pull away from everyday life and reinvigorate their passion and purpose.The major differences between private practice work and group retreats as income sourcesLegal considerations around liability, disclaimers, emergencies, etc.Megan’s low-risk tips for hosting retreats:Start small with a test audience and test venue with a half-day or one-day retreat.Look for 100% refundable venues through a certain date prior to the event.Do the math and “beta-test” your audience.Making your retreat a profitable ventureFinding 100% fully refundable venues—and why international properties are desirableMegan’s top marketing strategies for retreats:Be very clear about your intentions. (Who is this for, and what is the purpose?)Think about your runway. (Make sure it is long enough to “land the plane.”)Build a warm excitement with your audience around the date for open registration.Handling the cancellation or rebooking of your retreat with flexibility and transparency
    Resources:
    Want to launch your podcast? Check out our free podcasting workshop
    https://sellingthecouch.com/podcastingworshop
    Want to launch your online course?
    Please check out our free 7-Day Course Creator Starter Kit For Therapists: https://sellingthecouch.com/coursekit
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Check Out PsycCareers!
    If you’re a psychology professional who is ready to take the next step in their career, check out PsycCareers, the American Psychological Association Services, Inc’s career center. PsycCareers is home to over 400 open positions tailored specifically for psychology professionals. Start your journey...

    • 52 min
    ENCORE: The Anxiety Of Finding A Private Practice Niche

    ENCORE: The Anxiety Of Finding A Private Practice Niche

    About a month ago, I shared that I’ve decided to go into private practice, in addition to keeping STC running and growing. There are three main reasons for this decision: I miss the therapy room, a clinical arm to my business is a wise move, and I’ll be able to more strategically diversify my income. I think this venture will offer new opportunities for the future that are beneficial in many ways, but, to be honest, this decision has brought me some anxiety, insomnia, and depression.
    I’m addressing these issues with my wonderful therapist, and I’m doing all the things that we therapists tell our clients to do. My worries and fears are probably normal for someone who feels the pressure to be successful in multiple businesses and endeavors. In today’s solo session, I’m sharing my insights on finding my private practice niche. Join me for a closer look!
    You’ll Learn: 
    What is a niche, and how did I choose my niche for private practice? Who do I want to work with?My top four insights on finding my private practice niche:Niches are living and breathing things that evolve over time.Family and friends will always recommend people outside your niche.There is a relational component to marketing beyond your website.Even though my niche focuses on tech and business founders, working within other branches of these niches will add diversity to my work. (These last two insights come from my friends, Raj Lulla and Ben Lueders, the founders of Fruitful Design.)
    Resources:
    Interested in becoming part of our affiliate program? Learn more at
    https://sellingthecouch.com/jointhehealthcasters  
    Want to launch your online course?
    Please check out our free 7-Day Course Creator Starter Kit For Therapists: https://sellingthecouch.com/coursekit
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Check Out PsycCareers!
    If you’re a psychology professional who is ready to take the next step in their career, check out PsycCareers, the American Psychological Association Services, Inc’s career center. PsycCareers is home to over 400 open positions tailored specifically for psychology professionals. Start your journey today by exploring opportunities that inspire and challenge you at sellingthecouch.com/apa.

    • 26 min
    ENCORE: Using Brainspotting To Work With Athletes

    ENCORE: Using Brainspotting To Work With Athletes

    Today’s session is all about brainspotting, a powerful and fascinating psychotherapy technique that I have personally found to be helpful. Specifically, we discuss the technique as it is used to help performance athletes. Join us to learn more!
    Our Featured Guest
    Thad Frye, LCSW
    Thad Frye is a licensed clinical social worker in Boulder, CO. As a certified brainspotting consultant, Thad has gone through multiple levels of training in this therapy technique. In our conversation, Thad explains why he was motivated to pursue training in brainspotting after previously focusing his work with families through hospice care and end-of-life journeys. He describes the technical aspects of brainspotting and how he uses it in his work with athletes, specifically in those with the “yips,” a puzzling phenomenon of the loss of an ability.
    Thad Frye Counseling and Brainspotting Coaching for Athletes
    You’ll Learn:
    Why Thad pursued training in brainspotting in 2016 as a way to serve families betterHow Thad experienced the somatic connection with his personal grief in new and real ways during his brainspotting trainingHow brainspotting differs from EMDRTechnical aspects of “inside window” and “outside window” reflexes within brainspottingHow different clients might respond during a brainspotting sessionHow training phases are structured in the brainspotting certification processWhy Thad chose to use brainspotting with performance athletesHow Thad uses brainspotting with athletes who experience muscle-guarding and the “yips”
    Resources:
    Interested in becoming part of our affiliate program? Learn more at
    https://sellingthecouch.com/jointhehealthcasters  
    Want to launch your online course?
    Please check out our free 7-Day Course Creator Starter Kit For Therapists: https://sellingthecouch.com/coursekit
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Check Out PsycCareers!
    If you’re a psychology professional who is ready to take the next step in their career, check out PsycCareers, the American Psychological Association Services, Inc’s career center. PsycCareers is home to over 400 open positions tailored specifically for psychology professionals. Start your journey today by exploring opportunities that inspire and challenge you at sellingthecouch.com/apa.

    • 40 min
    ENCORE: What Therapists Should Know As Billions Are Invested In Mental Health Startups

    ENCORE: What Therapists Should Know As Billions Are Invested In Mental Health Startups

    Today’s session covers a topic that many clinicians are pondering. Many, like me, are having conversations with themselves in their heads about the available opportunities and the most efficient and ethical ways not to be left behind as technology presents new options in our field. The issue is how we can navigate the world of mental health tech startups that are available to join us to support our good work. Examples of what these startups provide are electronic health records, website design, marketing, and more. The truth is that the pandemic changed everything and catapulted the tech startup world into the range of billions of dollars. Don’t miss my enlightening conversation with today’s guest!
    Our Featured Guest
    Michael Fulwiler
    Michael Fulwiler is Head of Brand Marketing at Heard, a company that assists therapists with bookkeeping and financial needs. I’ve come to rely on Mike’s expertise as a good friend as I navigate the aspects of STC, trying to be a protector of our field while staying in alignment with my values. In this session, Mike and I discuss the mindblowing numbers around the multitude of mental health tech startups and how clinicians can be informed about which ones are most likely to succeed or fail. We also discuss the vitally important topic of client data privacy and the top three considerations we should have before signing up for a product or service. 
    Heard Website
    You’ll Learn: 
    How to view tech startups in the mental health industry in terms of “headwind” and “tailwind” tendencies since the COVID-19 pandemicWhat the data shows about tech startups: 90% will fail!Why the big risk also comes with big opportunities in the startup worldWhat happens when a clinician contracts with a mental health tech startupWhy client data privacy is a valid concern when working with a tech startup (Hear Mike’s advice about watching out for red flags!)Top three considerations for a therapist about a tech startup:How they handle the data Whether or not there is a mental health professional on their team who helps with decisions and developmentHow compensation for therapists is structuredMike’s advice about doing your due diligence when contacted by a tech startupAn overview of Mike’s work and mission at Heard and what they provide for therapists
    Resources:
    So you’ve probably heard that blogging is one of the best ways to attract your ideal clients as a therapist. 
    But I know that it can be intimidating to SEO optimize your blog post so that it’s actually getting found by your current and future clients. 
    Simplified SEO Consulting is a team of mental health professionals who genuinely want to help you attract more of your ideal clients using a proven on-page SEO process.
    Please visit https://sellingthecouch.com/simplifiedseo.
    **Use the code “MELVIN” to get 20% off any online, DIY SEO courses, and mention Melvin during your consultation for $100 off your onboarding fee for Done-For-You SEO services!
    Interested in becoming part of our affiliate program? Learn more at
    https://sellingthecouch.com/jointhehealthcasters  
    Want to launch your online course?
    Please check out our free 7-Day Course Creator Starter Kit For Therapists: https://sellingthecouch.com/coursekit
    Mentioned...

    • 37 min
    ENCORE What I Learned from Creating a Course for CEUs with Matthew Bierds

    ENCORE What I Learned from Creating a Course for CEUs with Matthew Bierds

    Many of us have thought about creating continuing education courses and wondered how the process works and what factors are involved. Who better to learn from than someone who has done this successfully? Being successful at CEU course creation takes innovation, creativity, and an entrepreneurial spirit. Join us for informative insights from today’s guest!
    Our Featured Guest
    Matthew Bierds
    Matt Bierds, from Duke City Counseling, is a licensed professional counselor, course creator, and professional speaker who does in-person and virtual counseling and LPC supervision in Texas and New Mexico. As far back as ten years ago, Matt realized that the world of online education was expanding, and he knew there were interesting opportunities for LPCs in the area of online courses. After jumping into this arena, Matt went through a “failing forward” phase before making a few tweaks and creating a course for LPC supervisors. In today’s session, Matt shares the lessons learned along his fascinating journey and the mistakes and successes that have brought him to where he is today. 
    Matt's Website
    You’ll Learn:
    Matt’s wisdom: “I learned the hard way that selling general continuing education courses online is pointless and a waste of time and money.”The value in pivoting and niching down when something isn’t workingDiscovering the sweet spot: How Matt created a course designed for a specific person in a specific situationCourse creation is successful when you see the need and solve the pain point.Matt’s path to building trust and cultivating repeat customersThe progression and development of Matt’s 40-hour course and 6-hour refresher coursesThe challenges in maintaining compliance and navigating changes in licensing requirementsCourse creation challenges: creating content and incorporating more video interaction and student engagementMatt’s biggest mistakes and successes in marketing his courses
    Resources:
    So you’ve probably heard that blogging is one of the best ways to attract your ideal clients as a therapist. 
    But I know that it can be intimidating to SEO optimize your blog post so that it’s actually getting found by your current and future clients. 
    Please visit https://sellingthecouch.com/simplifiedseo.
    **Use the code “MELVIN” to get 20% off any online, DIY SEO courses, and mention Melvin during your consultation for $100 off your onboarding fee for Done-For-You SEO services!
    Interested in becoming part of our affiliate program? Learn more at
    https://sellingthecouch.com/jointhehealthcasters  
    Want to launch your online course?
    Please check out our free 7-Day Course Creator Starter Kit For Therapists: https://sellingthecouch.com/coursekit
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Check Out PsycCareers!
    If you’re a psychology professional who is ready to take the next step in their career, check out PsycCareers, the American Psychological Association Services, Inc’s career center. PsycCareers is home to over 400 open positions tailored specifically for psychology professionals. Start your journey today by exploring opportunities that inspire and challenge you at sellingthecouch.com/apa.

    • 37 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
327 Ratings

327 Ratings

EngagedMarriage.com ,

Approachable and Insightful

Melvin does a masterful job of interviewing a variety of experts, and offering his own insights. I am not a mental health professional, but I still gain a lot of value from this show. I highly recommend it!

JP10301 ,

Thoughtful, brave, kind

I am not a therapist but this podcast is top notch! Mel is thoughtful, brave, and kind. He is a gifted speaker who shares in an authentic and personal way. He has a niche to be sure but his lessons transcend (especially if you are interest in creating content online). He is a gift to the podcast feed!

lisa mustard ,

Honest & transparent

I truly appreciate Melvin’s authenticity. He shares so much of his journey and process with his listeners. His guests range with a variety of expertise and knowledge..I learn something new in each episode!

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