Dr Marny Lishman is a Perth psychologist working with individuals in mental health. She has recently been featured on t.v., radio and WA newspapers and is now a regular columnist for Perth Now. Over the years, she has worked with thousands of people with all kinds of health issues – from individuals living with mental health problems such as anxiety and depression through to people living with chronic health conditions. But really, she sees herself as a helper of people who are totally out of balance.
In this interview
Marny reflects on her work with Julissa on her personal brand and how this has helped shape her career and bring increased success.
What work do you do and how has this evolved from where you started out?
I am a Health & Community Psychologist and over the years I have worked in a variety of roles including different health projects, lecturing at universities and training health professionals. For the last 4 years I have been running my own private practice “Clarity Health” where clients can see me for individual consultations. About a year ago I felt that I needed to expand what I was doing as there are only a certain amount of clients I can see in one week, and I felt that there were so many people with psychological and physical health issues that if I made my work more accessible on a community level, I could actually help a hell of a lot more people. I am also really passionate about reducing the stigma of mental illness and making psychology more modern and publicly accessible.
So I have taken on a different direction and started developing on-line programs such as “The Anxious Mind” and “The Stressed Goddess”. Which has now led to writing articles for a variety of women’s magazines and becoming a columnist for Perth Now. I can now help people on a larger scale.
What does ‘personal branding’ mean to you, and why has it been a focus for you?
Working online and in the media now has meant learning about a whole new world of personal branding and marketing. To be honest, I had no idea of the importance of personal branding when I set up my private practice, although looking back it would have been so helpful. I first became aware of the importance of personal branding when I had my first photo shoot with Julissa. She really made me think hard about who my niche group was and what I wanted to project to the public. It was so much more than just a photo of myself (which I was thinking was all I needed). These points are now continually reinforced in everything I do now whether it is working online, in the paper or on television. I have to always be thinking about how I present myself, particularly visually.
What elements of your personal brand did you need to work on or highlight to get your message across and attract the right clients?
I think one element of my personal brand that I really needed to highlight was that of just being myself and not having to appeal to EVERYONE. It allowed me to stop trying to want everyone as my client, and just focus on being me and working with people who I love working with the most. Not everyone needs to like me, but if people feel comfortable in working with me and being a client of mine, then that is great. I learnt a lot of this working in Julissa’s branding training and just in our chats on our photo shoots. If I am comfortable in myself, and doing what I love doing, then it is going to radiate on to others. It’s okay if it isn’t everyone, as there are plenty of other great psychologists out there that would fit with those types of people.
How has a clear personal brand strategy helped your business grow?
Once I was clear on my personal brand strategy – which is only in the last 6 months – my business grew tremendously. It has allowed me to be comfortable in just being me, and projecting that in my marketing. This in turn has attracted the media as well as the exact people that I love working with, and the ones I know I can make a huge difference in their lives.