Online reviews have a tremendous impact on your medical practice. In fact, reviews can shape your bottom line more than advertising. Potential patients say that online reviews play a major role in choosing a plastic surgeon. Welcome to the era of online transparency where any action or comment by you or your staff may be communicated publicly. Here are some tips to optimize your online reviews.
- Don’t shy away from online reviews because of one or two bad reviews. Ask the reviewer to contact your office so you have an opportunity to resolve the issue. Then, move on with your review strategy. Five-star reviews are the most effective way to counter a poor review, so ask happy patients for reviews.
- Incenting reviews can put a doctor in a precarious position. Most online review sites warn against incenting reviews. Some will punish you for it. But, let’s look at incenting another way. If a reviewer mentions that he/she was “paid” in some way for a review, your reviews lose value. Your reputation suffers as your credibility drops. Today’s technology allows you to easily follow up with patients to obtain great reviews. Choose that route instead of opening the door to problems that can be associated with incenting reviews.
- Claim your listings on primary review sites. Google, Facebook, Healthgrades, Vitals, RateMDs, Yelp, etc. You may also wish to claim secondary local listings such as directories and local listings. Claiming your listings gives you the opportunity to correct misinformation and add a description and contact numbers. In addition, many online review sites allow you to respond to online reviews if you own your listing.
- Thank your reviewer when the review site allows it. If the site doesn’t allow comments but shows the reviewers name, send the reviewer an email or text. A simple thank you goes a long way in patient/doctor relationships.
- Make the most of your reviews by sharing them. Not everyone is a Yelper. All patients aren’t on Facebook. That’s why it is important to share your reviews on your website and social media. You can do this on your own or use Internet technology to collect and share your reviews.
Word of mouth translates to online reviews in today’s world. Do you need help in making sure that potential patients are sizing you up correctly? Are you getting your share of reviews? Contact our PUMC experts to discuss how to optimize your online reviews.