Let’s be frank: Most people do not enjoy going to the doctor.
It’s nothing personal. Maybe they’re afraid that the doctor will discover that something’s wrong or recommend them for an extensive procedure. Or maybe doctors just make them nervous.
Either way, you’re tasked with providing excellent 5-star service to people who—in all honesty—would probably prefer not to be in your office.
So how can you get stellar reviews for your practice—even from the guy who needs a colonoscopy?
Getting positive reviews isn’t as simple as following a recipe—there are several factors that work together to create and maintain a great brand reputation. However, these principles lie at the heart of each marketing and reputation building strategy.
1. To Be, Rather Than to Seem
If you want to be a 5-star practice, you need to act like a 5-star practice.
If patients are receiving poor service, no marketing plan in the world can transform your reviews.
This means you shouldn’t just “seem” like a world-class practice. You have to be one.
Instead of worrying about having “good PR” to cover for any negative encounter, start by making sure everything is in place to ensure a negative encounter doesn’t happen at all.
- Does my practice provide a welcoming, calming environment?
- Do we greet patients in a courteous and professional manner?
- Do we provide quality service?
- Do we help our patients with filing insurance and financial information?
- Do patients refer us to family and friends?
- Do we offer technological innovations and products our patients want and need?
If you don’t have a solid answer to any of these, it’s time to take a careful look at your practice and think about your goals.
2. Every Encounter, Every Time
All it takes is one.
Sure, one may not seem like a large number, but when it comes to your Google+, Yelp or Facebook review ratings, that “one” can lower your overall score.
The key to getting great reviews is not only providing stellar service, but also doing so consistently.
After every encounter, you should follow up to ask about patients’ experience and ask them to leave a review.
There are several different ways to solicit these reviews.
For example, requests for reviews can be sent to patients via email when you confirm their next appointment. Sometimes, this can be done through your practice’s own medical record software. It may be more convenient for patients if you hand out a business card with a link to your Google reviews page.
No one approach is the answer—it all depends on your practice.
3. Never Let Them Leave Angry
No one should leave your practice upset. Ever.
If you question the impact of one bad experience, consider this: Have you ever left a store angry over the service (or lack thereof) you received? What did you do about it?
Most likely, you told your friends.
Now imagine your patient having that same experience. And telling all of his/ her friends about it. And leaving a horrible review on Yelp.
It’s important to have any issue involving a disgruntled patient resolved before they leave the practice.
At Proclaim Interactive, we work with medical practices to monitor these bad reviews and solicit positive ones. We’ve seen 2-star feedback change to 5-star feedback.
The average Google+ star rating for our medical clients increases .2 a month because of our customized rep building program.
4. Who’s Watching the Store?
You are being reviewed, whether you realize it or not.
Who is monitoring these reviews? Who is responding to them?
There are several review sites. The most popular include Google+, Yelp, Facebook and Vitals. Just because you have a positive review on Yelp doesn’t mean that your score on Google+ is also positive.
You became a dentist not because you wanted to be on social media–but because you wanted to help people through a profession that was both challenging and rewarding.
You may not have time to jump through all these hoops and check all these places. That’s where Proclaim comes in. We monitor these sites so you don’t have to.
Better Reviews Help Amplify Your Message
We’re well-versed in handling all types of social media and reviews.
We understand the importance of reviews as a part of an overall marketing strategy for amplifying your message. Contact us for more information on how we can help you
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Established in 2000, Proclaim Interactive is an award-winning, think-out-of-the-box digital marketing agency located in Wilmington, NC. Proclaim Interactive provides website design, social media management, SEO and general marketing services designed to amplify clients’ messages. For more information call 910.795.4143.