Five Strategies for Improving Your Online Reputation

It is easy for potential patients to find out about your practice before they even step foot in your office – online reviews, post comments, and ratings are at their fingertips. Because of this, medical practices need to have a healthy and robust online reputation.

Follow these five simple steps for improving your online reputation while keeping things positive.

Monitor regularly.

Perform a raw, online search for your practice and evaluate everything you see. Ensure the information provided is accurate, and everything they need to know about your practice is readily available.

It is essential to continually monitor how you are being portrayed online and ensure the information is current and potential patients get the correct information.

Create a strong social media presence.

If you don’t have a Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Twitter account, create some as soon as possible. Post engaging and relatable content for your patients, post regularly, and use quality photos. Some other tips for building your social media presence include:

  • Define your goals – Decide if you want to build SEO, become a thought leader, or just engage with other professionals.
  • Choose a few platforms and become an expert – Instead of posting on every possible platform, choose one or two and get very familiar with those.
  • Be timely and consistent – Social media is all about engaging with the right people at the right time.

Encourage your patients to post testimonials.

According to recent studies, 88 percent of customers trust online reviews as much as they would a personal recommendation. So, it’s crucial to be proactive about getting online reviews. However, it is essential to be smart when doing so. Add links to Yelp or your other social media pages in emails, start a Facebook campaign, or keep it simple with comments cards.

Whatever method you chose, keep it consistent (without being overbearing), and be sure to follow up with any responses.

[Want more tips for marketing your medical practice? Click here!]

Engage with your patients.

Now that your patients have reviewed your practice, it is time to engage with them. Don’t ignore the community that went out of their way to comment or rate your business. Taking the time to respond tells the patient reviewing you that you care. It also tells future patients that you are a practitioner committed to your patients on a personal level.

Don’t ignore bad reviews.

You cannot make everyone happy, so bad reviews are bound to happen. When coming across a negative review, contact the patient, and express that you’d like to discuss their concerns.

Responding to them personally increases the chances of the negative review being removed. If you choose to respond online, don’t get into specifics, and always keep it professional.

Patients comment on everything from office tidiness to a doctor’s bedside manner, so be prepared for the good and the bad. Discovering what patients are saying about your practice online provides an opportunity to improve.

In today’s tech-savvy world, patient experience is more important than ever. Use the feedback, whether it be positive or negative, to your advantage. We hope these tips help you build your online presence while connecting with and engaging with your patients. If you have any strategies to add, be sure to let us know via our Facebook page.

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
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