Doctors need a professional image and ensuring that this is monitored and kept in the right shape is important. We asked Cormac Reynolds of VelSEOity to provide us with some tips on reputation management For doctors and he happily obliged.
Search The Internet
To determine what your online reputation is, you need to search for your practice online instead of focusing on your ranking compared to your competition. This search will let you see what people are saying. If you do not know what is being said, you cannot stay on top of any potential risks.
When you complete this search, you will come across review websites and search directories. You need to take the time to look at these websites because a single negative comment on there can affect your whole online reputation. It is recommended that you prioritize looking are review sites that are focused on medical practitioners.
Be Professional When Handling Negative Comments
You should not simply look at the review sites once or twice each month. You need to be prepared to face any bad reviews being left. It is important to note that bad reviews are inevitable and you should not avoid them. The damage these reviews can do will be direct and long-lasting when you do not address them. This is why you need to handle any bad reviews in a constructive manner.
Most review sites will allow you to comment to the reviews that mention you. However, you do need to be careful and not worsen the situation. You need to take some time to reflect on the review and then answer it in a polite manner. The route you take will depend on the comment, but you should consider apologizing if needed and making it clear that the person’s concern has been noted.
You should also show that you care about what they say and that you will focus on improving the issue. When you respond, you should do this publicly because this will show potential patients that you value feedback. It also makes you appear more approachable and credible.
Encourage Good Reviews
The rating you have on review sites can be compromised by the fact that happy patients generally do not go online to post about their experience. Any unhappy patients will be more than willing to tell people about their bad experience. This means that you need to get as many positive reviews as you can. A lot of medical professionals do not want to ask patients to write a review on a specific site, but encouraging this is acceptable and something you should consider.
If the situation is right, you could ask one of your happy patients to write an honest review for you on a popular review website. If the patient is willing, you can also display this review on your website. Customer recommendations and testimonials will make you more credible. A lot of happy patients will be willing to leave a review, but will generally not think about this unless you suggest it.
Post Unique Content
When you build a positive online reputation, you need to control the amount and nature of content online. You will have no control over what other people write about you, but you can decide what you write about. There are a number of ways that you can create positive content around your practice.
Using social media accounts where you post favorable content is a good idea. You can also use blogs and your website to reaffirm your credibility and knowledge of your field. When you regularly post positive content, you will start to drown out the negative and make it harder for people to find. This will take time, but you will notice an improvement in your online reputation.
While addressing public negative feedback is important, you need to ensure that this negative feedback will not happen again. This is why you should avoid the mindset that managing your online reputation is the end goal. Your goal needs to be to learn from your mistakes and avoid repeating them.
Your online reputation is a direct result of how you act offline. With this being the case, improving your offline conduct will improve your online reputation. Being the best medical professional you can be will benefit you more than managing your reputation.
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