Online Reputation Management for Doctors
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Online Reputation Management for Doctors
Curated and Written Articles to help Physicians and Other Healthcare Providers manage reputation online. Tips on Social media, SEO, Online Review Managements and Medical Websites
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5 Tips to Remove Google Reviews

5 Tips to Remove Google Reviews | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Bad reviews are hard for business owners to read. When you do your best to run a quality business each day, a bad review can feel like a personal attack. This is especially true for Google reviews, which are often the first thing customers see about your business online. If you’re wondering about how to remove Google reviews, you do have some options.   

5 Tips to Remove Real and False Google Reviews

First, it’s important to understand what Google reviews are and why they exist.

The reviews submitted to Google, which appear in a search along with your location, hours, and other information, are attached your Google Business profile. You can claim your profile and make a Google Business account for free at any time, but this profile and the attached reviews will exist either way.

Google Business reviews are primarily for customers using the Google search engine. Just like the search engine itself, the goal of the reviews is to provide information and help customers make decisions.

Google reviews are supposed to be honest accounts of an experience by a real customer. However, this is not always the case. Competitors, spammers, former employees or other disgruntled people may write a bad review when they never even used your products or services. Since these reviews are false, you have options you wouldn’t have for true reviews. For this reason, we’ll divide this post into tips to remove true and false Google reviews.

Tips to Remove a Real Google Review

What is a real Google review? It’s pretty simple; a real Google review is a truthful review of your business from a real customer.

First thing’s first; you can’t remove a review simply because it’s bad. If that were the case, every review would be positive and reading Google reviews would be pretty pointless. However, there’s still hope for removing bad Google reviews, even if they’re true.

1. Ask the Customer to Edit Their Review

Google reviews are not permanent. The original reviewer can delete or change their review, but you’ll have to change their mind first.

First, determine whether or not this is a reasonable person who actually could change their mind. If the reviewer left a long list of emotionally-charged complaints, or it’s clear that the product or service simply isn’t for them (for example, a quiet person at a noisy bar or a meat-lover at a vegan restaurant), they probably won’t change their mind. Respond to their review respectfully, but remember that there are a few positive effects of negative reviews.

Perhaps the customer left a bad review because something just went wrong—the service was slow, the chef was having an off day, or a defective product somehow fell into the customer’s hands. These are reviews that are most likely to be fixed. Try the following strategy:

  • Respond to the review. Thank them for taking the time to write, and apologize for the mistake. Inform them the situation has been rectified, and you’d like a chance to make it up to them. Give them your contact information or ask them to visit again for a special offer.
  • If they contact you or visit, make sure you deliver what you promised. Be friendly, and thank them for visiting or using your service again.
  • Finally, follow up and ask them if they would change their review. Emphasize the importance of reviews, and give them instructions on how they can change it.

A customer can edit their review pretty easily. Follow these steps.

    1. Go to Google Maps. You can search any location to get there.
    2. In the upper left-hand corner, click the menu icon (three horizontal lines).
    3. Click “Your contributions.” Click “Reviews”
    4. Find the review in question, and click the three vertical dots near the business name.
    5. Click “Edit review” and rewrite or change the review.  

2. Push the Review Down

Most people read less than 6 reviews of a business. This means, though you may not be able to actually remove the review from your listing, you can essentially remove the Google review from sight by adding other positive reviews. If you get six more positive reviews, most people won’t see the bad one. If you get 10, you’ve effectively removed the Google review for 90% of customers.

How do you get more Google reviews? It won’t happen overnight, but you can make a focused effort to add more reviews over a short time frame. Start a testimonial collection promotion to rally your customers and get more reviews. Use Boast to get more Google Business Reviews and save time by automating this process. Try some of the following methods to gather reviews fast;

  • Set up a review collection kiosk in the store.
  • Periodically ask customers in the store to leave a review.
  • Put a review request at the bottom of receipts
  • Start a review collection campaign or contest
  • Ask customers for a review at the end of a meeting, or when your business together has concluded.
  • Include review requests with packages.
  • Start a review request email campaign.
  • Contact previous customers where possible to ask reviews.
  • Include a review request at a check-out line or waiting room
  • Include a review request with a follow-up email

Learn other ways to save time and automate your testimonial collection process. 
Download the Free Testimonial Automation Guide.

3. Rebrand

Big companies that have had serious PR debacles know the value in rebranding. WorldCom, the biggest accounting fraudster in U.S. history, became MCI Inc (later Verizon Communications). Marlboro maker Phillip Morris rebranded to Altria to distance themselves from deathly cigarettes. Hundreds of other major and minor companies have rebranded in similar ways. If you have a lot of bad reviews and you don’t see a way to repair your reputation, this is an option to consider. However, it will take your existing business literally off the map, so this should only be a last resort.

 

A rebrand means physically and digitally changing your business. This means changing your business name, logo and website, at the very least. With this complete, you’ll need to close your Google Business account and inform Google that the previous business has closed. You’ll see this option in your Google Business account, if you have one, and you can also use the “Feedback” option at the bottom of your search results card. This will bring up a message box to “mark as closed, non-existent, or duplicate.”   It will take some time for Google to verify this, but the listing will eventually disappear from search results.

Then you’ll need to register a new Google Business account, inputting your new business name, phone number, website, address (where possible) and other information. This means starting from a clean slate, so gathering good reviews right from the start will be important.

Remember that this is a strategy to completely change your business and start with a clean reputation. This is not a way to simply trick Google, trick customers and keep the rest of your business the same. “Closing” your business in order to get rid of bad reviews and then reopening it again under the same won’t work, and you may be banned from Google completely for violating their terms of service.

A full-scale rebrand is a big undertaking. Consider this option carefully and consider repairing your business reputation first.

Tips to Remove a Fake Google Review

What is a fake Google Business review? Also pretty simple. It’s a review that is not truthful and/or not written by a real customer.

It is possible to remove these Google reviews, though proving they are fake can be difficult.  All of the previous strategies may work with a fake review as well, though getting a fraudulent poster to change their review is unlikely.

4. Flag and Respond

If the reviewer doesn’t look or sound familiar, they may be fake. Check your records if you can, and see if you have done business with this person. Also, check the reviewer’s other reviews. Fake reviews tend to be non-specific, while real reviews will include details about that person’s experience.

 

If you’re fairly certain the review is fake, first flag it as spam and report it. This signals Google staff to look it over and remove it if it is obviously fake. It will also show the message, “This review has been flagged and reported to Google.” This signals to other prospective customers not to take the review seriously.

Respond to the review and state that you do not recognize the reviewer as a customer. If they made false statements, refute them calmly. Though it is frustrating to be defamed this way, try to avoid emotional statements. Stick to the facts.

When you report the fraudulent review, Google will check it and may remove it. However, there are millions of Google Business listings all over the world. Unless the review is clearly abusive or inappropriate, it’s unlikely to be removed. Try flagging the post multiple times, appealing to customer service reps on Twitter @GoogleSmallBiz, or taking your case to the Google Community. You’ll need proof that the reviewer wasn’t a customer, could not have made the review, or is being paid to review, which could be tough.

5. Legal Action

In some cases, you may know the reviewer making false statements. They may be an angry ex-employee, a competitor, or someone who personally dislikes you. In this case, you may want to take legal action.

First, respond and flag the review. Then, if you are certain you know the reviewer and can send them a message, do so. Ask them, politely but firmly, to remove the false review.

If you believe the review is significantly hurting your business, you may want to take legal action. Writing false statements about a person or business can qualify as libel or injurious falsehood (AKA trade libel), and may be grounds for a civil suit. To do this, you’ll need to be able to prove the statements are false and prove who wrote them. However, a cease and desist notice from a reputable attorney may be enough to persuade the reviewer to delete the review, and a full legal case won’t be necessary.

Your business reputation is a valuable thing. Though it may seem obvious, the best way to protect it is to run a reputable business. It’s also a good idea to regularly ask customers with positive experiences to write reviews. This way, if you have to displace or remove a Google review, customers will still know who to trust.

Technical Dr. Inc.'s insight:
Contact Details :

inquiry@technicaldr.com or 877-910-0004
www.technicaldr.com

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10 of the Best Tools to Monitor Your Online Reputation

10 of the Best Tools to Monitor Your Online Reputation | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

The ability to track what people say about you online has several benefits.

You can leave timely feedback on comments about you. It can help improve your products and services.

Most of all, monitoring what people say about you online will help you maintain a good reputation.

Here are 10 tools that can help you monitor your online reputation, irrespective of your niche.

1. Google Alerts

Google has several valuable free tools for marketers and SEO pros, and Google Alerts is one of them. If you’re a seasoned marketer, then you probably already know and use it, either for monitoring your brand or for content creation.

Simply enter your company name the same way you’d enter terms in your niche you want to get alerts for.

For example, this is an alert for “search engine marketing”:

 

You’ll get email notifications of your mentions via Google’s database, based on your preferences: as they happen, at least once a day, and at most once a week.

2. Social Mention

Social Mention monitors more than 80 social media sites, including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

The results also display the following information to help you measure, monitor, and improve your brand’s reputation:

  • Strength: The likelihood that your brand is discussed on social media.
  • Sentiments: The ratio of positive mentions to negative mentions.
  • Passion: The likelihood that people talking about your brand will do so repeatedly.
  • Reach: The number of unique authors who write about or mention your brand.

Here’s what it looks like:

 

Another reason to use it: Social Mention is free.

3. Trackur

Trackur calls itself the “broadest social media monitoring” tool — a debatable claim. In trying to live up to such a lofty promise, it has several features to help you monitor your brand online.

 

Trackur offers full monitoring of all social media and mainstream news sites, insights like trends, keyword discovery, and influence scoring.

For example, this is what the dashboard looks like when I type in the keyword “Facebook.”

 

Additionally, if you offer social media monitoring as a service to clients, you can pay to customize your dashboard with your logo, URL, and your own colors.

4. SentiOne

SentiOne helps you to pay attention to what your customers or others generally are saying about your brand. With SentiOne, you’ll get access to not just real-time data but historical data too – what people may have said about your brand in the past before you began using SentiOne.

You can track mentions of your brand, social profiles, or other keywords.

 

If you feel you’ll experience information overload, since SentiOne scours thousands of web sources to find mentions of your brand, you can easily filter the number of keywords you’re tracking.

Plus, you can filter results into positive or negative mentions, where the latter can help you act quickly to avert crisis where necessary.

 

5. Reputology

Reputology is a review management and monitoring platform for multi-location businesses. Put simply, it helps businesses manage and monitor reviews online.

 

Apart from social media sites, you can “listen” to what customers are saying about your site from industry-specific review sites in the hospitality, dining, healthcare, fitness, and real estate niches.

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To ensure you handle negative reviews efficiently, Reputology converts them into customer service tickets.

6. Review Push

This online review management software helps businesses with multiple locations to monitor social media and popular review sites (e.g., Facebook, Yelp, Google, Yellowpages, Foursquare).

 

The best part isn’t only that you’ll get all reviews from any site in one place, but when you set up email alerts, you can respond to any review, positive or negative, directly from your inbox with Review Push.

 

You can also see the review sites on the web or in your industry that your business is not yet listed on. Then Review Push ranks your stores’ review performance online so you can easily see which store should improve its product or service delivery.

If you’re wondering how you’ll get reports from multiple locations, there’s multi-level reporting where you can get reports from corporate, regional, or store level.

7. Chatmeter

Chatmeter was designed to help companies collect and analyze customer feedback and improve customer experience for multi-location brands and agencies.

 

It notifies you via email of any reviews found on over 20 local search and review sites. In addition, you’ll get notifications when there’s new content about your brand.

Chatmeter has tools that enable you to spy on your local competitors to see how you stack up against them and what you can learn from their activities.

 

Their widget allows you to share reviews from external sites on your website and store’s pages. And if you create a new profile on a listings’ site, your profiles on other listings sites are automatically updated with any current information.

8. Reputation Ranger

Created for four niche industries — restaurants and bars, hotels and travel, automotive sales and services, and plumbers and home contractors — Reputation Ranger monitors Facebook and industry-related sites to create alerts and reports.

 

Broken down by niche, it comes to:

  • 15 websites plus Facebook in the hotel and travel niche.
  • 12 websites in the restaurant and bar niche.
  • 9 websites for plumbers and other contractors.
  • 12 auto-related review websites and blogs.

So you’ll largely get real-time monitoring and alerts of the review sites that matter most to your business, depending on your niche.

9. Reputation Health

If you have a medical practice, or you offer SEO and other online marketing services to medical practices, you may need Reputation Health.

 

t offers reputation management and online review monitoring for physicians. It monitors 23 review sites related to the medical practice, including DrScore, HealthGrades, UcompareHealthcare, and Vitals.

The software collects online mentions and reviews of what patients are saying about your practice and sends you email alerts.

10. Meltwater

What started as a press clipping service that scanned news sources to get keywords relevant to customers has since evolved into a full-blown media monitoring tool.

 

Today, Meltwater goes beyond press monitoring by adding social media listening into the mix with real-time analytics. It still offers the largest global media database, so you can be sure you’ll see all your mentions in the news media too.

 

If you’re keen on who’s talking about your competitors or where they’re getting features, or how many mentions they’re getting daily, weekly, or monthly in comparison to yours, you can track that via Meltwater too.

 

While you can see your reports and analytics from your Meltwater dashboard, you can also transform these reports into presentations directly from the dashboard and also share them with internal teams.

Conclusion

You can manually perform searches for your brand’s name on search engines or social media sites, but you’ll likely find a handful of results at best. Not to mention the sheer drudgery and valuable time you’ll need to spend on such an undertaking daily, weekly, or monthly.

 

The tools above will help you more easily and efficiently monitor your online reputation. Choose one that works best for your brand.

Technical Dr. Inc.'s insight:
Contact Details :

inquiry@technicaldr.com or 877-910-0004
www.technicaldr.com

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RepuGen Is Now Fully Compliant with Google’s Review Policy Update

RepuGen Is Now Fully Compliant with Google’s Review Policy Update | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

RepuGen’s review generation process is in full compliance with the updated Google review policy. that clearly states their stance against review-gating.

 

Now, on the Thank You page for positive, neutral and negative feedback, we will always show the review sites where the patients can click to post their review. With that, unhappy patients now also get an option to submit their review directly on Google (and other review websites) right off the bat. You will still be notified when negative ratings are made, but due to Google’s policy we can’t avoid asking unhappy patients for reviews.

We’ll explain the new RepuGen review process later in this blog. First, let us re-acquaint you with the respective Google review policy update.

 

Google’s Update to their Review Guidelines
On April 12, 2018, Google updated its online review policy, according to which, businesses are no longer able to “discourage or prohibit negative reviews or selectively solicit positive reviews from their customers.” The move was to ensure that businesses gather reviews from all its customers, irrespective of whether they were happy or unhappy with the service, and that online reviews of a business on Google are an accurate reflection of the kind of service they can provide.

 

RepuGen’s Review Requesting Process [Updated]
All user accounts with RepuGen have been updated to be in full compliance with Google’s review policy, providing the patient the option to directly leave a review on Google regardless of their sentiment, positive or negative.

 

The process is the same for happy patients who rate their experience positively. That way, patients will see hardly any difference between a negative rating and a positive rating, but at the same time we’re not limiting the benefit of some of RepuGen’s best reporting features – specifically sentiment analysis and word clouds from the comments that patients write.

 

At RepuGen, we are committed to protecting our clients' businesses by keeping them always up-to-date with the latest industry guidelines and standards. The online reputation industry is constantly evolving, and with that these changes are often necessary to make.

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Online Reputation Management for Doctors 

Online Reputation Management for Doctors  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

As patients are increasingly turning to search engines and review sites for evaluating the quality of care, it's time that doctors should also be there to provide the answers that patients are looking for. With a proactive reputation management, doctors can leave the right impact that will convince patients and eventually acquire them. This article will guide you step-by-step in developing and managing your online reputation. The success of your healthcare practice depends on how positive a reputation it has with its patients. If that’s the case, then how do you determine your reputation? Referrals and word-of-mouth are still a well-known and common factors that relate to your reputation and patient acquisition, but then how many of your new patients rely on just these two factors to choose you? As a matter of fact, even after getting referred by their friends or family, or even by another physician, one of the first things that your patients will do is to research your or your practice and its reputation online to see what other patients are saying about you. 85% of (healthcare) consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. - BrightLocal While displaying positive patient reviews can certainly help your practice influence opinions in your favor, it doesn't mean that reviews are all that matters for your practice's online reputation. Users check, on an average, 12 different sources including content from review sites, social media, on-site testimonials, blogs, etc., before finally picking a provider. – Google All this sum up into two things: first, many other factors (apart from reviews) are responsible for your online reputation. Second, reviews and testimonials form a major part of it. The process that takes care of all these is called online reputation management. Related Blog: Why Doctors Should Pay Heed to Their Patient Reviews Online


What Is Online Reputation Management?
“Online reputation management (ORM) is the practice of crafting strategies that shape or influence the public perception of an organization, individual or other entity on the Internet. It helps drive public opinion about a business and its products and services. – Techopedia The definition encompasses almost every online marketing activity that directly or indirectly adds to the reputation of your practice and you. So, in those terms... ORM may involve utilizing your medical expertise to engage with your online patient community on Facebook to answer medical questions and concerns. Or, using the same expertise to provide relevant answers to your patients' health-related inquiries via content marketing, to establish yourself as an authority in the eyes of your audience and Google (by improving your search rankings). However, as the term 'reputation' exhibits more about your patients' beliefs or opinions, it's arguable that in its core, ORM strategy deals more with taking control of the online conversation. That way, ORM may involve using Twitter or Yelp to jump in on conversations and tackle negative or defamatory comments about your practice. Or, it could involve soliciting positive reviews from happy patients to improve the search engine rankings and the public-facing online reputation of your practice. With online reputation management, you can ensure your healthcare brand is decently positioned (and represented) not only on review sites, but on other important places like search results and social media timeline/feeds. If you are interested to see how these are done, we will explain later in the article. Before that, you should introspect whether your practice really needs reputation management or not. For that, you'll need to self-assess your current online reputation. How?


How to Assess Your Current Online Reputation
Have you ever Googled your practice or your provider's name to see how they appear in the search result? If you haven’t, do it now! A stellar online reputation starts with a robust internet presence. After all, if you are not properly visible, how can anyone say anything about your reputation? While you Google your practice, look for these in the search results: [Note: Try 'incognito' browser setting. It will ensure that the search results aren't influenced by the previous search activities on your desktop.] Your website: Ideally, your website should appear as the first result for a direct search (someone directly entering your brand name) on Google. If your site is well-optimized (with proper keywords), is well-indexed, isn't serving any penalty from Google, then it'll rightfully appear in the first result. Of all other content links in the search results, at least some should be the predominantly “owned” ones (i.e., those where you control the content). For example, your blog page where your brand owns the content. Appearing with more predominantly “owned” links means a high reputation in the eyes of Google. Review snippets: Google can fetch results from review sites too. Remember the review snippet in the search result.

 

If the review snippet appears, check for these:

 

  • Aggregate review scores are appearing from how many review platforms?
  • Is it only from Yelp, or from other review platforms such as HealthGrades and Facebook?
  • Are the aggregate review scores positive or poor?
  • Is there parity in the aggregate review scores of different review platforms?

 

To appear with review snippets from different platforms, your review profiles will need to be well-optimized for local online presence. For a high reputation, they'll also need to be mostly positive. Google Knowledge Graph: Appearing in the Google Knowledge Graph means you have a high online presence and reputation. The Knowledge Graph sums up the most useful information about your practice such as your picture, the map, the business address, telephone number, patient reviews, etc., all in one place.

 

healthcare client as it appears in Google's search result. We have blurred the photo, phone number, website and address because of privacy reasons)[/caption] However, appearing in the Knowledge Graph requires a well-optimized site and proper online listings of your practice on different third-party online directories, including Google My Business. [Read: Everything about online business listing and its relation with patient experience] Note: Google Knowledge Graph is the box that appears to the right of the search results and that contains information such as a map, the business address, telephone number, and also Google reviews. Tip: Search differently as patients will do. It means replacing related words around the keyword. For example, substituting “Dr. ABC Neurologist” or “Dr. ABC McArthur Boulevard” for “Dr. ABC, MD” will expand the search results. Search results for all these terms will slightly differ, and ideally for all these terms, you should appear decently parallel to make sure that your reputation is on terms with related keywords. While search engine reputation matters the most, social media reputation is no less important. That's why you'll need to assess your social media reputation as well. One of the best ways to assess your reputation on social media is by manually checking your social media profile pages and comparing them with your competitors. If you have been visiting your social media pages daily, you should already be aware of the situation. However, if your profiles are being handled by a social media marketing person or your practice manager,


Why You Should Focus on Facebook
Facebook is the most important platform as it's a highly sociable place where you get to learn from your patients' perspectives. For learning about your reputation with other stakeholders, such as referring physicians, pharma people, and medical industry influencers, Twitter and LinkedIn are the best. For now, stick with Facebook, as that's the place where you directly get to interact with your patients online. Also, in terms of monthly user traffic, Facebook is already the highest review generating site with 47% of its surveyed users having written a review in the last year. How do you assess your reputation on Facebook? Look for these: Review frequency: It's important that your profile page should be receiving reviews on a regular basis. An outdated database of reviews doesn't help patients in their decision making. Also, regular reviews help in increasing engagement and keeping up with the algorithmic actions on your profile.

 

also get a closer look at the content of the reviews, especially the negative ones with less star ratings. That will help you understand the factors that are causing a bad reputation among your patients. Review responses: Also, check how your reviews are being handled from your practice's end. If you find that reviews, especially the negative ones, aren't being handled carefully and tactfully, it means you need a reputation management team dedicated for the job. Engagement & interaction: Check for how the posts on your Facebook profile page are performing. Are they getting a sufficient number of responses in terms of likes, comments, and shares? You should check the quality of those comments too. That's because these metrics can indirectly affect the frequency and quality of your reviews. With these informative steps, you should be able to get an idea of where your current online reputation stands. If it needs improvement, don’t hesitate to make the changes necessary to optimize your practice’s reputation.

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Controlling The Message for Better Outcomes and Medical Practice Reputation

Controlling The Message for Better Outcomes and Medical Practice Reputation | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

We have yet to find an online physician and medical practice rating system that is “perfect.” Are you aware of how you rate on HealthGrades.com, or ratemds.com, or Vitals.com, or any of the dozens of other physician rating websites that populate the Internet?

 

If someone has taken the time to post a comment, does it represent your practice fairly or is it a one-time unflattering rant? And if the overall impression is “positive,” a practitioner may embrace the results. But “negatives” that don’t reflect well on the physician’s marketing, branding or reputation are frustrating if not infuriating.

 

If, for example, a patient feels that they’ve been rushed through an appointment or believes their concerns are being ignored, they may express their own frustrations and disappointments online. And once the unflattering comments are posted on the Internet, they are difficult to challenge or change, even when they are false or unjustified. (Contrary to what some paid services would like you to think, there’s not much that can be done to remove or erase such comments.)

 

Proactive control begins with the patient experience.
The most practical approach to positive patient comments is by being proactive. While you can’t control reactions to patient care, you can implement a deliberate program of communications and engagement that gives every patient the means to feel heard before turning to online social media.

 

The foundation, of course, is in consistently delivering an overwhelmingly positive patient experience. And when patients feel that you’re listening to their concerns and addressing them, they are more likely to become ambassadors, and make referrals to friends and family.

 

Communications strategies to enhance patient experience and physician marketing


The most effective communications programs include a variety of media and methods. Here are several strategies for showing your patients you are listening.

 

Learn how your patients prefer to communicate: While you may or may not like the idea of using email, text messaging or online scheduling, your patients might prefer to engage electronically. While it can be hard to monetize the time spent communicating outside the examining room, consider this an aspect of your marketing program. (And, yes…this all can be done within HIPAA guidelines.)


Collect email addresses and mobile phone numbers: Request this information on patient information forms and ask for written consent to contact them by email or text messaging when appropriate.


Use scripts for welcome, interaction and parting: Don’t leave your verbal communications to chance. Implement and train everyone in communications skills for positive interaction. Scripts are powerful tools to inspire patient feedback, clarify questions or concerns, and assess patient understanding of medical instructions, etc.


Text messages: Consider how to integrate a standardized follow-up text message to remind patients how to contact the office with any questions about their visit, diagnosis, medication or treatment.

 

Follow-up contacts: Utilize letters or survey questions following a visit to help assess the patient’s level of satisfaction. Even if they don’t reply, you’ll let them know you care enough to contact them, and to connect with new patients after their first visit.

 

Follow-up calls: A follow-up call a day or two after a patient’s first visit (or treatment or surgery) provides a clear and direct channel for questions and encourages treatment or medication compliance.


Post an FAQ page on your website: Provide answers to Frequently Asked Questions to further understanding and patient education. Remind patients during their office visit that the website is an information resource for their use.


E-newsletter: Regular communication by email/newsletter promotes your accessibility as well as your ideas.

 

Relevant educational materials: Empower your patients with relevant and research-based articles about health conditions. A reliable and authoritative source of your own is superior to potentially erroneous information online.

 

A consistent communications program has the potential to create the kind of advocates who are encouraged to go online and post glowing reviews of your services, as well as refute negative ones you can’t address yourself.

 

The good news is that some surveys say that most online comments are positive. More importantly, well-informed and engaged patients are more likely to experience better health and outcomes.

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Online Reputation Management to Avoid in 2019 

Online Reputation Management to Avoid in 2019  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

4 Traits of Bad Reputation Management
We all know it’s critical to maintain a great company reputation and build positive relationships with customers. This has lead many marketing firms to include online reputation management services as part of their offering. However, businesses may find it difficult to sift through the options and find the best firm for their needs. To help, we’ve put together this list of red flags to avoid when choosing an ORM firm for your company.

 

Guaranteed First-Page Rankings
Some SEO firms guarantee that you’ll quickly rank number one or you’ll pay nothing. This deceptive practice should be a huge red flag to businesses. Nobody can truly guarantee that you’ll attain the top spot in the search results. Many factors influence ranking movement, including some external factors that you can’t control. Moreover, search engines are constantly improving their algorithms, which impact search engine results on a daily basis.

 

Online reputation management requires a deep understanding of these factors, as well as the ability to adapt to external changes. Further, it takes time to rank in the top of search engines, especially for highly competitive keywords. A qualified firm understands the search engine reputation management strategies needed to improve your brands positive online presence.

 

Generating Reviews
Online reviews are critical for driving revenue. Whether you’re a local business or a top internet retailer, reviews are a major factor in consumers’ purchasing decisions. Because negative reviews can drive away potential customers, it’s important to monitor what customers say about your business. Many reputation management firms include review monitoring and management, however some may even offer to generate reviews.

 

This can be tricky. You should try to get Google reviews naturally because you offer great service and ask for reviews. However, don’t ever write or buy fake reviews. Reputation management agencies that promise to generate reviews often hire freelancers to publish fake reviews about your business. These reviews can even end up duplicated across several web platforms and have a negative impact on your business’s credibility. In some extreme cases, reputation management companies actually own review sites where they themselves publish fake negative reviews before seeking out the customer and offering their ORM services to remove these bad reviews.

 

If a firm offers to generate reviews, ask for clarity on their process, and if you’re still unclear, it may be best to avoid entirely.

 

Spammy Content Distribution
Creating strong, positive, optimized content is a key element in managing your online reputation. While content creation is a common service offered by reputation management agencies, where that content is distributed and published is equally important.

 

Sketchy firms will take advantage of customers by publishing the same content on low-quality sites on a mass scale. Many times customers are unaware this has happened because they rely on that firm to monitor their mentions and placements. Unsuspecting customers are paying for unique content on quality sites, but instead, their content becomes spam, duplicated across the internet.

 

Be wary when you see offers for “high impact content” published on “trusted sites.” Similar to the scenario noted above for review generation, some firms own a plethora of of low quality sites that they lump in with their handful of “trusted sites,” where they are able to control the content. Ask detailed questions about the content creation and distribution process. Know where your content will be published and that those placements are relevant to your business.

 

Promised Removal of Negative Content
The promise to remove negative Google reviews from the search engine results is the most common ploy used by fraudulent reputation management companies to attract prospective customers. Without legal grounds, the ability to remove a piece of negative content from the internet is generally not possible.

 

To put this concept into perspective, this would imply a firm has the power to delete content from millions of different websites and social media platforms without the owner’s permission. No firm has the ability or authorization to simply remove reviews from Facebook upon request. In fact, some firms claim they possess a software that can achieve this. Sound too good to be true? That’s because it is.

 

Sometimes these sites are operated by the firm themselves, or the firm has a financial relationships with the owners of the sites that allows them to remove content anytime.

 

Google will only remove content from the search results if it includes: valid legal requests (ex. copyright violations), child sexual abuse imagery, or sensitive personal information not intended for the public. You can learn more about how to remove content from Google here.

 

Before hiring a reputation management firm: do your research, ask questions and be sure to reference the above points during the process. You many also consider asking for references or a case study that will allow you to determine the firm’s quality and credibility.

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Online Reputation Management for Doctors

Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

This is a sponsored post written by SearchReputation.net. The opinions expressed in this article are the sponsor’s own.

 

Most doctors can manage their reputations informally through customer relationship management and how they treat their patients. But most are unfamiliar with more practical ways of managing their reputational risk.

 

Word of mouth is no longer local. Although most doctors operate locally, happy patients (your clients) now head online to tell their friends and family about their positive experiences.

 

The same applies to a poor experience.

 

Google works similarly to the human brain. It will put much more emphasis on bad results than good results. Likewise, the human brain has a negative bias that is more sensitive to negative news.

So, one bad result that manages to make its way on the first page of the SERP can ruin a doctor’s whole reputation.

 

There are many factors to assess:

  • How are you currently viewed by patients?
  • How often are you getting referrals?
  • Are you meeting the bedside expectations and practical expectations of patients?

 

Answering these basic questions should help doctors determine where they stand with their community.

Perception is reputation. Managing beliefs and perceptions will favor a healthy reputation – online and offline.

The Anatomy of ORM for Physicians

While medical treatment is necessary for our society and doctors for our health, doctors with bad reputations are definitely seeing fewer patients walk through the door.

 

Before identifying the signs of an unsavory online reputation for doctors, we at Searchreputation.net explain to doctors in “medical terms” what a good reputation looks like in the eyes of patients.

 

The SERP can be divided into three parts:

The Brain & Heart

The brain and the heart represent the first three results in the SERP.

 

Depending on the patient, they will think with their head or their heart when they see a bad review or result that high up about their doctor.

 

Whether they think with logic or emotion, neither is good in this situation.

The Stomach

The stomach is where things may shift in perception often oscillating from good one day and bad another.

 

It takes a lot of traffic behavior change for Google to shake the first couple of results. So, it will test what’s in the middle first.

 

Most individuals will be less phased by what they see in the middle. The click-through rate from position 1 to position 5 drops by 24.13 percent on desktop and 17.1 percent on mobile phones.

 

On phones, people are much less likely to scroll. So, the CTR for the first three results in mobile phones has skyrocketed recently.

The Rest of the Body

The last couple of results – and everything after that – are the rest of the body: the supporting functions (or, in this case, the supporting results).

 

The everyday consumer won’t be as influenced by supporting search results as they would be by higher ranking results.

Interestingly enough, most people will simply change their search if they don’t find what they are looking for within the first eight results.

Vital Signs of a Bad Reputation 

Unfortunately, the anatomy of online reputation management is not as well defined as it is for doctors who study the human body.

Google’s algorithms are much more complex and constantly changing.

 

So, what determines the reputational risk of doctors?

  • The gap between perception and reality.
  • Changing expectations and perceptions.
  • Operations and communications.

 

When a reputation crisis hits, it’s hard to quantify how much damage it will do in the short and long terms. The best gauge is quantifying qualitative responses.

 

  • Are you a doctor who has no bedside manners?
  • Do you make your patients wait an hour and a half with an appointment and only see them for five minutes?
  • Are you reliable?
  • Are your secretaries and nurses unresponsive?

 

Depending on your answers to these questions, evaluate how you meet the expectations of your clients. An accumulation of poor experiences will reenforce the unreliability of a doctor.

Don’t overestimate how much people may or may not like you. Looking yourself up is the best way to tell.

 

How? Enter your name with various keyword combinations.

 

Start with your full name and dr. in front. Then, drop your first name, add your city on the end and interchange words like reviewscomplaintspissedratingscomments, and news.

 

Anything bad come up? Your lifeline as a doctor running a business with “clientele” might be cut short.

What Now? 

So you’re a doctor with bad reviews, perhaps a minor disciplinary action, but you can still practice. How do you restore trust in clients?

  • Evaluate your practice. 81 percent of Americans believe that the first impression of a physician is extremely or very important. This is strongly associated with bedside manners, how much time they spend getting to know their patients, and quality one-on-one time.
  • Replying to reviews. While many ORM firms might suggest removal (always an option but not always the most ethical method of changing up the SERP), try responding first. Not only does it respond to the user, it shows anyone who comes across the result that you’re reaching out and willing to start a discussion.
  • ORM, PR, SEM, SEO, every acronym you can think of. A combination of online reputation management, social media, public relations and press releases, search engine marketing, and search engine optimization will contribute to better shaping your online image.
  • Maintenance: Don’t ever stop. It’s nearly impossible to not have an online presence. Often times, patients create that online presence for doctors themselves.

 

While removing reviews and negative results is neither ethical nor guaranteed, it is a possibility. Speak to a lawyer or your online reputation managers about these possibilities.

 

Take control of your online reputation by managing what is being said about you online. The moment you stop engaging online, you’ll quickly lose control of your online reputation. One post can ruin it all.

 

Again, the negative bias Google has can ruin your whole image with one post, one comment, one review. Always be ready to counter it and get ahead of the game by spreading positive and attractive content.

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Your Online Reputation and Six Best Practice Ways to Make It Better 

Your Online Reputation and Six Best Practice Ways to Make It Better  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Successful medical practices recognize that their online reputation is a source of new business—almost like a referring doctor’s office. Here’s how the best of practices influence this resource and manage their reputation, to produce the greatest number of new patient calls and appointments.

 

Every doctor has two professional reputations to constantly manage:

 

  • The “CV version” for colleagues, and
  • The online reputation version for the public

 

The first version is what he or she believes professional colleagues know or think about—in person, or as a CV write-up, or what fellow professionals might say when you’re not in the room. This version is based on close, personal contact…occasions when doctors meet and/or work together. Interactions and observations might be clinical, business or perhaps social. It is this first type of reputation that professionals regard as most important and absolutely critical to manage. Indeed, it’s a critical foundation for a professional existence.

 

But it is the second type—your online reputation—that is widely seen and recognized by the general public. Curiously, the patients and prospective patients have almost no means to judge the clinical skills that represent the abilities of a medical practitioner. (The clinical particulars are usually the mainstay of the CV-type.)

 

The larger audience forms an understanding, or online reputation, by what they find on physician rating boards, practice and practitioner reviews, and comments and discussions or other patients. And it is in this “reputation arena” that carries the most influence with other members of the public.

 

 

How to Craft a Sterling Online Reputation

 

Collectively, the online reputation management has the greatest public influence on capturing, or losing, new business into the practice.

  • More than half of consumers list reputation first in the selection process
  • Positive, or excellent, online reviews inspire trust in a practitioner or practice
  • Patients usually read four or more reviews before they trust a practitioner
  • Over 90 percent of patients will select a local doctor with a five-star rating
  • Close to 40 percent of patients would not select a provider with negative reviews

 

The professional’s online reputation forms in the mind of the prospective patient. Their selection process is shaped largely by the reviews and ratings of others. That process—following by the actions of others—is the powerful dynamic of social proof or social influence at work. Assuming that your patient experience is world-class, here are some of the steps to shaping a sterling online reputation.

 

#1. Don’t be modest about asking for testimonials.


It’s easy enough to do, but many practitioners neglect the simple action step of asking. Make it a habit to ask for comments, provide a simple instruction card with review site directions, or provide a brief survey that’s geared to service improvement. The majority of comments will be positive. Occasionally, a comment may reveal something in need of improvement.

 

#2. Take advantage of any negative comments.


Even the best of practices may draw an occasional not-so-flattering review. Although the majority of patient comments are positive, the real opportunity to improve and exceed is to address patient concerns. The first steps are to:

  • Demonstrate concern
  • Quickly respond and embrace the issue(s)
  • Be a caring leader, anxious to resolve the concern

 

Being quick to discover and quick to respond is important with negative problems. The silent approach (even if you were not aware of the comment) implies that the issue or problem is being ignored. Trust is at stake. Take the issue off-line if necessary, but be proactive about a resolution.

 

#3. Install a system to diligently monitor your online persona.

 

Like it or not, consumer ratings are now an influential part of healthcare delivery. As with professional referrals, have an operating system to watch the places that influence patients and your reputation:

 

  • Assign the monitoring as a regular staff responsibility
  • Install Google Alerts, Social Mention or other pulse-checker
  • Routinely check your listing on review and comment sites
  • Respond to positive as well as negative comments


#4. Check and correct your N-A-P information.

 

A surefire way to cut off inbound calls is to have out of date NAME, ADDRESS, PHONE info listed. Check these constantly for accuracy in directories and online listings.

 

#5. Expand and enhance your online profile.


In addition to fundamental directory listings (NAP), take every opportunity to complete (and regularly update) the profile section of social media and online descriptions. Here’s where you have an opportunity to shine. Prospective patients respect a doctor’s experience, training, awards, and expertise.

 

#6. Actively jump into (or lead) the conversation.


Don’t be a bystander when you can be an active participant in social media discussions. Seek out timely and relevant topics and inspire or lead discussions. Ask questions, provide new information or respond to questions within a group.

 

You can shape your online reputation.


These are some of the ways that you can influence the information—and manage the reputation—that people find online. Because your influence is slightly indirect, it can be a challenging task. But the time and effort that’s invested can often realize an immediate return. People tend to see and absorb the first few entries in a physician review page. And newer comments usually float to the top of the page.

 

How well are you monitoring your online reputation? Remember that positive information and ratings are a significant influence in generating new business. But negative online reviews about their existing provider can cause them to change to an out-of-network physician. Further, nearly half of searching patients would go out-of-network for a physician with more positive reviews.

 

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11 Online Reputation Mistakes You Should Avoid 

11 Online Reputation Mistakes You Should Avoid  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Raise your hand if you scan the web for reviews about your business on a consistent basis. My guess is that very few of you are doing this.

 

When you’re wearing a thousand or more hats while managing your business, it’s easy to forget one of the most critical things you should be paying attention to: your online reputation.

 

Let’s face it, most business owners don’t pay enough attention to their online reputation, even though it’s a critical piece of an effective digital marketing strategy. While it’s important to be paying attention to your topline KPIs like new customer acquisition, percentage of new traffic, click-through-rates, conversions, revenue, etc., ignoring your online reputation can be detrimental to your business.

But WHY?

I can’t tell you how many times business owners ask me why online reputation is so important. Search behavior has changed over the years, and many of your customers are going to be typing in generic search terms to discover companies that cater to their needs. After discovering companies within that niche, your customers will do additional research to decide what business to work with, and they will likely pick the one with stellar reviews and ratings. If you’re not shining above your competitors in search results with those 4 or 5 yellow stars, your potential customers will scan past you and go with your competitors instead.

 

This just goes to show that reviews have become more important than ever to facilitate the decision making process for customers. In fact, Search Engine Land published a Brightlocal survey results that shows 88% of customers trust online reviews more than word of mouth recommendations.

 

So what does that mean?

 

Online reviews are more powerful than reviews that customers personally receive from friends and family.

 

Managing reputation is actually a lot more than just scanning the internet for reviews–it’s about building relationships with your customers, spreading positive sentiment, and taking negative feedback to heart to improve your product or service.

 

I cringe when I scan through potential clients’ social media profiles and listing pages and see how they claim to “manage” their online reputation. I like to tell potential clients that I don’t focus on the management aspect of reputation, I focus on developing a strong online presence that showcases consistently outstanding customer service.

 

With that being said, I asked some individuals who work in the digital marketing and online reputation space about the biggest ORM mistakes they see businesses make with their reputation. Here we go:

1. Not Responding to Complaints

It’s important to remember that no business is perfect and it is impossible to please all customers. With that being said, having some bad reviews is not the end of the world. When I see a company with 5-star ratings and over 50+ reviewers, something looks fishy and some potential customers may question your integrity. No customer expects you to be perfect across the board. As long as you respond to complaints and show potential customers how you handle those complaints, it will be enough for potential customers look past it and do business with you.

2. Not Realizing YOU Have an Online Reputation

You may have a Yelp profile with scathing reviews and not even know it! Customers are free to post reviews about you even if you don’t set up your own profiles — keep that in mind. A word of advice: set yourself up on all review sites so you can claim ownership and respond to reviews. If you don’t claim your review sites, you will not be able to address reviews written about your business.

 Not Dealing With Negative Feedback in Public

I have some digital marketing clients that avoid responding to negative reviews because they don’t want to “feed trolls.” Many people think that when you respond to negative reviews, you are adding fuel to the fire, and the negative reviews will show above the positive ones. This is an old-school mentality that needs to stop.

 

Every review site has an algorithm that determines the placement of reviews, but generally, the most recent ones show up at the top. It’s important to address negative reviews in public so potential customers can see how you handle criticism and can be reassured that if they have any issues with your product or service, you will provide them outstanding service to rectify their issue

 

4. Ignoring Good Reviews

Some people think that reputation management only pertains to damage control — meaning responding solely to negative reviews. ALL reviews need a response. You should thank your positive reviewers for taking the time out of their day to express their positive sentiment toward your business. This will help you strengthen your relationship with them and let them know that you appreciate them.

5. Not Generating Enough Content to Position YOU

Here’s a strategy for you! If you are being inundated with negative reviews or there are negative threads about your business online, curate content to overshadow the negativity. Be sure to include your name everywhere so you can be indexed in search engines for it.

6. Posting Fake Reviews

This is a big no-no. You can try it, but Yelp and Google My Business have developed sophisticated algorithms that will filter out reviews that come from individuals who are not active on their sites. They’ll also detect your IP, so forget about creating 50 fake email addresses to write fake positive reviews. They will likely be flagged or thrown in a sandbox. Earn reviews the honest way, even if it takes significantly longer.

7. Handing Responsibility to the Under-Qualified

You can manage your reputation on your own or pass it onto someone else in your organization, but make sure to exercise caution. If you are giving authority to a junior level executive at your company to manage your online reputation, make sure that you have trained them on replying with your brand’s voice in different scenarios. Consider creating a style guide and training manual that can be passed to whoever is managing your reputation.

8. Being Defensive

I’ve seen this too many times — companies getting “smart” or “defensive” with customers. Never argue or point fingers at a customer, even if they are blatantly wrong. Issue a response that is empathetic and let them know that you are willing to do whatever is reasonable to rectify the situation and offer your phone number for them to call you directly to take the conversation offline.

9. Not Developing a Process to Generate Reviews

Happy customers will often not willingly go out of their way to write a review after a positive experience. It’s simple, you need to just ask. Whether you ask via RepuGen‘s online reputation development platform that texts or emails customers after their experience or implement a review card system, you need to set a process in place to generate reviews. Generating positive reviews takes time, and never happens overnight. All you need is to add a couple positive reviews a week, and that should do enough to counteract negative reviews and drive a consistent flow of new customers through your door.

10. Thinking it Takes Too Much Time

Going back to point number 9, it may take some time in the beginning to get the team to jump onboard and understand the importance of why you’re requesting reviews from customers and get used to the new workflow, but after that wrinkle is ironed, it should be smooth sailing from there. It shouldn’t take you too much time, but where you will be investing the most time in is responding to positive and negative reviews.

11. Not Actively Listening

You need to be EVERYWHERE your customers are. You need to make sure you see a review within a day or so after it has been posted. The longer to wait, the worse it will make your company look in the public eye. Timeliness is the key.

 

That’s it folks, that was a handful of common reputation management mistakes business owners make with their reputation. Make sure that you are not making these mistakes or else you’ll lose out on new potential customers for your business.

 

It’s time to jump on the bandwagon and take control of your reputation.

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 5 Things That Leave a Negative Impact on New Patients 

 5 Things That Leave a Negative Impact on New Patients  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Patients are increasingly relying on online doctor reviews for verifying about your practice’s reputation. According to a report by Software Advice, almost three-quarters (72 percent) of patients use provider ratings as their first step in finding a new doctor. It confirms that your online reputation is often a first impression for your new patients.

 

This calls for a dedicated work on your online reviews to avoid a negative first impression on your patients regarding your practice.

 

It’s not just the quality of reviews (positive or negative) that matters. But there are other related aspects such as their age, volume, and whether you’re responding to them or not, that affects how your (or your practice’s) online reputation would personify before its audience.

 

The importance of first impressions in healthcare can never be denied.

 

Because reviews reflect the kind of patient experience you’re able to provide, you need to be serious about what impressions the online reviews are leaving on your prospective patients.

 

Reviews come first in the search results and stand in the forefront in providing that experience to your prospective patients. In addition to reviews, your organization’s online experience is also a key component of patient satisfaction.

 

Always know about the various aspects of online reviews that may hamper your healthcare business by presenting a negative first impression of your practice online. You have to acknowledge them so that you can focus on eliminating them.

 

Here are the 5 online reviews mistakes that leave a negative impact on your patients’ first impressions about your healthcare practice and affect their decision.

1. Reviews That Are Too Old

Patients appreciate finding lots of reviews about you. It adds credence to your presence and popularity in the respective locality. However, even the high quantity of reviews can’t save your online reputation for long if they’re not flowing in frequently.

 

A BrightLocal study cited ‘recency’ as the third most important factor of reviews. It concluded that reviews that are older than 3 months aren’t considered relevant by your consumers. This means that your prospective patients are more likely to leave looking for you any further if you don’t show up with recent reviews (within 3 months) by your patients.

 

After all, you cannot expect your prospective patients to judge your quality of service today based on reviews from months or years ago. Instead, it turns out to be very confusing for them to understand why reviews suddenly stopped when there were so many before.

2. Too Many Negative Reviews or No Reviews

Zero reviews are as bad as negative reviews. Sometimes, even worse. On one hand, too many negative reviews will suggest a bad reputation for your practice. On the other hand, no reviews will suggest a non-existent reputation with zero credibility on the internet.

 

Time-poor consumers (your prospective patients) who can’t find any reviews about you will instead check out other providers with at least an average review reputation. It’s all the same for providers who show up with too many negative reviews.

 

A whole bunch of negative reviews will also make your patients not want to use your service. In fact, according to the same BrightLocal study, 40% of local business consumers (including patients) would refrain from using your service if they find too many negative reviews about you.

 

Poor reviews leave a negative first impatient on patients and damage your reputation in the eyes of search engines. Too many bad reviews lead to lower click through rates (CTRs) in search results that tells search engines to lower your search rankings.

 

3. Too Many 5 Star Ratings

If there are too many negative reviews, your prospective patients won’t bother to scroll any further on your profile page. They’ll simply research elsewhere. If there are too many positive (5 stars) reviews, they’ll be hesitant and question the credibility of perfect reviews. Most of them won’t stick at finding more about you. As a simpler move, they’ll leave. Patients won’t spend more time than necessary to research your practice, and will instead, look elsewhere for a more credible and reliable practice.

 

According to a neuromarketing blog, 95% of consumers suspect censorship or fake reviews when there are no bad ones. This is the reason why you don’t want to appear too good to be true.

 

This is more so true for healthcare practices.

 

That’s because a healthcare business mostly drives on local patients. In most situations, these patients already have a general idea about your practice and its quality of care through news or views. Obviously, all those news and views can’t be perfect.

 

So, when they find only (or mostly) 5 star ratings with too good comments about your service quality on review sites, they cannot digest it.

4. Outdated or Inconsistent Listing

Patients go on looking at multiple reviews websites to get a better picture about you, according to a Zocdoc. Various researches have shown proofs of that too. Landing at inconsistent information regarding your practice across these different platforms will not only confuse them, but also make them angry.

 

Many of our existing healthcare clients were having some or other form of listing inconsistency on different review websites when they came to us.

 

These were simple errors like not being consistent with updated information (changes in email address, phone numbers, location of business, etc.) on all platforms. However, these simple errors were causing severe damage to their online reputation.

 

After we updated and made all information consistent throughout the review platforms, with some time, we started seeing a positive shift in conversion rates.

 

It’s necessary to ensure that your business information is consistent across all websites, including the review websites. Focus particularly on NAP (Name, Address, and Phone Number) information because that’s where your patients’ attention lands.

5. Zero Response on Patient Reviews from Your Side

Unfortunately, negative reviews do happen sometimes. While responding to them tactfully and in a highly professional manner can reduce their bad effects, not acknowledging them with a response will only add to the bad impression.

 

Patients value responses to negative reviews. It gives them an assurance that there is someone on the other side who is listening to their concerns and taking care of it.

 

According to Software Advice, a majority of patients (65%) believe that it’s “very” or “moderately” important for doctors to post a response.

 

That’s why it’s recommended that medical practices and doctors invest in a online reputation management for the job.

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Best & Worst Cities by Physician Reviews

Best & Worst Cities by Physician Reviews | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Study of 46,300 online doctor reviews nationwide yields a comparative snapshot of satisfaction with healthcare

 

Patients in San Francisco and Oakland appear to be happiest with their doctors, while the least satisfied American healthcare consumers live in other California cities as well as in New York State locales, according to an in-depth evaluation of the ever-contentious online reviews that many physicians denounce.

 

 

In a nationwide study, Denver-based Communications deployed special software to analyze Internet reviews of 46,300 healthcare providers on Google+ and Yelp.com websites.

 

Software collected ratings of individual doctors, group medical practices, clinics and hospitals in the 100 largest U.S. cities. Then ranked each city according to its average patient rating on the five-star scale used by both Google+ and Yelp.com.Tabulated the results in what the firm is calling the U.S. Happy Patient Index (HPI), providing a comparative snapshot of the state of satisfaction with American healthcare.

 

HPI rank City Average star rating

1 San Francisco, CA*  4.15

2 Oakland, CA*  4.14

3 Honolulu, HI  4.14

4 Madison, WI**  4.09

5 Indianapolis, IN  4.05

6 Seattle, WA  4.05

7 St. Louis, MO**  4.02

8 Cleveland, OH**  4.02

9 San Jose, CA  4.00

10 Austin, TX  3.98 

 

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7 online reputation management strategies for doctors 

7 online reputation management strategies for doctors  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

According to research, 85% of patients are not comfortable selecting a healthcare provider with only a one-star rating. Why is that important? Well, more than 40% of patients use online reviews and consider doctor rating sites as “extremely important” for choosing their healthcare provider. Patients today are researching thoroughly before choosing a doctor. So it’s crucial for doctors to develop a strategy to establish and maintain the best possible online reputation.

Managing your online reputation is a continuous process. Here are some key things to watch to ensure you aren’t losing patients because of how you appear online.

An effective online reputation strategy can help existing and prospective patients recognize you as a credible, reliable, established and authoritative medical practice. Positive reviews can also crush negative comments, forcing them lower on search engine results pages and minimizing their damage.

 

Check out seven compelling strategies for monitoring and enhancing the online reputation of your healthcare practice:

#1 Leverage online ratings and reviews

Like them or not, review websites are here to stay. More than 77% of patients browse through online reviews as their first step towards finding a new doctor.

Patients use both healthcare-specific rating websites like HealthGrades and RateMDs and general review sites like Yelp and CitySearch. The best way to grab a consumer’s eye online is to have a large number of positive reviews across multiple ratings sites.

Instead of just waiting for reviews to come in, watch for ways to engage your patients and encourage them to share positive experiences online. Make the review process easy, and consider implementing a tool that aggregates reviews from various websites, so you can manage all your reviews in one place.

 

#2 Fix your online presence

In addition to third-party review websites, make sure your business information is updated on search engines like Google and Bing. Uniform and accurate listings on various websites improves search engine rankings and reduces patient’s frustration over incorrect information. Correct listings are especially valuable for small healthcare practices that offer special services like flexible appointment schedules, short waiting times, and different insurance plan options.

Claim your listings on critical online directories, consumer sites and social media channels. These sites let you to share additional content like photos and reviews to present your healthcare practice as the best choice. Learn how lets you fix and enhance your listings across the web automatically.

 

#3 Keep an eye on what patients are saying on social

Social media is one the most useful sources for gathering the unedited opinion of your patients, especially the unhappy ones. With the help of social listening tools that hunt for mentions of your practice, you can discover high-engagement posts and address comments that need your attention. These tools scan social media channels like Twitter and Facebook and use crawlers to identify new review sites and online forums. The idea is to monitor all the feedback buzzing across the web that makes up your reputation. When you know what your patients are saying about your medical practice, you have a clear idea of the problems you need to fix.

 

#4 Always respond to reviews

Almost 70% of patients who share negative feedback feel better if their concerns are addressed. Your unhappy patients want to hear from you. Even if you are unable to solve an issue immediately due to insufficient information or a hectic schedule, do not ignore negative reviews. Acknowledge unsatisfied patients and let them know that you are looking into the matter. If you feel that the best way to deal with the situation is taking it offline, then do that, but try to minimize the steps involved in solving each problem.

Important: while responding to negative feedback, ensure that you adhere to HIPAA guidelines and check our blog on staying HIPAA compliant while responding to patient reviews.

#5 Promote positive testimonials

Negative feedback is inevitable, but it can be overpowered by the voices of your happy customers. If you’ve received some amazing patient reviews, share them on your social media pages and let prospective customers know. The more you intelligently share content online, the better reputation you build. BirdEye can help you do this automatically.

#6 Build a strong social media presence

When it comes to reputation management, social media is indispensable as it helps you reach both your existing patients and discover potential patients. It is crucial to create social media profiles on sites like Facebook and Twitter and keep them updated. If you already have social media pages, keep them active by sharing useful content and positive feedback from existing patients. These profiles determine how patients perceive your practice, and it’s up to you to ensure they show you in a positive light.

#7 Motivate your staff to provide outstanding service

Disappointed patients don’t tend to give you a second chance. Often, they share their bad experiences with their family and friends. This negative word-of-mouth can cost you patients. To avoid this situation, ensure that your employees are providing excellent patient care and exemplary service, and dive into patient feedback to find out what specifically your staff could improve upon. Delegate team members to manage patient concerns on certain channels to make sure nothing slips through the cracks.

Online reputation management is critical to the success of healthcare providers in today’s world of digitally connected patients, but it can be overwhelming without the right tools in place. BirdEye is a powerful online reputation management solution that caters to all the strategies mentioned above and many more. With BirdEye, you can manage feedback, respond to it, get more reviews, fix your online presence, share positive reviews on social media channels and listen to what patients are saying about you.

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Optimizing Your Hospital's Online Presence: Create Great Content

Optimizing Your Hospital's Online Presence: Create Great Content | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

A hospital’s website will always be the primary hub for its online outreach. But without the promise of anything fresh to keep patients coming back, a website is static — great content is what gives your page the power to reach and expand your audience. 

Gone are the days of Yellow Pages listings and bus stop advertisements — today, patients primarily take to the internet to research local medical treatment, forcing hospitals to adapt to rapidly evolving digital trends. Generally speaking, 97% of consumers use online media to research local products and services, and 90% of that portion uses search engines, according to BIA/Kelsey.

Of course, a hospital’s website is the center of its online activity, but the content on that site is your engine for digital outreach, determining both your visibility and the staying power of your message. However, nobody bothers to read bad content, which is why hospitals need to make theirs memorable.

The Importance of Great Content

On the one hand, high-quality and relevant website content — whether it takes the form of a blog, landing page, white paper, or other resource — increases the likelihood that your hospital’s site will come up first in the search engine results for engines likes Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. The art of pushing your site higher and higher on these results pages is what’s known as search engine optimization (SEO). 

Unlike paid ads, SEO content is “evergreen,” meaning it never ceases to boost your hospital’s visibility across every channel — it also bolsters your ranking in Google’s local search directory, according to Google’s My Business page.

Secondly, your content is where your audience evaluates your hospital’s identity, giving them reason to trust you, return to your blog as a primary resource, link to your content, and refer your services to others.

Writing Searchable, Memorable Content

It might seem difficult at first to meet all the criteria needed for a content strategy to be successful. However, the creation process can actually be very straightforward when you start with patient's’ perspective and work backwards from there. 

As a golden principle, all content, whether on a blog or in a tweet, must address a common patient concern, cover a current topic of interest, or offer genuinely useful information. What questions do patients frequently ask? In what ways can you provide treatment that other hospitals cannot? The more location-specific you can make these answers, the better your response (and search ranking) will be. 

As Moz notes, it’s helpful to research topic keywords through Google Trends, giving you an idea of each search term’s popularity in your location, as well as a list of other terms commonly associated with them. That way, your content can address any and all relevant subjects of the present moment. 

To the greatest extent possible, you must back your content up with solid evidence, whether it comes from case studies, relevant research, or patient testimonials and reviews. In fact, two-thirds of online consumers trust local businesses as a result of positive reviews, according to Bright Local (via eMarketer). 

More than anything, your content should be conversational, humanizing your hospital and its brand. Headlines should be clear, containing keywords, and your body content must be broken up into easily digestible chunks. 

For many hospitals, especially for those short on staff, generating so many different types of content can be an overwhelming prospect. As QuickSprout points out, re-purposing existing materials (e.g., updating and republishing old blog posts, or reconfiguring them into evergreen site content, infographics, video content, etc.) can help ease the burden of constant content generation and help you get more out of less. 

At the end of the day, building out your online presence isn’t so much about jargon like “visibility” and “SEO” as it is about forming a genuine relationship with your hospital’s audience. And when they’ve invested trust in that relationship, your efforts will be magnified to an extent that no marketing gamesmanship can match.

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Physician Online Reputation Management

Physician Online Reputation Management | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Negative content published about physicians and other health professionals can detrimentally affect their online reputations and the success of their practices. Defamatory online content can take the form of doctor reviews on websites such as www.RateMDs.com and www.HealthGrades.com or as misleading newspaper articles that paint a physician in an incorrect or unflattering light.

Doctors seeking to control their reputations online have turned to a wide range of tactics. How doctors can manage negative content online is varied.  Some approaches can help their practice reach new levels of success; others can backfire, causing significant digital PR headaches.

Tactics that work for physician reviews by patients are different from those used to combat incorrect information that’s published by media organizations. That said, by developing a comprehensive internet reputation management, or an online reputation management (ORM) strategy, physician reviews and ultimately reputation become a positive way to deal with virtually any type of negative content.

 

Medical Practice/Physician Reputation & Review Management

ReputationDefender has recognized that physicians rely heavily on their online reputation/reviews and after consulting with many individual doctors from across the US, have developed services and tools to assist in monitoring, improving and repairing online reviews and reputations.  As you’ll see below we’ve laid out so general best practices for improving or maintaining your current online physician review and reputation situation, however we also realize that a physicians time is highly valuable and may be better spent elsewhere.  To this end ReputationDefender has developed ReputationDefender® and Reputation for Business, two services that can a help doctor build, improve or repair their online presence.

 

Reputation for Business

While Reputation for Business offers a number of different levels of service, from simple monitoring through to a fully managed PR service, the top packages are designed to not only save many hours/month that typically need to be spent on ones online presence but also to increase business by nipping bad reviews in the bud and improving the online presence of the business through positive reviews from a doctors actual clients.  Reputation for Business is a service that ReputationDefender recommends every doctor and practice have in place – the increase in business from a positive online presence is priceless.  To fix physician reviews or simply create a buffer of positive reviews, Reputation for Business is a service and not just an online tool that puts you back in charge of your businesses reputation.

Are online reputation issues hurting your practice?
 

ReputationDefender 

ReputationDefender® is a very specific service, and unlike Reputation for Business is not something that is recommended (or needed) for most physicians.  ReputationDefender® has be specifically designed for doctors that have been attacked online through blogs, articles, and review sites by disgruntled patients or former employees.  Unfortunately under the law it is virtually impossible to have a court order the removal of online content, however it can be suppressed through techniques that we’ve developed here at ReputationDefender.  Essentially anyone that Google’s you or your practice won’t look past the first couple pages of results, and if all they find are positive articles, reviews and sites then the negative material is substantially mitigated.

 

Best Practices for Online Review/Reputation Management

Tip 1: Focus on the positive, and share factual information.

When it comes to consumer-generated content, some doctors have tried to patch up their Internet reputations by asking patients to sign will-not-review agreements. This approach is prone to failure. First, legal precedent makes it unlikely that such agreements would hold up in court. Second, doctor’s risk alienating long-term patients and encouraging spite-based online reputation attacks. The website RateMDs.com even maintains a “Wall of Shame” for physicians who try to prevent patients from posting reviews.

 

A better approach is to keep tabs on the kinds of criticisms being leveled against your Internet reputation and to post factual information to counter these critiques.

 

Keep tabs on criticisms

Many physician review websites allow MD’s to display professional profiles, which can be used to defuse potential attacks and to control your reputation. Doctor-patient confidentiality prevents you from directly engaging online critics; however, you can address common themes in a general manner.

 

For instance, patient comments like “The doctor seemed rushed” can be downplayed with a statement such as “We are one of the few specialty practices in this area, and we pride ourselves on serving as many patients as possible.”

 

Need personalized reputation advice?

A creative, positive response exists for virtually any criticism. And when you do find content that addresses a genuine shortcoming, use it as an opportunity to improve your practice.

Provide factual information to counter critiques

When it comes to media organizations, don’t even think of trying to threaten them; you’ll just generate more negative content. Your best bet is to provide clear, factual evidence that they have unjustly tarnished your professional online reputation.

  • Contact the organization to identify the editor responsible for the piece.
  • Prepare a concise description of the facts for that individual, and politely request that the article be retracted or corrected.
  • Persistence is key: Continue with periodic, polite requests until you get a response.

For more information on how to contact newspapers about incorrect or negative content, see this article.  How doctors can manage negative content online can be tricky business, but with persistence you can and will succeed.

 

Tip 2: Garner support from your patients.

Regardless of the source of your negative content, this tip involves getting your patients behind you. Enough positive physician reviews by patients will outweigh a few negative ones, and they can also help mitigate misleading newspaper articles.  By sheer mass of positive feedback you can fix physician review situations.

Are online reputation issues hurting your practice
 

Be aware of your bedside manner

Patients mention a doctor’s bedside manner in online forums more than any other factor, so you can do a lot to inspire would-be positive reviewers by making patients feel valued. Work on developing conversational strategies that instill trust without significantly lengthening patient visits. If you need to rush to get through a busy day, explain why. Also give the patient some avenue for seeking further information or asking questions, whether that takes the form of a nurse or physician’s assistant who can tackle their concerns or your promise to respond later via email.

 

Request feedback from patients

Next, encourage patients to write good reviews. Directly asking for praise might turn off some patients, but there are a lot of ways to gently foster positive feedback. You might consider some of the following:

  • Quote a few positive reviews, listing the source, on your patient intake forms or information brochures.
  • Post a sign in your waiting area saying that you value patient feedback, whether in person, by phone or email or via online forums.
  • Link to positive content on your practice’s website.
  • Send follow-up emails encouraging patients to provide feedback.

 

Tip 3: Engage an online reputation management (ORM) service.

If you find yourself in the midst of a negative media storm, the self-help approaches above may not be sufficient to resolve your negative content. Even if the newspaper agrees to correct the article, someone may have reposted the earlier, defamatory version on his or her blog. In this case, you’ll need to enlist professional help.

 

Need personalized reputation advice?Schedule a free consultation

First, it makes sense to employ a monitoring service that will alert you to any new developments in your Internet reputation. You want to know if someone reposts negative content and also if new, derivative attacks appear in response.  This is an important step in how doctors can manage negative content online.  Online review management and online reputation management is a time consuming task, employee a professional service will save you time and most likey money as all the issues that you’re facing are issues that professional services deal with on a daily basis.

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Strategies behind Online Reputation Management for Doctors 

Strategies behind Online Reputation Management for Doctors  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

At Digital Authority Partners, we are often asked about our doctor reputation management services. Usually, reputation management for doctors, as a service, is often sought if a doctor is:

 

  • dealing with too many negative medical reviews
  • involved in embarrassing public incidents
  • receiving negative press coverage
  • recovering from a malpractice lawsuit

 

Reputation management is critical to the success of a medical practice. But before we go on, a simple definition: 

 

Online reputation management for doctors falls under the category of marketing services meant to repair and improve a health professional’s online presence. It tackles the reviews, embarrassing public incidents, bad press coverage or malpractice lawsuits that might threaten a medical practice’s success.

 

When negative media coverage or online reviews about doctors appear online, medical practices see a one third drop in visits and calls to their offices, causing a potentially disastrous financial impact.

 

When any of these events occur, doctors tend to enter “crisis mode” and often scramble to find the best strategies to restore their reputation.

 

Usually, reputation management companies refuse to divulge the techniques used to repair a doctor’s online reputation. Unlike most agencies, at Digital Authority Partners we prefer to be honest and transparent about how we approach reputation management for doctors.

 

If you or your medical practice are dealing with a reputation issue, read our ultimate guide to online reputation management, along with an explanation of how each technique works.

 

Every doctor should care about their online reputation

 

As early as 2012, 60% of US customers researched their doctors online. By 2016, 84% of patients researched new medical practitioners before their first appointment. Positive reviews and coverage are consistently considered important or very important before scheduling an appointment with a specific doctor.

 

The first page of Google search results tied to a doctor’s name or practice is the new business card. While some doctors may still choose to ignore this fact; their prospective patients will not. 

Bad press won’t go away. So a lot can go wrong if you don’t address the problem head on.

 

This is the simple truth about online reputation management for doctors: bad reviews and bad press coverage don’t go away. As a consequence, prudent doctors have taken very aggressive measures to guard their reputation. But there are good ways and catastrophic ways to restore your reputation. This article will only focus on the tried and true tactics to restore a doctor’s reputation.  

 

Let’s pause for a second and explore the unfortunate ways some doctors try to deal with their tarnished online reputation.

 

According to Aaron Schur, Senior Director of Litigation at Yelp, the company regularly receives subpoenas from legal counsel retained by doctors to fix their reputation. Yelp rarely acts on these aggressive legal tactics to remove customer feedback.  

 

Even though negative coverage never goes away, the worst thing a doctor can do is fight fire with fire.

 

In 2016, a Manhattan dentist sued multiple Yelp reviewers for their negative reviews – a move that backfired. The New York Daily News began its coverage of the suit in very unflattering terms: “A Manhattan dentist has been trying to extract money from patients who give him bad reviews online.” Then the case caught the attention of national media.

 

Worse yet, the case caught the attention of senior executives at Yelp. Two years later, potential patients going to the dentist’s Yelp page see this warning message:

Although you cannot delete negative coverage, you can bury it with positive content

The Manhattan dentist mentioned above is a prime example of what reputation management companies advise against. Obviously, more negative coverage is the opposite of what a medical practice needs to restore trust in the digital space.

 

Instead, any reputation expert will advise its customers to focus on other strategies that are more likely to succeed. The best way to deal with negative reviews and coverage is to bury it with positive content.

 

How do you bury negative content? By replacing it with a single recipe for success: use Google’s search algorithm in your favor by creating valuable content that pushes the negative content associated with a business name after the first page.

 

It doesn’t happen overnight. And it’s easier said than done.

 

Regardless of your industry, there are specific white hat marketing techniques that can be employed to repair your online image. These are legitimate, widely accepted tactics promoted by some of the most renowned marketers in the world.

 

The rest of this article presents 11 tried and true tactics Digital Authority Partners leverages to successfully restore the online reputation of doctors. We strongly believe all doctors should know exactly what steps we follow to repair their online reputation.  

 

Strategy Number 1: Build a website for yourself and/or your practice

The first and most valuable strategy to repair your reputation is to create a website dedicated to yourself and/or your practice. In some cases, you should consider doing both.

 

Why build a website for yourself or your medical practice?

 

A website serves multiple purposes. First – it introduces a doctor to the world. A good physician-dedicated website tells the story of a specific doctor, the values to which he or she adheres and provides testimonies about the quality of services the physician provides.

 

So, what makes a doctor’s website rank highly in Google search results?

 

Use the following checklist to build a website that will improve your reputation:

 

Launching your own physician website has multiple benefits.

First, if done right, your website will be found when patients look up your name. That’s very powerful. Even if patients find some negative reviews, making a great first impression is imperative.

 

Second, in online doctor reputation management, it’s best to have a website that clearly presents all the critical information about yourself you want emphasized. Your website is a building block, a central place that will be used for all aspects tied to reputation management.

 

For example, one of the foundational strategies to improve an online reputation for a doctor involves the act of securing backlinks to the cornerstone digital property. That can be your own personal website or a website dedicated to your business.

 

Either way – for any reputation management campaign to succeed you need one primary digital property that you own and control. The reason that matters is because a centralized digital property with a robust analytics platform is needed to actually measure and improve on the overall effectiveness of your reputation management campaign.

 

Third, a personal website is your own forum. It’s where you can share updates about your practice, show your thought leadership, and engage with patients.

 

In short, having a website is the single most important tactic of reputation management for doctors. 

Strategy Number 2: Start a blog directed to your patients

If you talk to 10 marketers, all 10 will tell you that the best way to manage your reputation is to have a blog. A blog lives on the internet forever (or as long as you pay for your web hosting). More importantly, a blog allows you to speak to your patients – current and future – to show your expertise and the value you bring to your clients.

 

Most important of all, a regularly updated blog is more likely to bring new clients, garner repeat business, and help you and/or your practice rank higher in Google search results.

 

Why launch a blog for yourself and/or your medical practice?

 

Starting a blog may seem to be a daunting task. How often should you publish content? Will you regularly have time to do it? Is it really worth it?

 

If you talk to any reputation management company, you will often see a list of clear and indisputable benefits tied to starting a blog. If you are in process of repairing your reputation online, here are some quick reasons why you should start a blog for your practice or yourself.

 

As other experts have pointed out, a pleasant side effect of physician-run blogs is that they lead to more business and referrals.  

 

Most importantly though, from a pure reputation management perspective, a physician blog (preferably on your website) nearly guarantees that your content appears at the top of the Google search results. This is why most reputation management companies make the creation of new and original blog content the Number 1 technique to bury negative results in Google.

 

In sum, no legitimate reputation management campaign can succeed without creating great blog content on behalf of a doctor. 

Strategy Number 3: Create blog posts for other websites

The key to success, when dealing with a reputation management issues, is to create relevant, timely content associated with a physician’s name on multiple platforms. As we saw above, one of the easiest ways to create valuable content is to start a blog.

 

However, even if you create the single best physician blog on the internet, that will likely only bury one of the first ten Google search results.

 

A robust doctor reputation management campaign needs to do more than that. The easiest way to bury negative reviews or press coverage is to create new content on other websites as well. For example, at agencies like ours, we have partnerships with over 400 blogs that accept guest submissions from the doctors and clients we represent.

 

First, we work with each client to determine the topics that will best showcase their expertise. Then our team of writers create long, in-depth content pieces that are published under our client’s name on other websites. As part of the guest posting efforts, we secure backlinks to our physicians’ websites or social media profiles (more on that below).

 

If you are a doctor with a significant reputation management issue, guest posting is one of the best strategies for displaying additional Google search results when a patient looks online for your name or the name of your practice.

 

Guest posting is perhaps the most popular doctor reputation management tactic for restoring physicians’ online reputations.

 

Clearly, guest posting has numerous benefits, but the technique is primarily used to get backlinks to specific interviews and news coverage about you and your company. Guest posting can be on another physician website, blog, or social media profile. Links from guest posts will point to whatever content we create for you. 

Strategy Number 4: Create powerful social media accounts (LinkedIn, Facebook) for your medical practice

Google takes a wide variety of digital signals into consideration when ranking content for a specific search term. When running a doctor reputation management campaign, the best way to get meaningful results is by tackling all the major signals drawing Google’s attention.

 

It is well established that social media activity has an impact on Google search results. Specifically, Google is drawn by the number of visits specific websites and blog posts receive directly from social media like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.

 

This strong correlation between Google search results and social media activities is what drives most successful reputation management campaigns for doctors to include a social media component. Creating robust social media profiles combined with frequent posts has proven to be a very effective reputation management technique.

 

By creating strong social media accounts with regular posts, every doctor with whom we perform reputation management initiatives will see their social media profiles rank on the first page of Google search results tied to their own or their firm’s name within 60 days.

 

Social media is a powerful tool not only for restoring your online reputation but also for proactively engaging your patients and future clients. An article from March 2018 reveals how various physicians all over the US leverage social media to combat misinformation – not only about their own practices but also about specific conditions, diagnostics, and other timely healthcare news that could affect their patients (ex., flu season, epidemics, etc.).

 

This makes social media management incredibly relevant not only for reputation management but also for long term digital engagement with your patients.

 Strategy Number 5: Claim your Google business listing online

According to Google, 97% of users search for local businesses and local business owners names online.  For that reason, reputation management campaigns often focus on what is called “local SEO practices.”

 

The first priority when improving a doctor’s reputation is to make sure locals searching for a doctor’s name see relevant results – preferably not the questionable ones.

 

To that end, the most important step when initiating a local SEO strategy is for a practice to claim its local Google business listing.

 

For example, here’s the Google listing page for a doctor in the Chicago area:

 

When searching Dr. Gnatenco’s name, Google search results return her image, Google map location, specialty, address, and phone number.

 

Since reputation management campaigns center on optimizing the Google search results, claiming, optimizing, and managing a Google business listing page is important for online reputation management.

 

Google allows for mini-posts on the Google listing page – something that helps with SEO and reputation management initiatives.

 

This is one of various “social” online listings that carries a lot of weight when tying a doctor’s name and medical practice to Google search results.

 

There are many customization options on the Google Business Listing dashboard, giving doctors the opportunity to create powerful and influential profiles for potential patients to visit.

 

Strategy Number 6: Respond to all reviews on Google/Yelp

When looking for new service providers, most customers go to two sources: Google and Yelp.

 

For doctors who are doing well – reviews are a great way to attract new customers. For doctors dealing with unhappy customers and other PR baggage, online reviews can be a nightmare.

 

Doctors’ responses to the new world of online reviews have not always been appropriate or even legal.

 

In 2016, a Washington Post investigation into 3000+ physician responses to negative reviews on Yelp and Google showed that an alarming number of doctors violated HIPAA compliance rules when responding to disenchanted patients. Other doctors – who used a passive aggressive tone or responded rudely to online reviews opened the door to additional criticism and unwanted attention from online users who were offended by physicians’ postings.

 

In general, doctors should not take it upon themselves to respond to online reviews. That’s because it is impossible to not feel emotional when dealing with negative comments. Instead, doctors should either designate a staff person to this task or outsource responses to reputation management consultants. This approach will often avoid making a situation worse or drawing more unwanted attention.

 

Responding to a negative review poorly is not the only problem doctors face with regard to their online reviews. Another unfortunate tactic some physicians erroneously employ, not addressing online reviews at all.

 

Neither strategy is good. Some doctors have reported a 30% loss of business after negative Yelp reviews. As one doctor put it, “Yelp reviews can literally be the bane of many doctors’ existence.”

 

Online reviews aren’t only read by patients. A 2013 study showed that 86% of doctors read their own reviews; 36% also regularly check their competitors’ reviews. As a result, online reviews can affect not only a physician’s ability to acquire new patients but also his/her standing as a member of the medical community as a whole.

 

In general, the appropriate course of action for doctors dealing with online reviews is to respond to every single new review – positive or negative. That shows others researching doctors that you listen to your patients’ concerns and address them professionally.

 

Don’t forget – you can’t make everyone happy. However, you can treat everyone with respect and courtesy – especially when everyone in the world can see your online interactions.

 

How should physicians and reputation management agencies respond to Google and Yelp reviews?

 

The best approach, is to answer to every single online review as part of your ongoing reputation management activities.

 

But how should a physician respond to negative reviews online?

 

There are many ways doctors can tackle negative reviews in their reputation management campaigns. Through it all, remember this point: a bad review doesn’t ruin a business. It’s impossible to please everyone. The best technique is to keep your head cool and to give professional answers to every single review online – good, bad, or ugly.

 

Strategy Number 7: Create medical profiles on relevant directories and social media sites designed for doctors

One of the best approaches to online reputation management for doctors is to create rich profiles on a wide variety of platforms set up specifically for doctors. Just like mainstream social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin, social media platforms for doctors stand a very good chance to rank organically in Google for the search term associated with the name of a specific doctor.

 

Some popular social media platforms and directories for doctors are:

  • CareDash: As one of the fastest growing provider review sites, CareDash uses artificial intelligence to help detect and stop the publication of fraudulent reviews. Doctors can easily create and personalize their profile, and patients trust the platform to help them confidently choose their care provider.
  • Doximity: An online social network for doctors with verified clinicians’ profiles. As of 2018, the network has over 1,000,000 doctors and physicians. That’s approximately 50% of all doctors in the US.
  • Sharecare: An online health and wellness platform and doctor directory. Sharecare lists each doctor’s full profile – including insurance plans, years of experience, biographical information, specialities, professional affiliations and educational background. The platform also allows doctors to answer questions and provide thought leadership on specific topics.
  • WebMd: One of the largest healthcare news and directories in the world. The company allows doctors to create free profiles and advertise on the platform to get new patients.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies should optimize healthcare directory profiles

 

Healthcare directory profiles play a critical role in reputation management campaigns. This infographic shows the top reasons why doctors should care about their online directory profiles:

 

For reputation management companies, creating online profiles in established directories is an “easy win” to influence google search results. Given the nature of some of the directories – where doctors need to verify their identity – new profiles for specific doctors are usually easy to set up and then rank in Google. Google sees verified directories as highly legitimate social signals for ranking those profiles highly for specific keywords.

 

Whether you are actively working on your reputation or not, one thing is certain: you should absolutely have yourself and your practice listed on some of the most popular – and free – directories in the US.

Strategy Number 8: Be helpful online by posting on relevant Q&A sites and threads

One often ignored technique for ranking high in Google search results is the practice of creating profiles on Q&A websites and responding to questions posted on message boards that are within the doctor’s specialty.

 

For example, Quora is the most popular question and answer website in the world. It ranks 90th  for the most popular sites in the world and 3rd for Q&A sites. On Quora, anyone can create a profile under their own name and contribute to the community.

 

However, Quora has a lesser known benefit. Engaged users who create relevant content using their actual names, can be up-voted by their users.  This usually results in that individual profile ranking higher for the name of its author.

 

In simple terms: a doctor can create a Quora profile under his/her name. After answering questions on specific topics, the Quora profile link will appear in the results of a Google search when a user looks for the name of a specific doctor.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies use Quora to rank organically in Google

 

The following infographic is based on a Quora thread around the SEO benefits of using Quora to get positive results.

 

In many ways, Quora is just like many other social platforms available. However, by its very nature, Quora is a content platform. That means it can be used to showcase a doctor’s expertise, credentials, and thought leadership. Relevant Quora profiles rank high in Google search results, while simultaneously pushing down negative content tied to a specific physician’s name or business practice.

 

 

Strategy Number 9: Use YouTube to post promotional content, highlight testimonials and make your YouTube profile rank highly in search results

Here is a lesser-known fact: YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world. Furthermore, YouTube is also a tried and true tactic that has become increasingly popular among doctors to attract new patients, learn new methods, and even attract new employees.

 

In addition, YouTube allows users to create a custom URL in their own name for their channel. As that URL gets backlinks, it will start ranking in search results.

 

The SEO benefits have made creating a channel and getting a custom URL a very popular technique for reputation management firms.

 

Of course, there is a catch. According to Google, a channel must meet the following criteria to get a custom URL:

 

  • Have at least 100 subscribers
  • Be at least 30 days old
  • Have an uploaded channel icon photo
  • Have uploaded channel art

 

This means that if a reputation management company is to reap the SEO benefits for a client from YouTube, it’s not enough to just create a YouTube profile.

 

Reputation management companies need to work with a client to create relevant video content. Then, the video content needs to be promoted. Potential subscribers need to be found and encouraged, through campaigns, to follow the channel.

 

In the end, this is worth the effort. When a doctor or reputation management company uses YouTube correctly, the YouTube channel for a specific physician can become one of the top ten search results associated with a specific doctor’s or practice’s name.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies use YouTube to rank organically in Google

 

Many doctors feel intimidated by video content. When we think video – we think high tech video editing, sound editing, special effects, and more.

 

Actually, any doctor with a smartphone can become a videomaker. The videos can be about any relevant healthcare topic. Some examples include: testimonials, health related tips / tricks, video from a conference, etc.

 

Any video – small or big – can help with reputation management. Especially when you are dealing with negative online reviews, YouTube becomes a great channel for online visitors to see you in action, sense your personality and charisma, and relate to you as a doctor outside of any negative reviews found online.

 

YouTube is one of the most powerful tools to quickly and efficiently improve your online reputation.

 

 

Strategy Number 10: Use SlideShare to showcase your expertise, thought leadership and skills as a doctor

Creating a powerful SlideShare online profile is another popular technique used by reputation management companies to remove negative reviews from the first page of Google search results.

 

SlideShare is a social network allowing users to publish professional presentations, infographics and documents online. The website gets approximately 80 million visitors a month and has over 30 million users. In 2012, the company was purchased by LinkedIn for $119 million.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies can use SlideShare to rank organically in Google

 

SlideShare has long been used for marketing and SEO purposes. Like other techniques presented in this article, SlideShare is simply another online social network which, when used correctly, can offer businesses and physicians a much needed search result in the process of burying negative results in Google.

 

Like Quora, SlideShare is created around topics. This makes it easy to create a robust strategy to rank higher in Google search results.

 

As with other techniques discussed in this article, SlideShare is great for reputation management. Prepared correctly, Slideshare accounts can even replace other Google search results and help physicians rank higher for their own content.

Strategy Number 11: How physicians and reputation management agencies track online presence in real time

Reputation management never stops. Even when a specific issue is resolved, physicians must be diligent about their online presence and quickly react appropriately when necessary.

 

The best way to handle your reputation management is to create a Google custom alert. When users go to this link they can set up a specific alert for any word or combination of words of interest:

 

In the search bar above, a doctor can enter a personal name or the name of the business. Any time the name is mentioned online, an email alert is sent.

 

This strategy is very effective because it allows doctors to easily maintain their reputation management. Rather than waiting until the last possible moment to respond to negative reviews or negative PR coverage, physicians can deal with problems early.

 

In reputation management, it’s imperative to answer criticism proactively and quickly counter any negative publicity.

 

This simple tactic will keep you instantly informed and give you peace of mind. With custom alerts you can sleep well at night because you know you have access to any good or bad online news as soon as your name is mentioned.

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Online Reputation Management Strategies for Doctors 

Online Reputation Management Strategies for Doctors  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

How your patients will review your practice depends on how they feel during their visit. This means that to improve your online reputation, you'll have to start with improving patient experience at the practice level, then utilizing positive patient experiences to build a positive reputation on the web. How do your build a great physician reputation? Read on to find out.

 

1. Be proactive in collecting feedback from your patients
According to a 2016 survey on how patients use online reviews, 30% of patients who could be writing reviews aren't writing. This could be due to the absence of an automated review generation process. However, even in the presence of an automated system, many doctors complain about receiving only a few reviews. In many cases where practices send their patients a link to publish a review, they still didn't get a response. That's because you need to ensure you’re getting patients at the right time – when they are most likely to publish a review. If you really want your patients to leave a review, encourage them to do it. One way you can do this is by engaging patients in a conversation and then asking them for a review. Doing so will improve the chances of your patients writing reviews for you. Here's how you can engage your patients in a conversation before asking them to write a review:

 

  • Ask as a favor
  • Let them know the time it will take (ex. “It will only take 2 minutes!”)
  • Clearly reveal your purpose for asking them (ex. “Reviews are the lifeblood of my practice”)
  • Clarify the process [keeping it easy will ensure more reviews]
  • Ensure you’re asking them at the right time (immediately after they leave the office is typically the best time, as the experience is fresh in their mind)

 

2.Intercept unhappy patients & perform service recovery
As you start collecting patient reviews, you'll start receiving some negative reviews too. Don't worry, as a few negative reviews are good for you as they present a more balanced reputation online. Also, when tracked proactively, negative reviews provide the opportunity to build and nurture a long-lasting relationship with your patients. A reputation management tool allows you to intercept your unhappy patients right after their visit, and hopefully before they post a review online. The process of intercepting unhappy patients and performing service recovery is simple. It goes like this:

 

  • Your unhappy patient rates you poorly using the tool
  • The tool immediately notifies you of the negative rating
  • You instantly connect with the unhappy patient, listen to their concern, and work with your team to turn the negative experience around
  • After successfully performing service recovery, the same tool again prompts the patient to write a fresh review (which will now be positive)

 


3. Objectively respond to all reviews; positive or negative
People seeing your patients' reviews online will also expect to see your responses to them. This way they get to learn about your attentiveness towards addressing your patients' concerns and how you tackle your patients' issues with your care or service. According to a Software Advice survey, 65% of patients feel it's “very” or “moderately” important for doctors to post a response. Keeping professional courtesy, refraining from disclosing the patient’s identity, and addressing to the masses instead of the specific patient is the key to being objective in your responses. Here are the guidelines on how you should respond to positive and negative reviews: Responding to positive reviews from your patients Create an uplifting, professional response that shows your commitment to patient satisfaction. Don't write anything that could reveal or confirm the patient's identity, to prevent yourself from violating HIPAA. Also, negative or positive, never forget to show your appreciation by always thanking your patients for sharing their feedback. A piece of advice here: Keep distance from phrases like, "It was great to see you", or "Thank you for visiting the office". Try something that's more vague and positive such as, "Thank you for the kind words". Doing so will reduce the chances of confirming the identity of a patient. Responding to negative reviews from patients Before taking any action with a negative review, address it objectively. Examine the situation from all perspectives; the patient's point of view, a legal point of view, and the public's point of view. Then, create a professional response that can minimize the damage to your reputation while respecting confidentiality laws. Software Advice suggests some Do’s and Don’ts of responding to negative reviews, which are very think that a review is falsified or inappropriate, you can report or flag it; asking the review site to take it down. The review site should comply – so long you can provide a credible argument. However, before reporting, learn about the guidelines laid out by each review site. It will help you to be more objective with your request, improving the chances that the review site will comply with your request.


4. Train your staff in customer service best practices
Patients leave reviews about your entire practice; not just about the quality of healthcare you provide. It's just the same when patients are reading reviews. According to a survey, 84% of patients look for information such as staff friendliness, ease of scheduling appointment, wait times, and office cleanliness/environment, etc., over other obvious details while reading reviews.training every staff member in customer service best practices and making it a company policy to follow these practices closely. From phone calls, front desk conversations and nurse interactions, to other things such as car parking, wait times, etc., all should be handled with friendly and professional behavior. Here, you can take help from the sentiment analysis feature provided in your patient satisfaction survey tool. Sentiment analysis of your patients will help you understand what precisely bothers your patients, which will allow you to implement the required changes to your practice more effectively. Related blog: Patients Value Personal Interactions with Their Providers: An Analysis of 7M Reviews Confirms


5.Build a strong patient community & network on social media
While patients are increasingly using social media for healthcare information, doctors are still reluctant about it. The reasons could be the fear of violating ethical and legal regulations, and the possibility of a misstatement getting shares on social media. Contrary to all that, having a social media presence is vital for your practice's growth in this digital age. Marjorie Stiegler, MD, a Harvard trained physician and a healthcare social media strategist provides these reasons for having a social media presence:

 

  • Curating a library of useful healthcare information
  • Finding collaborators
  • Promoting health literacy
  • Growing your practice, and 17 more

 

On the point of reluctance in using social media, Marjorie says, “sharing your ideas with as many people who might possibly benefit (even if that is by challenging you or taking another view) is a good thing. Disseminating knowledge and advancing science are core reasons we publish in journals. Even the best academic journals have a ridiculously low readership compared to the web.” To learn more about what Marjorie suggests for managing your professional reputation on social media, read her complete article on the topic.


6.Utilize content marketing to establish yourself as an authority
Healthcare content marketing is another way to build a robust online presence and reputation. Not only does it help you win valuable organic search traffic, but it also gives you a chance to establish yourself as a thought-leader with your 'expert articles' on related medical issues. According to Pew research, 1 in 3 patients use internet for resolving medical issues. A Google research says that, on an average, patients go through 12 different online resources before finally picking a provider. All of these explain the reason why you should be investing your time and resources in content marketing. Publishing useful content – even just one post per month – can go a long way in garnering appreciation from readers and giving you an effective means of selling your expertise without being overtly ‘sales-y’. The above given physician reputation management strategies can help you in elevating your image online. However, while implementing these, you should always refrain from some practices that may prove to be harmful to your healthcare business. Let's check out some 'Don'ts' of online reputation management for doctors:


Don't incentivize for getting positive reviews: Incentivizing (rewarding or discounting) for reviews isn't just illegal, but is also a practice that is heavily scrutinized by review sites like Yelp, who will bury reviews and flag accounts that they think are paying for reviews. Review sites have their well-defined system to track these reviews. Once found guilty, not just your reviews will be removed, but it will also invite discrediting of your practice by the review site itself, thereby affecting your online reputation and ranking.

 

Don't hire someone to post fake reviews for you: Review sites keep a regular check on fake reviews. They don't just remove a fake review from their site, but may also flag your practice for fabrication, which drastically impacts your online reputation.

 

Don't indulge in an online argument: Regardless of how much an angry patient tries to offend you into an argument, do not get involved as doing so will only discredit you. Always respond professionally, no matter what. If the patient still instigates an argument, offer to discuss and resolve the issue offline.

 

Don't mix up your private and professional life: Maintain separate professional and personal accounts on social media. Never post personal opinions, photos or videos on your professional accounts. Ideally, patients shouldn't find your personal social media accounts even if they go looking for them.

Now that patients' decision-making has shifted online, you should also focus on elevating your reputation on the web, so that you can positively influence prospective patients in your favor. While doing so, take help from a reputation management company who will provide you with a seamless process to ensure that managing your reputation isn’t overwhelming.

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Fight, Flight or Listen: Dealing with Physician Reviews & Negative Comments

Fight, Flight or Listen: Dealing with Physician Reviews & Negative Comments | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Perhaps you’ve followed the Taco Bell (“Of Course We Use Real Beef“) PR brouhaha, or you recall the PR catastrophe for BP regarding last year’s gulf oil spill.

 

Admittedly these are big business issues at the tip of the PR disaster sword. The media has a field day, and it’s a spectator sport for the general public. Professionally, let’s hope that your healthcare marketing and public relations experience never suffers this kind of global flack.

 

But these corporate calamities hold useful lessons for physicians, group practices, hospitals and other healthcare providers. What the giant corporations do (or don’t do) can transfer to something as common as physician reviews and negative patient comments.

 

Straight from the news pages, here are three PR textbook examples and how they might be useful where you live:

 

The FIGHT Response: In response to a much-publicized class action lawsuit, Taco Bell is out with vehement denials and a series of new advertisements titled: Thank You for Suing Us. While it’s commonplace to quickly embrace and repeat compliments, a common reaction to negative comments by patients is to discount or deny them as uninformed and/or incorrect. Some, perhaps most, situations require a response, but an angry, defensive or “come-out-swinging” answer can more easily aggravate a situation than disarm it.

 

The FLIGHT Response: For reasons that are self-evident, we can’t link to an illustration on this one. Remaining silent–the opposite of FIGHT—is seldom heard. Call it the “ignore-it-and-it-will-go-away” approach. And while minor things sometimes do seem to disappear, healthcare Public Relations pros and marketing communications executives recognize that there can be a serious downside in silence. The “no-response-response can be seen as stonewalling or even an admission or agreement. The patient issue or comment is still out there.

 

The LISTEN Response: Hopefully the patient-physician communications channels are wide open and so that patient issues or experiences can be discussed, addressed and resolved before they blossom into a negative online review or word-of-(bad)mouth comment.

 

A real world illustration of listening and acting—one that didn’t make as many headlines as Taco Bell—is this article by Los Angeles Otolaryngologist John W. House: How Online Reviews Can Help a Physician. It can be surprising how effective it is to listen to, and learn from, patient issues and to actively resolve an issue of concern.

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Reputation Equals Revenue So What’s Your Review Site Strategy? 

Reputation Equals Revenue So What’s Your Review Site Strategy?  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

The painful thing about lost business opportunity is that you often don’t know that it’s lost. It’s revenue that never happened. Here’s a sorry-scenario that we discover all too frequently:

 

  • A word-of-mouth (WoM) referral passes from a patient to a prospective patient
  • The prospective patient looks for your practice online only to find “unhappy” reviews
  • The WoM endorsement is offset by one or more “bad review” site ratings
  • Your competition’s phone rings…
  • The empowered consumer has taken their business elsewhere

 

Your name, practice, hospital and/or professional affiliations have more online listings and ratings than you realize. Sites such as Vitals, Yelp, RateMDs, Healthgrades, ConsumerReports and many others are well established. (The following graphic from PwC Health Research Institute slices the field into six primary categories. Although they provide 18 example sites, they quickly note that the “figure does not include all sources of healthcare ratings and reviews.”

 

Source: PwC Health Research Institute analysis

Despite the overabundance of healthcare review and rating sites, it’s a vital marketing concern to see what each has to say and to use the various sites to protect and extend the professional reputation that visitors find online. A recent study by PwC reports:

 

“While nearly half (48 percent) of consumers said they have read health-related reviews, only one-third has used reviews to make decisions on where to get care. (The single largest source for information was Consumer Reports, identified by 43 percent of respondents who have read reviews.)


Quick note: Patients and prospective patients are “empowered” about making personal healthcare decisions, and health-related reviews are being considered with increased frequency. Although only one-third used reviews to make a final decision, in our experience, such sites are frequently a starting point, negative or unflattering reviews influence individuals to search further, and reviews do carry influence.

 

In fact, among those who have read healthcare reviews, 68 percent said they have used the information to select a doctor, hospital and to a lesser extent, a health plan, pharmacy and drug or medical device.

 

“No single trusted source has emerged in the health industry, creating an enormous market opportunity. Organizations such as the California Health Care Foundation and the Leapfrog Group are attempting to close the gap with more user-friendly data sites. Big-box retailers are beginning to apply their consumer expertise to better market health-related products and services.


“Through internal surveys and observations, healthcare companies found that consumers care the most about topics such as the physician-patient relationship, understanding what to do after a clinic or hospital visit, and how to obtain more helpful service from their health plan.”


Healthcare organizations are, PwC concludes, “increasingly operating in a world in which the voice of the consumer impacts the bottom line, and where customer experience is now a matter of dollars and cents. Customer feedback has become a determining factor…[and] ratings connect consumers’ experience to quality, and quality connects to financial performance, market share and reputation.”

 

The PwC report, Scoring Healthcare, is available here. And you’ll find related information in our previous posts, Physician Ratings & Reviews: Doctors Distrust Them and Fight, Flight or Listen: 3 Ways to Deal with Physician Reviews & Negative Patient Comments.

 

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How to Monitor Your Reputation Online? 

How to Monitor Your Reputation Online?  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

People are talking about your business online. Do you know what they’re saying? Online reputation monitoring is the best way to ensure that the chatter is accurate and positive. It can help you identify trouble early on, as well as let you know when things are going well.

 

When you keep watch over your online reputation you’ll discover positive stories to share when customers write glowing reviews. You’ll also discover any negative comments quickly so you can address them. It’s important to monitor your online reputation with a variety of different channels. Don’t limit your scope to Google and Facebook. Be mindful of every social media site, complaint website, and even image search.

 

Sound exhausting? It can be. But there are many helpful tools to automate the process so regular check-ins don’t become a burden. Read on to learn about the tools and processes you can use to monitor your reputation.

 

How to Monitor Your Reputation on Social Media
Social media is the new water cooler. People discuss everything on social networks, including your business. Whether they’re leaving Facebook reviews, sharing inspiration on Pinterest, or lodging a complaint on Twitter, customers are talking about you.

Consumers are turning to social media to connect with brands and high profile individuals more than ever. In fact, people now prefer using Twitter for customer service more than a company’s website.

 

You’ll need to monitor more than just your pages and accounts, but public mentions and comments also. Social media isn’t limited to what you share. What people say about your brand is important as well.

 

Social Media Reputation Monitoring Tools
Keyhole: Keyhole is the ultimate resource for monitoring your social media and online reputation. Use Keyhole to easily monitor your brand across different social media platforms, and listen for both direct and indirect (‘dark’) mentions of your brand. Keyhole also monitors news articles, blogs, and discussion websites (like Reddit) and allows you to set up AI-driven Intelligent Notifications that immediately notify you if someone has made a negative post about your brand. Keyhole’s dashboard also gives you key insights into your audience, brand, and competitors, such as sentiment, trending topics, top users or influencers and much more.
Mention: Monitor the entire social web with Mention, a service that monitors millions of sources in 42 different languages. The tool offers analytics, statistics, reports, and more, and you can respond to mentions without even leaving the application as well.


Hootsuite: Hootsuite was made for social media monitoring. This tool allows you to monitor emerging trends, create custom conversation streams, monitor based on geolocation, and much more.


Monitoring Reviews for Reputation Management
Online reviews are great for companies with a strong online reputation, but a few complaints on Ripoff Report can really damage a brand. However, by actively monitoring on review sites, you can identify negative reviews and quickly take action. In some cases you may be able to work with the website to remove fake or negative reviews. If that’s not possible, you can always try to contact reviewers directly to make amends and request an updated review.

 

Don’t just monitor the big review sites, like Google, Angie’s List, Yelp and Trip Advisor. Look into niche review websites as well. Stay on top of them all by using the following review monitoring tools. They can even send you updates and let you know any time you get a new review.

 

Review Reputation Monitoring Tools
ReviewPush monitors the most popular review websites each day. You’ll get an email alert each time someone posts a review about your brand. You can even use this service to ask for new positive reviews.


Review Trackers helps you listen to what customers are saying online. This tool analyzes reviews from customers on Foursquare, Trip Advisor, Open Table, Google, and more.


Chat Meter offers an easy way to monitor and respond to online reviews each day. It even looks at the attitude of the reviews your customers are posting and more.


Monitoring Your Reputation on Your Website
Often, the most trusted source of information about your reputation or the reputation of your business is your very own website, which you control. This is great news, as you’re in charge of this resource, and you can manage the information on it.

 

Of course, it’s important to get a handle on any user generated content to make sure things aren’t getting out of hand. Using a commenting platform like Disqus, you can get notifications for upvotes, comment replies, or new comments on articles so that you can stay on top of the conversation on your website.

 

Monitoring Your Reputation on Google
In addition to social media and review websites, your reputation exists on Google, which is basically the entire rest of the Internet. This includes blogs, news websites, even mug shot websites and the like. It’s tougher to pin down monitoring in this area because it is simply so large and spread out, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do it.

 

Monitoring online allows you to learn about new links, news stories, and more — and finding out right away gives you a chance to respond. Monitoring tools can let you know as soon as a webpage has changed, if there’s a new search result for your name, even if someone has used your image. Stay on top of it all with tools designed to help you tame the monitoring power of the internet.

 

Online Reputation Monitoring Tools
Google Alerts: If you use just one reputation monitoring tool, Google Alerts is the one. It will tell you about any new mentions of your name, your brand’s name, product names, and anything else you’re concerned about. Check out our guide to setting up a Google Alert for more.


Google Autocomplete: Google’s autocomplete feature can say a lot about what people think about your reputation. When a name or phrase is typed into Google, the search box will automatically pop up with what it thinks might be what users are looking for. For a company, a bad autocomplete term might be “Your Company fraud” or “Your Company complaints,” but more positive ones would be “Your Company charity” or “Your Company new location.” To take a look at what Google thinks of your reputation, simply go to Google.com and start typing your name to see what pops up.
Complaint Website Search Tool: There are more than 40 different complaint websites online, and with this search tool, you can monitor your name on all of them at once. We recommend using it regularly.


WatchThatPage: Have a page about you that you’re concerned about? Set up a WatchThatPage alert to find out any time a page on the Internet is updated or changed.

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27 Essential Tips for Reputation Management for Doctors 

27 Essential Tips for Reputation Management for Doctors  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

1. Self-Assess Your Current Online Reputation

Have you Googled yourself lately? If you don’t know what’s being said about you or your practice online, you need to self-assess your current reputation. In 2017, patients commonly checked doctor reviews on websites such as Yelp, ZocDocs, WebMD, RateMDs, Healthgrades, Google Reviews and Angie’s List. If you find your practice on any of these websites, look at what patients are saying.

 

After exploring various review websites and the first few pages of Google, you’ll have a better idea of your current online reputation.

 

2. Monitor Your Reviews Proactively

Set up Google alerts that will email you whenever your name or the name of your practice is mentioned online. Read each new mention of your practice carefully and closely monitor your online reputation every day.

This proactive approach will allow you to better manage your image and improve the success of your medical practice.

 

3. Treat Every Patient Like a Reviewer

Remember that every patient that calls or comes to your practice is a potential reviewer. Treat each patient with the utmost respect, projecting the image you want your practice to have. For example, if you’d like patients to report courteous behavior and compassionate staff (and you do), go above and beyond to ensure each person experiences just that.

 

Remember, in today’s high-tech society, what you say to a patient could be posted online immediately.

 

4. Request Feedback

If you’re not receiving many online reviews, it might be because you’re not encouraging patients to leave them. Ask your patients if they’d be willing to leave reviews about their experiences online when you send them follow up emails.

According to a 2016 survey, 70% of consumers said they’ll leave a review for a business if they’re asked to.  If you’re concerned about asking for public feedback, know that requesting reviews rarely hurts a practice. In fact, more than 50% of patients report leaving positive reviews when they do rate a business. To compare, only 7% of patients write negative reviews.

 

5. Hire a Reputation Firm

If your online reputation has gotten away from you, or if perhaps you’re just too busy to take the necessary steps to improve it, you may want to seek out professional assistance by hiring an online reputation management firm. These firms staff teams of professionals who can keep your online image focused on the positive aspects about your practice so you can put your best foot forward when being considered by new patients.

Reputation firms can also offer advice on responding to negative patient reviews and on improving doctor/patient relationships online.

 

6. Address Critiques Objectively

Before you do anything about a critical review, address it objectively. Consider the situation from the patient’s point of view, from a legal standpoint and from the public’s point of view. Examine the most professional response and how you can minimize the damage to your reputation while respecting confidentiality laws.

If you are feeling heated and upset by a negative review, come back to the review later on.

 

7. Think Carefully Before Addressing Anyone Online

Nothing looks worse than a doctor arguing with a patient online. For example, if a past patient claims your practice missed a diagnosis, to dispute this online would breach doctor/patient confidentiality laws and cause you to appear unprofessional.

Instead, doctors are encouraged to ask the patient to contact the practice for a specific response while offering apologies. Always address reviews professionally and do what you can to make it right. Do not acknowledge that a patient was in your office, or that you provided treatment for both positive and negative reviews.

 

8. Don’t Create Fake Reviews

Filling a website with dozens of fake positive reviews might sound like the easiest way to improve your online reputation. Instead, this can quickly ruin a practice. Not only is this fraudulent behavior, but many review sites regularly scan for fake reviews.

If the authenticity of your positive feedback cannot be verified, the reviews may be removed and your practice may be flagged for fabricated reviews. It’s just not worth it.

 

9. Respond to Positive Reviews

When you receive a positive review, thank the patient for his or her kind words about your practice. Leave an uplifting, professional response that shows your commitment to patient satisfaction. Do not, however, share any patient information that could violate privacy laws.

 

Stay clear of phrases like, “It was great to see you,” or “Thank you for visiting the office.” Keep it vague and positive such as, “Thank you for the kind words.”

 

Patients prefer visiting practices that demonstrate active engagement with online reviewers.

 

10. Respond to Negative Reviews

Just as you should respond to positive reviews, you should also respond to patients who leave negative feedback. As previously noted, do not do so from an emotional state and always consider your response carefully. Ask yourself if anything you write violates confidentiality laws and if it shows your practice in the best possible light.

 

Most patients feel that it’s important for doctors to respond to all online feedback. In fact, only 27% of patients found it minimally important, or not at all important, for physicians to respond to negative reviews.

 

The right response can neutralize a negative review, preventing it from further damaging your reputation.

 

11. Don’t Get into Online Arguments

When you respond to a negative review, an upset patient might try to antagonize you into an argument. Regardless of what is said, even if the patient is lying, participating in an online argument will do worse for your reputation than the review itself.

Always respond professionally. If a patient instigates an argument, offer to discuss and resolve the matter privately, but do not otherwise engage in a dispute.

 

12. Promote Positive Reviews on Your Website

The positive reviews you receive can be your best marketing material. Promote positive reviews on your website, use quotes from happy patients in your marketing and draw attention to the good things your patients say about you. Before sharing or embedding patient reviews, however, always seek written consent from the patient to protect his or her privacy.

 

13. Be Extra Careful of Patient Privacy Laws

Patient privacy laws must be respected when responding to online reviews. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability ACT of 1996 (HIPAA) obligates every healthcare practitioner to protect patient privacy.

 

Information gained through any part of the patient’s care should never be published publicly without proper authorization. Best practice is to never confirm that the patient was seen by your clinic, according to Dr. Danika Brinda of Planet HIPAA. Instead, thank the patient for sharing feedback, and if necessary, invite further discussion in private.

 

14. Train All Staff in Customer Service Best Practices

Patients leave reviews about their entire experience with a practice, not just with their doctor. Train every staff member in customer service best practices and make it company policy to follow these practices closely. Each phone call, front desk conversation and nurse interaction should be handled with friendly, professional behavior.

 

When patients read reviews, they’re not always focused on the quality of healthcare that each review reports. It might surprise you to learn that a combined 48% of patients say they value the friendliness of the medical staff and the ease scheduling appointments over other information when reading online reviews.

Every member of your staff, even those who do not regularly interact with patients, should be trained in the company customer service policy.

 

15. Maintain a Social Media Presence

Social media is an excellent way to find new patients, engage existing patients and improve your online reputation. Maintain a social media presence that provides useful information, updates about your practice and helpful, respectful answers to patient questions.

 

Many patients turn to social media in their online inspection of a healthcare provider. If you don’t have a presence, you’re selling your practice short. Over 40% of patients report that social media affects their choice in a healthcare provider and facility.

Today, 31% of healthcare professionals have already turned to social media for professional networking. Join these businesses and shine brighter than your competition in 2018.

 

16. Keep a Regular Social Media Posting Schedule 

Maintaining an effective social media account for your practice requires consistency. The right posting schedule will boost your traffic and help you find new patients.

 

Include your posting schedule in your organization’s social media guidelines to keep your staff on the same page. Over 30% of healthcare organizations provide similar social media guidelines to staff. If you do not have staff in charge of managing your social media, consider outsourcing the job to a reputation management firm.

 

17. Be a Thought Leader in Your Field 

Don’t settle for being an off-line doctor. Become a thought leader in your field. A thought leader drives innovation and brings new ideas to his or her given industry. Such leaders become popular, well-respected professionals in their fields, which increases exposure and boosts their online reputations.

Becoming a thought leader isn’t something you can earn a degree for and be done with, it’s a process. You must establish yourself as a reputable professional, refine your skills and bring new, improved ideas to the field on a regular basis.

 

18. Keep Your Online Private Life Private

When your patients look you up online, you don’t want them to see your nights out with friends, family barbecues and casual social media updates. Keep any private online profiles restricted so only friends can view them and never post personal opinions, photos or videos on your professional accounts.

Ideally, your patients shouldn’t find your personal social media accounts even if they go looking for them. If you have private information online and cannot remove it, an online reputation company can help.

 

19. Register Your Name as a Domain and Secure Relevant Web Properties

Registering your name as a domain dramatically improves your search engine optimization (SEO) and it can even protect you from scandal. When potential patients Google your name, the domain that matches your name will appear at or near the top of the page. If you don’t own this domain, someone else could purchase it for their own means or even to use it against you.

 

For example, a disgruntled patient or competitor could buy an unregistered domain – i.e. www.DrYourName.com – and post false content about you there.

You’ll also want to secure other relevant web properties on professional website, blogging platforms and more.

 

20. Verify and Claim Your Google Business Listing 

Claiming your business on Google provides a good starting point to control what’s displayed about you on Google searches. This includes business location, images, hours and reviews. Once claimed, you can use Google Business tools to improve your listing.

 

Visit www.google.com/business and log in with your professional Gmail account to create your free Google listing.

 

21. Read Reviews of Other Doctors to Identify Trends and Pain Points

Researching the competition is among the best ways for businesses in any field to boost their success. Read reviews from other local doctors so you can identify pain points and trends that impact what other patients are saying.

 

The more you know about how and why your competition succeeds or fails, the more information you have available to help improve your private practice.

 

22. Know Your Audience and Keep It Professional

Whether you’re posting on the company blog, your practice’s Facebook page or in response to a positive review, know your audience. Consider your patient demographic and use it to define how you present yourself. Also keep every post professional, clean and polite.

 

Doctors, more than many other types of professionals, must maintain complete professional presentation and neutrality.

 

24. Temper Your Expectations

Remember, overhauling your online reputation is a marathon, not a sprint. If you start cultivating your online reputation now, it will not look perfect in five days. However, if you work on your reputation every day, proactively address reviews and continue to improve your practice, you could end 2018 with an excellent online presence.

 

To put it into perspective, Google typically recognizes index profile changes every two to six weeks. This means you can expect some small changes about every month, but you will not dominate the front page of Google after one long night of reputation repair.

The more time you can devote to this, the better. If you don’t have hours of extra time to devote to managing your presence, consider outsourcing to someone who does.

 

25. Treat the First Page of Google as Your Business Card 

Whether you like it or not, Google results are the new business cards. It doesn’t matter what your traditional advertisements say if your potential patients find contradictory information on the front page of Google. Often, when a patient Googles a practice, he or she will look for another physician in seconds if the front page lacks information or displays negative reviews.

 

According to a 2016 survey, 88% percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations. Furthermore, 90% of consumers read fewer than ten reviews before forming an opinion about the business.

 

If your online reputation is less-than-perfect, launching a proactive approach will improve your practice’s success. Online reviews are a modern concern for practitioners in all fields of healthcare and the number of platforms used to facilitate patient reviews is rapidly increasing.

 

Whether your reviews are positive, negative, or nonexistent, knowing what’s out there is the first step in protecting both yourself and your practice.

 

26. Pay attention to your Facebook reviews and ratings

Facebook is increasingly becoming one of the more frequently relied upon review platforms. Many experts have so much as predicted that 2018 will be the year that Facebook reviews come of age and begin to rival Yelp and other platforms as the go-to source for customer sentiment about brands. You can be certain that doctors – especially those with the all-important social media presence – will be a healthy part of the mix.

 

Facebook is also a great place to speak to your patient base and directly ask them for reviews through organic posts. And since no one can hide behind an anonymous moniker, you can trust that the feedback you solicit should be a bit more reliable than on other platforms. Take advantage of the following you’ve built to solicit feedback.

 

27. Content marketing is essential, even for doctors

Not only can an effective content marketing strategy win you valuable organic search traffic, but those in your city who see you’ve published thought-provoking articles about your industry of expertise will also see you as a thought leader in your field. What better way to show the world you’re keeping up with current trends in the medical world than to publish a regular stream of articles about your profession? Useful content will be greatly appreciated by readers and it gives you an effective means of selling without being overtly sales-y. Even just one post per month will go an incredibly long way over a period of several years.

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11 online reputation management techniques for doctors 

11 online reputation management techniques for doctors  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

At Digital Authority Partners, we are often asked about our doctor reputation management services. Usually, reputation management for doctors, as a service, is often sought if a doctor is:

  • dealing with too many negative medical reviews
  • involved in embarrassing public incidents
  • receiving negative press coverage
  • recovering from a malpractice lawsuit

 

Reputation management is critical to the success of a medical practice. When negative media coverage or online reviews about doctors appear online, medical practices see a one-third drop in visits and calls to their offices, causing a potentially disastrous financial impact.

 

When any of these events occur, doctors tend to enter “crisis mode” and often scramble to find the best strategies to restore their reputation.

 

Usually, reputation management companies refuse to divulge the techniques used to repair a doctor’s online reputation. Unlike most agencies, at Digital Authority Partners we prefer to be honest and transparent about how we approach reputation management for doctors.

 

If you or your medical practice are dealing with a reputation issue, read our ultimate guide to online reputation management, along with an explanation of how each technique works.

 

Every doctor should care about their online reputation

 

As early as 2012, 60% of US customers researched their doctors online. By 2016, 84% of patients researched new medical practitioners before their first appointment. Positive reviews and coverage are consistently considered important or very important before scheduling an appointment with a specific doctor.

 

The first page of Google search results tied to a doctor’s name or practice is the new business card. While some doctors may still choose to ignore this fact; their prospective patients will not.

 

The bad press won’t go away. So a lot can go wrong if you don’t address the problem head-on.

 

This is the simple truth about online reputation management for doctors: bad reviews and bad press coverage don’t go away. As a consequence, prudent doctors have taken very aggressive measures to guard their reputation. But there are good ways and catastrophic ways to restore your reputation. This article will only focus on the tried and true tactics to restore a doctor’s reputation.

Let’s pause for a second and explore the unfortunate ways some doctors try to deal with their tarnished online reputation.

 

According to Aaron Schur, Senior Director of Litigation at Yelp, the company regularly receives subpoenas from legal counsel retained by doctors to fix their reputation. Yelp rarely acts on these aggressive legal tactics to remove customer feedback.

 

Even though negative coverage never goes away, the worst thing a doctor can do is fight fire with fire.

 

In 2016, a Manhattan dentist sued multiple Yelp reviewers for their negative reviews – a move that backfired. The New York Daily News began its coverage of the suit in very unflattering terms: “A Manhattan dentist has been trying to extract money from patients who give him bad reviews online.” Then the case caught the attention of national media.

 

Worse yet, the case caught the attention of senior executives at Yelp. Two years later, potential patients going to the dentist’s Yelp page see this warning message:

 

Although you cannot delete negative coverage, you can bury it with positive content


The Manhattan dentist mentioned is a prime example of what reputation management companies advise against. Obviously, more negative coverage is the opposite of what a medical practice needs to restore trust in the digital space.

 

Instead, any reputation expert will advise its customers to focus on other strategies that are more likely to succeed. The best way to deal with negative reviews and coverage is to bury it with positive content.

 

How do you bury negative content? By replacing it with a single recipe for success: use Google’s search algorithm in your favor by creating valuable content that pushes the negative content associated with a business name after the first page.

 

It doesn’t happen overnight. And it’s easier said than done.

 

Regardless of your industry, there are specific white hat marketing techniques that can be employed to repair your online image. These are legitimate, widely accepted tactics promoted by some of the most renowned marketers in the world.

 

The rest of this article presents 11 tried and true tactics Digital Authority Partners leverages to successfully restore the online reputation of doctors. We strongly believe all doctors should know exactly what steps we follow to repair their online reputation.

 

Strategy Number 1: Build a website for yourself and/or your practice

 

The first and most valuable strategy to repair your reputation is to create a website dedicated to yourself and/or your practice. In some cases, you should consider doing both.

Why build a website for yourself or your medical practice?

A website serves multiple purposes. First – it introduces a doctor to the world. A good physician-dedicated website tells the story of a specific doctor, the values to which he or she adheres and provides testimonies about the quality of services the physician provides.

 

So, what makes a doctor’s website rank highly in Google search results?

 

Launching your own physician website has multiple benefits.

 

First, if done right, your website will be found when patients look up your name. That’s very powerful. Even if patients find some negative reviews, making a great first impression is imperative.

 

Second, in online doctor reputation management, it’s best to have a website that clearly presents all the critical information about yourself you want to be emphasized. Your website is a building block, a central place that will be used for all aspects tied to reputation management.

 

For example, one of the foundational strategies to improve an online reputation for a doctor involves the act of securing backlinks to the cornerstone digital property. That can be your own personal website or a website dedicated to your business.

 

Either way – for any reputation management campaign to succeed you need one primary digital property that you own and control. The reason that matters is that a centralized digital property with a robust analytics platform is needed to actually measure and improve on the overall effectiveness of your reputation management campaign.

 

Third, a personal website is your own forum. It’s where you can share updates about your practice, show your thought leadership, and engage with patients.

 

In short, having a website is the single most important tactic of reputation management for doctors.

 

Strategy Number 2: Start a blog directed to your patients


If you talk to 10 marketers, all 10 will tell you that the best way to manage your reputation is to have a blog.

 

A blog lives on the internet forever (or as long as you pay for your web hosting).

 

More importantly, a blog allows you to speak to your patients – current and future – to show your expertise and the value you bring to your clients.

 

Most important of all, a regularly updated blog is more likely to bring new clients, garner repeat business, and help you and/or your practice rank higher in Google search results.

 

Why launch a blog for yourself and/or your medical practice?

 

Starting a blog may seem to be a daunting task. How often should you publish content? Will you regularly have time to do it? Is it really worth it?

 

If you talk to any reputation management company, you will often see a list of clear and indisputable benefits tied to starting a blog. If you are in process of repairing your reputation online, here are some quick reasons why you should start a blog for your practice or yourself.

 

As other experts have pointed out, a pleasant side effect of physician-run blogs is that they lead to more business and referrals.

 

Most importantly though, from a pure reputation management perspective, a physician blog (preferably on your website) nearly guarantees that your content appears at the top of the Google search results. This is why most reputation management companies make the creation of new and original blog content the Number 1 technique to bury negative results in Google.

 

In sum, no legitimate reputation management campaign can succeed without creating great blog content on behalf of a doctor.

 

Strategy Number 3: Create blog posts for other websites


The key to success, when dealing with a reputation management issues, is to create relevant, timely content associated with a physician’s name on multiple platforms. 

 

However, even if you create the single best physician blog on the internet, that will likely only bury one of the first ten Google search results.

 

A robust doctor reputation management campaign needs to do more than that. The easiest way to bury negative reviews or press coverage is to create new content on other websites as well. For example, at agencies like ours, we have partnerships with over 400 blogs that accept guest submissions from the doctors and clients we represent.

 

First, we work with each client to determine the topics that will best showcase their expertise. Then our team of writers creates long, in-depth content pieces that are published under our client’s name on other websites. As part of the guest posting efforts, we secure backlinks to our physicians’ websites or social media profiles.

 

If you are a doctor with a significant reputation management issue, guest posting is one of the best strategies for displaying additional Google search results when a patient looks online for your name or the name of your practice.

 

Guest posting is perhaps the most popular doctor reputation management tactic for restoring physicians’ online reputations.

 

Clearly, guest posting has numerous benefits, but the technique is primarily used to get backlinks to specific interviews and news coverage about you and your company. Guest posting can be on another physician website, blog, or social media profile. Links from guest posts will point to whatever content we create for you.

 

Strategy Number 4: Create powerful social media accounts

 

(Linkedin, Facebook) for your medical practice
Google takes a wide variety of digital signals into consideration when ranking content for a specific search term. When running a doctor reputation management campaign, the best way to get meaningful results is by tackling all the major signals drawing Google’s attention.

 

It is well established that social media activity has an impact on Google search results. Specifically, Google is drawn by the number of visits to specific websites and blog posts receive directly from social media like Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin.

 

This strong correlation between Google search results and social media activities is what drives most successful reputation management campaigns for doctors to include a social media component. Creating robust social media profiles combined with frequent posts has proven to be a very effective reputation management technique.

 

By creating strong social media accounts with regular posts, every doctor with whom we perform reputation management initiatives will see their social media profiles rank on the first page of Google search results tied to their own or their firm’s name within 60 days.

 

Social media is a powerful tool not only for restoring your online reputation but also for proactively engaging your patients and future clients. An article from March 2018 reveals how various physicians all over the US leverage social media to combat misinformation – not only about their own practices but also about specific conditions, diagnostics, and other timely healthcare news that could affect their patients (ex., flu season, epidemics, etc.).

 

This makes social media management incredibly relevant not only for reputation management but also for long-term digital engagement with your patients.

 

Strategy Number 5: Claim your Google business listing online

 

According to Google, 97% of users search for local businesses and local business owners names online. For that reason, reputation management campaigns often focus on what is called “local SEO practices.”

 

The first priority when improving a doctor’s reputation is to make sure locals searching for a doctor’s name see relevant results – preferably not the questionable ones.

 

To that end, the most important step when initiating a local SEO strategy is for a practice to claim its local Google business listing.

For example, here’s the Google listing page for a doctor in the Chicago area:

 

When searching for Dr. xyz name, Google search results return her image, Google map location, specialty, address, and phone number.

 

Since reputation management campaigns center on optimizing the Google search results, claiming, optimizing, and managing a Google business listing page is important for online reputation management.

 

Google allows for mini-posts on the Google listing page – something that helps with SEO and reputation management initiatives.

 

This is one of various “social” online listings that carries a lot of weight when tying a doctor’s name and medical practice to Google search results.

 

There are many customization options on the Google Business Listing dashboard, giving doctors the opportunity to create powerful and influential profiles for potential patients to visit.

 

Strategy Number 6: Respond to all reviews on Google/Yelp

 

When looking for new service providers, most customers go to two sources: Google and Yelp.

 

For doctors who are doing well – reviews are a great way to attract new customers. For doctors dealing with unhappy customers and other PR baggage, online reviews can be a nightmare.

 

Doctors’ responses to the new world of online reviews have not always been appropriate or even legal.

 

In 2016, a Washington Post investigation into 3000+ physician responses to negative reviews on Yelp and Google showed that an alarming number of doctors violated HIPAA compliance rules when responding to disenchanted patients. Other doctors – who used a passive aggressive tone or responded rudely to online reviews opened the door to additional criticism and unwanted attention from online users who were offended by physicians’ postings.

 

In general, doctors should not take it upon themselves to respond to online reviews. That’s because it is impossible to not feel emotional when dealing with negative comments. Instead, doctors should either designate a staff person to this task or outsource responses to reputation management consultants. This approach will often avoid making a situation worse or drawing more unwanted attention.

 

Responding to a negative review poorly is not the only problem doctors face with regard to their online reviews. Another unfortunate tactic some physicians erroneously employ, not addressing online reviews at all.

 

Neither strategy is good. Some doctors have reported a 30% loss of business after negative Yelp reviews. As one doctor put it, “Yelp reviews can literally be the bane of many doctors’ existence.”

 

Online reviews aren’t only read by patients. A 2013 study showed that 86% of doctors read their own reviews; 36% also regularly check their competitors’ reviews. As a result, online reviews can affect not only a physician’s ability to acquire new patients but also his/her standing as a member of the medical community as a whole.

 

In general, the appropriate course of action for doctors dealing with online reviews is to respond to every single new review – positive or negative. That shows others researching doctors that you listen to your patients’ concerns and address them professionally.

 

Don’t forget – you can’t make everyone happy. However, you can treat everyone with respect and courtesy – especially when everyone in the world can see your online interactions.

 

How should physicians and reputation management agencies respond to Google and Yelp reviews?

 

The best approach is to answer to every single online review as part of your ongoing reputation management activities.

 

But how should a physician respond to negative reviews online?

 

There are many ways doctors can tackle negative reviews in their reputation management campaigns. Through it all, remember this point: a bad review doesn’t ruin a business. It’s impossible to please everyone. The best technique is to keep your head cool and to give professional answers to every single review online – good, bad, or ugly.

 

Strategy Number 7: Create medical profiles on relevant directories and social media sites designed for doctors


One of the best approaches to online reputation management for doctors is to create rich profiles on a wide variety of platforms set up specifically for doctors. Just like mainstream social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin, social media platforms for doctors stand a very good chance to rank organically in Google for the search term associated with the name of a specific doctor.

 

Some popular social media platforms and directories for doctors are:

 

CareDash: As one of the fastest growing provider review sites, CareDash uses artificial intelligence to help detect and stop the publication of fraudulent reviews. Doctors can easily create and personalize their profile, and patients trust the platform to help them confidently choose their care provider.


Doximity: An online social network for doctors with verified clinicians’ profiles. As of 2018, the network has over 1,000,000 doctors and physicians. That’s approximately 50% of all doctors in the US.


Healthcare6: An online directory that helps patients find doctors based on specialty and location. The company currently lists almost 3 million doctors and health care providers.


Sharecare: An online health and wellness platform and doctor directory. Sharecare lists each doctor’s full profile – including insurance plans, years of experience, biographical information, specialties, professional affiliations, and educational background. The platform also allows doctors to answer questions and provide thought leadership on specific topics.


WebMD: One of the largest healthcare news and directories in the world. The company allows doctors to create free profiles and advertise on the platform to get new patients.
How physicians and reputation management agencies should optimize healthcare directory profiles

 

Healthcare directory profiles play a critical role in reputation management campaigns. This infographic shows the top reasons why doctors should care about their online directory profiles:

 

For reputation management companies, creating online profiles in established directories is an “easy win” to influence Google search results. Given the nature of some of the directories – where doctors need to verify their identity – new profiles for specific doctors are usually easy to set up and then rank in Google. Google sees verified directories as highly legitimate social signals for ranking those profiles highly for specific keywords.

 

Whether you are actively working on your reputation or not, one thing is certain: you should absolutely have yourself and your practice listed on some of the most popular – and free – directories in the US.

 

Strategy Number 8: Be helpful online by posting on relevant Q&A sites and threads


One often ignored technique for ranking high in Google search results is the practice of creating profiles on Q&A websites and responding to questions posted on message boards that are within the doctor’s specialty.

 

For example, Quora is the most popular question and answer website in the world. It ranks 90th among the most popular sites in the world and 3rd for Q&A sites. On Quora, anyone can create a profile under their own name and contribute to the community.

 

However, Quora has a lesser known benefit. Engaged users who create relevant content using their actual names, can be up-voted by their users. This usually results in that individual profile ranking higher for the name of its author.

 

In simple terms: a doctor can create a Quora profile under his/her name. After answering questions on specific topics, the Quora profile link will appear in the results of a Google search when a user looks for the name of a specific doctor.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies use Quora to rank organically in Google

 

Strategy Number 9: Use YouTube to post promotional content, highlight testimonials and make your YouTube profile rank highly in search results


Here is a lesser-known fact: YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world. Furthermore, YouTube is also a tried and true tactic that has become increasingly popular among doctors to attract new patients, learn new methods, and even attract new employees.

 

In addition, YouTube allows users to create a custom URL in their own name for their channel. As that URL gets backlinks, it will start ranking in search results.

 

The SEO benefits have made creating a channel and getting a custom URL a very popular technique for reputation management firms.

 

Of course, there is a catch. According to Google, a channel must meet the following criteria to get a custom URL:

 

  • Have at least 100 subscribers
  • Be at least 30 days old
  • Have an uploaded channel icon photo
  • Have uploaded channel art

 

This means that if a reputation management company is to reap the SEO benefits for a client from YouTube, it’s not enough to just create a YouTube profile.

 

Reputation management companies need to work with a client to create relevant video content. Then, the video content needs to be promoted. Potential subscribers need to be found and encouraged, through campaigns, to follow the channel.

 

In the end, this is worth the effort. When a doctor or reputation management company uses YouTube correctly, the YouTube channel for a specific physician can become one of the top ten search results associated with a specific doctor’s or practice’s name.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies use YouTube to rank organically in Google.

 

Many doctors feel intimidated by video content. When we think video – we think high tech video editing, sound editing, special effects, and more.

 

Actually, any doctor with a smartphone can become a videomaker. The videos can be about any relevant healthcare topic. Some examples include testimonials, health-related tips/tricks, video from a conference, etc.

 

Any video – small or big – can help with reputation management. Especially when you are dealing with negative online reviews, YouTube becomes a great channel for online visitors to see you in action, since your personality and charisma, and relate to you as a doctor outside of any negative reviews found online.

 

YouTube is one of the most powerful tools to quickly and efficiently improve your online reputation.

 

Strategy Number 10. Use SlideShare to showcase your expertise, thought leadership and skills as a doctor
Creating a powerful SlideShare online profile is another popular technique used by reputation management companies to remove negative reviews from the first page of Google search results.

 

SlideShare is a social network allowing users to publish professional presentations, infographics, and documents online. The website gets approximately 80 million visitors a month and has over 30 million users. In 2012, the company was purchased by LinkedIn for $119 million.

 

How physicians and reputation management agencies can use SlideShare to rank organically in Google

 

SlideShare has long been used for marketing and SEO purposes. Like other techniques presented in this article, SlideShare is simply another online social network which, when used correctly, can offer businesses and physicians a much-needed search result in the process of burying negative results in Google.

 

Like Quora, SlideShare is created around topics. This makes it easy to create a robust strategy to rank higher in Google search results.

 

As with other techniques discussed in this article, SlideShare is great for reputation management. Prepared correctly, Slideshare accounts can even replace other Google search results and help physicians rank higher for their own content.

 

Strategy Number 11: How physicians and reputation management agencies track online presence in real time


Reputation management never stops. Even when a specific issue is resolved, physicians must be diligent about their online presence and quickly react appropriately when necessary.

 

The best way to handle your reputation management is to create a Google custom alert. When users go to this link they can set up a specific alert for any word or combination of words of interest:

 

In the search bar, a doctor can enter a personal name or the name of the business. Any time the name is mentioned online, an email alert is sent.

 

This strategy is very effective because it allows doctors to easily maintain their reputation management.

 

Rather than waiting until the last possible moment to respond to negative reviews or negative PR coverage, physicians can deal with problems early.

 

In reputation management, it’s imperative to answer criticism proactively and quickly counter any negative publicity.

 

This simple tactic will keep you instantly informed and give you peace of mind. With custom alerts, you can sleep well at night because you know you have access to any good or bad online news as soon as your name is mentioned.

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How Doctors Can Save Their Online Reputation and Flourish

How Doctors Can Save Their Online Reputation and Flourish | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Every doctor now gets searched online, as many patients and prospects base their choices on reviews. Since they make judgments based on what they discover online, it’s imperative to know what’s being said about you so that you can manage your online reputation. Even if you execute caution on what your online posts are, someone else may say something negative or unfair about you. Here are strategies on how to protect online reputation for doctors.

Reputation Risks for Doctors

Some doctors may assume the best way to protect online reputation is to delete negative comments and hide behind security settings on Facebook or Twitter. But if people suddenly can’t find you after reading a negative review, it raises questions. Keep in mind that everyone from celebrities to unknown clerks is at risk of facing negative online content about them.

 

A Deloitte global survey of executives in 2014 found that reputation is considered the biggest business risk. In fact, 87% of the respondents said reputation risk was a greater concern than business strategic risks. Over 40% of executives fear the consequences of reputation damage can involve loss of revenue.

 

The biggest challenge is cleaning up the mess created by what other people say about you online. While you can control the content you post about yourself, you can’t stop what others decide to say, whether they have a legitimate complaint or are just recklessly trying to damage your reputation. Perhaps they are a dissatisfied patient, a disgruntled former employee, a competitor or someone hired by a competitor to spread negativity.

Impact on Referrals

One of the biggest drivers of new leads in the healthcare industry is referrals. When you see a drop off in referrals it can be a sign that people are finding negative reviews about you online. So, be sure to Google search your name periodically to find out what others see. Keep in mind that not everyone is served the same results, since Google uses cookies that track your online interests. Each individual gets different results, so it’s important to check on various computers.

 

A Harris Interactive survey in 2012 of 2,570 adults found that 48% of who Googled their own name said the results they found were not positive. Furthermore, 30% said they found results that were irrelevant. Those are pretty alarming statistics, considering Google is the world’s most used search engine.

How To Protect Your Online Reputation?

Luckily, there is an innovative technology you can use to track and defend your online reputation. One of these tools is Google Alerts, which sends you free notifications when new content based on your keywords appears online. Several other tools can help you track what people are saying about you or your keywords on social media. Here are additional steps you can take:

  1. find out who the people are that are posting negative comments
  2. if the information is false, ask them politely to remove the comments through a private message
  3. consider a service that scrubs online content
  4. review your own social media and blog posting and consider removing any content that may offend others
  5. purchase your own domain name and launch an official website so that you control content about yourself
  6. create many pages for your site to increase the odds that search engines will prioritize them
  7. Develop about 9 other web properties with regularly updated content including social media profiles to further dominate search results

Over to You!

It is crucial to protect your online reputation as a doctor since many patients now based decisions on online reviews. Stay on top of your own online content and consider hiring someone to manage your online reputation.

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Reviews Online Rank Top-Rated Hospitals Poorly 

Reviews Online Rank Top-Rated Hospitals Poorly  | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

An analysis of nearly 2,700 online reviews of the nation’s top-20 hospitals as ranked by U.S. News & World Report (USN&WR) finds almost two out of three reviewers give the facilities a mediocre to a poor rating on the social media website Yelp.com.

 

Each year the magazine names 20 hospitals for outstanding clinical outcomes in 16 areas of complex specialty care. Meanwhile, from another perspective, an analysis by Denver-based consulting firm Vanguard Communications & Healthcare Process Improvement found that 62.7 percent of Yelp reviewers rate the latest ranked top institutions at only one to three stars out of five possible.

 

The 20 hospitals combined earned an average rating of 3.2 out of five stars.

 

USN&WR published its latest rankings in August based on the best clinical performances of hospitals nationwide. However, on social media, patients tend to discuss customer service far more often. According to Vanguard’s evaluation of 2,679 reviews of the top 20, nearly 9 in 10 (84 percent) complaints cited nonclinical, service issues as the main source of their dissatisfaction, ranging from chronic billing problems, to poor phone and follow-up communications, to wait times of one to four hours or more to see a doctor.

 

Ironically, most online healthcare reviewers who complain about customer service wind up praising their doctors and typically appear satisfied with the quality of medical care, said Ron Harman King, Vanguard CEO.

 

“Each year U.S. News & World Report performs a great public service by evaluating hospitals in areas that are least transparent and accessible to healthcare consumers,” King said. “We thought it would be interesting to learn more about what patients thought. Our findings suggest they focus their online comments more on nonmedical matters such as how many rings or pushed buttons it takes to get a live person on the phone, and the availability of parking for a doctor’s appointment. This is understandable, given the greater transparency of quality of those services.”

 

Vanguard’s prior social media research found patients freely express gratitude for doctors’ individual performances. A 2016 Vanguard analysis of 34,748 online healthcare reviews showed that 2 out of 3 American patients (66 percent) give doctors either four or five stars on social media.

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Is Yelp Reviews Hurting Your Online Medical Practice?

Is Yelp Reviews Hurting Your Online Medical Practice? | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

“Yelp just doesn’t understand us!”

Undeniably, Yelp has had an impact on local businesses and that influence has certainly been felt in healthcare, emerging as a top reputation red flag for many medical practices. Tackling Yelp in an attempt to remove a negative review or get a positive review released from Yelp’s filter seems like a losing battle. Meanwhile, Yelp’s 1-to-5 star rating attached to your practice’s name often has a page-one presence in your business’ search results.

So we propose a different strategy: Give preference to other review sites to better control what potential customers see when they are virtually shopping for the services you offer.

Since its inception in 2004, Yelp has grasped the American consumer by becoming one of the most trusted business review websites, and is currently ranked the thirty-third most viewed website in the U.S. With such great prominence, Yelp’s presence is undeniable: Google your favorite restaurant or hair salon and with great reliability, a Yelp review will rank among the top search results.

 

When you’re dealing in healthcare reputation management, however, you’re not mitigating complaints about cold soup or distasteful ambiance.

 

During a recent marketing meeting with a group of ob-gyns, out of frustration, one doctor said, “Yelp just doesn’t understand us!” Across varying specialties, I’ve often heard this type of sentiment from doctors and practice managers alike. But what’s unique to medical practitioners that makes them feel as though Yelp reviews have no place in medicine?

 

The source lies not in what unhappy patients are saying about their doctors, but what Yelp’s algorithm does to suppress happy patients’ voices.

What’s the beef?

Most anyone in medicine would agree that “rate your doc” websites are an essential measurement of performance and provide clinics and hospitals an opportunity to clean up lacking customer service.

 

Earlier this year, my employer Vanguard Communications decided to look at 3,617 negative online reviews of doctors in four U.S. cities and found that complaints about poor customer service and bedside manner were four times more prevalent than misdiagnoses and inadequate medical skills.

 

And why wouldn’t doctors listen? Patients facing real problems like cancer or infertility have legitimate reasons to review doctor and clinical performance: one’s health and the intimate interaction with their physician is not something to be taken lightly. You take the good reviews with the bad, right?

With Yelp, not always.

 

Let’s consider a patient that went through intensive chemo. After finding out that she is cancer-free and wants to extoll the virtues of her oncologist, she goes to a website like Yelp and writes a warm, heartfelt review. But what happens to that review?

Since the cancer-free patient is a one time, preach-it-from-the-rooftops kind of reviewer (and not a frequent reviewer of restaurants or hair salons), the five stars that the patient assigns to her oncologist will most often be filtered away by Yelp in the “not currently recommended” section. According to the company, their algorithm “[includes] various measures of quality, reliability, and activity on Yelp.”

 

To put it plainly: the more frequently you Yelp, the louder your voice is heard. Yelp believes this is the surest way to ensure an “authentic experience for consumers.”

Yelp matters

I was recently reviewing the Yelp account of a Bay Area client and was reminded how easily Yelp can hurt a business. This urology practice has six locations, each with its own location page on Yelp. Honing in on one of those location profiles, potential patients will see that there are eight reviews, each with a 1-star rating. Anyone who’s looking for a urologist would take their business elsewhere.

 

A savvy Yelp user – who would take the time to scroll down to the bottom of the page and look at filtered reviews – would see, however, that this particular urology clinic isn’t so bad, because there are 24 more reviews, 21 of which are 5-star.

 

Not to discredit complaints of the practice, but if Yelp were to report all reviews, a potential patient would see that this particular clinic has nearly a 4-star rating.

 

Unlike the medically focused review sites such as HealthGrades and RateMDs – which combined account for 39 million unique monthly visitors – Yelp has surpassed the 100 million mark for monthly visits to the site. Admittedly, much of the traffic is owned by the entertainment and restaurant industries; however, the company reports that Yelp appears in 32 percent of all health and medical impressions online, even with its unfortunate filtering system.

 

Solely based on volume, networks like Google, Yahoo! and Bing have traditionally given preference to Yelp reviews over other online content. And when a 1-star rating appears as the top search result for your medical practice, you’ve got a real SEO problem.

Viva Yelp Résistance!

Historically, my firm has addressed negative reviews by drafting copy on behalf of our clients. Additionally, we work with practice administrators to identify source problems and ensure our doctors have a chance to speak directly with unhappy patients. We will continue to execute this reputation management strategy, as it has had some very positive results.

But Yelp has become too big of a bear to tackle. They won’t budge on their review filtering and have even begun imposing strict rules on incentivizing happy customers to write Yelp reviews.

 

Because of this, we’re in the early stages of launching a Yelp suppression strategy and our battle cry viva Yelp Résistance! has become commonplace around the office.

Earlier this year, in what is presumably an effort to boost their social functionality and reach, Google+ unveiled “reviews.” Much like Yelp, Google+ allows users to review businesses by their location. The difference is Google doesn’t have a filter, so all reviews – good and bad – will show as part of a business’ star rating.

 

Anyone with a basic understanding of SEO knows that Google gives preference to its own products and platforms ahead of its competition. Though we know this based on experience and anecdotal evidence (because Google would never admit to such practice) I was excited to learn a few months back that AdWords – Google’s advertising platform – began offering the ability to link reviews to paid advertising, at no cost to marketers.

Why is this thrilling? For kicks, I tried a number of times to link Yelp reviews to Google advertisements, however, I was greeted with the message “review source is ineligible.” Not surprisingly, Google+ reviews were accepted without question. This confirms that Google is indeed giving preference to its own products – such as Google reviews – and pushing aside larger threats, such as Yelp.

 

Similarly, search partners Bing and Yahoo! are already launching a review option of their own, Yahoo! local (representing a network share in web searches of 29 percent).

 

For marketers wishing to get Yelp off the top of their brand’s search, a concerted effort to begin operating within Google’s platform is required. Claiming a practice’s location on Google+ Places and doctors’ identities on Google+ Profiles, and directing patients to write reviews on Google requires a great investment in time.

 

Although Yelp cannot be ignored, by pushing Yelp aside – and hopefully off the first page of search – we believe potential patients’ view of our clients will not be unfairly skewed before they walk through the doors of a practice.

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24 Outstanding Statistics on How Social Media has Impacted Health Care

24 Outstanding Statistics on How Social Media has Impacted Health Care | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Social media is one of the most talked about disruptions to marketing in decades, but how is it impactful for the health care industry? In a generation that is more likely to go online to answer general health questions then ask a doctor, what role does social media play in this process? Let’s dive into some meaningful statistics and figures to clearly illustrate how social media has impacted health care in the last few years.

 

1. More than 40% of consumers say that information found via social media affects the way they deal with their health. (source: Mediabistro)

Why this matters: Health care professionals have an obligation to create educational content to be shared across social media that will help accurately inform consumers about health related issues and out shine misleading information. The opinions of others on social media are often trusted but aren’t always accurate sources of insights, especially when it comes to a subject as sensitive as health.

 

2. 18 to 24 year olds are more than 2x as likely than 45 to 54 year olds to use social media for health-related discussions. (source: Mediabistro)

Why this matters: 18 to 24 year olds are early adopters of social media and new forms of communication which makes it important for health care professionals to join in on these conversations where and when they are happening. Don’t move too slow or you risk losing the attention of this generation overtime.

 

3. 90% of respondents from 18 to 24 years of age said they would trust medical information shared by others on their social media networks. (source: Search Engine Watch)

Why this matters: A millennial’s network on social media is a group of people that is well trusted online, which again, presents an opportunity to connect with them as health care professional in a new and authentic way.

 

4. 31% of health care organizations have specific social media guidelines in writing. (source: Institute for Health)

Why this matters: It is crucial to have social media guidelines in place for your health care facility to ensure everyone is on the same page, your staff is aware of limitations to their actions on social media and that a systematic strategy is in place for how social media should be run across your organization.

 

5. 19% of smartphone owners have at least one health app on their phone. Exercise, diet, and weight apps are the most popular types. (source: Demi & Cooper Advertising and DC Interactive Group)

Why this matters: This drives home the need for your health care organization to look into possibly launching a health related app focused on your specialty. This statistic doesn’t mean every health care facility should have their own app, but they should have a strong mobile focus across their marketing no matter their size.

 

6. From a recent study, 54% of patients are very comfortable with their providers seeking advice from online communities to better treat their conditions. (source: Mediabistro)

Why this matters: If the context of a group or community online is high quality and curated, then many trust that crowd sourcing of information from other like mind individuals is reliable. This shows how people perceive the Internet to be beneficial for the exchange of relevant information, even about their health.

 

7. 31% of health care professionals use social media for professional networking. (source: MedTechMedia)

Why this matters: This helps shine a stronger emphasis on the many applications and benefits of social media, one of which being professional development for health care workers from networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

 

8. 41% of people said social media would affect their choice of a specific doctor, hospital, or medical facility. (source: Demi & Cooper Advertising and DC Interactive Group)

Why this matters: This statistic shows that social media can be a vehicle to help scale both positive and negative word of mouth, which makes it an important channel for an individual or organization in the health care industry to focus on in order to attract and retain patients. Consumers are using social media to discuss everything in their lives including health and it is up to your organization to choose whether it’s time to tune in.

 

9. 30% of adults are likely to share information about their health on social media sites with other patients, 47% with doctors, 43% with hospitals, 38% with a health insurance company and 32% with a drug company. (source: Fluency Media)

Why this matters: Social media is slowly helping improve the way people feel about transparency and authenticity, which will hopefully lead to more productive discussions and innovations regarding an individual’s health.

 

10. 26% of all hospitals in the US participate in social media. (source: Demi & Cooper Advertising and DC Interactive Group)

Why this matters: If your hospital isn’t using social media, then you’re way behind the learning curve. Social media is really important for hospitals to communicate with past, present and future patients, despite the many regulations to what can and can’t be said on behalf of the hospital.

 

11. The most accessed online resources for health related information are: 56% searched WebMD, 31% on Wikipedia, 29% on health magazine websites, 17% used Facebook, 15% used YouTube, 13% used a blog or multiple blogs, 12% used patient communities, 6% used Twitter and 27% used none of the above. (source: Mashable)

Why this matters: Understanding where a majority of consumer health information comes from is important way of knowing of its value, credibility and reliability. It is important to differentiate sources of quality content from other less desirable sources of info.

 

12. Parents are more likely to seek medical answers online, 22% use Facebook and 20% use YouTube. Of non-parents, 14% use Facebook and 12% use YouTube to search for health care related topics. (source: Mashable)

Why this matters: Parents are more concerned about the well-being of their children then they were before having children, therefore they often source more information about a loved one’s health on social media and online more then ever before.

 

13. 60% of doctors say social media improves the quality of care delivered to patients. (source: Demi & Cooper Advertising and DC Interactive Group)

Why this matters: This statistic is important because it shows that many doctors believe that the transparency and authenticity that social media helps spur is actually improving the quality of care provided to patients. Lets hope this is a continuing trend among the industry for patients at all levels.

 

14. 2/3 of doctors are use social media for professional purposes, often preferring an open forum as opposed to a physician-only online community. (source: EMR Thoughts)

Why this matters: It is interesting that a majority of doctors chose a more open forum as opposed to discussion in a health care specific community online. It is a fascinating statistic because it feeds into the same premise that a certain level of transparency spurred by social media is taking ahold of the entire industry.

 

15. YouTube traffic to hospital sites has increased 119% year-over-year. (source: Google’s Think Insights)

Why this matters: Video marketing converts to traffic and leads much more easily than other forms of content because it more effectively gets across the point, shares a human element and is able to highlight the value of the facilities more quickly. Other hospital facilities should look to create video content based around interviews, patient stories and more.

 

16. International Telecommunications Union estimates that global penetration of mobile devices has reached 87% as of 2011. (source: mHealth Watch)

Why this matters: Once again, it’s time to think mobile first, second and third for your healthcare facility. With mobile penetration reaching an all time high, an age of connected devices is on the horizon for many healthcare facilities and it is time to develop a plan.

 

17. 28% of health-related conversations on Facebook are supporting health-related causes, followed by 27% of people commenting about health experiences or updates. (source: Infographics Archive)

Why this matters: This statistic supports and highlights two common uses of Facebook related to your health like sharing your favorite cause or interacting with others recovering. Social media has penetrated our society very deeply to the point where it has become a place where we share our interests and give support to others. This could be one of the many factors affecting why many trust the information found on social media about healthcare. The masses are continually accepting social media as a part of their everyday life, it is time your healthcare facility incorporated this marketing medium as part of your culture as well.

 

18. 60% of social media users are the most likely to trust social media posts and activity by doctors over any other group. (source: Infographics Archive)

Why this matters: Doctors as respected members of society are also highly revered for their opinions when they are shared on social media, which is even more reason to help boost your reach as a healthcare professional and actively use social media to discuss the industry.

 

19. 23% of drug companies have not addressed security and privacy in terms of social media. (source: Mediabistro)

Why this matters: This is an unsettling statistic about privacy concerns with drug companies that drastically needs to be addressed in order to guarantee that sensitive data is not accidentally released to the public on social media. It shows how many companies in health care still don’t know the first thing about the use of social media. This can be corrected by creating clear and concise guidelines on how social media should be used by the organization and its staff.

 

20. The Mayo Clinic’s podcast listeners rose by 76,000 after the clinic started using social media. (source: Infographics Archive)

< p>Why this matters: This is a clear cut example of how to successfully bolster the reach of your organization’s messaging by echoing it appropriately on social media. Mayo Clinic already had a regular podcast that they helped grow by effectively using social media to share content and chat with their audience. Don’t get left behind in the digital age, take this example and run with it.

 

21. 60% of physicians most popular activities on social are following what colleagues are sharing and discussing. (source: Health Care Communication)

Why this matters: Many people on social media are passive participants since they aren’t creating or commenting on content, but instead reading and observing the content and conversations of others in their network. This is also true for many doctors that find value using social media to exchange information but don’t always choose to join the conversation. Many doctors are seeing the value of social media, regardless if they are a participant or an observer.

 

22. 49% of those polled expect to hear from their doctor when requesting an appointment or follow-up discussion via social media within a few hours. (source: HealthCare Finance News)

Why this matters: This is a surprising statistic because of how many people are comfortable with connecting with their doctor on social media, as well as how quickly they expect their doctor to personally respond to their outreach. This is a telling sign that the way in which we typically book appointments and handle follow-up conversations after an appointment, will continue to be disrupted by the use of social media in the process.

 

23. 40% of people polled said information found on social media affects how someone coped with a chronic condition, their view of diet and exercise and their selection of a physician.(source: HealthCare Finance News)

Why this matters: The opinion and viewpoints of the people in our social circles online are continuously influencing our decision making even it when it comes to our opinion on healthcare options. Health care professionals should take note of this fact by using social media in an impactful way to ensure they become a part of the process of forming an opinion of a person’s health care options.

 

24. Of more than 1,500 hospitals nationwide who have an online presence, Facebook is most popular. (source: WHPRMS)

Why this matters: The fact that most hospitals use Facebook over other social media channels is important to note because time, staff and budget are always limited and your efforts with social media should be targeted and focused to where your organization can make the most impact.

Technical Dr. Inc.'s insight:
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