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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3 Easy Ways to Engage Patients Online During the Holidays

3 Easy Ways to Engage Patients Online During the Holidays | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Many people love this time of year because the holidays offer a chance to slow down, give thanks, and spend time with friends and family.

 

For healthcare providers like you, the holidays present a good opportunity to connect with patients in a way that helps them keep their health — and your healthcare practice — top of mind.

Email a Digital Holiday Card

Sending holiday cards is a beloved gesture. According to the publication JSTOR Daily, Americans purchase 1.6 billion holiday cards every year.

 

Rather than send paper cards through USPS, take advantage of your robust patient email database to send digital cards. A digital holiday card expresses the same “thinking of you” sentiment and helps you save time and money.

 

Websites like Paperless Post offer hundreds of holiday card templates that you can customize.

 

All of your patients, including those who have not visited your practice in some time, should be sent a digital card.

 

In fact, a digital holiday card might just be the reminder some patients need to schedule appointments in the new year.

Offer Holiday Discounts on Social Media

People jump for discounts during the holiday season. According to Marshal Cohen, Chief Retail Analyst at NPD, almost one-third of purchases made around holiday time are for the buyer themselves.

 

If your healthcare practice sells retail products or can offer reduced prices on services, you can take advantage of “self-gifting” by running a special holiday sale on social media.

 

To effectively market your sale, you should share eye-catching images and use strong language that specifically outlines exactly what patients must do in order to take qualify for the discount. If you choose to promote the sale on Facebook, for example, you might require patients to “Like” your healthcare practice page and “Share” the specific post.

Discuss Hot Holiday Topics on Your Blog

Now is a great time for healthcare providers to write original blogs that discuss hot holiday topics.

 

A general practitioner, for example, can write several blogs that tackle one of the biggest holiday concerns: weight gain.

 

A few blog topics could include:

  • How to avoid overindulging at holiday parties
  • Healthful alternatives to harmful holiday foods
  • How to exercise regularly when the weather is frightful

Remember, publishing a blog is just the first step in encouraging patient engagement online. You must also share your blogs on social media. You can also send your blogs to patients via email or submit your work to a healthcare publication to bolster your online brand.

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

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

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Reputation Management for Doctors in 3 Easy Steps

Reputation Management for Doctors in 3 Easy Steps | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Doctors, practices, and their staff all have a brand. And like any brand, it must be protected.

 

I’ve spent years helping struggling doctors grow revenue and find more time in their day, and I’ve discovered that when you have a strong brand, patients engage more, and they’re willing to invest with less analysis, cynicism, and caution.

 

Think of strong brands such as Nike, Apple, and Coca-Cola. Branding is more about the perception of excellence than about the perception of a good deal.

 

That’s the perception you want for your practice. And that’s why you need a strong brand.

 

Negative press will instantly and immeasurably harm a brand. To avoid this, doctors should consider reputation management to help protect their brand.

 

Here, we’ll take a look at what that means for you and how you can get started protecting your brand in three easy steps.

What is reputation management?

Reputation management means knowing what’s being said about you and taking a proactive response to enter the conversation constructively.

But how do you know what people are saying?

Patients and prospective patients primarily use online search results, review sites, and social media to evaluate and find new doctors.

According to a Software Advice survey:

  • Eighty-four percent of patient respondents use online reviews to evaluate physicians
  • For 77% of respondents, reading online reviews is the first step taken when searching for a new doctor
  • Favorable reviews would motivate 47% of respondents to choose an out-of-network doctor with similar qualifications over one with less favorable reviews

In addition to the myriad reviews websites out there, there are also forums, Twitter, and Facebook where people may be talking about you, your staff, and your practice.

Is reputation management worth the effort?

Regularly monitoring your web results may seem like a daunting task.

After all, according to a 2012 article in the Annals of Family Medicine, the average primary care physician has about 2,300 patients under their care at any one time. And they’re all online.

But—think about Amazon. How many products have you not bought because of negative reviews? This applies to your world as well.

How do I begin?

So, how can you develop a system to help ensure that patients speak well about your practice online and thereby help ensure you maintain a steady stream of new patients?

Here are three simple steps you can take:

1. Act right offline

When a patient has a wonderful experience, they will tell the world about it.

Likewise, when a patient has a bad experience, they will tell the world about it.

The key to having a good reputation online is not giving patients much to complain about, but also giving them plenty to rave about. Offer patients a good experience, and they’ll reward you with a positive reputation and help you build a strong brand.

Ensure you and your staff create a positive patient experience from their appointment’s beginning to its end. Here are five ways you can ensure a good patient experience:

(For more details, check out “The Best Doctors Enhance Their Patient Care With These 3 Tips.”)

1. Acknowledge the patient. Always greet patients with a smile, a hello, and their name when possible. Have a staff member take patients where they’re going, instead of pointing or giving directions.

2. Introduce yourself. A little camaraderie and pleasantry makes a huge difference.

3. Give the patient an estimate. Tell patients how long it will be until the doctor sees them.

4. Explain the procedures. Give patients as much information as you can, as soon as you can, including:

  • What you’re going to do
  • What you’re hoping to learn
  • What outcomes you’re expecting/hoping for
  • What the potential resolutions include

5. Say “thank you.” Always end a patient visit with a fond farewell and an invitation to return.

2. Act right online

Today, what you or your staff say to patients can live forever online, for everyone to see. Prospective and existing patients continually document the good, the bad, and the ugly online.

If you don’t already, begin to scrutinize what you and staff say online. According to Software Advice, 60% of respondents say they feel that it is “very” or “moderately important” that doctors take time to respond to online reviews.

But while it’s important to respond, it’s more important to respond correctly. Never get into arguments with any prospective, current, or former patients online. What you say will live in perpetuity, and you will live to regret it.

Instead, when someone has a complaint online, follow these steps:

  1. Acknowledge their pain.
  2. Apologize that they had this experience. Even if it’s not your fault, show compassion and care.
  3. Explain what you’re going to do differently, or are already doing differently, to prevent this pain in the future.

3. Be proactive

Proactively conduct an online search of your name and your practice’s name weekly.

If you don’t have the ability to do this, then designate someone on your staff to do it for you. You should be checking the following places to keep track of your digital reputation:

  • Search engine results. Use a variety of keywords such as your name or your practice name, or even your last name and the city and state where you live.
  • Local directory listings. Find out which local directories your competitors are listed on that you aren’t by Googling their names. Check out this site for a list of free online directories.
  • Social media. Register profiles for your practice on each social media site that you know your patients use. These include but are not limited to Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat, and Instagram. Monitor your pages and profiles daily or weekly for mentions, comments, and direct messages.
  • Physician rating and review sites. There are a plethora of review sites today, including Yelp, Healthgrades, and ZocDoc, where people can leave reviews about your practice. You should visit these sites on a weekly basis to get a better idea of what patients are saying.

Conclusions

What many doctors fail to realize is that their name and their practice is also a brand. A strong brand creates emotional appeal, and many patients book appointments based more on brand impression than price or outcome data.

Reputation management, when handled appropriately, could potentially increase pipeline flow, decrease obstacles to prospective patient entry, and increase your revenue.

Think of reputation management like planting a tree and then ensuring that it has a strong root structure. It will aid your reputation and root your future revenue.

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

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

Jammal Jones's curator insight, April 24, 2018 10:45 AM

In addition to proctecting their medical practice, doctors need to protect their online image as well! 

 

Sanjana Singh's comment, April 30, 2018 7:21 AM
Great post. I have suggested your post to one of my doctor friends to read for online reputation tips. I also cam e across another useful blog post on the similar topic on Techmagnate blog http://www.techmagnate.com/blog/how-manage-business-online-reputation/ Other doctors can also refer to it
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Physician Online Reputation Management in 2018

Physician Online Reputation Management in 2018 | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

A few years ago, when we first wrote about online physician reputation management there were fewer people writing and reading reviews, especially for physicians and other healthcare experiences. The tide has turned since then and now we're seeing that physician reviews are playing a significant role in the selection of a healthcare provider. Did you know that:

 

  • At least 77% of patients use online reviews as their first step in finding a new doctor. - Software Advice
  • 53% of providers looked at physician review websites, likely to understand their patients’ experiences and to improve their practices. - Journal of General Internal Medicine

 

What do you need to do for your reviews to be visible and show positive interactions with patients? 

 

HOW DO CONSUMERS USE ONLINE PHYSICIAN REVIEWS?

 

The truth is we often use them without intending to. When I searched my general practitioner on Google, the physician's website was fourth in the search results, plus there's a huge box at the right on the desktop to feature him in Google. Many won't even get to his website to see what they have to say before exposure to many different reviews, as you see here.

 

We also naturally tend to gravitate towards sites we know and already trust like Health Grades or Yelp. Both of those beat the practice's own site in search results for this doctor. 

 

HOW MUCH DO ONLINE PHYSICIAN REVIEWS AFFECT A PATIENT’S DECISION?

 

Bright Local reports that in 2017, among those who look at online reviews, 68% said a positive review makes them trust a business more.  And negative reviews have almost as big of an effect in the opposite direction with 40% saying that a negative review makes them not want to use that business. 

 

In 2016, the National Research Corporation reported that 47% of consumers indicated that a doctor’s online reputation matters. This percentage is tied with the restaurant industry for #1 among all local business types.

 

The short answer: Physician online reviews matter. A lot.

 

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR REVIEWS AREN'T ALL FIVE-STARS?

 

If every doctor in the practice has a 4 or 5 star rating on all of the various review sites being monitored by your service provider – then rock on! You don't really need to do much other than just keep on doing what you do. 

 

The sad reality is that no matter how good our intentions we sometimes don't see eye to eye and that can cause a negative review to get published. Here are a few steps to take when a less-than-stellar review shows up online:

 

1) Pause before responding

It's a very personal feeling when you see someone comment about you and your life's work in a negative way. Remember, your response can actually make things worse if it's not carefully crafted and all facts taken into consideration. You don't want to leave a public record of an argument with anyone on a third party website.

 

2) Reach out directly

Whenever possible we recommend the practice call that patient right away and have the discussion offline. That way when you respond online later to state that you saw this and addressed with Mr. X privately because he is very important to you.

 

3) Never delete the bad reviews

You don't want to be accused of trying to manipulate how your reptuation looks by removing anything that's negative. When every review is 5-stars, consumers are likely to  sense that you're curating the results to only show the best ones. You can also start a firestorm on social media if you remove a negative review rather than respond to it publicly. 

 

Whether you do it yourself or you engage a reputation management service, negative reviews should not be ignored. If you’re starting to see a few comments that aren’t as positive as you’d like, it could be a flag that someone at your practice is not interacting well with patients. Or perhaps there’s a problem with your operational flow that has caused some discontent. These are things that can easily be addressed, improving your patient experience and reducing further harm to your personal reputation! 

 

TIPS FOR INCREASING POSITIVE ONLINE PHYSICIAN REVIEWS

1) Use a Service for Online Reputation Monitoring and Reporting

 

Using a service makes it easier to stay on top of what's out there so that you and your staff aren't blind-sided by a negative review. We recommend that you use a service that monitors everything and gives you a regular report or a dashboard you can access at any time. They can also help mitigate some negative reviews from appearing publicly.

 

Your review service can often help with removal of a review, especially if PHI is being revealed. Ask us if you're not sure what kind of review services are out there and what you get with each.

 

2) Make it Someon'e Job to Make Updates and Address Reviews 

 

It's not enough to know what's out there, you'll also need hands to help correct things and address items as they come up in reviews. Most of the online review collection services do not review and update the data. They only aggregate it for you. If you don't have someone you can assign to this, let us know.

 

If you don't choose an online reputation management service, be sure to pay particular attention to these five physician review websites:

  • Healthgrades.com
  • Yelp.com
  • Vitals.com
  • WebMD.com
  • RateMDs.com

Facebook could also play a role if you have reviews enabled on your business' page.

 

3) Do Not Submit Reviews on Behalf of Your Patients

 

Don't do anything that could potentially look like you're stuffing the reviews. Consumers will become suspicious if they see this.  Avoid asking your spouse or children to review you, as well as your employees. You really need actual patients to submit their reviews. Use a follow up email to give them a link for reviews. Some services offer a texting following where reviews can be submitted. 

 

REFERRING PHYSICIANS USE ONLINE REVIEWS

We mentioned at the start that other providers are reading the reviews, especially for physicians they may refer to. While your best referral sources typically know you personally, they want to be sure that their patients are going to find good things about you online, knowing that about three-fourths of them will do a check of the reviews.

Also, be sure your listings and reviews show the correct office address so that your referral sources feel confident that when they refer you their patients can find you.

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

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

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Is word-of-mouth marketing best to attract new patients?

Is word-of-mouth marketing best to attract new patients? | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

4 reasons why word-of-mouth marketing is not enough to grow your practice

1. Patients still conduct online research even after being referred

A referral might help you attract new patients, but that alone probably won’t seal the deal. Nearly all patients (91 percent) always or sometimes conducts additional research after receiving a referral from a healthcare provider, according to the 2018 Patient Access Journey Report conducted by Kyruus.

 

If your online reputation isn’t great — or is non-existent — people probably aren’t going to take the recommendation. With so much information readily available online for other providers, it’s easy for patients to find a doctor who meets their unique needs.

 

2. There is a limit to how many people word-of-mouth marketing can reach

Online reviews and your practice website can be accessed worldwide on a 24/7 basis. Word-of-mouth marketing has a much smaller reach, as it relies on the discourse between two people.

 

“There’s a limit to how many people you can access through your existing patients, and even if a patient refers me to a friend, that person will look for me online,” said PatientPop customer Dr. Nicole Mermet. “No matter how good your dentistry is, or how strong your staff is, or how well you run your business, you’re invisible if you don’t have a strong online presence.”

3. You’re not in control of the conversation

Nearly three-quarters (71 percent) of people make recommendations because of a great experience, according to the Chatter Matters report. This is a good thing, but even when patients rave about your practice, you don’t know what they’re saying.

 

Just because patients praise your practice, it doesn’t mean they’re speaking to an audience who requires your services. Even if they are, their recommendation might not include the information needed to convince the other person to give your practice a try. If they go online to learn more about your practice but don’t find anything, they might opt for your competition.

4. Growth can take a long time

When trying to figure out how to get new patients, growth is something you’d like to see sooner, rather than later. Unfortunately, you don’t know when referrals will be given or when recipients will need to use them.

 

Your practice might be referred by a patient today, but it could be months or even years before the other person actually makes an appointment. If you want to grow your practice now, this method might prove to be of little help.

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

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

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How To Build Strong Online Presence Of Your Practice?

How To Build Strong Online Presence Of Your Practice? | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

The ever-growing number of practitioners can make it difficult for you to stand out and make your practice visible in the local market. Thus you cannot just rely on the word-of-mouth marketing, but create a stronger online presence. Let’s check ways to strengthen online presence of your practice.

Online Branding

To let others know about your practice, you need to brand it. You need to manage your online reputation that is majorly influenced by online reviews. Various online review sites allow consumers to express their good and bad experience and numerous people visit these sites before planning a physical visit to your practice. This makes it imperative for you to build a positive online reputation and manage it.

Proactively managing reviews help you maintain your brand’s reputation online. You can easily deal with bad reviews and let your patients know what more you can offer. For a consistent branding and management of reputation, you need to regularly check reviews of various platforms along with an informative website and active participation on social media sites.

Patient volume

Your patient base can increase or decrease anytime if not monitored regularly. Before it’s too late, you need to regularly check if the number is dropping. The decrease in patient count could be because of many reasons such as new competitors coming in the market, lower referrals, change in insurance cover, etc. So, it is important to take initiatives to grow your patient base every day and deal with such situations.

Better online presence will help you stay updated with changes in insurance and winning over your competitors. Also, you can build new online referrals via emails, social media accounts, etc.  Since the world of internet is becoming a part of everyone’s life, it is necessary to get a strong hold over it and build your brand here.

Target audience

You aim should not be just getting more patients to your practice but the right patients who are looking for your specialties. This will also help you get better reviews. Any patient coming to your practice who is in need of some other care and not getting satisfactory treatment is likely to write a negative review about you online. To save yourself from such mishaps, it is better you state a clear description of yourself and your practice on your website. The searchers can know if your practice can benefit them or not and your expertise. That makes it important for you to have an informative content on your website and build trust with patients. Such a skimming can also be done even during appointment scheduling.

Patient portal

Yet another important factor that helps you enhance your online image is the presence of patient portal on practice website. It helps you maintain health records of your patients. It allows patients to monitor their medications, medical history, book appointments, lab test reports or email queries if any.

An effective marketing strategy is a must to save your practice from saturation. Nothing can happen overnight. For strong marketing, you should take help of an agency that has an experience in such as medical marketing such as myPracticeReputation. We offer reputation management and other services depending on your practice.

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

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

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Population Health Would be Easy, If it Wasn’t for Our Patients!

We get so caught up in our day to day work that we often forget what it is all about. We focus on the technology and clinical side of Population Health, but there is another aspect that is harder to control; Patient Compliance. One of the agenda items at a Physician Group Board meeting I attended included the dismissal of patients. These were primarily patients that had been abusive to staff or had failed to meet financial obligations, etc. On some occasions we had patients that failed to follow through on the provider orders and was placing their health at risk.

These situations are difficult. On one hand the provider cannot stand idle as they watch a patient ignore medical advice and jeopardize their health. On the other hand, you don’t want to leave the patient without medical options. These are often elderly patients that may not have a family member helping them navigate all the treatment decisions or translating the medications and therapies to layman terms. They are also patients that have a surgical procedure and fail to attend or complete physical therapy, severely affecting their range of motion or quality of life. Then there are also patients that are non-compliant with drug therapy or maybe they never scheduled the specialist referral.

Population Health will be tracking various provider metrics and could reflect if a patient is consistently showing non-compliance with prescribed therapies. This has the benefit of identifying those patients with certain special needs. These can include language barriers; help with navigating the healthcare system, or patients with transportation problems. There are also patients that can’t afford the deductibles, or co-pays associated with therapeutic treatment or medications. Some patients are either too proud or too uncomfortable talking to the providers about these issues.


In the physician group that I worked with, they had very solid policies and procedures with specific escalation points to deal with non-compliant patients. Often it only took a friendly letter to say that you are concerned about their health and maybe offer someone on staff to schedule their referral or go over the treatment options that were presented. Of course all the letters and policies had to have a legal review. You also had to have the information technology systems that tracked, flagged and even produced alerts to providers when someone missed appointments.

Population health cannot just include what we are doing on the clinical side, we must understand what unique issues our patients are having and help them make the right treatment decisions. Often these include an advocate or patient coordinator. However, sometimes it may also include a letter stating that they cannot continue to ignore medical advice. It is always an uncomfortable conversation for the staff and patients. However, it is at the core of the goals that we set for improving clinical outcomes.


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