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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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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Can Marketing Automation Help Doctors Improve their Patient Relationships?

Physician Dr. Sonia Henry recently published an article, on http://kevinmd.com, titled Doctors: Don’t lose your humanity, in which she discusses how important it is for professionals in the medical field to retain their humanity.

 

As Dr. Henry states:

A doctor without feeling is a canvas without a painting – the day we lose our ability to engage with our emotional responses to difficult situations is the day we lose our patients, even the ones who are still alive.”

Long before technology entered the fray, doctors risked losing that human-to-human interaction that’s needed in the medical field. But as technology has become prevalent in the field, it’s easier now, more than ever, for doctors to “lose their humanity” and forget that the people they’re dealing with are more than just patients.

Apps. Computer screens. Tablets. These devices and software are intended to improve the efficiency of the healthcare field, not dehumanize it.

Yet dehumanization is exactly what we risk unless we find ways to regain that doctor-patient relationship. This doesn’t mean foregoing technology; rather, it means finding ways to use technology to make the medical industry more personal.

That’s why marketing automation is so effective. Not only can it help your practice stay in-touch with your patients, but it can do so with very little effort on your part.

Improving your patient relationships with marketing automation

Unlike a retail business or another type of brand, patients actually wantto hear from, and know more about, the people in charge of their health. It’s far more welcoming for a patient to come see a doctor whom they feel they know, rather than a stranger they only hear from once a year or during a health scare.

With marketing automation, you can tear down the barrier that exists between you and your patients, while providing them content and information they actually value.

Here are a few ways to use automation to your advantage:

Emails

Take some time to create pre-made emails that you send to your patients based on certain parameters.

For example, your practice could have a setup in place that registers when patients come to your office. This system could then trigger a follow-up email to them a day or so following their visit that lets them know that if they have any specific questions or concerns to feel free to reach out to your team. This little follow up – that would be signed and sent by the doctor who saw them, is enough to make them feel like they were more than just a number.

While you’re at it, you could also encourage them to write a review on behalf of your practice, which would then improve your overall marketing efforts.

Nervous about getting bad reviews?

Not a problem. In your email to your patients, you could create a safeguard against negative reviews. Something like the image below is a good example of what you could do:

In this instance, if the patient clicks YES, they’ll be taken to a review site of your choosing (Healthgrades, Google, Facebook, etc.). If they click NO, they’ll be taken to a landing page where they can fill out a form to air their complaints. That form is sent directly to you, rather than going live to a review site.

There is no limit to the level of personalization you can do with your emails. You could have a standard follow-up email for every possible scenario your facility faces: annual checkups; emergency calls; parents of children, and so on.

You could then set up emails to mark certain milestones or events.

 

For example, it’s not uncommon for a car dealership to reach out to a car owner after a few years to remind them of the need for a tune-up.

You can take that same approach with your patients. For example, many health professionals believe that people should get their first colonoscopy at the age of 50. Since you have the date of births of your patients, you could trigger an email to patients who are nearing 50 that wishes them a happy birthday and reminds them that it’s time to consider scheduling a colonoscopy.

You could keep on providing health advice to your subscribers, based on their age, on the reason for their last visit to you, and more.

Newsletter

The average person interacts with their healthcare providers or specialists only when they have to. This type of relationship doesn’t forge a lasting bond of trust and transparency.

As a medical professional, you want to be seen as the trusted resource of medical information for your patients. You can achieve this through a periodic newsletter emailed to your patients.

Newsletters allow you to remain top-of-mind of your patients and provides your readers with valuable information.

Updates to your facility, healthy living tips, patient testimonials and stories – each of these can become a fabric of your organization’s newsletter. In fact, the content pieces that make up your newsletters can be used in many different ways for your marketing efforts.

 

For example, let’s say that you run a monthly newsletter for your hospital. As part of that newsletter, you conduct a Q&A each month on a different doctor. Aside from adding that Q&A in your newsletter, you can also post it on your website, and share it on social media.

In other words, your newsletter becomes the anchor of your content marketing efforts. All of the articles and social updates you post feature elements of your newsletter, but at the same time, serve to strengthen your relationship with your patients.

Below is one page from a newsletter published by North Cypress Medical Center of Texas:

 

You’ll see that this page focuses on Prostate Cancer Screening. Not only does it serve as an informational piece for readers, but it’s also valuable marketing: it promotes the hospital’s upcoming free screenings.

Regain that personal feel of your practice

It might seem ironic to look toward technology to get more personal with your patients, but that’s exactly what automation aims to do. By setting up workflows and processes up-front, you can engage in ongoing conversations with your patients, with little effort on your part. By reaching out to your patients with content they value, and that’s relevant to them, you’ll stand apart from other medical professionals and will build the trust that is so vital toward the patient-doctor relationship.

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

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

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Did you know that Long Patient Wait Times Costs You?

Did you know that Long Patient Wait Times Costs You? | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Patience is a virtue, but patients don’t always feel the need to practice it. And that makes sense; as more practices offer shorter wait times and more one-on-one time with the doctor, why would they want to put up with long patient wait times?

Attitudes towards patient wait times are changing

If you’ve worked in the healthcare field for quite a while, you’ve probably heard the term “healthcare consumerism.” While the term encompasses many different things, the big idea is that patients expect their healthcare experience to be more like a customer service experience.

 

This retail mindset means patients are no longer willing to put up with long wait times at the doctor’s office—just as they wouldn’t wait a half-hour in line at the store to buy an item.

Reasons for shifting patient attitudes

The truth is that patients have never enjoyed long wait times in the office. In many cases, they simply accepted it as the norm.

 

While some offices have always attempted to streamline processes, we all know that practices and hospitals have a reputation for scheduling appointments that rarely begin on time.

 

So what’s different now? Patients have become empowered to take control of the situation. They know that there are other options out there. And while they may not be able to turn back the clock and choose another office, they can prevent other people from making the same mistake.

Your reputation is on the line

Wouldn’t it be great if a doctor or hospital’s reputation was based solely on their professional merits? Of course, you strive to provide the best level of healthcare you can. But in this day and age, that’s not enough to earn a strong patient referral.

 

And patient referrals are not just limited to someone’s family and friends. A recent Vitals study showed that healthcare facilities with long wait times tend to receive much poorer reviews than those with shorter waits.

 

The highest reviewed practices had average wait times of 13 minutes, while those receiving low star ratings had wait times of 34 minutes.

Patient reviews have greater reach than ever before

90% of patients have researched a doctor or hospital before visiting. Chances are high that most of your patients have looked you up online. They may have been pleased with your reviews, or they may have decided you were worth a shot despite them—but after a visit, they could change their mind.

 

This fact is not just limited to primary care. Even patients who receive a referral from another doctor are likely to research that referral online. And if they don’t like what they see, they may seek out a second option.

Your competition is changing

Depending on your area of specialty, the competition surrounding your practice or hospital is likely a lot different than it was just 10 or 15 years ago.

 

Primary care doctors and some other specialties are competing with urgent care clinics, including those in retail locations like a CVS. Urgent care clinics now compete with telehealth apps on mobile devices.

 

If you want to keep patients in your practice or hospital, you have to create an experience of care that keeps them coming back and is competitive with these modern healthcare environments.

Losing a patient is expensive

According to Vitals, 30% of patients have simply left a doctor’s office because they were dissatisfied with the wait time.

 

In some cases, the cost of acquiring a new patient can be a couple hundred dollars—worth it when you consider the lifetime value of that patient, but not if you lose them!

 

And when one patient leaves, you miss out on the opportunity for several more patients. This includes their family and friends and, of course, several people reading your negative reviews.

What can you do to reduce the wait?

It may be time for an audit of your systems and processes. Think about what you could do to really streamline appointments and make sure everyone is in and out in as little time as possible. Could you…

  • Automate check-ins or keep these online?
  • Keep better estimates of the amount of time needed for certain times of appointments?
  • Text patients when you’re running behind and allow them the option to reschedule?

 

Best of all, listen to your patients and their needs. Even if you fall behind in scheduling, your patients will appreciate transparency and your willingness to fix the issues over time.

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

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

No comment yet.