Physical violence harms your body, but verbal abuse harms your career.
Some of our parents have taught us that words cannot hurt us, but as adults, this is not true to some extent, especially when it comes to our careers.
What others say about us affects our reputation, and a doctor's reputation is one of their most valuable assets.
Doctors spend years studying and training to build their reputation, and so what others say about that reputation is very important, both online and offline. That's why we have put together this guide that will walk you through all the essentials of healthcare reputation management. Let's get started!
What Is Healthcare Reputation Management?
Healthcare reputation management is a process of managing the online reputation of your healthcare organization. This includes managing the reputations of physicians and providers, as well as the reputation of the practice as a whole.
The reputation of your healthcare organization has a huge impact on your ability to attract new patients. Patients are more likely to choose a healthcare provider with a good reputation.
To gauge the reputation of your healthcare organization, start by asking yourself the following questions:
- Are my patients happy with the care they get?
- Do my patients feel like they have a good experience when they visit my hospital?
- Do my patients frequently leave positive reviews of my practice and providers online?
- Does my reputation accurately reflect the level of care and services I offer?
- Am I known as the best orthopedic surgeon or dental office in my city?
If your perceived reputation doesn't match your actual abilities and offerings, then you need to work on improving your reputation.
How Patients Use Online Reviews To Choose A Medical Provider?
In the past, doctors' reputations were mainly based on word-of-mouth recommendations from friends, family, or other doctors. This is no longer the case.
Today, patients check online reviews before deciding which doctor to see.
Here are some statistics that show how important online reputation is for doctors:
- 72% of patients read online reviews before choosing a new doctor.
- 75% of patients use online reviews to confirm their decision to choose a doctor.
- 42% of patients still read online reviews even when they have been referred to a doctor by another doctor.
Patients are more likely to choose a doctor based on online reviews from other patients than on a referral basis. This is because patients trust other patients more. Patients are searching online for doctor ratings and reviews to evaluate their experience, qualifications, practice setting, and other factors.
Positive reviews on these rating sites do more than just provide positive feedback to potential patients. They also improve your ranking in search engines so that more people can find you. Also, positive reviews help you build trust with potential new patients, which leads them to choose you.
As a doctor, you need to be where your patients are present today, which is online. Read on to learn how to start building your online reputation and use it to help patients find, choose, and become advocates for your practice.
Tips For Building & Managing Your Healthcare Reputation
When you take an active role in managing your online reputation, you learn what patients are saying about you online. This is a great opportunity to improve the patient experience.
Make Sure Your Online Listings Are Accurate & Consistent
This includes your Google My Business, Yelp, Healthgrades, Vitals, and Facebook listings. Link your listings to a trusted email address that you check regularly. This will help you stay up-to-date on any review activity on each platform.
Check Your Online Reputation
Search for your practice name and the names of the doctors in your practice online to see what people are saying. It's important to know what's being said about you, even if it's negative.
Put yourself in a patient's shoes and ask yourself:
- Are there enough reviews?
- Do the reviews show that my hospital cares about its patients?
- Do the positive reviews outweigh the negative ones?
Read the reviews carefully and use the feedback to make changes to your practice. Understand why patients are satisfied or dissatisfied to improve the patient experience and get better reviews.
Here are some specific tips:
- Look for common themes in the reviews. Are there any areas where the practice is consistently praised or criticized?
- Respond to both positive and negative reviews. Thank patients for their feedback and address any concerns that they raise.
- Make sure that your hospital’s website and social media pages are up-to-date and informative.
- Encourage patients to leave reviews by providing them with easy-to-use links and QR codes.
This way, you will build a positive online reputation that will attract new patients and help your hospital grow.
Need help understanding your audience's mood at scale?
Statusbrew's AI analyzes all of your reviews and identifies the overall sentiment of each one. It then plots the sentiment on a graph, so you can see how your audience's mood has changed over time. You can also use the graph to see how your audience reacts to your services.
Use it to identify trends in your audience's sentiment, see how your audience reacts to your services and to identify customer service issues.
Ask Patients For Reviews
While quality is more important than quantity, too few reviews are as bad as a negative review among a handful of positive reviews. Don't be afraid to ask your patients for reviews. Your patients want to feel like their opinions matter.
When should you ask for reviews? We suggest asking immediately after an appointment when the experience is still fresh in the patient's mind. According to Medical Economics, reviews collected in the office tend to be more positive. Patients can use the downtime waiting for post-appointment activities, such as lab work, to write about their experience.
In addition to in-office review requests, we recommend sending satisfaction surveys to all your patients after their visits. Invite patients to share their experiences on their own time. In your survey, include a few questions that can be answered on a scale, as well as 1-2 open-ended questions.
Questions should cover access, quality, and interpersonal issues. When reviewing surveys, respond personally to both grievances and promoters. Ask promoters if they would be willing to share their experience in an online review if they haven't already done so, and include a convenient link for them.
Respond To All Online Reviews
When you want more of something, you reinforce it positively. This is true for positive reviews, also. Take the time to thank patients who leave positive reviews. Let them know that you appreciate their feedback and their trust.
Acknowledge damage to your reputation and take steps to repair it. You can significantly improve a patient's satisfaction rate by simply addressing their negative feedback. Use reputation management platforms like Statusbrew to alert and notify you of new reviews received on review sites like GMB as soon as they are posted. This will help you respond quickly to unhappy patients.
When responding to negative reviews right from Statusbrew, apologize for the problem, thank the reviewer for bringing it to your attention, explain why and how it happened, and commit to resolving it. If the conversation continues, use discretion and offer to take the conversation offline.
Responding to negative reviews may seem like a difficult task, but it can help you turn unhappy patients into loyal advocates. It's also an opportunity to impress potential patients with your commitment to customer service. How you respond to unhappy patients will tell them a lot about you and your commitment to providing a positive patient experience.
Finally, don't let a few negative reviews derail your career. Negative reviews can actually help build patients' trust that all of the reviews, both positive and negative, are real and genuine.
Proactively Monitor Your Hospital's Reputation
Just like doctors work on continuing medical education (CME) throughout their careers, they should also work on managing their online reputation. Track your progress, continue to ask for positive feedback, thank those who provide it, address the concerns of those who don't, and outweigh the negatives by building on the positives.
Doctors should create profiles on relevant directories and social media sites designed for doctors. This is one of the best ways to manage your online reputation. These platforms rank well in Google search results, so patients are likely to see your profile when they search for your name.
Some popular directories and social media sites for doctors include:
- CareDash: This site uses artificial intelligence to detect and stop fraudulent reviews. Doctors can easily create and personalize their profiles, and patients trust the platform to help them choose a care provider.
- Doximity: This online social network for doctors has over 1 million members. It allows doctors to connect with each other and share information.
- Sharecare: This online health and wellness platform and doctor directory lists each doctor's full profile, including insurance plans, years of experience, biographical information, specialties, professional affiliations, and educational background. It also allows doctors to answer questions and provide thought leadership on specific topics.
- WebMD: This is one of the largest healthcare news and directories in the world. It allows doctors to create free profiles and advertise on the platform to get new patients.
Why should doctors care about their online directory profiles?
- Profiles help patients find you and learn more about your practice.
- Profiles help you build trust with potential patients.
- Profiles help you manage your online reputation.
For your reputation management, creating online profiles in established directories is an "easy win."
Google sees verified directories as highly legitimate social signals, so new profiles are usually easy to set up and then rank in Google.
Whether you are actively working on your reputation or not, you should absolutely have yourself and your hospital listed on some of the most popular - and free - directories of your location.
Invest In Your Social Media Presence
Social media is an important tool for businesses of all sizes, including hospitals. In fact, 70% of healthcare organizations in the US use social media, especially Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. And studies show that 81% of consumers associate a strong social media presence with cutting-edge technologies and high-quality service.
A strong social media presence allows you to connect with patients, raise awareness of your hospital, and share announcements, customer service information, and patient education resources.
Statusbrew Helps You With Healthcare Reputation Management
Managing your reputation can be a lot of work, especially when you are running a healthcare organization. Statusbrew has the tools to help you improve and manage your reputation more easily.
Our platform allows you to automate your review management so you can easily respond to reviews on time and analyze how reviews help to shape up your reputation.
Our marketing reports measure results, collect data, and keep you informed about your online reputation, how you are attracting new patients, and more. You will know what's working and where you need to make adjustments.
We help you manage your reputation without adding more work to your already full plate so you can focus on providing outstanding healthcare service and a great patient experience. This will lead to more positive reviews, a better reputation, more new patients, and a better bottom line.
Ready to grow your practice? Learn more about reputation management and schedule a FREE demo with us today.
Statusbrew is an all-in-one social media management tool that supports Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and even Google My Business.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Here are some commonly asked questions about healthcare reputation management:
What to look for in healthcare reputation management?
When looking at your healthcare reputation management company, you need to look for experience, expertise, and comprehensive services.
Why reputation management isn't just for a crisis healthcare?
All healthcare providers need to manage their reputation on an ongoing basis because a positive reputation helps to attract new patients, retain existing patients, build trust and credibility, improve patient satisfaction & protect the organization's brand.
Why healthcare providers use reputation management?
Healthcare providers use reputation management for different reasons, such as to improve their online visibility and search engine ranking, generate positive reviews and testimonials from patients, respond to negative reviews and feedback in a timely and professional manner & protect their brand and reputation.