The increase of digital communication technologies has lowered the barriers between and companies. Customers are increasingly turning to the Internet to form opinions about products and services about companies as well as their reputation. According to a survey by BrightLocal, almost 97% of consumers research companies before buying their products. Healthcare services are not an exception. Patients do research screening different medical practices before choosing a healthcare professional. Hence, a strong brand online reputation is a key to differentiating and winning the battle against competitors!
Currently, online reputation is one of the most important intangible assets of any organization. It does exist for a company in any industry, regardless of whether it is working on it or not. However, suppose the formation of an online reputation is not controlled and left to chance. In that case, it can develop spontaneously, and there is no guarantee whether it will be positive or not.
Today, the problem of online reputation management is experiencing a real “boom.” A company’s reputation as a whole has a much more significant effect than individual reviews published about your healthcare practice on Google. This is why it’s essential to be proactive and take deft steps to manage your online reputation effectively. It will set you apart from your competitors and allow you to attract and retain patients, increase their loyalty, and create an expert image of your medical practice.
Below we prepared some tips for you that can help you to improve your online reputation management.
Develop a Long-Term Online Reputation Management Strategy
The first and most important tip for successful Online Reputation Management (ORM) is to invest in a comprehensive digital reputation management strategy. A good strategy will benefit you, highlighting you as a medical expert and presenting a positive online image to patients, potential investors, and employees. With the right ORM strategy, you will create a strong visible online presence fostering the growth of your healthcare clinic and expanding your professional network.
Online Audit Brand Name
As part of the successful ORM, it’s necessary to audit your brand name on the Internet regularly. You need to have a good understanding of your brand’s online image: how is your brand positioned, what do your patients and competitors say about you, what information appears when you ‘google’ your company name? You need to find and analyze all the relevant information about your brand that can impact your reputation. Gather all the data and transform it into valuable insights to improve your ORM strategy.
Ensure the company’s presence on Social Media Platforms
At a minimum, you must have your healthcare practice pages on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+. Though it’s not enough to just create pages on different Social Media Platforms, you need to continuously work on it, share interesting content, and engage with your target audience. That will enhance your credibility, increase user engagement rate, and attract new patients.
Set up brand alerts
To consistently monitor your brand on the Internet, it is advantageous to set up Google Alerts and Social Mention. These tools are free. You just need to enter your company’s name, product, or service for which you want to receive alerts. After that, you will be notified each time somebody mentions your brand, product, or service in any online discussion. Being proactive will protect your reputation and enhance your popularity in the eyes of customers.
Do not ignore or delete negative reviews.
Never delete or ignore ignoring negative comments or reviews about your healthcare practice. It can significantly damage your whole reputation, which will be so hard to recover. Instead, you should admit your mistakes and take steps to resolve the issue. Remember, negative feedback is also feedback. It helps you to grow, improve customer services, and build stronger relationships with your patients.
For instance, if you or your company’s employees commit a mistake, fail, or do something wrong, and a patient leaves a negative comment about it on the Internet, you should take responsibility for it and sincerely apologize. When you sincerely apologize, it helps to resolve the situation, allowing you to reconcile the parties.
Be attentive and listen to your audience.
When responding to complaints or negative reviews on the Internet, seriously think about the fact that there may be some truth in them and that you might need to improve your healthcare practice, especially if you continuously encounter negative comments on the same topic. Remember the aphorism that “the buyer is always right”? Don’t be stubborn – be creative and find a way to improve your services and please the patient without getting into conflict with them.
Encourage your patients to share positive comments and reviews.
To have a strong online reputation, you need to promote positive content about your brand on Social Media. Online Reputation Management is also the game of numbers: the more positive reviews there are, the higher your ranking is and the stronger your reputation. Hence, incentivize your employees and patients to share their feedback and leave comments in the online discussion. Remember to always engage with your patients offline, providing them with medical products and services and, most importantly, on the Internet earning their trust and respect.
Working on an online reputation brings many tangible benefits to your healthcare practice. It helps create a positive impression of you as a reliable supplier of medical goods or services, attract new patients, build long-lasting, trusting relationships with them, and finally increase revenue. Therefore, there is no doubt that you need to dedicate time to manage your online reputation!
You can manually search for reviews and mentions of your brand or company on various websites and social networks, often requiring a lot of time and effort. Or you can hire a digital marketing agency that will professionally manage your online reputation creating a positive image for your healthcare practice and tackling any reputation issues that arise on the Internet.
One way or another, but you must have control over the online reputation of your medical practice. Always be aware of what patients are saying about you on the Internet, be creative and proactive, and take steps to maintain a positive online reputation.
At Phidev we offer effective digital marketing solutions tailored to the needs of your organization. Feel free to contact us and we’ll answer all the questions that you have.