Doctor and Medical Practice negative reviews are a reality and something you will all have to deal with at some stage. The more control you have now, the better the outcomes later – always.
Let’s face it; if you have been in business long enough you are going to get a few bad reviews, it is impossible that everyone will think you are as amazing as your mother does. You are far more likely to have someone sit down at a computer and write something negative about you – than positive. That is – if you dont have control and systems in place.
Over the years the first question I seem to be asked by a practitioner almost always is, “can I get a negative review taken down?” In short – no – unless the review is discriminatory or defamatory and even then, be ready for a long process.
There usually are three types of people that will review a medical practice or doctor. Patients, employees, competitors. The latter two are almost always going to be negative and are usually easy to spot – such as competitor reviews, which are usually anonymous, terse and have no accompanying photo.
This is why you need to take control. Here are your setup steps.
- Create a Google Account (Gmail) to manage all of this. If you are going to do all the work yourself, then you can skip this step, however, you may need someone to do this for you in the future and it would be better to have an account that monitors all of this anyway.
- Complete Account Profile including Image for Account. Also, Create a Gravatar for that email Account.
- Assign as a Manager to your Google Business Listings Account your new Google Account so that email account can also manage it.
Get Control on all Review Sites
Firstly, let’s take a look at all of the sites where you may have reviews. You will want to either sign up or take control of a listing. Make 100% sure you respond to every single review you are given, good and bad. For the bad ones, ask them to contact your office to try to resolve the issue.
- Google Business Listings: You can search for your business on Google Maps. If you do not have access to edit, it means it is controlled by another Google Account.
- Facebook: On your Business Page. Make 100% sure you respond to every single review you are given, good and evil.
- ZocDoc: You can either claim your listing or create a new one*.
- Health Grades: You can either claim your listing or create a new one*.
- Vitals.com: You can either claim your listing or create a new one*.
- RateMD’s: You can either claim your listing or create a new one*.
If you try to create a new one, they will likely combine the old one. So you dont get to remove the negatives if they are already there. So, we are back to getting control, responding to every single review (good and bad) and now creating a process for having an overwhelmingly positive review count on all sites!
Create a System for Reviews
By creating a system for reviews, you will increase the quality of your patients, increase the revenues of your practice and have some great testimonials to use on marketing materials.
- Create a Page on your Website with all the links where a customer can review your site. Use trackable links like Bitly.com
- Create a postcard for front desk give to customers that you know are happy with your services. Maybe have a special offer as an incentive (discount) to write the review. I would suggest giving a discount on the spot, even before they review. You will find they will all write the review anyway.
For every one negative review, strive for at least ten positive reviews. This will make the negative reviewers look more like cranks, rather than a reflection of your services. You cannot stop negative reviews, we all get them, but you can drown them out.
How this Works
A few months ago, I needed an electrician for some work at my apartment. So I did a Google Search. Two results with great reviews on Google Search caught my eye. I contacted both of them and one contacted me immediately and gave me a rough estimate on the phone. Once he arrived, he gave me a firm price (similar to the estimate). At the completion of the project, he told me he would take $50 off my price – if I left him a great review on Google. I agreed.
So, this guy was smart; he currently has over 200 five star reviews on Google, all five stars. For a range of search results, he appears on the first page of results. What do you think this is worth to him? I would say at least $20,000 per annum. Not bad for a lone wolf!
So, there you have it. reward your happy customers, get great reviews, improve your Search Engine Ranking and count the extra cash.