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No doubt angst is among your first reactions to patients posting online reviews of your office. Happily, there are some easy steps to facilitate and encourage positive customer reviews of your practice and post them where the growing online audience — read: potential patients — can see them.
The world of the Web shines a spotlight on the gulf between the tech-wary and the tech-savvy, but Shauna Duty’s April blog post on Modern Dental Practice Marketing once again highlights the importance of your business’s online presence and reputation. She wrote that 70 percent of web users believe what they read online from other consumers. Seventy percent!
So what can you do? Naturally, you want to highlight the good work your practice does. But how?
Edward Logan, a dentist and consultant from O’Fallon, MO, has puzzled over reviews too.
“I will be honest and tell you that getting positive online reviews is somewhat of an uphill battle depending on where you live,” he writes on his website, www.dentistrysbusinesssecrets.com. “Even the most well-meaning patients may have a hard time getting around to posting a review.”
Still, he targets “positive patients who have verbally expressed how pleased they are with our office, and we ask them if they would consider posting an online review,” he said.
Ms. Duty offers a roadmap to encourage positive testimonials, including offering giveaways as incentive.
Start in the lobby: “At the front desk or on the lobby’s coffee table, place a framed printout featuring text that encourages patients to review your practice online. Include icons for the sites where you’d like to acquire reviews.”
Consider the operatory: “The doctor (or hygienist if the doctor does not see the patient) should tell each patient that his or her online review would be much appreciated. If you’re hosting a monthly drawing for reviewers, let the patient know.”
At the checkout desk: “Place a computer at checkout so that patients can easily post a review, right after their visit – while the experience is fresh on their mind. To encourage reviews, hold a monthly drawing in which you give away a Sonicare Toothbrush to a randomly selected reviewer. (Be sure to take a photo with the winner and post it to Facebook!)”
Your website: “Place a page on your website with direct links to all of the places you’d like reviews posted. The links should take the visitor directly to the destination where they can post a testimonial. Be sure to note on the webpage that most review sites require a free user account. This will help people choose the most convenient site.”
Use email: “In your e-newsletters, e-blasts, or post-appointment emails, remind patients to post reviews for you. Send links that direct them straight to the destination for posting their testimonial.”
The extra effort does pay off, Dr. Logan said. “It is a worthy marketing endeavor to seek more positive online reviews (because) the new patients who schedule an appointment based on reading reviews are often ‘sold’ on you before they even walk through the door.”
A tradition of working for the dental profession. The Chicago Dental Society was organized in 1864 and incorporated in 1878. The objective of the Chicago Dental Society is to encourage the improvement of the health of the public, to promote the art and science of dentistry and to represent the intrest of the members of the profession and the public that it serves.
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