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Do you do enough to encourage patient reviews?
Discover how Google+ can help.
If you are a dentist, chiropractor, physiotherapist or any business that deals with patients then you will understand the importance of patient reviews in your healthcare marketing.
Patient reviews are so important as 70% of people consult reviews before making a decision and 7 in 10 share these reviews with friends.
When your prospective patients are researching your services online, they look to reviews for guidance and with 80% of their searches beginning at a search engine, it makes sense for you to be visible on Google.
If you haven’t done so already, then you need to claim your Google+ local listing.
What is Google + Local?
Google+ is a great opportunity for your business to show high up in search engine results for local searches on your business and it’s free. With 97% of consumers searching for local businesses online you need to be seen and Google+ has 318.4 million active users.
Take a look at the image below:
You can see that these listings at the top come up on Google+ local and if your healthcare business doesn’t show up in here when people search for your services then you are missing out.
Your local listing can also be found on Google maps.
How to set up your Google + local page
Setting up your Google Plus page is easy and only takes 5 minutes. If you haven’t already, you should claim your Google+ local page as explained in the video below.
How to encourage patient reviews
Now that you have your Google+ local page set up, you can’t just leave it to gather dust!
Use it. Add people and your patients to your circles and engage with them.
Post interesting updates about your business and industry, share your blog content and demonstrate the personal, caring side of your business.
You can use the power of Google + to supercharge your reviews and encourage people to leave you reviews on your Google+ page.
I would like to offer you some ideas on how to do this but firstly think about what could work for your business and get creative.
Place a poster where your patients can see it, telling them how to do a patient review.
A good tip here, for the more tech savvy of patients, is also to include a QR code in your poster.
This is like a barcode, when scanned with a mobile phone it will take your patients straight to your Google+ page to write a review.
This could be placed in your waiting room and catch your patients when they are most likely thinking about you.
Scan the below qr code with your mobile phone and it will take you to Stargazer’s Google+ page.
I found this free tool for creating a handout for generating reviews. This great tool will create a document that you can print off and give to your patients to encourage them to review.
One thing to remember is always allow people to naturally leave reviews as Google does have advanced techniques to detect if reviews are natural or fake. This could result in your page getting banned.
How to deal with negative reviews
This is a question I hear a lot and it is a concern for many businesses. What I always say is embrace negative reviews. No business is perfect and the people who do have negative things to say about your business can be your most important customers.
Negative comments teaches you what is wrong with your service and helps you to improve.
If people thought your service needed improving and never said anything all that would happen is you would get less and less repeat business.
You would be left scratching your head to the reasons why.
The businesses that listens to their patients are the ones that will have the most success and more repeat business.
Listen to what they have to say and adapt accordingly.
If someone leaves a negative comment then don’t delete it, unless of course it nasty and/or personal abuse. Don’t put up with this, report it to Google.
I always believe it’s not the mistake that matters, it’s how you fix the mistake. So if someone leaves a negative review don’t delete it but make sure you reply to it and resolve it.
Once the patient is happy with your response ask them to update or change their review to include how you fixed their problem.
This makes your reviews look real because people may not trust reviews that are always 100% positive.
The thing to remember is if people are going to leave negative comments about your business they will do so anyway and it is better to offer them a place to do it that you can control.
If you don’t then they could post it on their social media website or forum where you have no control.
Key take aways
Claim your Google+ local page and start using it. Encourage your patients to leave reviews by advertising your Google+ page and always reply to negative reviews and resolve their issues whenever possible.
Get creative and use qr codes in posters and if you have a great service people will leave positive reviews and share them with their friends.
Source: 318.4 million active users
Now it’s your turn
Do you encourage reviews? What tips do you have to share? Let me know in the comments.