Doctors, Reviews & Social Presence
In the online world where we are all driven by what others think, reviews are fast becoming the barometer which determines approval or disapproval of products and services.
If I am looking into an appliance or a holiday let, reviews play a key part in deciding which product is right for me & who I should purchase it from.
However, when reading reviews about people, experiences & services this can be an entirely different “kettle of fish” – with opinions swaying who for e.g. is the right Doctor for me to see..
Over the years working closely with many consultants & clinics, I must confess one of the key phobias these Professionals have expressed is their fear of patients writing inaccurate, untrue or completely made-up reviews which tarnish the Doctors reputation. In a profession where reputation really matters & careers are made or broken because of this one has to be careful & tread carefully.
That being said – though you are unable to stop an upset patient keen to make him/ herself heard by making a review on an online social media platform such as Facebook, you can manage it.
Exploring this medical phobia further “What be done when an unsatisfactory review is made”?
- It is important to acknowledge the review as soon as possible & request them to write/contact you offline (out of the public arena) so you can assist.
- Take time to understand the key issues for posting the review, uncover what they want & manage their expectations.
- DEAL WITH IT! Many dates are agreed & promises made which are not kept, this leads to further negative reviews being made online. Do what you say & say what you do!
- Close all the loops & seek confirmation they are satisfied with the outcome.
- All being well request them to post a positive “all is good” review.
Remember it’s highly unlikely for a patient to visit a Consultant searched on Google where it says “John Stevens – Orthopaedic Specialist …never go to him he left me in so much pain …”
However, your approach to dealing with it, your responsivity & attention to detail will speak volumes of your practice. This is what will give patients the option to discern good service & poor service.
Positive reviews are akin to testimonials and good feedback can be encouraged within your practice – patients are only too willing to write.
The advantage of having online presence & creating your social media channels is so you can connect, interact & engage with your target audience – patients and in the process manage all reviews as they happen.