Six Ways To Stop A Reputation Problem Before It Starts
1. Be accessible.
Most problems stem from anger caused by lack of communication. The more accessible and transparent you are the better. Take the patients call. Deal with problems head on before they go online. The sooner you can address the upset person, the happier theyre going to be - its a classic customer service idea.
2. Be proactive.
If 20 people have given you good online reviews and someone writes a bad review, thats not such a big deal. If no one has given you a good review and someone gives you a bad review you have 100% bad reviews! Proactively assess your reputation and take steps towards controlling it. Build into your systems things that look for problems before they start. Thinking about your reputation before it completely hits the fan is a great idea. You dont want the oldest and most important thing out there to be some troll ranting about your practice. Take steps today to avoid this scenario now, not when it happens.
3. Build credibility.
Put logos of associations, news organizations and your other affiliations on your marketing materials. Put elaborate signatures on your practice emails. Try to use the importance of your position and the importance of your associations to lend credibility to your business. Its harder to believe youre the worst doctor in the world if its pretty clear youve got a lot of training. Create social proof by demonstrating what youre a part of.
4. Customer service.
Get people what they want, fast! Thats the definition of customer service. A focus on customer service, some sales training, some human nature training is very valuable in ANY business.
5. Phone skills.
As a new patient, much of the perception of your practice is the person on the phone. The phone is the most valuable piece of equipment in your office; every new patient comes through the phone. The phone makes more money than anything else in your whole office. Yet, many practices do not have scripts or plans for what should happen with every phone call. Many times, the person answering the phone has no particular interest in the outcome.
6. Conduct surveys.
The worst way to assess how your marketing is doing is to ask your staff, How is our marketing doing? Because then what are you tracking? Youre tracking guesses that are influenced by emotion.
What you should do is ask these questions to every patient and prospect: How did you find us? Could you provide us with a referral? If you had a good or bad experience, could you fill out your testimonial here? A survey at the end of your email to every patient and prospect is valuable.
An online survey form is easy to set up and easy to link an email to. Check out Google owned surveymonkey.com or search for online survey software.