If you want to attract more new dental patients to your practice you must be aware of your online reputation?
Do you know what your patients are saying about you on the internet? If you don’t, you are not being proactive in your dental marketing.
It’s critical you pay more attention online. More so than ever!
Years ago in the internet marketing world the key to success online was getting testimonials from satisfied customers. Today, they are called online reviews, and they are blanketing the net now.
When someone is searching for a dentist in their area, they are now reading reviews about each and every dentist before they make the call. If you have negative reviews, you are losing business every day!
Check this out:
84% of Americans say online customer reviews have an influence on their decision to purchase a product or service. (Opinion Research Corporation, April 2009).
Slightly more than 50% of all consumers find internet customer reviews more important than their family and friends opinions. (HubSpot, 2013)
Only 3% of consumers NEVER check out brands online before doing business with them. (McKremie Online Reputation Management Survey, November 2012)
You must make it a daily habit with your staff to get reviews from happy patients. Even though google does not allow solicited reviews, if you have a patient that is mentioning how happy they are with their teeth, there is nothing wrong with asking if they’d post those comments on your google business page.
Google is now putting a major emphasis on online reviews, especially with their own at google+ local.
Because they still own the majority of search activity on the net, you need to play by their rules, which is launching and optimizing your google local business listing, then getting reviews on it.
Unfortunately, google makes it extremely difficult for a patient to do a review. They “handcuff” you into creating a gmail email account first. Then a google+ account. Then and only then after all that can you actually write a review for your favorite dentist.
It’s absolutely ridiculous, but google is the big daddy at this point, so it must be done!
One of the biggest review sites on the net is yelp. Implementing yelp into your reputation management plan is critical to attracting the millions of people who rely on yelp for all their local service and restaurant decisions.
The frustrating issue with yelp is when you get reviews for your practice, if your patients are new to yelp, they will not show. Yelp unfortunately treats these new reviewers as if they are possibly spam reviews, and will hold them without showing them. We had a dental client who got 8 yelp reviews from happy patients in one week, and not one of them showed! Shame on yelp!
With that being said, like google, you can’t ignore them either, but be patient, as it will take several months of effort to start seeing results.
With over 1 billion people on facebook, you can place a fair bet most of your potential patients are on it.
One effective way to create awareness of your practice locally is to have your patients recommend you on your facebook page.