No matter how reliable and trustworthy your medical practice may be, it’s the reviews that people look for when determining which place would best suit their needs. Reviews add social credibility, which over time will organically lead to more patients in the future. Garnering reviews comes down to having a dependable review management system, following review tips, and staying consistent with responding.
Importance of Reviews
Reviews can serve as a make or break for people deciding whether they want to come to your practice. Qualtrics reported that 91% of 18–34-year-olds trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. This is especially important in any healthcare field as people want and expect the best healthcare practice and practitioners in town. Positive reviews reinforce consumers’ ideals of your practice. On the other hand, many consumers actively seek out negative reviews when making informed decisions. Before we talk about how to deal with different types of reviews, let’s take a step back and see how you can use Art of Chat (AoC) to collect review responses.
Review Management System
Right after a patient finishes their visit to the doctor for a checkup, you want them to leave a review, so you send them a link to an external website via email. However, the chance of patients going into their email and completing a review on a different website is minimal. This is where Art of Chat comes into play. AoC serves as a review management system to increase patient communication and engagement. The patient can easily get a reminder text to complete a review on their smartphones.
Going back to our example, now that the patient has finished their visit to the doctor for their checkup, you can use AoC to send a clickable link via text so the patient can leave a review at their earliest convenience. They don’t have to take the extra steps of finding your business online, then deciding which review platform to go with, instead they now have the accessibility and convenience of completing the review on their own time, though driven to the platform you choose. This increases completion rates, as this method of gathering reviews is optimal for the patients. With integrated Artificial Intelligence, AoC can intercept the message and respond appropriately if the patient texts back to the practice.
Now that we have gone over the platform patients can use to create their review, there are a few rules to follow. Make sure to follow HIPPA guidelines by not including any personal information, such as reasons for patient’s visit, their health assessment, or other identifiable information on their profile. Customize your message on AoC with just your patient’s first name and ask for them to respond to the review questions about their experience.
Timing is crucial when it comes to asking patients to review your practice. The window to ask should be immediately after a patient comes out of the office from their visit or procedure until the end of that day. People are more likely to remember how their experience went nearly five minutes ago, compared to their visit several days ago.
If you are still not getting enough patient reviews, provide an incentive for patients to complete one. Offer a discount for their next appointment, a prepaid Amazon gift card, or a chance to win a raffle prize after submitting their review of the experience. The purpose of using incentives is to encourage patients to describe how they felt their visit or procedure went. Make sure people aren’t taking advantage of your offer by submitting dishonest or not enough input on their reviews.
Respond to Existing Reviews
We have the platform along with helpful tips for gathering reviews from your patients, but let’s not forget about the existing reviews. People want to be heard and recognized, while companies want more opportunities to engage with customers. What better way to do that than with existing reviews! It is critical to respond to reviews people have posted, both positive and negative. If you have positive reviews, respond with a “Thank you” message. If you have negative reviews, address the problem, apologize if the mistake is on your behalf, and mention how you will improve from here on out with their suggestions or your considerations. Existing reviews serve as a gateway between patients and providers to communicate acknowledgment on current services or improvement for the future and your responses will not only be seen by the existing patient, but also prospective ones.
Remember, obtaining reviews for your medical practice starts with the ask, and doesn’t end until you follow-up. Each review is a very short and very public conversation. According to data from Statista, a significant share of consumers are more likely to search for customer reviews on their smartphones instead of speaking to an associate, highlighting the importance of accessibility. Reviews are essential to medical practices in providing clarity and ease for the patients’ selection process. With Art of Chat, you can ensure greater review rates as accessibility and convenience are optimal for your patient and practice engagement.