Your online presence is the cornerstone of your veterinary practice’s digital marketing success. You may have a beautiful website and a smart social marketing strategy, but if what’s being said about you – both as an individual practitioner and as a practice is less than fantastic, it’s likely that you will have trouble getting tails through the door.
The reality is, though, that eventually you’re bound to get a less-than-ideal review. It happens to everyone, eventually; and the best thing you can do is prepare for that day to come so you can handle it with tact and grace.
But what else can you do to manage your veterinary practice’s online reputation? Our collaborative webinar series with MWI has the answers you are looking for.
The holidays are a strange mix of emotions and expectations, aren’t they? People hope for the best, want to be surprised with the unexpected, focus on the positive, and try to bring out the best in themselves and others.
Marketing is much the same way; but in the past, people have tended to focus on the negative aspects of marketing, instead of the positive. Most folks generally perceive marketing as a black hole, assume the worst, and just wish the whole darn thing would go away. But gone are the days of the YellowPages ad, when all you had to do was write a check once a year and decide which size ad you were going to buy.
In 2017, Beyond Indigo aimed to deliver the unexpected, with greater returns and more tails through the door then anticipated. And, just like Santa, we have delivered a few surprises this holiday season – namely the gift of increased business, all wrapped up with a bow on top.
Recently there has been a lot of noise about online business listings in the veterinary digital marketing world, especially when it comes to duplicate listings.
If you’ve used the Moz Local tools to check for duplicate listings, you’ve probably noticed that there’s a listing for not only for your main practice, but for the individual doctors at your practice as well. While instinct tells us that those listings shouldn’t be there and that they’re getting in the way of your official business listing, the truth is, Google made those listings on purpose. They’re called practitioner listings, and they work a bit differently than Google’s other business listings. Here are some of the basics of how to handle these listings.
Integrity is what Online Reputation Management is all about and having positive online reviews is one of the most powerful word-of-mouth advertising techniques you can employ. Unfortunately, with a greater importance being placed on reviews, the temptation to generate fake reviews has also increased.
You want to have a shining online reputation where your clients write new reviews about you, your ratings are all 5-star, and you are actively participating in the online conversations about your practice. But, you have precious little time to devote to this important part of your marketing. What should you look for and what should you avoid in a third-party review service?
Online reviews impact a business’ reputation, SEO, and ultimately the number of people who will use their products and services. Because veterinary practices have a higher need for trust among their clients, the stakes in having positive online reviews are even higher.
Yelp is the biggest of the online review websites, boasting 138 million unique visitors per month. People use the website to look up businesses from hair salons to car dealerships and any and everything in between, by reading consumer recommendations and reviews.
Online Reviews: Stopping the Tail from Wagging the Dog
Many veterinary practices feel powerless when it comes to online reviews. They feel that people will say what they are going to say and there is nothing you can do about it. However, taking control of your online reputation is not only possible, but an excellent way to strengthen customer loyalty, improve business practices, and attract new clients.
Animal Family’s Online Reputation
Bobbie Cotton, the Practice Manager at Animal Family Veterinary Care Center noted that online reviews are an important thing to focus on because it does matter what people say about you and you have a part in the process. She says, “Be cognizant of the fact that they (reviews) are out there and what they mean to your practice. That is the route people are going when checking out a business.”
When businesses ignore social media and online review websites they suffer huge setbacks not only to their online reputations, but also to their bottom line as frustrated customers vow to never purchase their products or services again.
However, when you take control of your online reputation by paying attention and responding to what your clients are saying, you can retain existing customers and attract new families to your practice!
According to an Econsultancy article:
I’m not wrong, so why do I have to say I’m sorry?
Most negative review posts in the veterinary field stem from misunderstandings and emotionally charged situations such as the illness or loss of a beloved pet. The pet owner is hurt and angry and goes to Yelp to lash out.
When posting a response, the temptation is to pile up mountains of evidence to show that you handled the situation perfectly. Put up the X-ray pictures, copy the in-depth notes you took, substantiate your findings with lab results, and point to it all to say, “See… I’m RIGHT!” However, this isn’t likely to calm your clients or win them back to your practice, and you will look like a mad scientist to everyone else reading the exchange of posts.