If you’re reading this post, then you likely already know some of the benefits of how online reviews can help a physical therapy clinic’s digital reputation. In fact, Over 90% of people use online reviews in some capacity to evaluate healthcare providers.1
What you might not know is that online reviews also help with building search engine trust, which can increase organic search rankings.
In other words, generating positive reviews serves as two powerful digital marketing strategies for a PT clinic: reputation management and SEO.
This makes sense, but generating positive reviews also doesn’t come easy for any physical therapist. Providing value and a positive experience within a clinic is an obvious necessity, but this doesn’t automatically lead to great reviews. Receiving positive reviews on a platform like Google takes a few additional, proactive steps by the clinic.
Below are a few recommendations that can help a physical therapist earn more positive reviews for her or his clinic. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll be focusing on Google as our primary source for online reviews, but these principles apply to Yelp, Facebook, any other digital review platforms.
Timing is everything, and there is never a better time to ask than when the patient is in the office.
You might think that many of your patients do not have the ability or the know-how to create online Google reviews while they’re in your office. But this is false for a reason that will seem obvious once you know it:
Still, many PTs might think that asking while patients are still in the office could be a little awkward. This, of course, is a mental barrier that can easily be squashed by repetition.
The fact is that if you are confident in the quality of the service that you offer, then the patient is likely to be highly satisfied. Asking for a positive review is a common enough practice in a large variety of industries that it’s nothing new to the common consumer.
You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the number of people who’ll be happy to help you after you helped them.
2) Email Campaigns
Sending timely email campaigns to your patient lists is a great way to generate reviews. Below are recommendations for separate email campaigns.
All patients. You don’t want to do this too often, but a monthly email campaign to your entire list can help generate reviews. Again, you just have to ask, and it also helps if you can provide a link to the review site.
New patients. A patient’s first visit is usually the most important one for the clinic. A positive experience ensures a re-occurring patient. If you’re good at “wowing” a patient on their first visit, then I highly recommend that you ride that momentum by sending a targeted email campaign and asking them to leave a review. The best opportunity is to do this the same day as the first appointment. If this isn’t doable, then do it weekly.
Custom emails. If you made a real and memorable connection with a patient, then follow up with an individualized email asking for a review. This is hands down the best practice using email to generate reviews as it’s the most personal. Yet, it’s also the most time consuming.
Bonus. Use surveys. Send out a survey to a list of patients and make sure you have a field for testimonials. Then, follow up with each of these testimonials with a personal email asking for a review on Google. This takes a little more work, but it’s typically very effective.
3) Respond to ALL Reviews.
This is not just a rule for those who left a negative review (learn more about responding to negative reviews and more in our e-book 4 Pro Tips to Master Online Reviews in Healthcare). It’s almost as important to respond to a positive review.
Why respond to a somebody who already gave you a positive review? The answer is simple: “Everyone is watching.” This means that other viewers will likely read your response, adding an extra layer of customer service, further enhancing your reputation, and encouraging others to chime in.
Keep in mind that getting positive reviews online can take time as only a small number of requests or responses are likely to yield reviews. But you don’t have to change your physical therapy practice. By making it a part of your regular administrative/marketing workflow, in time, you will boost your online reputation and SEO strength.
Net Health’s patient engagement marketing tools streamline the patient review request process for you, helping you get more reviews and more SEO clout, and allowing you to focus on providing care. Interested in learning more? Give us a call today to see a demo.
4 Pro Tips to Master Online Reviews in Healthcare
Build, grow, and improve your healthcare organization’s online presence
1 Softwareadvice.com, “How Patients Use Online Review,” 2020.