How to Turn Patients into Brand Ambassadors for your Urology Practice

Oct. 22, 2018

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It’s estimated that nearly 80% of all healthcare needs that drive someone to choose a doctor, clinic, or hospital begin with online research.

Consumers are not only turning to the internet for information about symptoms and treatments. They’re also searching for provider reviews to help them decide who they’ll trust with their health – and often in the case of urological conditions – their life.

Adjusting to a paradigm shift where patients have greater control over a provider’s reputation can be intimidating (if not frightening). But at the same time, this shift gives physicians, clinics and hospitals an exciting new way to engage patients.

 

Start with your website

Your website can empower patients and other consumers with the information they need to choose your practice over any other. That said, when was the last time you evaluated your current site? For example:

  • Are you effectively attracting consumers to your website and giving them a reason to stay and look around? Here are 7 strategies to help you do that.
  • Does your site include a provider directory with a link to patient testimonials and reviews? This is critical. When it comes to provider recommendations, people value the opinions of former patients the most.

 

Managing the Patient Experience                            

Consumers read an average of seven reviews before trusting a business. And 43% say they would travel an extra 30 minutes to visit a doctor with a higher review rating. Facts like these reveal the importance of managing your online reputation on social media and health-related review sites.

 

Social Media

Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Yelp are conduits for posting personal healthcare experiences and opinions – good or bad – about your urological practice. On the provider side, these platforms provide the opportunity to engage patients in two-way communication. This interaction can help you effectively build your brand – and brand ambassadors.

 

Here are a few tips to leverage the power of social media:

  • Build a strong social presence. You can start by creating a profile page for your clinic that shares current urology-related health news, patient education, and information specific to your practice.
  • Post regularly – on your website and on social media platforms. Posting your own content allows you to position your clinic in the best possible light.
  • Self-assess regularly. Stay current with what is being said about you. A simple first step is to Google your practice and providers to find reviews you may not be aware of. When you do:
    • Don’t ignore negative reviews hoping they’ll go away. They won’t. When responding, keep in mind that you’re not just talking to one dissatisfied patient. Other people are looking for providers on these sites as well. They’ll take note of how you handle each complaint.
    • Do respond to positive reviews: It shows consumers that you are responsive and care about each patient. It can also help offset any negative comments that are posted.

 

Health-related Review Sites

With 85% of consumers saying they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, providers can no longer ignore widely used health-related sites like HealthGrades, Vitals and WebMD. To keep pace with the changing digital curve, urologists need to encourage loyal patients to share their experiences online.

 

Here are a few strategies that can help you turn patients into brand ambassadors:

  • Review cards that are handed to patients before they leave your office. The card includes information about how – and where – to leave an online review.
  • Follow-up emails with a direct link to your website or specific health-related sites where the patient can easily leave a review or rate a specific urologist.
  • Flyers for patient rooms that direct individuals to your website to get current medical information and updates, and links to health-related sites to share their patient experience.

 

Review a Strategy for Success

See how Legato Healthcare Marketing successfully helped Urology Associates grow online visibility and build reputation in this recent case study. Legato Healthcare Marketing is an expert in the urology field. We have the skills and strategies to help you succeed. 

 

Download your Urology Practice Digital Guide today and reach out to Mike Milligan (mikem@golegato.com) to get started.

 

Website by: Craig Erskine