11 Ways Your Physical Therapy Practice Can Avoid Poor Online Reviews

Wake Up! Take a good look around you and observe what everybody else around you is doing. They are more than likely texting posts on Twitter or Facebook or some other form of social media. Face it my friends, social media is here to stay and will be alive and well for a very long time. Although these social media sites are a great way to drum up business, they also make it much easier for your patients to post their opinions about the experience that they had at your physical therapy practice.

Of course, social media makes it incredibly easy for your physical therapy patients to give you stellar reviews immediately. Great reviews can help you to gain referrals for new patients which will help you to grow your practice.  However poor reviews can make potential patients seek out other professionals for needed physical therapy services.

It is absolutely essential that you protect the image of your Physical Therapy practice as well as your own reputation as a professional. Handling poor reviews from patients can prove to be difficult and oftentimes detrimental to your practice. Have you ever heard the old saying that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure? No truer statement has been made when it comes to your physical therapy practice. You simply must use these preventative measures to decrease and/or eliminate the number of poor reviews that show up on the many review websites as well as on the social media networks.

1. Follow Up!

It is vitally important that you do a follow up call to your patients after their visit. This lets them know that you are concerned about their well-being and opens up the door for them to tell you what they liked about receiving physical therapy treatment from you as well as what could be done better. It’s better for them to tell you directly if they were unhappy, than it is to have their complaints memorialized online!

2. Get Feedback

You really need to find innovative ways to get feedback from your physical therapy patients. This will help you to improve the quality of care that you and your staff provide. Don’t be afraid to call a meeting and ask for the input of your staff on ways to obtain feedback. They very well might shock you with their great ideas.

3. Give Good Customer Service

Customer service is always of the utmost importance! Your staff should prove to be personal professionals who genuinely care about your physical therapy patients. Find ways to improve customer service and you will certainly get great feedback from your patients.

4. Monitor Your Social Media Accounts And Respond To Comments In A Timely Manner

All of your social media accounts should be monitored consistently. When a patient feels that you are actually accessible to them and willing to engage with them, they are less likely to leave poor feedback. Every comment, whether it be by email, Facebook, Twitter or other form of social media should be responded to quickly and effectively. Delayed or non-existent responses will have your patients thinking that you really don’t care about them.

 5. Use Monitoring Tools To “Listen In” On What Is Being Said About You And Your Practice

Monitoring tools such as Twitter Search, Google Alerts and others are extremely helpful. They help you to stay up-to-date on what your patients are saying about your practice online.

Use Monitoring Tools Like Google Alerts To Know What Is Being Said About You And Your PT Practice
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6. Develop A Plan For Responding To Negative Feedback

Negative reviews usually feel like a slap in the face to physical therapy professionals. Most physical therapists completely ignore such reviews and lose the patient. This is a bad look for any practice. You must always respond to any negative feedback quickly as well as formulate a plan to resolve the problem. A quick and effective plan for resolution will show your patient that you are concerned about them and make potential patients feel comfortable that you only want to provide the best service possible!

7. Respond To Negative Comments With Compassion And Understanding

You need to keep a cool head when you must respond to negative reviews of your practice. Becoming defensive can make matters even worse. Be sure to respond in an understanding manner and offer the patient some options of how to resolve the problem. Simply try to rectify the situation, the reviewer will probably delete their poor review or at least leave a positive remark later.

8. Know When To Execute Your Response Plan When You Receive Negative Feedback

It’s best to have a solid plan developed for dealing with poor reviews. This will help both you and your staff to keep your composure and not react hastily when there is a problem. A step by step plan should be in place to avoid having a small problem snowball into a huge issue.

9. Kindly Ask Your Patients For An Online Review

Don’t be afraid to ask your patients to leave reviews for your physical therapy practice. You should supply them with printed instructions on how to post a review. After you receive a positive review from the patient, you should re-post it on all of your practice’s social media pages. This helps others to gain access to the testimonials and which could increase your patient referral base.

10. Find Effective Ways To Be Accessible To Your Patients

Be sure that your physical therapy patients are aware of how they should contact you, should they have any issues or concerns. Even if they need to contact you after-hours, there should be a method for them to do so. Let your patients know that you will do anything in your power to resolve any problems in a quick and effective manner.

11. Manage Your Online Reputation

Your online reputation can either make or break your practice. It is essential that you dominate the top 10 search results when people search the name of your physical therapy practice. The results will include a variety of things such as reviews, your business listing, social media pages and other content belonging to your practice. Poor reviews will eventually show up on search results. Sometimes on the first page.  So it is good practice to kick negative reviews lower on the results page by creating blog posts, articles and videos. This will help to keep potential new patients from readily seeing any poor reviews.

I have to be honest with you, one bad review really isn’t going to adversely affect your physical therapy practice nor will it truly damage your reputation. At the same time you don’t want to have a string of negative feedback either. You absolutely must do all that you can to have a long and constantly updated list of glowing reviews. This will drown any negative feedback  in a sea of positive reviews!

Any thoughts? I would like to know what you think or what has worked for you!