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    Posted December 11, 2013 by
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    Tech talk

    Dentists Understand The Importance Of Their Online Reputation

    For years the dental profession has believed that all that is important is what goes on within the 10 by 10 room where dental treatment begins and ends.

    Unfortunately, with the advent of the Internet and Mobile technology, dentists, as well as other professionals, have had to leave the comfort of their private offices and reach out to the online and mobile market.

    One of the most obvious areas of concern for dentists now is what is being said about them online. As professionals who are trained to always to their best, do no harm, a pristine reputation is not only important for their practice success but probably more importantly for their own well being.

    The Four Ms of reputation management, although not totally part of the dental lexicon, are slowly but surely becoming a critical aspect of a dentist’s thought process.

    The Four Ms are:

    Mining – Probably the most critical aspect of creating and maintaining a great online reputation means first finding out what is actually being said about you, or your practice, online. Without this knowledge a dentists, or any other business owner, cannot move forward either increasing their practice presence or protecting it as the case may be.

    Management – Once a practice, or business, finds out what is being said the next step is to start managing future reviews. This involves not only creating a system for creating great reviews but more importantly an atmosphere of excellence that starts with the staff and continues through the practice ending at the dentist him or herself. One of the most disconcerting facts that can be found occurs when a practice’s reputation is being harmed because a staff member causes some discomfort that goes unnoticed by the dentist but finds a home online for future patients to observe. Potential new patients more and more rely upon online reviews almost as much as they believe reviews from family members, friends or business associates.

    Marketing – Now that a practice has created an environment of reputation excellence it is time to use that experience to benefit the practice by letting the world know just how great the practice really is. There is nothing wrong with using legitimate online reviews as a means to attract new patients and to expand a dental practice, or just about any business. If you’ve earned a great Five Star reputation, you certainly have the right to use it. A word of caution though….fake reviews are not tolerated by any of the review (citation) sites and must be avoided at all costs. If you’ve created a Five Star practice, or business, than honest reviews will be easy to come by and there is no need to falsify the process.

    Monitor – Once you’ve created that Five Star reputation you need to monitor it so that bad habits never return. Bad reviews will stay visible almost forever. Being proactive is critical to avoid reputation fatigue. Every business needs to take charge of their reputation. Train their staff or employees. Monitor the process each and every day. If a bad review happens to occur, fix it before it grows. Tracking your reputation can be a bit daunting but with the tools available today it can be done and needs to be part of a total reputation strategy.

    As the online world has grown more and more people rely upon it as their source of information and guidance. The cocooning of the past has become the mobility of the present. We no longer sit at home and just rely upon our immediate family and circle of friends for advice and assistance.
    Instead we look at our mobile device and then make decisions based upon what we see on that small screen.

    For any business, dentists included, that information needs to be fair and balanced.

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