Search engine optimization is really difficult because it’s so enigmatic and the rules keep changing. Social media and reviews are heading down that road but we’re not quite there yet. Sure, Facebook has continued to monetize their service so much that you almost have to boost everything just to have it seen, but that’s not the end of the story. People can still visit our profiles and see what’s happening, and social media activity factors into Google’s search algorithm too as an indicator of how well your business is doing. Reviews have factored into online visibility so much that they now impact search, website design and social media. They are so critical to success and yet many practices are struggling with these two areas. There are two words that are the key to winning at both: Be outgoing!
Key Components of Social and Reviews
Personality for the Win
If your team does not include a person with an outgoing individual to spearhead these efforts, you are in big trouble. There’s just no getting around it. I recommend that every office appoint someone as their “social media czar” but if you appoint an introvert who is personally reserved and private to be in charge of your social media, you are setting them up for failure and you’re doing the same for your practice.
You Just Have to Ask
You have to be outgoing to consistently ask for reviews. The vast majority of people would be happy to give us reviews if we ask for them and even more of them would be fine with us asking even if they don’t follow-through with the request. It’s our job to ask and then what the patient does from there is outside of our control. An outgoing individual understands this intuitively. They have high self-worth and self-confidence and aren’t concerned much about rejection.
If you have someone who is not naturally outgoing, the fear of rejection is going to make it very difficult for them to ask for a review. It reminds me of this part of the movie Fight Club.
I can almost see a patient saying, “Do you want me to do a review?”
And we’re saying, “Would that be a problem?”
And the patient says, “Is it a problem for you to ask?”
In many of our member practices, it is a problem to ask. Because we haven’t tasked the right people with this job, it’s painful for them to ask for a review. I can tell you that the practices who are winning in the review game are ones who are asking.
Automation makes it easy to ask- the computers do the asking, but because we aren’t being outgoing, there is no community or relationship involved in the request. We’re being passive, hiding behind our marketing. That’s a turn-off for a lot of people, and it’s simply not going to be as effective.
And now that Google has recommended against the use of sentiment checkers in review generation apps like BirdEye, Weave, etc, automation is going to greatly increase the chance that you’ll get a negative review as part of automated review generation efforts. I probably don’t need to tell you that negative reviews have a major, negative impact on your conversion rates and SEO.
The number 1 component of both of these efforts is…effort- that is actual activity. Social posts- truly effective ones- don’t just happen. Sure, at Pro Impressions Marketing Group, we try to post for you by sharing blog posts and we use review platforms to share reviews to your social profiles for some free, user-generated content, but just look at the reach and engagement of those posts. They don’t move the needle much.
What does move the needle are personal posts; truly social posts that build a sense of community online. Think about the difference in reaction that you have when you see a stranger waving a sign as you drive by them versus when you spot a neighbor and they smile and wave at you as you drive by. You probably smile and wave back at the neighbor and the sign waver is lucky if they get a head nod or even eye contact from you. The difference is community.
By focusing on community and relationship, an outgoing person will easily make your social presence a raging success. They may need a little help at first with some ideas of what to post, and that’s what we’re here for- it’s why we created the Stay Social 2018 calendar. You’re using that, right? Don’t know if you have it? Contact us and since you’re a Pro Impressions Marketing Group member, we’ll send you one at no cost!
What If You Are Not Outgoing
Having worked with many of you for several years, I know that not all of you are as outgoing as I am. And really, if you’re the doctor, you shouldn’t be heading up your social media and review efforts even if you are outgoing. You’re way too busy to be messing with that. Even if you’re in a season right now when you have time to deal with it, you don’t want these critical areas to fall by the wayside when you find yourself caught up in other things.
Because like tends to attract like, if you’re not a very outgoing person, there is a risk that you’ve tended to hire members of your team that also aren’t very outgoing. If that’s the case, you may need to pay someone to be outgoing for you. Add that outgoing dynamic to your team mix as they will help you boost your internal marketing efforts, social media and reviews, and could even end up being a dynamo at closing cases.