Let’s face it. Some patients are more likely to post negative comments in online forums than positive ones. Additionally, negative comments can have more influence than positive comments do. These are some of the reasons that it’s imperative to be proactive about your hospital’s brand reputation management.
Be in Control of Your Brand’s Search Results
Research has it that 25 percent of search results for the world’s biggest brands is user-generated content: online forums, review sites, articles, etc. In fact, 51 percent of millennials say that user-generated content from strangers influences their buying decisions more than recommendations from family and friends.
Most consumer searches for hospitals and healthcare begin with the Internet. Hospital Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can influence the content and material that leads the Search Results page over user-generated content. Page Results are critical to hospital reputation and brand recognition.
Use Social Media to Your Advantage – Don’t Let it Overtake Your Reputation
Being a pervasive and engaging presence in social media includes being proactive in online content and conversations. Brand alerts can be set up via Google Alerts, which notifies you when you’ve been mentioned in social media or elsewhere online. These alerts can help to you to respond quickly to conversations involving your brand.
Negative online comments can damage your hospital's reputation if left alone, especially when social media is the source of communication. Take proactive countermeasures as well to manage your online reputation. In doing so, you’ll be in a better position to engage your patients, public as well as physicians, medical staff and employees.
Nurture Employee Relationships With Your Brand and Your Consumers
One of the quickest ways to bruise a hospital reputation is when employees object to issues in administration or management. When you consider that the public can be influenced by internal comments and word-of-mouth recommendations it’s of serious concern.
The answer is in a positive organizational culture. Ensure that your brand message resonates with employees, and that they are relaying that message to both consumers and others.
Adrienne Erin is a freelance writer and designer. With a background in art and career development, she closely follows trends in social media, design, and public relations. Follow @adrienneerin on Twitter or visit her blog, Design Roast.