<a href="http://www.linkedin.com/pub/chelsea-woods/26/29a/46" rel="author">Chelsea Woods</a> is the Marketing Director at <a href="http://www.solution21.com/">Solution21</a>, a website and marketing firm that focuses on the marketing needs of dental practices. In addition to <a href="http://www.solution21.com/dental-medical-web/design/dentist-websites.htm">custom website design for dentists</a>, Solution21 also offers SEO, Pay-Per-Click Advertising, Local Listings, Social Marketing, Branding and more. To get started with a website and marketing package with Solution21, contact them at 888-423-9235.

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5 Tips For Handling Negative Reviews

It happens to all of us. We do our best and treat our patients as we’d like to be treated, but one or two unhappy clients are inevitable. There’s an endless list of places consumers can share their thoughts and opinions regarding a recent purchase, most notably Yelp, Google Places, Facebook, and Twitter. The internet has transformed the process of complaining from a private phone call or filling out a customer comment card, to an inherently public media available for all to see.

So what do you do if they share their experience on the web? Here are some tips to handling negative reviews:

1. Publicly reply to the post. More often than not, it will prove to be worth your time if you respond to the comment. Replying publicly to the post in a professional way and addressing the customer’s concerns reassures the unhappy client, and all of the post’s viewers, that you are interested in your client’s satisfaction and in setting things straight.

2. Do your research. It hurts to be criticized. You may feel the comment was unfair and fails to address everything that went well. Take a deep breath before responding to the post. Find all the information you can about that patients experience with your practice. Putting yourself in that person’s shoes and keeping that in mind as you respond, can help change a poor review to a great review and a loyal patient.

3. Consider constructive criticism. Express your appreciation for this opportunity to evaluate your current business practices and think of ways to improve the areas that may lead to patient dissatisfaction.

4. Encourage patients to write good reviews, either with or without promotional incentives. Gradually, you will have many more good reviews than bad, and this will help eliminate the effect of a bad one.

5. Offer resources where customers can write positive reviews while they visit your office. Consider adding a space for testimonials on your website and social profiles if you don’t already have one, and having that page open on an iPad or other mobile device.

Following any of this advice can help you turn an unhappy patient into a loyal, brand ambassador. At the same time, you’ll be showing all viewers of this post that client satisfaction is a top priority for your practice. And of course, positive reviews deserve some attention, too.

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What you need to know about Google AdWords

We’re sure we don’t need to tell you how important Google is in this Internet-savvy day and age. Need to know the weather predictions for your upcoming vacation? Google it. Need to check your lottery numbers? Google it. The same thing goes for prospective patients when they are searching for a dentist.

With a total of 4 billion average searches a day (StatisticBrain.com), Google is the most widely known search engine, and it produces the fastest results when a user types in a keyword. An organic online presence with Google can take years to build, but Google offers an advertising program that will allow your practice to show on the first page for specified keywords, and this could be set up in a short amount of time.

Of course, Google doesn’t give this advertising space for free. Google charges per click, meaning that you don’t get charged until a viewer actually clicks on your ad and visits your website. The cost-per-click depends on the competition in your area, as well as the relevance of your selected keywords with the content in your website.

Here are the steps to take when setting up a Google Advertising campaign:

1. Set up a campaign with Google Adwords and customize the settings that are best for your practice, and of course for your budget. This is the first step in controlling who sees your ads and how often the ads will show. You will also have the option to set a budget per day and the maximum you are willing to pay per click.

2. Create an ad that will entice viewers to visit your website, and eventually to visit your dental office. Usually a strong call-of-action such as “Call Now!” or “Make An Appointment Today!” will be beneficial in writing your ad.

3. Choose keywords that will trigger your Google ad to show. Try to choose keywords with the most relevance to your practice. To limit unnecessary clicks, it is a good idea to include the city name in the keywords. Most patients won’t drive over 10 miles to visit their dentist.

4. Monitor and test you campaign regularly. It’s always a good idea to improve your AdWords campaign and update your knowledge of Google’s latest suggestions by viewing tips from Google’s support.

“Google Annual Search Statistics.” Statistic Brain. Statistic Brain, 14 Mar. 2012. Web. 16 Mar. 2012.

Solution21, Inc. is in no way affiliated or endorsed by Google Inc.


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