At present day, it is no secret that the entire world communicates through social media. Of the 7.6 billion people on the planet, 2 billion have access to social media accounts.
Given those astounding figures, entrepreneurs, including health practitioners, cannot dismiss social media when advertising their businesses. But in order to be successful, one must learn the technique of utilizing social media to their full advantage.
Regardless of how big or small your nutrition practice may be it will be subjected to online comments and criticism at one point or another. Since social media sites are open platforms, your response will be observed by countless of people and will contribute to your general business reputation.
So if you are unsure of how to use your patients' social network comments to your advantage, we have compiled a list for explaining different ways to do that.
Respond to all comments
A lot of businesses only respond to complaints that they believe are genuine, but not to other customer concerns. The trouble with this approach is that others are observing. Not responding to certain complaints can be interpreted as the inability to listen, or lack of care. Since healthcare is a sensitive profession, you could get into even more trouble if you are perceived as someone who doesn’t care about his or her patients.
Dishonest comments won’t always be apparent to others who lack the inside knowledge of what you actually do. Even in circumstances where the person complaining is obviously a troll, a rough response from your side will still speak against your business’s reputation. Complaints should be dealt within 24 hours.
Think carefully before you react
When you see downright rude comments or false allegations thrown your way, it can be very tempting to respond to them in a defensive or equally combative manner. But pause for a minute, and consult with your assistant or other team members regarding the best way to respond.
Brainstorm a few probable scenarios. Keep in mind that your response can either make or break your image, and deleting your initial comments will only succeed in giving a very bad impression. So really think before you dive into responding.
Avoid making assumptions
A great tip to keep in mind when reading your patients’ social media comments is to never make assumptions. Sometimes, one patient’s complaint might sound extremely implausible because no other patient experienced that problem.
But do not just dismiss it assuming they are mistaken until you have gathered all the relevant information needed to make a final verdict. You will be in a better position to respond after you have collected all the facts, as opposed to basing your reply on assumptions.
Add some humor to your response
If you ever find yourself caught in faux-pas, sometimes it can be a good idea to inject some positivity and humor. This doesn’t mean you go on making fun of the patients. Instead, poke some fun at your own business.
Introducing humility and levity shows your real personality, and more patients will be impressed. However, use this tip sparingly. If patients always find you hiding behind humor, that can give a seriously bad impression. Use humor only when the matter is light; in serious cases, show concern.
Say no to generic or automated responses
Numerous aspects of social media can be better served by automation but patient complaints are not one of them. Giving out generic responses shows your lack of care and inability to really pay attention, and usually ends up hindering real engagement with your potential clients.
When your responses are unique and personalized, you come off as more approachable and considerate, qualities that a lot of patients look for in a health practitioner.
Using the aforementioned steps to deal with your patients’ social media comments will exhibit your ability to take responsibility and show concern for patients, which will eventually help you clear out any bad air, thereby recovering any lost business.