WRMC Ortho and Sports Medicine Clinic | Doctor.com
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Build a winning online reputation at WRMC Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Clinic

Overview

White River Health System engaged Doctor.com in 2019 to implement a listings and reputation management solution. With listings fully implemented and the organization’s digital presence on the rise, White River Health System is on the right track toward providing an improved online experience for patients seeking care.

Building a winning, consumer-friendly digital presence through listings has been a critical first step to ensuring a smooth patient journey. However, a successful outcome of attracting patients to White River encompasses more than listings management. The next logical step is to turn our focus to growing reputation. As you will discover below, reviews have an enormous impact on consumer decision-making. They spark curiosity, boost site traffic, encourage longer profile visits, provide comforting social proof about the quality of care, and ultimately drive business to your practice. To spur more traffic to your improved, patient-friendly profiles, actions must be taken now to generate more patient feedback.

What we will accomplish:

  • Raise review quantity through engaging patients for feedback on key sites (Google, Healthgrades, Vitals).
  • Create a process for increasing reviews that fits seamlessly within the current practice flow.

Why online reputation is important to digital marketing success for White River Health System

In the modern patient journey “customer experience” proves to be critical to business success. Patients are demanding, impatient, and willing to switch doctors when dissatisfied. Until the moment a consumer enters the examination room, he or she goes through a series of actions and transactions that highly resemble any customer journey: researching and evaluating your staff and services, engaging your office to get more information, reading reviews on trusted sites, and taking action to schedule an appointment. Today, much of this journey happens through digital channels, and the nature of these interactions can dictate whether a consumer becomes your patient or not. A broken, frustrating, or inconvenient experience at any of these touchpoints could lead your patient right to a competitor’s practice.

The new customer journey begins and continues online:

  • 90% of patients will change their mind about a referral due to the provider’s poor or weak online reputation (a rating of less than three out of five stars).
  • 60% have chosen one provider over another based on a positive online reputation.
  • 81% will read reviews about a provider even after they’ve been referred.
  • 79% have used the internet to make a healthcare-related search in the past year.
  • Nearly 80% of patients say the digital consumer experience in healthcare needs to improve, and 50% would leave their current doctor for a better digital consumer experience.
  • When searching for a healthcare provider online, 62% of patients consider complete listings information (e.g., detailed profile, easily found online) when determining whom they will choose as their provider.

Debunking the myth that older patients don’t rely on the web for healthcare decisions

From airline tickets to buying goods on Amazon to researching the best local healthcare options, the internet has transformed how people access information, assess their choices, and make purchasing decisions. And it’s a common myth that only young people are using the web for healthcare reasons. While that might have been more true in the past, the 60+ demographic is now going digital, too.

A few statistics about the 60+ audience:

  • 76% have made a healthcare-related search online in the past year.
  • 80% will occasionally, frequently, or always read online reviews about a referred provider.
  • 67% agree that the availability of relevant and accurate information online has impacted their decision to seek one healthcare provider over another.
  • 56% say that a positive online reputation has impacted their decision to choose one healthcare provider over another.

Today, older patients use technological resources in unprecedented numbers. Mobile phones have enabled the demographic to access diverse health information, facilitating a patient’s sense of agency and self-efficacy in improving their health and making informed choices (AMA Journal of Ethics). 79% of adults ages 50–64 have a smartphone, and 53% of adults over 65 use a smartphone (PEW). Google continues to respond to these trends and has made strategic changes to the user interface to help people access information quickly, with as few clicks as possible, ultimately driven by the motive to keep users within the Google product ecosystem. (Read more here.)

Patients’ demand for ease and consumer-friendly convenience is growing, and the digital experience needs to encourage trust across these critical channels. Never before has it been more imperative to attract patients of all ages by leveraging digital tools.

For more information, check out Doctor.com’s Patient Trends Report.

Goals of online reputation campaign pilot

  • Empower providers and administrators to be proactive in their facility’s reputation.
  • Activate easy tools that staff can seamlessly use to achieve success.
  • Improve both provider and facility online reputation.
  • Increase quantity of reviews in key listings.
  • Drive ROI through attracting patients online to strategic service lines.
  • Become less vulnerable to bad reviews that are costing you patients.
  • Drive trust and confidence with new patients booking appointments.
  • Work smarter, not harder, to build a 5-star reputation for practices and providers.
  • Turn more referrals into new patients.
  • Give patients better access to quality healthcare by highlighting success stories in reviews

Pilot group and current status

Qualities of an ideal practice for a reputation management pilot:

  • Physicians are focused on business growth.
  • Practice has capacity for patient volume increase year over year.
  • Strategic service line: Successfully attracting new patients has a high impact.
  • Clinical distinction.
  • Clinical managers who create an environment for an orderly office and successful patient experience.

Luckily, the perfect practice exists within White River Health System!

Pilot practice name:
WRMC Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Clinic
501 Virginia Dr. Suite C, Batesville, AR 72501

Physicians:
James Allen, MD
Jeffrey Angel, MD
Dylan Carpenter, MD
Wesley Greer, MD

APRNs:
Josh McIntosh, APRN
Chad Grady, APRN

The Ideal state for WRHS practices:

  • Provider is easy to find: All digital assets are helpful and intuitive with correct and relevant information.
  • All information is on-brand and uniform.
  • Relatable, humanizing profiles with headshots and provider bios.
  • Convenient mobile actions are possible through Google My Business.
  • Ample reviews that were posted recently with rich descriptions.
  • A mix of reviews tell an honest and credible story.
  • Organic search page contains WRHS website link and sites that WRHS would be happy for patients to find along their path (under-control, informative profiles with rich review content).

Online presence before listings and reputation:

  • Unclaimed GMB listing and missing business hours
  • No existing Vitals listing
  • Name inconsistent across platforms
  • Reviews are outdated
  • Existing Google My Business (GMB) listing but name appears LAST, FIRST
  • Vitals has no photo and low ratings
  • No existing GMB listing
  • No existing GMB listing

Online presence after listings implementation and outstanding needs: 

Highlights:

  • Headshot uniform on all sites
  • Name, address, and phone number accurate everywhere
  • Fully built-out Google My Business profile with easy actions

Needs:

Highlights:

  • Quantity of reviews on Healthgrades is strong

Needs:

  • Higher volume of reviews on the rest of the healthcare web

Needs:

  • Become less vulnerable to a bad review by proactively achieving good reviews

Needs:

  • A single poor review creates a one-star average for Dr. Carpenter due to the lack of review volume
  • A larger quantity of reviews will change the average rating very quickly; a small n is statistically not a fair assessment, and it will not be hard to change

Practice: Current status

Google My Business:
Average rating: 3.9 stars
Reviews: 8
Newest review: June 2019

Tools and technology

Corporate tool: Reputation Insights

Capabilities:

  • Bulk messaging campaigns at the facility and/or the provider level to activate existing patient base who have recently visited the practice
    • One-time message inviting a patient to connect on social media and leave feedback
    • Patients who have opted in for SMS/email communication
    • Facility-level sites: Google
    • Provider-level sites: Google, Healthgrades, Bing, Vitals, WebMD, Wellness, DocSpot, CareDash
  • Review monitoring
  • Alerts for new reviews
  • Tracking changes in reputation
  • Benchmarking progress
  • Reporting
  • Escalating feedback (positive and negative) to appropriate parties
  • Reply-in-platform to GMB reviews for service recovery

Practice-level tool: Companion (desktop app)

Capabilities:

  • Quicksend SMS or email prompts; on-site app to empower staff to request feedback
    • Note: Patient must have a Google account to leave a Google review
    • Feedback will be facility based (Google) or provider based (Healthgrades, Vitals, Bing, WebMD, Wellness, DocSpot, CareDash, etc.)

Provider vs. practice reviews: best practices and recommendations

Healthcare searches travel both at the practice level and the facility level. Online directories focus on either the facility as the subject (e.g., YP, Facebook, Google My Business) or the provider as the subject (e.g., Healthgrades, WebMD, Vitals). WRHS needs a sound strategy for generating more patient feedback on both types of listings.

Additionally, not every website has equal visibility, brand recognition, and brand equity. To maximize resources and optimize our outcomes, we need to be strategically focused on key sites, rather than attempting to “boil the ocean” by trying to generate feedback in too many places at once and diluting our results. Instead, let us concentrate our efforts where it matters most and focus the pilot on strategically important sites.

Recommendation

The full picture of what we have been doing with syndicating listings data is important for broad coverage, but reputation strategy will be focused on the most important sites.

Facility focus: Generate more patient feedback on the Google My Business page
Tools: Reputation Insights, Patient Connections campaign

Provider focus: Generate more patient feedback on Google, Healthgrades, Vitals, and Bing
Tools: On-site Companion desktop app

Schedule

Implementation and training: 2 weeks
Pilot time: 3 months
Analyze and present results: 2 weeks
Total pilot run time: 4 months

Outcomes and deliverables

  • Doctor.com to produce case study for WRHS
  • Reporting detailing the impact of this campaign
  • Modify as needed and roll out strategy to other practices

Resources

For deeper reading, including our advice and best practices, check out the following resources from Doctor.com: