Whatever the product or service, these days we’re all guilty of using online reviews a part of our research before parting with our money. From kitchen gadgets to hairdressers, and everything in between, it’s all open to reviews, and the same goes for your dental practice. It means the competition just became fierce, so what should you do to ensure you get plenty of great reviews?

As tempting as it may be, I don’t advise offering incentives, such as prize draws, to those who leave reviews. It’s a bit of a grey area, but this could technically invalidate your testimonials as they would not be classed as impartial.

Instead, it’s all about asking your patients to write real testimonials, but how do we go about that? Think about all of the means of communication you have with your patients, and how you can leverage each one to also ask for reviews. Here are a few ideas…

In person

If you know a patient is over the moon with their treatment, ask them in person if they’d be willing to leave a testimonial. It’s a ‘strike while the iron is hot’ move but it can really pay off. You’ll be able to gauge each patient as to whether they’re the type to leave you a review and the more often you have this conversation, the more natural you’ll find it. Give it a go tomorrow, the absolute worst that could happen is they’ll say no – you won’t be any worse off!

Follow-up text messages

If you have a system that sends out text message reminders to opted-in patients, you will probably be able to set up follow-up messages too. Along with important aftercare information, you can also include a line requesting a review and thanking them in advance for it. Include the link on your text message to make it really easy for them to click through to the review page.

Patient emails

If you think about how many emails are sent out from your practice each day – with appointment reminders, patient queries, treatment plans, newsletters, etc., this is another perfect point at which to request reviews. Simply incorporate a short line on all email footers/signatures that includes a link to leave a testimonial.

Social media

Your social media platforms are the perfect place to request testimonials. Your followers are already your fans, so it’s well worth tapping into this group with a few posts now and then – just don’t overdo it!

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