Online reviews are the backbone of any business’s reputation. Potential customers increasingly check out reviews to inform their decisions on where to spend their income. Naturally, as a quality med spa, you want that spend to be with you, not your competitors.
More than ever, you need to keep on top of your online reputation and ensure that clients have an excellent customer experience when they contact you and when they visit you. Every part of interacting with your med spa matters to your customers and, therefore, it has to matter to you too.
How you answer the phone, how you respond on social media, what your med spa décor is like, how your receptionist greets patients, what patients’ experience of treatment is like… It all combines to give an overall impression of your med spa. And that impression is what customers will take away with them and what they will write about in online reviews.
You have to put the work in to ensure a quality customer experience before you can expect that your patients will leave positive reviews. But it’s equally important to manage your reviews and, in turn, your online reputation.
This involves requesting reviews on a consistent basis, replying to each review on every review platform, and dealing with both positive and negative reviews. Of course, that takes time, but a professional reputation management platform for med spas can certainly help save you time and take on some of the load.
In this article, we will look at why reviews are important, how to manage your reviews and remain HIPAA compliant, and how Surefire Local can help you increase your reviews and boost your online reputation.
Managing your reputation in today’s customer-driven world
Businesses have always used word of mouth to market themselves. Since well before the internet existed, people have asked for recommendations from neighbors, friends, and family when looking for products or services. And now, with the internet to amplify it, a single review – good or bad – could potentially be seen by thousands of people. Naturally, that’s going to have a huge impact on any business’s reputation and any med spa must keep their online reputation in mind and learn to manage it.
That means requesting reviews consistently, following up, responding to reviews in a timely manner, and learning how to respond to negative reviews well.
Here are a few reviews statistics to show just how important reviews can be to your med spa.
- “97% of people read reviews of local businesses.”
- “78% of people trust online reviews as much as a recommendation from a friend or a family member.”
- “85% of consumers believe online reviews older than three months are irrelevant.” – all from Review42
- “Customers are likely to spend 31% more on a business with “excellent” reviews.” – Invesp
But it’s not just reviews. Your star ratings can also impact not only whether a new customer chooses you or not, but also, ultimately, your bottom line.
- “New research shows that small changes in star ratings can drive explosive growth for products—on the order of 30 to 200 percent depending on category.” – McKinsey
- “A one-star increase in Yelp rating leads to a 5-9 percent increase in revenue.” – Harvard Business Review
The difficulty for med spas and any other health professionals is that what you do online must remain HIPAA compliant. You can respond to your reviews and ensure you monitor and manage your online reputation; however, you must do it in compliance with HIPAA.
That does add an extra layer of difficulty, but it’s not impossible and Surefire Local can help. Read on to find out how to manage your reviews with HIPAA compliance, and how our business marketing platform can help you.
How to build a 5-star reputation while remaining HIPAA compliant
Patients are free to write whatever they want in their reviews, including revealing their own PHI if they choose to. However, you can’t respond to it or even confirm that they are, or were, a patient of your med spa.
You can’t discuss any health information, medical details, contact details, personal information, anything to do with their insurance, or even confirm any future appointments they might have.
This can make it more difficult to respond to your reviews, but see below for our top tips when responding to reviews while remaining HIPAA compliant:
Rules of thumb to follow when it comes to responding to reviews
- It is vital that you respond to all of your reviews. Potential clients want to see the interaction between you and the people that have taken the time to post a review. They want to see how you respond and how you come across. Your responses can provide a flavor of what it’s like to come to your med spa and show people a little of what they might experience. Your reviews and responses really can be the reason that someone chooses you over your competitors.
- It can be hard, but you really cannot mention any patient information in your review responses, not even if the patient mentioned anything themselves. You cannot even confirm that someone is, or was, your patient. Keep that in mind at all times when writing review responses.
- The safest way to respond is to get your lawyer to create a standard set of compliant responses that you and your staff can choose from. If you don’t have marketing software, you can compile a Word document of these responses so you can copy and paste the most suitable one. With marketing software, such as the Surefire Local Marketing Platform, you can upload these compliant responses to give a drop-down menu that staff members can select from. You have a much better chance of being compliant if your responses are already written for you.
- While you will want to request reviews and remind people if they haven’t provided one, you cannot simply send out emails to do this. In many states, you must have written permission to email a patient and there are fines in place if you do so. Always get permission for emails and texts.
- Enjoy your good reviews and excellent feedback, but take note too. People will tell you what they liked and what they want to see more of. They will also provide you with what could be very helpful feedback that could make your med spa even better. Acknowledge these great reviews and thank the reviewer for their feedback. Confirm that you do take notice of everyone’s feedback and that you have or will take action. This approach makes people feel heard and valued, which is exactly how you want them to feel.
- Naturally, you will get some negative reviews. It’s impossible to please everyone no matter how hard you try. Don’t ignore these reviews and definitely don’t flag them for removal. If your reviews are wall-to-wall four and five stars with no negatives, that’s not nearly as convincing as if you had a genuine and authentic mix of reviews and opinions. People can tell the difference.
- When you do get a negative review, you must respond promptly and professionally. It’s perfectly possible to handle a complaint and turn it from a negative review into a positive outcome for your med spa. If you’re honest and open, and you apologize, people are generally inclined to forgive. You may even be able to get the reviewer to alter the review to a good one. Again, it’s good to have some compliant responses available via your lawyer. The first thing to do is take the reviewer away from posting online. Get them onto a telephone call (not email – remember, you need permission for that) so you can make a personal connection without the whole thing playing out in public. Handle things well and you will impress anyone who reads your negative reviews and provide an excellent impression of your med spa.
How Surefire Local can help you get more 5-star reviews
Surefire Local offers quality business intelligence software to save you time and help you more easily gain and manage your reviews.
You don’t need to track everything yourself and send manual review requests. Instead, our professional marketing platform does everything for you. You can ask for reviews, manage your requests, send reminders, and respond to every one of your reviews without leaving your dashboard.
Manage your online reviews and reputation the easy way with our purpose-built reputation management platform for med spas.
1) Connect instantly with the top review platforms
Facebook, Yelp, Google Business Profile, Angi, TrustPilot… there are so many different review sites to keep track of that it would be impossible to manage without the right help.
Instead of signing into each site individually, use our software and connect directly with the top review sites. You’ll be able to see all of your reviews in one place with a complete overview that allows you to see what people are saying about your med spa and where you are with managing your reviews.
2) Send review requests to happy customers via text message or email
The best time to ask for reviews is when your happy customers have arrived home after enjoying one of your treatments. Failing that, try to request reviews within a couple of days of their appointment. Leave it much later than that, and they may have forgotten how good they felt and what positive things they were thinking about you at the time. You want the experience to be fresh in their minds.
Sending a review request is easy to do with our marketing platform. You can send texts and emails from within the platform to multiple users – obviously, as long as you’ve sought permission to be able to contact your patients in that way.
3) Write and post responses to reviews from within the Surefire Local Marketing Platform
Remember those previously drafted compliant responses to your reviews? This is where you can upload them to our platform, giving you and your staff an easy-to-use drop-down menu of safe responses.
You can reply to all of your reviews from our dashboard without having to log into different sites.
4) Send reminder emails or text messages
Not everyone will immediately respond to your review requests, but it’s perfectly acceptable to send one or two reminders to maximize the number of reviews you receive.
Again, you can use our platform to send email or text reminders to your happy patients, giving them a gentle nudge to complete your review.
Following up is easy with Surefire’s all-in-one marketing software.
5) Eliminate time wasted going from platform to platform
Imagine how long it would take to log into and out of every single review site on the internet each day. Luckily, you don’t have to do that with our platform. Log in once and you can see all your review sites in one place. You can then manage every aspect of your reviews, including reminders and responses, without needing to go from platform to platform.
This is a serious time saver while still allowing you to do everything you need to do to manage your online reputation.
6) Measure brand sentiment
Managing your reviews isn’t enough to keep an eye on your online reputation. You also need to be able to see brand sentiment. We help with that by providing a word-cloud graph in your dashboard. This shows you the most used words in your reviews, allowing you to see what people are thinking about your med spa.
This gives you a clear, at a glance, snapshot of both the good and the bad. You can learn from that both to improve your business and your reputation, and to find the language and words your customers actually use, so you can do the same in your marketing copy.
7) Optimize your brand presence
One other way to build your brand presence is to ensure your information is consistent and correct all across the internet. In particular, your NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) must be correct on every site.
When you’re dealing with your Google Business Profile (GBP) and hundreds of business directories, being consistent, especially when you apply updates, can be a chore. But, with our marketing software, you can manage your information on over 80 business directories and your GBP and update it from our dashboard with a few clicks. That includes posts, new services, new images, offers, and more.
Attend a Surefire Local Marketing Platform demo
Our business intelligence marketing software allows you to manage far more than just your reviews and your online reputation. You can collect ideas for your content, plan out your social media campaigns, write blog posts in your dashboard, manage your paid ads, manage your contacts, and so much more.
Everything is in one place, including top-quality analytics and reports to help you understand exactly how to take your marketing to the next level.
This isn’t just a reputation management platform for med spas. It’s a whole marketing platform to give you everything you need.
Why not request a demo and see how Surefire Local can help market your med spa?