It couldn’t be more vital for a dental practice or medical professional to have control over their online reputation.
PR professionals across the world have for a long time preached the golden rule: The best time to start a brand management campaign is long before a crisis erupts.
Here are 6 top PR tips for online reputation protection that Dentists and their dental practices cannot ignore
This is a great, easy to use free tool (only requiring a Gmail account) that is available for all individuals and/or companies wanting to keep a close eye on any mentions they might be getting online. If there is a discussion or review including your name or your dental practices name, you will know about it and you will be able react in a timely fashion.
Tell the truth and tell it all. This is the single most important rule in a crisis situation. A crisis is any situation that threatens the reputation of your brand, often fuelled by negative publicity. In the event of a crisis, you might want to have a pre-prepared a communication plan. Whilst the example given is a little over-kill for a dental practice, it’s worth a read for some gems. Importantly, pre-inform staff with a statement for media, because once they start calling it can be very stressful for all.
Keep in mind that if you find yourself in a crisis situation, it’s important to quickly admit your role in the situation.
Because news outlets carry so much trust and authority, these websites tend to rank high in search results. Social media and websites like HARO make it easier than ever to connect with journalists. The key is to have a compelling and timely story to tell when you do reach out. Building on these mentions for your dental practice or your individual dental success will go some way to buffer the bad press in the search engines should it arise, as these mentions will rank higher.
The goal is to get social media profiles ranked on page 1 for branded searches; this becomes your line of defence against unflattering or defamatory attacks. Not all platforms are created equal. Start by creating profiles on the most powerful networks, including Facebook, for both personal and brand pages; Google+; LinkedIn, for personal and company pages; Twitter; YouTube; Pinterest; CNN’s iReport; Blogspot and Blogger.
Citation building is also useful here for your brand and you dental services mentions. Not only will you have pro-actively ‘claimed’ these listings, but again your practice name will be further protected by good, accurate mentions.
The best way to protect your brand is to “own page 1.” In other words, have all positive mentions of your brand on the first page of search results. How? By creating a “network” of pages filled with positive information about your brand, a concept that works equally well for individual dentists and dental practices.
Ensure you are actively investing in your SEO, social media, online advertising (if necessary), to make sure when your brand is searched for, the negative impact will be quashed with the many positive mentions. Reviews from multiple review sites (most most importantly Google) is strongly advised.
If you already have a problem, the good news is that it’s never too late to regain control of your reputation. Displacing negative content and promoting positive news is the best way to turn this situation around.
Google can recognise a duplicated mention online. Don’t be lazy and simply copy and paste the same description of your practice brand, but instead mix it up and even adjust to your audience.
Each profile must be unique and in sync with the “spirit” of the website that you are publishing it on. You should aim to have optimised images too for each profile, which like the rest of the profile relates to the website that it is published on.
Try not to create and publish all your profiles at once; that looks unnatural. Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter should be among the first you develop, since many profile pages will allow you to link to them.
Linking to existing positive search results will also help boost or solidify those SERPs, as well.
In our experience the type of PR crisis above rarely happens, but if it does it pays to be prepared. Buffering your online reputation in the first place makes a lot of sense to us here at Dental Design. With our Social Media Management packages, fully managed SEO and online advertising expertise, our team are best placed to advise and administer the best tools available to safeguard your dental brand.
Call us on 01202 677277 to discuss in more detail.