You’ve worked hard to build your practice, and you’ve endured the ups and downs that come with starting and maintaining a business. Now with additional uncertainties stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, you may want to join the ranks of dental professionals who are reevaluating their marketing and client communication efforts as we move forward. Conventional print and broadcast marketing, social media promotions, direct client outreach—these are all powerful tools, but there’s an underlying principle that unites them all. Reputation management, in particular digital reputation management, is a key component in maintaining and expanding your practice.
But what is reputation management, really? Of course, it’s the practice of shaping, influencing, and controlling your reputation, but in application, it is a series of ongoing practices designed to accomplish those goals. Online reputation management—also referred to as digital reputation management—is an umbrella term for a series of practices intended to shape public perception and understanding of your organization and brand. This is a vital process with a number of benefits to the dental professional, whether we’re addressing your individual professional reputation or that of your practice.
So what is the importance of reputation management? Well, here are a few key points:
- Reputation management gives you control. Control over how you and your practice are perceived, control over the media narrative around and about you, and control over your communication with your clients and patients. This in turn fosters patient trust and confidence, leading to better outcomes for them and you.
- Reputation management drives business growth. It’s an important if not a vital part of your sales and marketing. Reputation management controls the pool of information that drives potential patients to choose your practice, helping bring new business in the door and helping them find the right dentist for their individual needs.
- Business survival depends on it. To be blunt, if you want your practice to survive and thrive managing your reputation, particularly online, is vital. Without these key tools and practices in place, you may find yourself eclipsed by other professionals in the field. You offer something unique, and keeping that spark alive is important.
- Reputation management these days happens primarily online. Study after study have shown that new patients choose their oral health professionals based on online reviews and other digital marketing. By ensuring that you’re putting your best foot forward online and have full control of your digital reputation, you’ll attract the right patients for your practice and in turn help them get the care they need.
- You can address problems before they become serious. The real art of dentistry is detecting and addressing problems before they start or at least before they turn serious. The same is true of reputation management; it’s primarily a preventative practice intended to guide things toward the best results instead of rushing in to handle last-minute crises. Action is faster than reaction; it’s a better approach all around.
- It’s difficult to go it alone. Reputation management is an ever-evolving world, and best practices change all the time. It’s really difficult to manage your reputation—particularly your online reputation—while simultaneously dealing with the complexities of a dental practice. Professional help in maintaining and enhancing your online reputation is akin to the services you offer your patients: guidance and care from experts in the field to help you get the best possible outcome.
Currently, so many things around us are in transition. As the situation evolves, this may be the ideal moment to take a look at your reputation and your need for reputation management. There are key questions facing us all right now: where do you want to go next? What do you want your future to be? What is the best possible outcome for you and your practice? At OmniStar Financial, we’re here to help guide you to the answers by illuminating the blind spots and ensuring your professional reputation is everything it can be. Times are changing, but you have the opportunity to change with them. Get in touch today and we’ll discuss your options going forward.