Mental health facilities face unique challenges compared to other healthcare facilities. Many times, counseling services are paid for out of pocket by patients or families, making consumers even more engaged in ensuring the highest level of care is delivered.
With 85% of consumers trusting online reviews as much as a personal referral, mental health facilities need to effectively manage their online reputation if they want to stay competitive in their market.
Thousands of potential patients are using platforms like Google reviews, and Facebook to help them make informed decisions about the products they purchase, the businesses they patronize and the service providers they hire.
If you haven’t taken online reputation management seriously for your mental health facility, now is the time.
Why Does Reputation Management Matter for Mental Health Facilities?
Don’t believe us?
According to BrightLocal, 49% of consumers require a four-star rating before they choose to use a business. That means even one negative review can potentially cause immense damage to a provider’s online reputation.
For an industry like mental health services, having positive reviews is even more important.
Prospective patients and their families want trustworthy information about providers and services so they can make more informed decisions about their care.
Additionally, with mental healthcare insurance coverage not always readily available for consumers, they want to make sure they are getting quality care for their financial investment.
Angela Kimball, director of advocacy and public policy at the National Alliance on Mental Illness, summed up the situation for NPR, “One of the most common reasons people give for not getting mental health treatment is the cost. The other is not being able to find care. It is hurting people in every corner of this nation.”
By having an effective reputation management strategy, you not only increase your odds of growing your practice, but you also help people who need these essential services to empower them and change their lives.
Who is Leaving Reviews for Mental Health?
This is a complicated question.
Unlike most healthcare consumers, most mental health patients have their family very involved with their level of care. This means online reviews could be coming from a patient or from a family member.
This poses a unique challenge for healthcare providers and marketers who want to improve their ratings online. More than any other healthcare industry, you have to pay attention to your reviews and have a clear understanding of who is leaving them and why.
Imagine you are a family member doing research on mental health services. You search “best mental health services near me” and you see three different results. Two of them are three-star ratings with a dozen reviews. The other has a four and a half star rating with 20 ratings.
Which would you choose for a loved one?
How to Improve Your Online Reputation: The Patient Experience
The good news is, you can take control of your online reputation and improve your visibility online.
It all starts with improving the patient experience and having clear communication with your patients.
Because mental health is such a complicated field, it’s imperative mental health providers provide clear communication to patents and their families. From initial online research to service delivery, patients need to feel confident in their level of care and expectations of costs.
Some things mental health facilities can do to improve their patient experience include:
- Provide clear information online and in the office about pricing and billing.
- Build a quality website with relevant information.
- Create a culture of improvement at your practice.
- Pay attention to what people are saying online.
- Address issues raised in negative reviews.
Measuring Results and Acting on Insights
Actively monitoring and engaging with reviews left by patients or their family members is an important practice for any mental health facility. Listening to what your patients and their families are saying allows you to better understand how to improve your patient experience.
It is a pretty simple equation: a better user experience = more positive reviews.
Once you start paying attention to reviews, it’s important to measure the results of your efforts and ultimately act on insights to continue to make your facility stand out compared to competitors.
Improve Your Mental Health Facility’s Reputation Today
Are you ready to help more people?
Engaging with online reviews can help maximize your online presence, increase patient acquisition and loyalty, and improve your chances of showing up in search results online.
We’ve developed a to mental health reputation management for providers, practice managers and marketers just like you.
This comprehensive guide will help you:
- Understand how people are searching for your practice.
- Show you how to respond to positive and negative reviews.
- Increase your visibility online.
- Improve your patient experience.
- Understand what financial hurdles customers must overcome.
It has never been more crucial for mental health service providers to take control of the online conversation surrounding their brand. Take your first steps today.
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