Dental Reputation Management: How to Defuse a Negative Review

Dental Reputation Management: How to Defuse a Negative Review

dental online reputation balloon

Source: Flickr

Reputation management has recently been added to the ever growing list of online marketing buzzwords. With radio ads from reputation management companies creating fear among business owners, I want to provide some insight into how you can manage your reputation online.

There are two main aspects to reputation management: getting positive reviews and managing negative reviews.

One of the biggest fears I have heard expressed is how a negative review is going to hurt business. Let me put to put to rest the notion that this will kill your business. Multiple studies have shown that having a negative review here and there gives your positive reviews more credibility.

With that said, if you only have one or two reviews and one of them is negative, that turn prospective patients off and cause them to search for another dentist.

Google yourself and see what comes up

The main place to look for bad reviews is Google Maps (aka Google Places). Since Google also collects reviews from other review websites, searching your listing on Google is one of the quickest ways to find reviews from multiple sources. The easiest way to find your listing is to go to and search for your phone number. Often times, you’ll have more than one listing, and this helps to ensure you don’t miss a listing. Once you get to your listing, just scroll down to the second red “write a review” button. If you have any reviews from around the web, the will most likely be listed here.

Ignoring negative reviews is the worst thing you can do

The key to making those bad reviews work to your advantage is to address them. The biggest mistake you can make is ignoring the problem. Many of these reviews are posted by an angry patient who is exaggerating the circumstances or are not taking responsibility for a variety of things (most often billing and scheduling). Kill these bad reviews with kindness. I have found that thanking the user for their feedback and mentioning that you will make improvements and be more aware of the situation helps to show anyone reading the review that you do care.

The Keys Are:

  • Acknowledge their complaint
  • Thank them for the feedback
  • Explain the solution you’ve put in place so the situation doesn’t occur in the future

While it is true, a bad review can deter prospective patients; that same review can also add credibility to your positive reviews and when handled properly, demonstrate the quality of the customer service at your practice and win patients as well.