Reputation is important for any organization. For some, though, it’s so important that a bad reputation could put the business in jeopardy. Rehab centers fall into this category. A good reputation builds trust and ensures a steady clientele, so it’s important to maintain it. That’s why reputation management must be a top priority.
Keep reading to learn more about the importance of reputation management, along with a quick primer on how to build a reputation management strategy for your center.
What Is Reputation Management and Why Does It Matter?
Reputation management is the ongoing process of shaping and maintaining the reputation of a person or an organization. It’s always been a common practice among corporations, which have PR teams to run frequent public relations campaigns. Today, the practice has moved online, where an entity’s image can be tarred by bad press or negative comments from web users.
This is why your center needs to focus on reputation management. Past clients may talk about their experiences at your center, some of which may not have been enjoyable. If they write about those experiences in blogs or on social media, their networks — including potential clients — will read about them and form a negative opinion of your center.
Unhappy clients aren’t the only ones who could put a dent in your center’s reputation. A news story about an incident at your facility, or even an inquiry into your methods and practices, can cast doubt on your track record and make people think twice about entering your program. With a proactive reputation management strategy, though, these potential risks can be mitigated.
How to Maintain Your Center’s Online Reputation
The web has given the public a forum they’ve never had before. Many use it to praise the organizations they like, but they also use it to bash the ones they don’t. If someone has an issue with your facility, their comments could hurt its reputation and its long-term revenue potential. Here’s how to ensure that doesn’t happen.
- Regularly Monitor Online Chatter: This may sound like a daunting task, given the volume of online chatter, but it’s necessary for maintaining your rehab center’s reputation. Set up Google Alerts to notify you when your center is mentioned, and do periodic searches of your name. Check social media for signs of unhappy clients or unflattering news stories. If you discover something that could damage your online image, don’t wait to follow the next step.
- Respond to Negative Feedback Immediately: The longer a negative comment stays online, the more it hurts your reputation. Meanwhile, the person who left the comment remains unsatisfied and may make similar comments later, adding to the problem. As soon as you see a negative comment or story, respond to it immediately.
Answer complaints with a resolution or an assurance the problem will be fixed, and counter negative press with a statement or clarification. When it comes to minimizing bad press, the best defense may be a proactive approach — not a reactive one.
- Promote Positive Feedback: Sometimes, the best way to market your center is to not market it at all, and instead let clients and other stakeholders do it. Highlight positive feedback about your organization to cement its reputation and mitigate the effects of negative press. Publish testimonials from satisfied clients (with their permission) and link to blogs and articles touting your programs and outcomes.
The success of your rehab center depends, in large part, on what other people say about it. Don’t just assume they’ll protect your reputation. Take proactive steps to leverage positive feedback and mitigate the circumstances that give rise to negative feedback. And if you’re not sure how to get started, let a team of experts show you.