Incorporate positive feedback into patient testimonials as part of your strategic marketing plan
It’s gratifying to hear patients tell you how much your chiropractic treatment helped them. This type of positive feedback not only speaks well of chiropractic in general, but also specifically of your skills and ability to connect with your patients. However, you can actually make their gratitude go even further by turning their kind words into patient testimonials for the efficacy and safety of chiropractic overall, as well as for your particular treatment and practice.
While it may seem easy to incorporate positive feedback into patient testimonials as part of your strategic marketing plan, there are some legal rules you need to follow, both for your protection and that of your patients. In addition, you should also consider how best to approach your patients if you want to solicit testimonials from them.
‘Reviews’ versus ‘patient testimonials’
Before you start soliciting patient testimonials, it is important to first understand how they differ from reviews. Your patients may leave reviews about your practice on third-party sites, such as Yelp or Facebook. These are their honest opinions about you and your practice. You should expect a mix of such reviews, which will lend your practice more credibility and allow you to see areas that might need improvement.
On the other hand, testimonials are reviews for you, which you can use to market yourself and your practice. You can either directly ask your patients to provide testimonials or use a particularly good review from elsewhere, provided you get permission beforehand (more on that in the next section).
In order to use patient testimonials, you must make certain that you are HIPAA compliant by not revealing any protected or personal health information. This could include the patient’s full name, photograph, or detailed medical information. You should also remind your patients of this if they are providing you with testimonials.
You should have the patient sign an authorization form before using any testimonial or review from them. A free HIPAA compliant form can be downloaded here. Obviously, you will want any testimonial to be completely truthful and not offered in exchange for payment, goods, or services.
Asking patients for help
If you are uncertain about how best to approach your patients to ask for testimonials, the easiest place to start is often with those who have given you good reviews on other sites, as mentioned previously. Another good starting point may be with patients who are your top referral sources. They’ve already proven they know how to sell their friends and family on chiropractic, so why not give them a chance to reach a wider audience?
A third potential source could come from patients who have left positive reviews on your other social media sites, such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or Instagram. Of course, if you do not yet have yourself established on such social media sites, along with your own website, this is a great reason to get started.
While you may feel somewhat reticent to ask for patient testimonials, the truth is that the hardest part has already been done for you. Patients who are your regulars know first-hand about the benefits of chiropractic and your skills as a practitioner. You don’t need to convince them of that. Instead, patient testimonials can help introduce chiropractic and you to a wider audience.