Welcome to the third and final installment of my series on reputation management. Today, we are going to take a look at what I consider to be the most important aspect of reputation management AND the most overlooked: creating and implementing a strategy to encourage more reviews.

That’s a fairly bold statement and I’m sure you’re wondering why. Let’s address…

I. Why is this considered the most important aspect of reputation management?

  • Review volume has a positive impact on potential patients. Personally, I’d feel more comfortable choosing a doctor that had four out of five stars based on 50 reviews compared to a five-star doctor with five reviews. You may disagree with that example, but you cannot disagree that the number of reviews carries more weight. The sheer quantity can affect the overall perception of the doctor.
  • Review quantity is a ranking factor in local searches. While I can only confirm this about reviews on Google, it is likely something that is also taken into account by the internal search engines on other review sites (e.g., you go to Yelp.com and use their internal search function to find a doctor). Even if this is only important for Google, as I discussed in the first part of this series, How to Get a Negative Review Removed, Google is the most important review site. So when patients go to Google to look for a doctor, the number of reviews that you have on your Google My Business page is taken into account when Google determines where your page should rank.
  • Negative ratings have less impact. If you are a competent healthcare provider, you will mostly receive positive reviews. Mostly. On occasion, however, you will get a patient who decides you deserve zero stars for whatever reason. If you only have five reviews, this will negatively impact your overall rating. If you have 50, it really won’t move the needle that much.
  • Reviews add unique content to your profiles. Not only do search engines like to rank pages that have been recently updated, but the unique, user-generated content can help your profile rank for a wider range of keywords.

II. Why is this aspect so often overlooked?

There are two main reasons why the emphasis on encouraging reviews is overlooked:

  1. Usually when someone decides to undertake a reputation management project, it is a reaction to a negative review. So, the goal becomes laser-focused on getting the review removed or suppressed, not to encourage new reviews. Most doctors and practices are just not being proactive with their reputation management.
  2. Some doctors and practices are afraid of getting more reviews. Assuming they are competent healthcare providers, this is because they already have good reviews online and don’t want to chance bringing down their ratings. Healthcare providers don’t want to rock the boat. Unfortunately, they are under the illusion that they have control of these review sites. They don’t. You don’t. You are completely at the mercy of your patients, and as I discussed in the first two parts of this series, it’s really hard to get a negative review taken down and even more difficult to suppress one. Therefore, your best option for creating a lasting, positive online reputation is to encourage as many reviews as possible.

So now that you understand why this is such an important part of reputation management that cannot be ignored, let’s get into the methodology…

How to Encourage More Online Reviews

There are two main goals for your strategy to encourage reviews: making it as easy as possible for patients to submit reviews and making sure you play by the rules of the review sites. To the latter point, many of the review sites have fairly stringent rules about what you are allowed to say to patients and pretty much all of them clearly state that you cannot incentivize reviews.

What you can’t do:

  • Set up a “review kiosk” at your place of business. Most sites specifically state that you cannot have people submitting reviews onsite. So really, you should discourage any reviews being submitted onsite.
  • Incentivize reviews. This one is pretty obvious. Incentivized reviews are not usually going to be very accurate or helpful, so pretty much every review site forbids this practice.
  • Get the same person to post reviews on multiple sites. While this can be difficult for the review sites to detect, it is something that some of them can detect and, if they can, it’s usually grounds to get a review removed. As a best practice, this should be avoided.
  • Ask for reviews. I know this seems extremely counter-intuitive, but most review sites state that they do not want you to ask patients for reviews. What you can do instead is say, “Check us out on ReviewSite.com!” It’s kind of ridiculous because the intent is obviously to get more reviews, but we have to play by the rules, no matter how inane they may be.

What you can (and should) do:

  • Make sure that your patients know that you are on these review sites. This includes in-office signage, flyers that are handed out to patients, traditional and digital newsletters, etc.
  • Make it as easy as possible for your patients to submit reviews. Include links in your e-newsletter or in a standard post-appointment follow up email. Create guides on how to create accounts and submit reviews and put them in waiting areas in your office. One thing to remember, especially if most of your patients are older, is that many are not tech-savvy and might need a little help to submit their reviews.
  • Focus on past patients, too! Don’t solely focus on current patients. Make sure you are reaching out to old patients on your email lists to encourage reviews.
  • Encourage reviews on multiple sites. Don’t just pick one site and run with it. Not every patient uses the same review site during the searching process. You want to have lots of good reviews on all of them.
  • Craft good, HIPAA-compliant responses to reviews. People like to receive feedback to their reviews, positive or negative. Responding shows that the doctors or practices engage and that they care. Responses, if crafted well, can also take the sting out of a negative review.

Many healthcare practices are behind the curve when it comes to reputation management. They don’t think to pursue reputation management at all until they see a negative review, and even then, they are only interested in trying to get it removed. Don’t fall into this trap! Online reviews are the internet version of word-of-mouth advertising and should be a major part of any healthcare digital marketing strategy.

Points Group is a full-service marketing and consulting agency with a specialty in healthcare. We are fully equipped to create and execute your reputation management strategy and that includes increasing your review volume. Contact us online here or give us a call at 973-998-8008.

Our Partners

facebook marketing partner
google partner
shopify logo
hubspot partner program

Subscribe to Our Newsletter!

@ 2023 Points Group / All Right Reserved

This Privacy Policy governs the manner in which Points Group, LLC collects, uses, maintains and discloses information collected from users (each, a “User”) of the https://www.pointsgroup1.10web.me website (“Site”). This privacy policy applies to the Site and all products and services offered by Points Group, LLC.


We may collect personal identification information from Users in a variety of ways, including, but not limited to, when Users visit our site, subscribe to the newsletter, respond to a survey, fill out a form, and in connection with other activities, services, features or resources we make available on our Site. Users may visit our Site anonymously. We will collect personal identification information from Users only if they voluntarily submit such information to us. Users can always refuse to supply personal identification information, except that it may prevent them from engaging in certain Site related activities.


We may collect non-personal identification information about Users whenever they interact with our Site. Non-personal identification information may include the browser name, the type of computer and technical information about User’s means of connection to our Site, such as the operating system and the Internet service providers utilized and other similar information.


Our Site may use “cookies” to enhance User experience. User’s web browser places cookies on their hard drive for record-keeping purposes and sometimes to track information about them. User may choose to set their web browser to refuse cookies, or to alert them when cookies are being sent. If they do so, note that some parts of the Site may not function properly.


Points Group, LLC may collect and use Users personal information for the following purposes:

  • To improve customer service
  • Information you provide helps us respond to your customer service requests and support needs more efficiently.
  • To personalize user experience
  • We may use information in the aggregate to understand how our Users as a group use the services and resources provided on our Site.
  • To improve our Site
  • We may use feedback you provide to improve our products and services.
  • To run a promotion, contest, survey or other Site feature
  • To send Users information they agreed to receive about topics we think will be of interest to them.
  • To send periodic emails
  • We may use the email address to respond to their inquiries, questions, and/or other requests. If User decides to opt-in to our mailing list, they will receive emails that may include company news, updates, related product or service information, etc. If at any time the User would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, we include detailed unsubscribe instructions at the bottom of each email.


We adopt appropriate data collection, storage and processing practices and security measures to protect against unauthorized access, alteration, disclosure or destruction of your personal information, username, password, transaction information and data stored on our Site.


We do not sell, trade, or rent User’s personal identification information to others. We may share generic aggregated demographic information not linked to any personal identification information regarding visitors and users with our business partners, trusted affiliates and advertisers for the purposes outlined above. We may use third party service providers to help us operate our business and the Site or administer activities on our behalf, such as sending out newsletters or surveys. We may share your information with these third parties for those limited purposes provided that you have given us your permission.


Users may find advertising or other content on our Site that link to the sites and services of our partners, suppliers, advertisers, sponsors, licensors and other third parties. We do not control the content or links that appear on these sites and are not responsible for the practices employed by websites linked to or from our Site. In addition, these sites or services, including their content and links, may be constantly changing. These sites and services may have their own privacy policies and customer service policies. Browsing and interaction on any other website, including websites which have a link to our Site, is subject to that website’s own terms and policies.


Points Group, LLC has the discretion to update this privacy policy at any time. When we do, we will revise the updated date at the bottom of this page. We encourage Users to frequently check this page for any changes to stay informed about how we are helping to protect the personal information we collect. You acknowledge and agree that it is your responsibility to review this privacy policy periodically and become aware of modifications.


By using this Site, you signify your acceptance of this policy. If you do not agree to this policy, please do not use our Site. Your continued use of the Site following the posting of changes to this policy will be deemed your acceptance of those changes.


If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy, the practices of this site, or your dealings with this site, please contact us at:

Points Group, LLC


150 Morristown Road, Suite 220

Bernardsville, NJ 07924

This document was last updated on July 24, 2014