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Key takeaways:

  • Collaborative review management: Hospital reviews demand teamwork among social media, marketing, and healthcare teams for centralized management and improved patient experiences, as seen in Becker’s Healthcare insights.
  • Monitoring tools: Leveraging social media and customer relationship management tools enables hospitals to track patient sentiment across platforms like Twitter, fostering quick responses and personalized engagement, according to American Hospital Association guidance.
  • Strategic response: Hospitals should swiftly address negative reviews transparently and express gratitude for positive feedback, as highlighted by Universal Health Services’ approach in Becker’s Healthcare, to bolster reputation and trust.

Your social media team plays a crucial role in influencing the ratings and reviews of your hospital. The ratings greatly hinge on the success of your social media and marketing teams and how effectively they can address any negative reviews and, at the same time, gather positive ones.

When it comes to leading social media at a major hospital, what tools can your team utilize to monitor ratings and what strategies can you use to address reviews? Here are some key insights into the critical role your team plays in monitoring your hospital’s online reputation.

1. Managing Reviews Across Your Hospital

Monitoring your hospital’s reviews is no easy task. With thousands of unique experiences from patients, customers, and even employees, a hospital’s rating can be impacted by various individuals. With this in mind, it’s important to understand which team within your hospital is tracking online reviews and to delegate responsibilities for monitoring them.

Many hospitals choose to task their social media teams with managing and responding to reviews, which can further impact the overall reputation of the healthcare facilities. Marketing and communication teams partner to not only take note of any positive reviews, but engage with patients and customers.

In a Becker’s Healthcare article, Universal Health Services Vice President and Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Roselle Charlier says, “We employ a centralized approach to online reputation management with a dedicated and diligent team that responds to all reviews.”

Roselle says their team flags reviews for any necessary follow-ups, shares positive feedback for internal teams to celebrate and acknowledge, and engages with consumers representing their entire organization.

It also helps make sure those working within the hospital are monitoring reviews and creating positive experiences with patients. Healthcare providers must also engage with patients and play an essential role in monitoring ratings.

Also quoted in the Becker’s Healthcare article, Julie Spencer Washington, Chief of Marketing and Communications Officer and Chief Customer Experience Officer at Trinity Health, shares how all stakeholders help in their patient review management system.

“This strategy is rooted in active engagement and collaboration among all key stakeholders and a trusting relationship with providers to improve the patient experience,” Julie says.

While your social media team may lead the management of the reviews and ratings of your hospital, it requires an organizational team effort to ensure your patients have positive experiences, which can reflect back to your overall reputation.

2. Tools to Monitor Reviews Across Different Platforms

According to a National Library of Medicine study, around 70% of healthcare organizations use social media tools for organizational promotion, which enhance the visibility and image.

Monitoring patient reviews is now an essential responsibility for social media teams at hospitals, as an American Association for Physician Leadership article showed 51% of adults share experiences on online reviews, and 70% of patients say reviews influence their selection of healthcare.

One of the biggest social media platforms to monitor these reviews is Twitter, where patients can quickly share their experiences with hospitals and provide feedback. In an American Hospital Association guide, it was shared that hashtags can be utilized in patient rooms for families and patients to express any concerns.

Ed Bennett, Founder of MarTech.Health Directory and former Director of Web and Digital Services at the University of Maryland Medical System, talked about the importance of quick feedback through social media platforms like Twitter.

“If people are having conversations about your hospital services, you should be there to talk about it too,” Ed says. “Maybe once a month, something pops up where a patient is having a problem. We can quickly step in and get them to someone who can solve it.”

In Becker’s Healthcare articleAlexandra Morehouse, Chief Marketing and Digital Officer at Banner Health, shared some of the other tools every healthcare team should use to monitor their patients’ experiences.

“Healthcare marketers need a customer database that includes clinical EMR data and all other service, billing, and demographic data on patients; customer analytics tools to use with the customer database; a customer relationship management tool and the related analytics; and a customer survey and feedback tool,” Alexandra says.

In addition to customer relationship management tools, some other vendors who specialize in social listening include Sprinklr, Sprout Social, Hootsuite, and Meltwater — which also help with social media management and analytics.

Members in Health, the membership organization for senior leaders of social media at major hospitals, use the community to confidentially discuss other tools they use to build and protect their brand reputation. Members share how tools like, Brandwatch, Press Ganey, and help them monitor their brand voice and sentiment to patient experiences.

These social media tools are crucial for creating positive experiences with patients and showcasing community involvement. They provide ways for social media teams at hospitals to engage with their customers and address reviews from patients through personalized messaging.

3. Addressing Negative Reviews and Gathering Positive Ones

After accessing the right tools to monitor reviews, it’s important to then implement strategies to address negative feedback and promote positive ratings. Negative reviews affect your hospital’s reputation, so addressing them is important to create personalized connections with patients. While positive reviews can help position your hospital as an even more reputable organization and build trust within your community.

Nicklaus Children’s Health System Senior Manager of Web Marketing, Roberto Prieto, discussed managing online reviews in a Xtelligent Healthcare Media article. He shared how they manage comments on Yelp, Google, and Vitals.

“It was a little out of control trying to aggregate all of this feedback we were getting that was important to read and categorize and send off to administrative stakeholders,” Robert says.

He explained how they prioritized reviews on their team through a single platform and immediately addressed actionable concerns from patients. Robert shared how they also monitored whether reviews were credible to help decide whether to address them.

In the American Hospital’s Association guide to digital and social media engagement, it was shared how creating opportunities for individuals who leave negative feedback to connect with hospital staff could also help address negative reviews. The guide suggested not to delete any negative comments, and instead express sentiment to alleviate any concerns.

As for positive reviews, Roselle Charlier shared how their team at Universal Health Services acknowledges comments to create positive engagement.

“All positive reviews receive a response of gratitude, while responses to negative and neutral reviews direct the reviewer to contact the hospital directly to engage privately and allow us to resolve patient concerns,” Roselle says in the Becker’s Healthcare article.

Responding to all types of reviews, both positive and negative, can be effective in garnering more positive feedback. In the same article, Becky Armendariz, Associate Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations at Banner Health in Phoenix, shares how they manage around 4,500 online engagements per month, and how it has helped increase their ratings.

“In 2019 when we started review solicitation for our urgent care locations, the urgent cares had roughly 2,200 reviews total and an average star rating of 3.03. Today, those locations have 56,340 reviews and an average star rating of 4.35,” Becky says.

These strategies are just some of the best practices social media leaders at hospitals use to monitor reviews and manage ratings. But how can you learn directly from your peers what other strategies you should implement for your team?

If you’re a leader of social media at a major hospital, you have the opportunity to join a confidential, vendor free discussion with Health members on Wednesday, June 22, at 2 PM ET, to benchmark your social media’s role in ratings and reviews.

As the scope of social media continues to evolve, you can rely on your peers at Health to benchmark best practices with hospital social media leaders across the country.

Interested in learning more about membership?

As a social media leader, your mission is important. We’re here to help you win.