LAS VEGAS – Like it or not, “word of mouth” is largely dead. “Nowadays word of mouth is Google or Yelp,” said Alex Anderson, Oswald’s Pharmacy and Medical Equipment, Naperville, Ill, one of three panelists at Medtrade Spring’s Handling Reviews—The Good and the Bad on day one of Medtrade Spring.How should DME providers react to dreaded negative online reviews, and is it worth it to ask for reviews? On the second question, Tim Rutti (pictured), president, Valley Medical Supplies, Phoenix, Ariz., gives a resounding yes.
“Seventy percent will leave a review when asked,” he said.As for reacting to bad reviews, first take a deep breath and really try to figure out what when wrong. “Negative reviews are an opportunity to learn,” Rutti said. “Sometimes the best way to learn is to get hit over the head with a bat. Respond to customer reviews. Show them that you care.”When it comes to positive review responses, post quickly, perhaps every Friday in a regular commitment to reputation management. “Responding to a positive review online is a chance for marketing,” Rutti said. “If it’s a bad review, make certain they’re talking about your business. If it’s not, you can dispute. Reach out to staff and speak specifically about the review.”Rutti pointed out that ultimately it’s best to be sincerely apologetic and find out what kind of remedy may assuage the customer. If a remedy is implemented, wait a week and ask the customer to remove the bad review. However, if the review remains, write a sincere response.Ultimately, consumers have lots of choices to find information on local businesses, and Nathan Purcell, CEO, The Rawr Agency, encourages providers to make sure they are visible and ensure information is correct with the following aggregators: Infogroup/Neustar; Localeze; Factual; and Foursquare—or use SaaS platforms such as Yext to rapidly deploy and sync listings.Top review sites by average monthly U.S. traffic are:
- Google My Business
- Trip Advisor
- Better Business Bureau
- Yellow pages
- Angies List
Attendees with a Conference Pass can go to more educational sessions on day two of Medtrade Spring. The Expo Floor is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Those who missed Medtrade Spring should consider attending Medtrade, scheduled for Nov. 2-4, 2020 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.