Negative Online Reviews? Here’s How to Respond. Has a negative online review lowered your team’s morale? Don’t give up. For every 99 positive, rewarding experiences you make with others, there is usually one encounter that is unavoidably difficult. Here you will learn how to respond to a negative review with poise while showing you value the opinions of your patients. Read the entire review — twice. Don’t skim. Take note of each pain point. Each of these are a chance for growth, so make sure you follow-up in your practice strategies to ensure these situations can be prevented in the future. Respond early. Make sure you respond to any negative review as soon as possible. These aren’t the kinds of things you want left unanswered on your public review listings, so aim to check through on a weekly basis, or delegate a team member to help with this. As an aside, you should be thanking patients for positive reviews, too! Apologize. Even if you may disagree with things that your patient has said, you should apologize for their negative experience. Ensure you don’t offer the “sorry, not sorry”-type of response that is only nominally apologetic. A true apology is the only thing that can help you rebuild patient relationships that have become strained. Empathize. As a dentist, empathy is likely innate to your entire experience of serving patients, and the same should extend to your response. Understand how, from their perspective, the experience could have been frustrating, confusing, or hurtful. Show you truly care. Make it right. Was the review left because of a payment error, or complications from treatment? Now is your chance to reach out to your patient and fix the problem. If you react quickly, and humbly, you may be able to restore the trust you have with this patient. In some cases, they might even amend or update their online review as well. We hope this advice helps you elevate the level of care and trust you provide your patients, both in the office and online. If you are interested in learning about ethical marketing strategies to boost your positive reviews and increase your online exposure, reach out to us. Schedule your complimentary marketing planning session with our team today.