Chiropractic, for all intents and purposes, hasn’t really changed much in the last 20 to 30 years. There may be some new techniques but, at its core, the basic reasoning and physics of the profession have stayed the same.

Creating a professional presence in your community, however, has changed immensely. Certainly the ‘old fashioned’ way of caring for your patients and creating a place of healing that people will flock to still holds true – but today, if you don’t have a solid, appealing professional presence online you may as well have a clinic that sits on the moon.

For the younger chiropractor just starting in practice, an online professional profile is even more important and can mean the difference between a solid profitable practice with steady growth or one that stutters and gasps along while trying to stay afloat in a sea of competition.

The reason, in simplistic terms, is this; the way communities communicate has changed from a ‘word-of-mouth’ based system to a ‘word-of-internet’ based system. It used to be that people would gather together at parties, gatherings, town-hall meetings and the water cooler to talk, gossip and rave (or complain) about the people and services in their town, but now they are doing that on the net.

300x250 md-attorney referral Through blogging sites like WordPress to online review sites like Epinions, Angie’s List and Yelp, people have taken to the Internet to voice their opinions about the services and service providers with whom they do business – and chiropractors fall square in the center of this new system.

Of course people still ‘talk’ about their local chiropractors and give their opinions (the good, bad and the stupid) but instead of face to face, it’s now computer to computer. The bad news is that you have no control over what people will write about you and your clinic. The good news is that, if you have a solid professional presence online you won’t need to worry as much about what they’re saying.

In fact, with a little bit of savvy and a small but consistent amount of time, creating and molding an online professional profile for yourself is not only possible but relatively easy. If you dedicate as little as 30 minutes a week to building and keeping an professional presence, the results could mean the difference between an adequate practice or one bursting-at-the-seams .

By ‘surfing’ to some of the local Blogs, Review Sites and community internet bulletin boards on a regular basis and leaving relative, interesting and useful comments and advice you will slowly but surely build an online reputation and brand for your chiropractic business. Your positive reputation will have people commenting about you, passing information around, and even ‘back-linking’ to your website. (Extremely valuable for search engine optimization reason.) (By the way, If you don’t have a chiropractic website we really need to talk.)

Not only that, but if a chiropractic patient posts negative comments about your practice (you, your staff, the patient’s results) you can actually address that negative comment or diatribe online – and leave your own version of what occurred. I’ve seen occasions where patients have left negative comments and, after a heartfelt apology and/or online explanation from the DC, the patient not only changed their comment but other commenters came to the support of the doctor.

That’s powerful PR but you’ll only get it if you work at it, nurture it and protect it regularly.

That means, at the very least, going online once a week and reading any relevant blogs in your community that share healthcare info. It means knowing how and where to leave relevant comments and useful information. It also means spending a little time creating an online ‘resume’ of your accomplishments and networking with other professional and patients through networking sites like Linked in.

Over the long term this will create a powerful professional presence within your community that might well bring you dozens of new chiropractic patients.

The very best part; it’s completely free. We’re talking about the kind of PR that used to cost doctors thousands of dollars – but today it doesn’t cost you a single dime.

For better or worse, our lines of communication have changed. As a Chiropractor you must do all that you can to keep up with the changes or risk being left behind. A few minutes a week devoted to spreading a handful of interesting comments on a few websites is well worth the benefits that a strong online professional profile will bring.

Return to our home page to learn more ways to bolster your professional presence online.

 

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One Response to How to Create a Professional Presence Online
  1. Great tips, especially the part about patients posting negative comments!


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