Is Your ENT Practice On LinkedIn? Your Reputation May Depend Upon It
As an ENT, you interact with all sorts of people. From the tech savvy to the not-so-tech-savvy, this gamut of patients offers an interesting perspective when it comes to how they express themselves concerning your services.
For the non-tech-savvy, they may express themselves through word-of-mouth, talking to their friends, neighbors and co-workers. This represents your offline reputation and comprises all of the perceptions formed about you offline, in the “real world”.
Others are more tech-savvy. They go online to talk about their experiences, on review and rating sites, blogs, but mostly on social media.
Many online conversations revolve around people like you – service providers in the medical industry. Some are positive, others negative, others neutral. For ENTs who want to manage and protect their reputation, being a part of these conversations is a must.
Finding out how to plug into social media is the first place to start. What networks should you sign up for? How do you develop a unique voice and personality for your profiles? Does all this even matter at all?
It does matter. If people are talking about you and you are not there to respond, there could be a huge gap between what they are saying and what the truth or reality is. Being online where people are talking about you gives you a chance to respond or to represent the facts as they are.
The first network you should sign up for is LinkedIn. Touted as the largest social media network for professionals, LinkedIn presents many opportunities for you to connect with other medical professionals and potential patients seeking health care information. Potential patients can go to LinkedIn to check your credentials, experience, affiliations and even your personality or character. What people also tend to look for, albeit unconsciously, is someone they think they can like. Credentials are great, but people want to know you are someone they can relate to.
Once you’ve signed up to LinkedIn, complete your profile as completely as you can. The more information you can add, the better. You are painting a narrative about yourself. Don’t try to create a fake image of who you are. Also include a professional picture of yourself.
Once your personal profile is complete, you are ready to start networking. Connect with peers in your industry, join discussion groups and share, comment and like other’s updates.
The next step is to set up a business page for your practice. Follow the same steps; fill out as much info as you can and be sure to fill out the ‘Services’ section, providing some detailed information about your ENT services. Make sure your LinkedIn page is optimized for the search engines by including full summaries of your business activities and services and linking back to your practice website and social media profiles.
Finally, don’t neglect your page once it’s complete; post some content to your LinkedIn blog, comment on other blogs when you can, post updates about your practice and keep the page as current as possible.
Remember, LinkedIn is your business card online, so be sure to make it count.