5 Tips on Dealing with Dental Reviews: How NOT to Market Your Practice

Opera-singing Manhattan dentist, Dr. Stacy Makhnevich, has come to find out that not all press is good press. She recently tried to bill a patient for posting a negative Yelp review about her practice.


Unfortunately, she might be singing the blues for a while. Makhnevich’s failed attempt to protect her reputation has left her with a tainted name and a class action lawsuit.

Former patient, Robert Lee, posted a negative review on Makhnevich’s Yelp page: “Avoid at all cost!” After the dentist warned Lee that his comments violated the terms of the “Mutual Agreement to Maintain Privacy” she had her patients sign, she proceeded to bill him $100 for every day the comments remained online.


The backlash has caused Makhnevich to temporarily close her office, and catch some negative headlines in Forbes and New York Daily News.


Ways Dentists Can Respond to Negative Reviews Online

According to the Wall Street Journal, 92% of consumers have more confidence in information they find online than they do in any other source.


So, to help you avoid this kind of bad press, we’ve got 5 tips to help your practice deal with and respond to negative reviews online:

  1. Pay attention to user generated comments online. Google alerts are a helpful tool to keep track of what’s being said about your practice on the web.
  2. Listen first and wait 24 hours after a negative comment is posted to give satisfied customers a chance to come to your defense. This builds authenticity and trust.
  3. Specific complaints should be dealt with directly. Look up the patient to gather more details before responding, and send them a direct message to resolve the issue.
  4. Replace any erroneous comment with facts, not argument. Never go on the offensive.
  5. Offer a true compromise to the problem. This will show others that you are committed to satisfying the customer, and may even have the patient retract his or her negative comment.


Have you had a negative comment posted about your practice online? How did you deal with this issue? Share with us in the comments below.

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