Simple tips for maximizing RealSelf profiles

January 28, 2019

Marketing experts say that it’s worth it for aesthetic physicians to maximize their RealSelf profiles, and to do so takes relatively simple steps.

Marketing experts say that it’s worth it for aesthetic physicians to maximize their RealSelf profiles, and to do so takes relatively simple steps.

RealSelf is a great platform for cosmetic practices, says John Berry, vice president of SEOversite, digital marketing consultants.

“It’s like a mini Google for plastic surgery. By maximizing your profile on RealSelf, and it doesn’t take much, you set yourself apart from all the other doctors out there that don’t,” Berry says.

Answer Consumer Questions, A Lot
The more questions an aesthetic physician answers, the closer he or she gets to becoming a RealSelf “Top Contributor.”

“In order to get the most out of RealSelf, you need to engage with the community,” says Mandy McEwen, founder of Mod Girl Marketing.

“Answer as many questions as you can. The goal of this is to build trust and gain ‘Top Contributor’ status. Once you answer 75 questions and consistently answer 10 questions every 90 days, you will be awarded ‘Top Contributor’ status - a recognition given to only 10% of the RealSelf doctor community,” according to McEwen.

Answering questions doesn’t need to take a lot of time.

“Some of the answers might be two or three sentences; some might be a couple of paragraphs,” Berry says. “Mark off some time to where that is your sole focus, even if it’s one question a week or three questions a week. Take your time to do it and do it well.”

If the doctor is too swamped to respond, Berry recommends delegating the task to a patient care coordinator or practice manager - someone who is experienced and has a high-level working knowledge of the answers to many of consumers’ questions. They can draft replies and the doctor can edit or tweak them to the doctor’s voice before responses are posted, according to Berry.

“Ideally the doctors should answer the questions themselves. If it’s going to be posted on behalf of the doctor, doctors do need to have their fingerprints on it,” Berry says.

Consider Doing RealSelf’s Dr. Spotlight
Dr. Spotlight is a sponsorship opportunity for doctors in RealSelf’s community to promote their profiles to consumers researching treatments in their local area, according to RealSelf.

Berry says providers must carefully choose procedures they want to spotlight to get best results.

“A RealSelf [Dr. Spotlight] is similar to other forms of paid advertising. You don’t pay-per-click with Spotlight, but you are guaranteed a certain amount of times your ad will show up in front of potential patients. By having Spotlights running, you can get in front of that many more patients and have that many more prospects to work with,” Berry says. “It depends on the market as to which procedure you might want to target. Sometimes there’s a little bit of trial and error.”

Capture those RealSelf reviews
Reviews are a big deal, according to Berry.

“Capturing reviews is probably the biggest [tip] and probably the toughest one for a lot of practices that I work with,” he says.

One useful tool, according to Berry, is called Patient Engage, which RealSelf designed to provide doctors with the benefit of online reviews without having to soliciting them or worry about HIPAA regulations. When patients enter email addresses on the physician’s RealSelf dashboard, RealSelf sends them an email on the doctor’s behalf, inviting them to share their experiences. The tool also offers access to a website widget that lets patients write RealSelf reviews directly on physicians’ websites.

That said, nothing is as powerful at capturing reviews as when the doctor directly asks a patient for a review during an office visit, according to Berry.

“But you have to really work for the RealSelf reviews,” Berry says, who recommends that a doctor might start the conversation with patients by asking them to share their experiences on RealSelf, for example:

“We love making our patients happy. Would you mind sharing your thoughts and experience with us on RealSelf?”