Patient Attraction Episode 261
Yesterday I told you about a dentist who is a fan of this podcasts who complained about Yelp’s “unethical” manipulation of its rankings. My response: courts would likely rule otherwise. Three weeks later, a court ruled on exactly that issue. I’ll tell you whether I was right or wrong when we return.
– So many people are under the assumption that when they look at Yelp reviews they are seeing all of the reviews.
– Well, that’s not true.
– You see some of the reviews.
– Which ones you see became the subject of a lawsuit by businesses who claimed Yelp dropped some of their positive reviews after refusing or dropping Yelp advertising.
– Yelp denies it manipulates ratings like this.
– In September, a federal appeals court said it doesn’t matter: If Yelp wants to manipulate which reviews are posted, it can.
– “As Yelp has the right to charge for legitimate advertising services, the (alleged) threat of economic harm … is, at most, hard bargaining,” and not extortion or unfair business practices, according to the 3-0 decision in the case.
– The verdict upholds a federal judge’s decision to dismiss a class-action lawsuit from the small-business owners against Yelp.
– What is the lesson here?
– Maybe Yelp’s reviews aren’t entirely on the up and up.
– Just as anything where money is involved: buyer beware.
– And where does this leave dentists?
– Exactly where you were before.
– Yelp, Facebook, Google, Angie’s List, and any yet-to-be-invented ratings sites give people a forum to say what they want about you.
– Remember, review sites are the new word-of-mouth advertising.
– Tomorrow, I’m going to tell you how you can avoid ALL negative reviews.
– Until then, Keep Moving Forward.