*The information presented in this video is my own opinion. My content is intended to provide information that is of value to the public on issues of public concern. I did not receive any compensation for this video.In every industry, Online Consumer Reviews are extremely important to a company's success because 92% of Consumers read Online Reviews for Local Businesses, 80% Trust online reviews just as much as a Personal Recommendation from a Friend, 87% of Consumers will not use a Business with Low Ratings, and positive Consumer reviews can even improve a company’s search rankings.This EXTREME importance of Online Reviews has led to an abundance of questionable review generation methods in the hopes of either convincing a you to trust a particular business, or convincing a customer not to trust a worthy competitor. There are Two reasons why you can't trust online reviews in the hearing industry.
Reason #1. Positive Reviews can be Purchased.A simple Google search can reveal an unlimited number of online services where you can purchase 5 Star Online Reviews for Facebook, Google, Better Business Bureau, and Yelp. Many online hearing aid companies buy these positive reviews in an attempt to appear credible to consumers who are looking for a lower cost treatment option. In my opinion, Nano Advanced Hearing Technologies is one of the biggest violators of these fake positive reviews. As of October 2018 they had 3,307 reviews on their Nano CIC hearing aids. which means they accumulated over 3,000 reviews in about 1 year. Since that time, in May of 2019, they now have 3,285 reviews which is actually a reduction in reviews. Which means that they actually lost reviews over the following 7 months. If that isn't suspicious enough, they didn't have a single 1 or 2 star review on their website. The Better Business Bureau, however, has 78 customer complaints about the company. Most of these complaints are due to the company not refunding their customers after returning their amplifiers. All of this, at least to me, appears to be a pretty obvious case of buying positive reviews in order to trick consumers into thinking that they are a legitimate company.
Reason #2. Anyone can Post a FAKE Negative Review as well.People and companies can easily create fake online accounts and then post negative reviews on their competitor's websites. This is exactly what happened to my clinic, Applied Hearing Solutions, 3 times in the past 4 months. It started with a review from an Alex Lakos on January 27th 2019. Even though he has never been a patient at our clinic, he was apparently offended by the way we operate.
Then a few months later, there was another One Star review left by a Francisco Newberry, who again, has never been to our clinic. In fact, the image he used for his review profile belonged to a lawyer who lives in Washington DC. One week later, a Third One Star review was left by a John Harrell who said that he and his grandmother were treated poorly at our clinic, and were called names for not pursuing treatment. I was also accused of "cursing like a sailor" during their appointment. Each Fake Review was reported to Google, but was also responded to. Sometimes, you can get a better idea of how a company operates based on how they respond to negative, and even Fake negative reviews. The point is, you can’t trust every Positive or Negative Online Review that you read.
However, one way that you will be able to increase the likelihood of finding a great Hearing Care Provider that you can trust, will be to find one who is in the Dr. Cliff Approved Provider Network. Starting in October of 2019, you will be able to go to https://www.DrCliffAuD.com and use the provider locator Tool to find a local provider who I have personally vetted to provide High Quality Hearing Care. Someone you can trust without having to sift through bogus Online Reviews. So make sure you head over to https://www.DrCliffAuD.com and bookmark that page so you can find it in October.