Understanding the Behavior of 4-Star vs. 5-Star Clients

Sep 28, 2023

While both 4-star and 5-star ratings suggest high satisfaction, there can be nuanced differences in the behaviors and attitudes of patients who leave these ratings. Understanding these subtleties can be crucial for a practice aiming to improve patient retention, referrals, and overall satisfaction.

Different Referral and Review Patterns

While 4-Star patients are generally satisfied with the service or product they might have identified areas where there could be some improvement. Their reviews might come with qualifiers, e.g., “They’re great, but they could improve on…” Typically, these clients provide constructive feedback, indicating where they think improvements can be made. Their criticism is often more actionable than those who give lower ratings, as they appreciate the service but see specific areas for enhancement. They might refer occasionally but they do so with reservations and with a certain level of apathy.

5-Star patients, on the other hand, often become true brand advocates. They’re more likely to refer frequently and without reservations or qualifiers. They are enthusiastic about your practice and are more than happy to talk about their excellent experiences with your business in online reviews.

These enthusiastic patients are more likely to give more reviews and more positive reviews for several reasons:

1. Positive Experience: Enthusiastic patients have had a positive experience with the products you offer and the service you provide. They are more motivated to share their positive experiences with others, which can lead to them leaving multiple positive and detailed reviews.

2. Emotional Connection: Enthusiastic patients often feel emotionally connected to the brand or product. This emotional connection can drive them to want to contribute more and help others discover the same positive experience they had.

3. Desire to Help: Enthusiastic patients genuinely want to help others make informed decisions. They understand the value of reviews in guiding potential patients, and their enthusiasm compels them to provide more detailed and positive feedback.

4. Sense of Belonging: Writing reviews can make patients feel like they are part of a community that values and supports your business and the products and services you offer. Their enthusiasm fuels a desire to contribute to this sense of belonging.

5. Gratitude: Enthusiastic patients may feel grateful for the positive experience they had. Writing reviews is a way for them to show their appreciation to the practice and share their gratitude.

6. Validation: Leaving positive reviews can validate the customer’s own decision to choose that particular product or service. This validation can reinforce their enthusiasm and motivate them to leave additional positive reviews.

7. Personal Branding: Some individuals associate themselves with certain brands or products as part of their personal identity. Enthusiastic patients might view leaving reviews as a way to communicate their personal preferences and interests.

8. Online Reputation: Some patients are motivated by building their online reputation as reviewers. Enthusiastic patients might enjoy the recognition and reputation that comes from being a prolific and positive reviewer.

9. Word of Mouth Influence: Enthusiastic patients recognize the power of word-of-mouth influence. They may want to amplify their voice in order to sway others towards the product or service they enjoyed.

10. Ease of Access: Many platforms make it easy to leave reviews, so enthusiastic patients might leave multiple reviews due to the convenience of the process. However, guiding enthusiastic patients towards the review platforms that have the most impact is an essential part of a successful online branding strategy. Vizium360 helps practices guide their patients towards the most impactful review sites like Google, Facebook, RealSelf and RealPatientRatings.

Attrition Patterns

While 4-Star patients are satisfied, they might be more open to exploring other options that promise to fill the quality gap they’ve identified. These patients are more susceptible to competitor offers or advertising that highlights improved features or services in other practices.

5-Star patients on the other hand are loyal patients who have a strong connection with the practice. Their likelihood of switching to another provider or brand is significantly lower, making them more stable and predictable in their loyalty.

Price Sensitivity

Given the fact that 4-Star patients have identified room for improvement, these clients might be more price-sensitive. They could perceive that the value they’re getting isn’t fully aligned with the cost, especially if the area they’ve identified for improvement is crucial for them.

5-Star patients on the other hand have experienced maximal satisfaction. These clients are often less price-sensitive. They believe they’re receiving outstanding value, which justifies the price point.

Response to Issue Resolution

The key with 4-Star patients is to not give up on them. If a practice actively addresses the feedback from a 4-star client, there’s a strong potential to convert them into a 5-Star patient. Their satisfaction can increase significantly when they see a practice or provider taking their feedback seriously and making necessary improvements. That increased satisfaction coupled with the fact that their feedback made this change happen, can turn a 4-Star patient into a true and loyal brand advocate.

While 5-Star patients already view your practice in a highly positive light, they also have very high expectations. Any slip-ups can be more jarring to this group since their expectations are set so high. However, efficient issue resolution can easily turn them around. By taking their feedback seriously and taking the necessary steps to resolve their issue, a practice can reinforce their desire to help, sense of belonging, and emotional connection.

By regularly surveying your patients and inviting them to leave reviews on relevant consumer sites, Vizium360 gives you the insight necessary to understand the subtle differences between 4- and 5-Star experiences and turn happy patients into advocates for practice growth.