Person overwhelmed by too many text voice and email reminders

8 Common Pitfalls to Avoid When Sending Appointment Reminders

Appointment reminders are useful for any industry that deals with routine scheduling and needs to enhance communication with customers without putting too much extra work on your administrative team. While an appointment reminder service can boost your business and improve communication around upcoming appointments, there are some practices that should be avoided to get the most out of your appointment reminders. Below, learn how to skirt the common pitfalls associated with appointment reminders and make communicating with clients simpler.

8 Things You Should Avoid When Sending Appointment Reminders

Unanswered Messages

In the past, appointment reminders might have been sent as a postcard, with no expectation of a reply. However, if you're not utilizing the full power of digital communication, you're not getting the full benefit of automated appointment reminders. With an appointment reminder software that offers two-way communication, you can answer patient questions and facilitate a seamless communication between your office and clients.

If you're not implementing two-way communication with your appointment reminder messages, clients may be responding to these reminders, not realizing that they aren't even reaching anyone. This can lead to confusion and the feeling that clients are being listened to sincerely by your business. For the best results, look for an appointment reminder software that enables easy, centralized management of appointment reminder responses.

Sending Too Few Reminder Messages

Appointment reminders are widely effective at improving appointment attendance--but if you're not sending multiple reminders, you're increasing the odds that text reminders or email appointment reminders get disregarded as spam. In an increasingly busy information economy, capturing the attention of your clients is important if you want to help them remember appointment information.

To support these efforts, you should be sending multiple reminders, starting within a week of the upcoming appointment, and leading up to the day before. By spacing these reminders out, you make it more likely that your client will see their appointment details and keep their scheduled service.

Including Too Little Information in Appointment Reminders

An appointment reminder is helpful if it leads to fewer no shows, and it can save time for you and your clients. However, if you send reminders with limited details, you may be forcing your clients to call your office to confirm appointment details. Now the time you could have saved is wasted, and customers may be frustrated that they had to take extra steps.

In your initial appointment reminder messages, make sure key details like service provider name, location, and any appointment prerequisites required, alongside the appointment's date and time. These detailed automatic appointment reminders make it easy for your clients to gather all the necessary information at a glance. They'll be ready to show up on time, and grateful you gave them a detailed, thorough reminder message.

Sending Appointment Reminder Messages at Inconvenient Times

Automated appointment reminders take advantage of scheduling software, allowing you to time when they send as you choose. If you're sending your reminders at off-peak hours, you may be missing clients when they're absorbed with other activities. For example, sending a reminder during rush hour means you'll reaching a lot of people while they're commuting and unable to look at their phone. Similarly, a reminder sent late in the evening is likely to be ignored for spending time with family or friends.

Relying on a Single Communication Channel for Appointment Reminders

The right appointment reminder software should sync with your existing calendar and enable you to send reminders via phone, email, and text. Utilizing multiple communication channels helps you reach a broader demographic of clients and tailor your reminders to each client's preferences. Plus, you have a greater chance of reaching clients if you're working across multiple mediums. A client who misses a reminder buried in their email inbox may notice a text reminder right away, while someone who rarely checks their texts might respond immediately to an incoming phone call.

Spacing your communications across text messages, email reminders, and phone calls helps you reach as many clients as possible and reduce no shows while you're at it. Just make sure the appointment reminder service you choose offers an intuitive interface where you can manage all your communication channels from a centralized platform.

Sending Too Many Reminders

While we mentioned the pitfall of too few appointment reminders above, it's also possible to send too many appointment reminders, to the point that your customers may become disgruntled or ask to unsubscribe from your appointment reminders altogether. As a rule of thumb, aim to send 2-3 appointment reminders in the lead-up to the scheduled service. This distribution helps get your customer's attention but avoids the risk of swamping them with too many details via text message, email, and phone.

Not Gathering Client Feedback

If you aren't using your reminder service to send customer feedback surveys, you're not getting the full value that you could be. A follow-up survey is a quick way to gather valuable data that can impact your business decisions, from schedule management to the way employees interact with customers. To get the most from this system, you should automatically send a short survey form periodically to collect reliable customer insights. With this data helping you make decisions, you can be sure.

Not Customizing Your Communications

Nobody likes it when appointment reminders sound robotic or impersonal. Even if your communications are automated, they don't have to sound like it. By creating custom templates, you can add a personal touch to routine customer communication. You may consider modeling this messaging after your business' tone of voice. Just make sure you keep all the vital information in the messages, so you don't sacrifice substance for style.

Send Appointment Reminders With Reminderly

Reminderly is an intuitive appointment reminder platform that simplifies sending email, phone, and sms appointment reminders to your customers. In addition to regular appointment reminders, Reminderly offers features like auto-reply, waitlist, customer surveys, and more, all in one single rate that's affordable for your business. Our free two week trial is a risk-free way to try sending text message, phone, and email appointment reminders. Or see how Reminderly integrates with common scheduling software like Google calendar, Outlook, and more.

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