If you’re running an appointment-based business like a salon, you know that you’re going to have to send out the occasional “Don’t forget” reminders to your customers. But what’s the professional way to communicate to your customers not to forget their appointments? We’ve got some tips for you about how to send out reminders with just the right touch. They’ll help make sure your customers show up for their appointments, and keep your business relationship with them rock-solid.
What’s the Best Way to Reach Your Customers?
Digital technologies let you get in touch with your customers in all kinds of ways. Something you definitely want to do is clearly define which communication channel does what for your business, and use them accordingly.
Don’t bombard your customers with reminders. Less can really be more: Use text messages or e-mails to shoot your customers a quick reminder about their upcoming appointment. Remember to include the day, time, and purpose of their visit in the message. Newsletters or flyers are a good option to fill customers in about general events and offers at your business. They let customers know the latest happenings without obligating them to take further action. Social media of course is another great avenue for doing this.
Do I Really Have to Send Out Reminders?
The best option of course would be to never have to send out reminders. Zero no-shows! Although you’re most likely never going to reach that level, there are in fact a few things you can do to get no-shows to a minimum. When booking an appointment with a customer:
- make clear when and where the appointment will take place,
- communicate specifically what the appointment is for,
- get the customer’s contact information.
This will help clarify everything the customer needs to know, and give you the option of being able to contact them. You’ll also take a big step towards avoiding having to remind the customer about their appointment – even though you know you may still have to do that.
Reminders: Friendly and Effective
Not sure if your customer still has their appointment on their radar when the date draws near? This is where you’ll be happy you took down their contact information. It’s the perfect time for a quick e-mail or text message reminder. It’s also the perfect opportunity to keep things upbeat and professional. Send a friendly message about the when and where of their appointment. You’re going for “Just a quick reminder,” not “Be sure you don’t forget!” Make the message personal with a positive-sounding subject line, and refer to the customer by their name. This will help hit the right tone, making people feel wanted and welcome, instead of pressured to show up on time.
Just a Few Examples:
- “Friendly reminder: …”
- “Just a quick reminder: …”
- “Look forward to seeing you: …”
Go with “I” Instead of “You”
A “you” message is going to sound like an accusation. This is where you’re basically saying to the customer, “You’re probably going to miss or forget your appointment”, even though you don’t even know if that’s the case. Do this, and you’re taking a step towards damaging or even losing the business relationship.
An “I” message on the other hand avoids this altogether, and instead communicates how much you’re looking forward to the upcoming interaction with your customer. You don’t even bring up the idea that the customer wouldn’t show up. This prevents anyone feeling like they might have to explain themselves – it really goes a long way to keeping things pleasant and professional. This is how you want to build your customer relationships.
- “You” message: “Don’t forget your 10 AM appointment tomorrow at our salon.”
- “I” message: “Our salon’s team looks forward to welcoming you tomorrow at 10 AM.”
Interesting the difference a few simple tweaks can make, isn’t it?
When’s the Right Time to Send a Reminder?
Be sure to never bombard your customers with reminders that say the same thing over and over. Limit them to a maximum of three:
- Thanks for booking: Send this message right after a customer makes an appointment to confirm their booking. This will give them the right nudge to enter the date in their calendar.
- See you soon: Send this message shortly before the actual appointment. The best time for this is usually one day in advance with a quick reminder message.
- How was it: This text reminds your customers to leave feedback or a rating. You can also use this message to offer your customers the chance to book their next appointment.
Handling Appointments: Staying On Top of Things
Manually sending out appointment reminders burns up your valuable time. So why not automate the process? Shore’s got the perfect solution with its all-in-one software. Offer your customers online appointment booking on your website, and Google, Instagram, and Facebook accounts. Booked appointments are automatically saved to your online calendar. Send automatic appointment reminders with just a few clicks, and get no-shows to a minimum. And there’s even more, with Shore’s digital customer database, a digital POS system, and all kinds of great marketing features. Contact Shore for your free consultation today. You’re going to love how it simplifies your work day.