Updated Aug 24th, 2020 by Nicolas Zenker
You look down at your phone and there’s yet another notification about something you don’t want to do. Events, appointments, and tasks seem to endlessly fill your inbox and message feed. Eventually, the ping of new notification makes you want to throw all of your technology into a lake.
Is this how you think your customers respond to your appointment reminders? If so, you’re wrong.
Given how quickly technology has progressed and become a part of our minute to minute daily experiences, business owners have a lot of fears about “getting it right.” These fears have been perpetuated by companies who have done a great job of “getting it wrong” by constantly blasting their customers with spammy ads and irrelevant content after they simply asked for one appointment reminder two years ago.
Unfortunately, the companies that have abused the power of reaching customers via technology have fanned the flames of myths stating that notifications such as appointment reminders are tedious, ineffective, and will hurt a brand’s image by annoying customers. In fact, whether you run a medical practice, a concert venue, or a yoga studio, proper use of appointment reminders can be a great way to engage your audience in a way that benefits them.
Here are 5 common myths about appointment reminders and why they aren’t true.
We’re all nostalgic for the old days when the only notes in our calendars were about yearly physicals. Those days may have never actually existed, but we like to dream about a time when we weren’t so reliant on the moment-by-moment instructions of our calendars. Nostalgia aside, the practical reality is that our calendars contain everything we need to do on a daily basis, whether that be picking up the kids from soccer practice or having dinner with friends. Yes, our medical appointments are still in there, but they now share real estate with every other task we complete throughout the day.
We live in an age where, if it’s not on the calendar, it doesn’t get done. If you want people to attend your event, keep your appointment, or show up for your launch party, you need to have real estate on their calendars and remind them that you are there. If you still believe that appointment reminders are solely for those in white coats, you are missing out on the potential to increase your attendance rates and be remembered by your customers.
In a 2016 study, Twilio found that 55% of users prefer to use messaging as an efficient way to respond to appointment reminders and see it as an easier way to communicate. More generally, they found that 9 out of 10 people surveyed reported that they would actually like to use messaging to talk to businesses for a variety of reasons, yet less than half of businesses are ready to communicate with their customers in this fashion.
Statistics surrounding the relationship between businesses using messaging and notifications to connect with customers show that it’s generally a positive thing. In fact, your customers are asking for it. How often do customers clearly state their desires and needs? Be in the minority of businesses that are giving their customers what they want by means of better and more efficient communication. If you do so, you’re sure to leave a positive impact on your customers as opposed to annoy them.
Don’t think that you need to be a web developer in order to implement an effective appointment reminder system into your customer communication routine. There are platforms that make it easy for you to add events to your website that your customers can sync with their calendars. Whether you simply want to notify your customers of their events or appointments or you want to open the doors to more extensive back and forth communication, there are a number of services that can fit your needs.
It’s precisely because your customers receive so many notifications everyday that they will notice your appointment reminders. Our cellphones and laptops are where we get emergency notices from family, dream job offers, and cute animal videos. Given that we can’t judge the importance of a notification until we see it, we keep our devices handy and check our notifications as soon as we get the chance.
89% of people always have their smartphones within reach and 90% of text messages that come through are read within 3 minutes. Whether your appointment reminders are sent via text message or push notification, you better believe that your customers will see them quickly. Without utilizing this technology in your marketing strategy, you’re neglecting to meet your customers in an arena in which they are already playing, which means that you’re missing out on an easy way to connect with them.
A San Diego Toyota dealership decided to take the promising statistics about appointment reminders to heart and implement them into their marketing strategy. Soon, appointment attendance rates rose to 80%, a 15 to 20 point increase from before they introduced the reminders. Now that’s a big difference for simply reminding customers of their appointments.
If you’re concerned about adding yet another marketing strategy to your plate, taking the time to effectively implement appointment reminders could actually save you time in the long run. Think about how much less time this Toyota dealership now has to spend following up with customers who no-show to their appointments. It’s worth finding the time to implement an effective appointment reminder strategy, as the benefits could far outweigh the time it adds to your work day.
AddEvent makes it easier to implement appointment reminders into your marketing strategy. With sleek “add to calendar” buttons and user-friendly dashboards, AddEvent lets you reap all of the benefits of an appointment reminder system without having to deal with the technological hassle.