Healthcare Reminders: Your Guide to Sending SMS/Text Appointment Reminders to Clients
Healthcare Reminders: Your Guide to Sending SMS/Text Appointment Reminders to Clients Introduction
Nothing is more frustrating than missed appointments and no-shows in a doctor’s office or dental practice. This just wastes everyone’s time and resources since a lot goes into making the appointment suitable for a particular patient. For example- suppose someone makes an appointment for a specialised bodily exam which involves a specific technician and others. But then the customer does not go through with it. This creates additional overhead and a loss of potential revenue.
To overcome challenges like these, sending SMS/text reminders can help clients make good on their appointments. Today in this guide, we are going to talk about these appointment reminders.
Alternative To SMS/Text Reminders?
There is more than one alternative to SMS/Text reminders, but not one of them is as cheap or effective as sending an SMS. Most appointments are missed either due to forgetfulness or miscommunication. Here are some of the alternative methods to SMS/Text which you can also use:
- Postcard: You can send a postcard to your clients informing them about their appointments, but most will simply not check it or toss it in the trash. This is because people get hundreds of postcards a week and most probably won’t have the time to go through them all.
- Phone Calls:You can call the customer for sure, but then your customers would classify it as an invasion of their privacy. If the call does not go through and instead it goes into voicemail, you also don’t have any way of knowing whether the customer will listen to it in time.
- Emails:Emails are the next best thing after SMS/Text reminders because, like SMS, they too are non-intrusive and do not disturb the customer. But sending up a gentle email reminder takes up significantly more resources for the company and the client, too, who needs to have an active email account and needs access to the internet to check for it.
What About Customer Preferences?
In a survey conducted by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA), it was found that 38.1 percent of people said that SMS/Text reminders helped them go to their doctor’s appointments. On the other hand, 14.3 percent of people said phone calls helped them with the appointment, and 19.1 percent of people said that they preferred email reminders about appointments.
So after reading this, would you still not invest in a good, reliable SMS/Text reminder solution, or would you rather let go of this wonderful marketing strategy? Yes, SMS/Text reminders are also a way of marketing since when you are connecting with the customer in their preferred way of communication, you are indirectly creating a better image of your company in their mind, and then they will self advocate about this to their friends and relatives, and then a whole chain of good word of mouth marketing will follow.
Why Do People Prefer SMS/Text Reminders?
People already have the texting service inbuilt on their device, irrespective of its operating system. So it does not matter whether they have a smartphone or a feature phone or a pay-as-you-go phone, the SMS feature is available to them all without any additional charge. Hence, people have grown familiar with it, and due to the inherent nature of SMS, the texts are not so big either, which helps in the readability aspect of it. Regarding readability, since a lot of people may read their SMS first and then later move On to checking emails. It creates an opportunity for you as a business owner.
Your clients can check their texts even if they are not immediately available to answer a phone call. And they can easily refer back to the text later if they forget their appointment time.
How To Send The Best SMS/Text Reminder?
In order to successfully send a text or SMS message, you need to make sure of certain key things as outlined below:
- Make sure that the text data is easy to comprehend and understand.
- Double-check the details of the date, time, and location of the said appointment.
- Ask for shorter replies to the appointment from the clients, like Y for Yes or N for No.
- If any additional documents or conditions need to be fulfilled before the appointment, mention that too.
- The best time to send an SMS/text reminder is between 12 noon and 5 pm.
SMS/TEXT reminders are an excellent and non-intrusive way for companies to send reminders to their clients. Follow these simple steps outlined above to effectively send appointment reminders by SMS/text quite easily and reduce your no-shows by a significant margin.
Like what you're reading? Subscribe to our top stories.
We are continuously putting out relevant content. If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact us!
Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube