4 tips to get the most out of SMS reminders

SMS is the king of immediate, actionable messages. Not only do people get them in their mobiles, they read them straight away.

For businesses like beauty salons, medical practices and restaurants, sms reminders have proven to be a fantastic way of reminding customers of appointments or upcoming events, hence reducing no shows... which translates to more business, and therefore higher returns.

online sms reminders - sms central

Here are 4 tips to unleash the power of your SMS reminders.

Send it 24-48 hours in advance

The main point about SMS is that it’s immediate: people read it as soon as they get it, and act on it instantly. If you send an appointment reminder a week in advance, your customer has 1 week to forget about it. Always aim at 1 or 2 (at most!) days before the appointment so that it’s close enough to be an actual reminder, and yet gives you and your customers time to act upon it.

Write straight to the point 

Don’t go over 3 SMS to remind someone about an appointment. Remember to include the relevant info like DATE and TIME. For first timers you can also include the address (or link to your Google Maps location!).

Brief but personal

You can still be approachable by customising the message without going overboard with the number of characters.

Would you rather receive this text?

  • DOCTOR APPOINTMENT: Tomorrow 5 Nov @ 3pm w/ Dr. Who. Reply YES to confirm attendance or NO if unable.

Character count: 103 (1 SMS, you have 57 unused characters)

Or this one?

  • Hi Anna, Just a reminder your next appointment with Dr. Who is tomorrow, 5 Nov, at 3pm. Please confirm by replying YES or call us on 9938 1110.

Character count: 143 (1 SMS, still 17 to hit 160).

Tip: did you know you can set up a personalised template so that the customisation happens automagically? This will save you tons of time!

Call To Action

Always, no matter what, tell your customer or patient to get back to you with a final answer. This will raise the attendance rate dramatically. Things like “confirm by replying YES” or “to confirm call XXXX XXXX” work wonders. If you feel fancy, you can have an autoresponse based on the answer they give you.

Hope these tips help you improve your online SMS reminders. Let us know how you go!

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