Collecting Phone Numbers
The first thing you have to do is collect phone numbers. It is really easy to collect the phone number using our text marketing software. Upon signup you will choose a keyword, for example if the dentist’s name is Dr. Brown maybe you’ll choose Brown as the keyword. To collect your patients phone number and add it to your contact list you need to instruct the patient to text the keyword “Brown” to the short code 77948 (the shortened phone number that we use for our text marketing platform). You can also have them send their name with the keyword, if you plan to personalize the messages or want to be able to easily find their number by searching a name. Make sure you set up your inbox to receive messages before having them text in their name with the keyword.
Sending the Text Message Appointment Reminder
There are different options for sending your message. You can send one message to everyone that has an appointment the following day by selecting those numbers and putting them in a group. After you have the numbers in the group just go to send message and select the group. This message could contain a generic reminder saying something like “You have a dentist appointment with Dr. Brown tomorrow. Please call us at 888-555-1212 if you need to reschedule or have any questions”. If you want to send a more personalized reminder you can save a template with the basic outline of the message and then manually type in the person’s name and exact appointment time.
Scheduling Appointment Reminders
You will also have the option of scheduling appointment reminders for days or weeks in advance. Our scheduler makes it very easy to select a group of contacts and schedule a date and time for a message to go out. Having your secretary schedule the reminders for the next week every Friday afternoon could be a simple and effective way of managing the time it takes to make sure every client is reminded of their specific dental appointment. The contact group will load the day the message sends so you can edit the group at anytime prior to that, if an appointment is cancelled or changed.
Fill Open Appointments
You can also use the text messaging system to send out notices about appointments that open up. If you keep a list of people that are waiting to get in, or that would like to know if an earlier appointment becomes available, when you have someone cancel you can quickly send a message to that group of people and let them know that an appointment is available and have them call to schedule it.