How to send automated follow-up messages
If a customer has recently visited your business, you may wish to follow-up or check in with them after their booking. Perhaps you have some specific information you'd like to send them (like after-care instructions), or you'd like to collect some feedback from them about their experience.
You can create any number of follow-up messages, which can be sent via SMS and/or email. These will be sent to customers at a set time after they have been in to visit.
You can restrict and customise these messages to specific services, new customers or particular booking statuses and make sure a message is only sent to a customer once.
Follow-up messages can be used in a variety of ways:
- Welcome new customers.
- Thank customers for visiting your business.
- Send after-care instructions after a specific service/treatment.
- Encourage customers to review/share their experience.
- Ask the customer to complete an online form.
- Share information guides or documents with customers.
Create a new follow-up message
Before you start, you will need to make sure that you have Two-way Messaging enabled. This allows customers to reply to SMS messages and is a requirement for setting up an SMS follow-up. Our How to turn on SMS replies and confirmations (two-way SMS) guide steps you through that process.
To create a new follow-up message, head to Setup > Customer messages in the main menu:
Click the Add new message button in the top right corner:
At the top of the page, you will see a list of customer messages. Choose Follow-up from the options:
Select the type of message you'd like to send
You can choose to send the follow-up message via SMS or Email.
You have the option to customise both SMS and email messages to suit your requirements, as well as create unique follow-up messages for specific services.
Select which type of message you'd like to send under the Send this as an email or SMS heading:
Set the rules for this specific message
You can then choose when, and under what circumstances, you'd like the message to be sent.
- Choose how long after the customer's booking you'd like the message to be sent:
- Decide what bookings/services the message will be sent for. You can send this after all bookings by choosing the Any service option. Or only send this to Selected services.
- When you choose Selected services a window will pop up which allows you to select which services you'd like this message to be sent for:
- Click Save once you've selected all appropriate services. To change the services included, click the View/change services link:
- You can choose what Booking status the appointment must be set to. If this isn't checked, then follow-up messages will be sent to all booking statuses (except for Cancelled and Did not show bookings).
- If you'd prefer, you can choose to only Send to customers with no previous appointments. If this is checked, customers who have visited you before won't receive this message.
- If this is a welcome message, or you only need to share this information once, then you can check the box next to Send to each customer once only:
Customise your message
You have full control over what information is included in both SMS and email messages:
Follow-up Email messages
When you set up an email message, you can include a link to an external website or document that is hosted online. This will be displayed as a button, which customers can click to take them directly to your chosen site.
- Enter a Subject and your own Custom text message, or adjust the one we've suggested to suit your business:
- To include a link, check the box next to Add a button linking to a site of your choosing:
- Enter the link (URL) in the field provided and choose the Label for the button:
- View a Preview of your message below:
Need some inspiration? Here are a couple of ways in which you can use that button:
- Link to a review website like Yelp, Facebook, Google Maps etc.
- Connect this to your business Facebook so customers can "Like" your page.
- Link directly to a form, or detailed after-care instructions hosted on your website.
- Create a link that allows the customer to reply to an email address
Follow-up SMS messages
You can determine what information is included in the SMS message using the placeholder tags on the left-hand side.
Make sure you include your business name, so customers know who they are receiving a message from. You are restricted to 160 characters, so you may need to get a little creative!
Our How to customise the SMS templates has some more information about how you can set up, or amend your SMS templates.
We also like this handy tool that allows you to view the content of a shortened link, before clicking: https://www.websiteplanet.com/webtools/redirected/
Name and save your message
- Give your follow-up message a name:
- Click Save to create your new message.