How to set up client reminders and appointment messages

Client messages are an important part of all successful businesses, this guide walks through the four kinds of reminder/appointment messages and shows you how to set them up.

  1. Appointment Confirmation and Changes: Let your customers know what's happening with their appointments with confirmation and booking change messages. 
  2. Appointment Reminder: Reduce no-shows by automatically reminding clients of their appointment
  3. Rebooking Reminder: Reminding your clients to rebook is an important part of a client retention strategy. Sending them a reminder will ensure you don’t miss a chance to get a client walking back through the doors of your business. 
  4. One-off Messaging: Stay organised and in control with the ability to send one-time SMS messages to clients from within Timely. We’ll deliver any replies right to your account, so all your communications are in one place

Messages available on your plan

The types of reminder messages you can send depends on the package that you chose for your business. Pictured below are the types of messages available in each of our new packages. To find out more about managing SMS in Timely click here


Appointment confirmations and booking changes

To turn on appointment notifications: 

  1. Go to Setup > Customer messages in the main menu: 

  2. Click Add a new message in the top right corner: 

  3. Select the Booking change option from the list of messages:
  4. Select what type of message you'd like to send (SMS or email). You will be able to set up both email and SMS notifications, but they will need to be set up separately:
  5. If you're setting up an SMS, enter your message template. Once you're ready, click Save to save your message.
  6. If you're setting up an email, you won't be able to customise the template, so just click 'Save'.

Appointment reminders

  1. Go to Setup > Customer messages in the main menu: 

  2. Click Add a new message in the top right corner: 

  3. Select the Customer reminder option from the list:

  4. Select what type of message you'd like to send (SMS or email). You will be able to set up both email and SMS notifications, but they will need to be set up separately:
  5. Setup your reminder rules by choosing when you'd like to send your Customer reminders. There are two options - x hours before or x days before at x time. We recommend using the 'x hours before' option for the best experience for your customers. If you choose the 1-day prior setting, then only bookings added at least 24 hours before the appointment start time will be sent reminders. If a reminder won't be sent on a booking, we will add an alert to the appointment's history. Check out our How to view appointment history guide for more information.
  6. If you'd like to send reminders to clients that have pencilled in appointments, make sure to check the box. You can also use two-way SMS to confirm appointments
  7. Once your rules are setup, enter your SMS template. Check out our guide on customising SMS templates for more details. 
  8. If you're selected Email, set up your email rules, and click Save.

Rebooking reminders

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 rebooking reminders. Our How to turn on SMS replies and confirmations (two-way SMS) guide steps you through that process.

Rebooking reminders are an awesome way to get your clients coming back if they've been away for a while. A rebooking reminder will send a message a set number of weeks after an appointment, if the client does not have a future booking. To get started, head to Setup > Customer messages, and click Add a new message.

  1. Select Rebooking reminder from the list:
  2. Choose whether you'd like to send the rebooking reminder as an SMS or email. We recommend SMS as these are more likely to be opened and viewed by clients.
  3. Set up the rules for your rebooking reminder. A message will be sent based on the customer's appointment history, as well as their future bookings in the calendar. This can be applied to any bookings, or restricted to bookings for a specific service e.g. if a customer comes in for a particular service regularly.
  4. If you'd like to restrict the rebooking reminder to specific services, choose 'Selected services' and select them from the pop up screen. Click Save once you're ready:
  5. Once your rules are set up, enter your message into the template field. You can find out more about customising message templates here. Your message length can be up to 434 characters - if your message is longer, it may cost you multiple messages.
    If you'd like to include a link in this message, then you may like to use a URL shortener like  Bitly (https://bitly.com/) or Google (https://goo.gl/). 
  6. If you are setting up a rebooking reminder Email, customise your message content. You can include a button link to your email, which is great for including a direct link to your online bookings. 
  7. Enter a message name, and click Save

Sending on-off messages to clients

There are a couple of ways to send messages directly to your clients from Timely:

Send a message from the calendar

  1. Click on an appointment in the calendar. From the pop up, click the envelope icon:

  2. Choose either the Send an SMS or Send an Email option: 

  3. The client's mobile number or email address will be added automatically so simply write your message: 

  4. Click the Send button when you are ready.

From the client record

  1. Head to the Customers tab.
  2. Search for the client by entering their name, phone number, etc.
  3. Once found, click the Messages button on the right: 

  4. Choose Send a message from the options: 

  5. Then you can choose either the  Send an SMS or Send an Email option.

  6. Compose your message and click the Send button when you are ready. 

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