You check your weekly planner or organizer and start seeing gaps where there should be client bookings. But last month, it seemed like your practice was thriving, so what happened?
Don’t stress too much. Learning how and when to rebook clients is a common challenge. You’re so busy managing other aspects of your practice and helping your clients reach their health and wellness goals that sometimes you just don’t have the bandwidth to make sure they are rebooking appointments and follow-ups.
As a health and wellness professional, having a reliable and predictable schedule is one of the most important things you can do for your practice — for the wellbeing of your clients, your overall business goals and for your own mental health. That’s why getting clients to rebook well in advance of their next appointment is so key. It’s all well and good to lock down those important first bookings, but how do you keep the momentum going? What are some effective ways to ensure that your clients — both new and returning — book appointments and follow-ups?
In this blog, we’ll look at three simple strategies that you can use to get your clients to rebook.
Sell a package of sessions at a discounted rate
Good things don’t just come in small packages. One surefire way to ensure repeat client visits or consultations is by selling them a package of appointments upfront for a discounted rate. From the classic “Buy One, Get One Free” approach — which gives a prospective client two visits for the price of one — to a more regimented, program-based plan of four to eight sessions designed to keep a client on track with their goals over the long haul, there are a variety of package models you can follow. The bottom line to remember? Everyone loves a good deal and likes feeling rewarded for making good choices.
Session pricing and structure will obviously vary from practice to practice, but packages should be structured in a way that offers clients more value than if they booked all those sessions individually. For example, a four-session package could be approximately the same price as three individual sessions, an eight-session package around the same price as six sessions, and so on. The more sessions they purchase in bulk, the more of those appointments are “free,” so to speak. Think of it as rewarding clients who are investing in their own health by working with you long term.
Not only will the session package model mean your clients get better value for their money, booking follow-ups ahead of time means that you’ll get more touchpoints with them and more opportunities to help them reach their health goals. Selling session packages also makes good business sense for your practice, as you’ll be able to fill your calendar weeks and months ahead of time and be able to make more savvy decisions based on predicted revenue. It’s win-win.
Book the next session before the current session ends
When you’re finishing up a session with a client, the chances are that you’ll leave them with a list of next steps or goals that you’d like them to follow through on or aim for. But how are you supposed to keep your clients on track if you don’t know when you’re going to see them next? This is a fantastic opportunity to book your next session with them.
At the end of every session, make a habit of letting your clients know about your upcoming availability and suggest a few possible dates and times for their next booking. Let them know the importance of these follow-up visits as part of their overall health plan; you can even frame it as a deadline of sorts. The psychology behind setting deadlines should not be underestimated — by this date we’ll want to have done X, Y, and Z. Penning in that next appointment ahead of time gives everyone a mark to hit, a shared goal to follow up on.
Booking sessions in advance is also an organic way to remind clients that your services are valuable and in high demand — this small reminder can add a sense of urgency and exclusivity to your request to rebook. If the client knows you’ll be busy in the coming weeks or months, they’ll be more inclined to try to get one of those coveted spots.
Want to make booking that follow-up even more attractive? Offer your clients the option to make their next appointment virtual or in-person. It’s all about choice. If a physical meeting isn’t necessary, consider offering the option to meet over the phone or via video chat services like Zoom, Google Meet or Practice Better.
When you choose to ask your client to book their next appointment is up to you. Some practitioners like to get it out of the way at the start of their session, but rebooking may be an easier ask later in the meeting after you’ve developed a rapport with a new client or you’ve provided them valuable advice.
Invite to Book with Practice Better
If you’ve already been using the aforementioned strategies to rebook clients, but are still having trouble keeping that calendar filled then Practice Better may be the solution you’re looking for. One of the many great features of Practice Better is the ability to send appointment booking reminders and invites to your clients with just a few clicks.
Want to know how? From your My Services page you can easily send reminders to your clients to rebook follow-ups or other package sessions. Inviting a client to rebook is as simple as clicking Invite to Book — no need to sell them on a package or broach the subject during an in-person meeting. Just customize the subject line and message and send away!
Has a client purchased a package of sessions but not booked their appointments yet? Practice Better has you covered there as well. Again, with just a few clicks you can remind a client about the package they’ve purchased and invite them to rebook with booking reminder. You can also click the Invite without package button to send your client a reminder to book a session not associated with an already purchased package.
Client not checking their inbox? These booking reminders can also be sent via SMS text message with the Practice Better Pro and Plus plans. You also have total control over when you’d like the client to book by suggesting an exact date/time or earliest date available to them.
Discovering the pain points in your practice is, well, painful. Getting clients to rebook is just one of the many challenges you will face when running your own health and wellness practice. We hope the simple steps outlined in this blog help you in your journey to becoming the best practitioner you can be.
Practice Better is the complete practice management platform for nutritionists, dietitians and wellness professionals. Sign up for free today.