Here are all posts by the author Frank Cort: Page 5 of 7

Entries by Frank Cort

Staying Connected with Family Using Call Reminders

It’s always fun to see our clients making use of Apptoto in unique and creative ways.  Most of our readers/users know us as simply an Appointment Reminder system. However, Apptoto is an appointment messaging platform that can be used creatively. In this case, call reminders were used to set up a “reverse phone tree” two years ago to help our Founder’s family encourage their 83-year-old grandmother to go for a walk twice a day. Setting up a “reverse phone tree” like this in Apptoto was actually quite simple. In summary, we set up a calendar in Apptoto containing “fake appointments” for when various family members should be reminded to call Grandma. Apptoto sends a voice call to the family member at the start of each event on the calendar. The family members are given the option “press 1 to be connected”.  If 1 is pressed, the family member is directly connected to Grandma (using a hidden “Call forwarding” feature inside Apptoto). Since we set this up in 2016, Apptoto has orchestrated over 1,100 calls to our Founder’s grandmother from her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.  During those 1,100 calls, countless stories […]

Uncover Appointment & Client Insights with Apptoto Search

Apptoto Releases Search Feature Apptoto has released a very powerful search feature that allows you to search for customers, confirmed appointments, no-shows, and custom fields, with robust reporting and messaging capabilities. How Can You Leverage Apptoto Search? Search allows you the ability to manage appointment messaging, view your customer’s appointments, and enhance reporting. Viewing your customer’s behavior is easy with search. You can look at the history of their appointments, who they booked with at your business, if they attended, and their appointment cadence. Apptoto will also create a custom report for your searches. If you leverage custom fields in Apptoto, for example, if you use Apptoto to manage your sales calls, you can search for all your upcoming prospect calls. Common Search Syntax: “confirmed: true” → Confirmed Appointments “confirmed!=true” → All Unconfirmed Appointments “cancelled: true” → All Cancelled Appointments “start_time> today” → All Appointments After Today “name: Jane Doe” → All Appointments with Participant named Jane Doe You don’t need to remember these, though. You can select the funnel on the search bar, and they will populate for you.  Also, check out our in-depth article on search syntax for […]

Google’s Business Profile Appointment Links: Everything You Need to Know

It seems like every few months, the way people discover and interact with businesses online undergoes a new shift. From changes to search and social channels to new technology, evolving devices, and consumer habits, things are always in flux. Search engines play a huge role in these changes. Google continues to roll out new features aimed at helping small and local businesses bring more customers through the door. Their aim seems to be to establish themselves as a one-stop shop for finding and learning about SMBs anywhere in the world. One feature that has gotten an overhaul is the addition of appointment booking links right into Google Business Profile (fka Google My Business) listings. Depending on your business type, you can add customized links that allow users to take specific actions, like viewing a restaurant’s menu or booking an appointment with a lawyer or doctor. This is a great marketing opportunity for appointment-based businesses that makes booking an appointment seamless for clients. If used properly, someone could do a search and then book an appointment right away — after making just one click. This kind of convenience marks the future […]

Accountability vs. Responsibility in Business

Most business schools dive into existential topics that surround business but may seem superfluous to actual day-to-day operations. Two ideas often covered are accountability vs. responsibility. In the business world, we often see these terms used in connection with things like meeting quarterly goals or undertaking major projects. So much so that many people believe these words mean the same thing. To be accountable is also to be responsible—right? By unpacking these two terms, we can see that they’re not simply vapid buzzwords meant to spice up your PowerPoint. Knowing and understanding the difference between accountability and responsibility is actually quite useful for understanding how businesses should think about what these terms mean and what effect it has on the performance of individuals and teams. The first thing to know is that some level of accountability is often a driving force for success. Projects often fall apart without a specific party being accountable for the outcome. Entire goals get thrown out the window. Let’s explore what accountability vs. responsibility really means in more detail. What Does It Mean to Be Accountable? Accountability is a way of understanding the outcomes of […]

Expect the Unexpected: A Playbook for Handling Unpredictable Schedule Changes

No matter where you live, you’ve probably experienced erratic weather patterns over the last few years that have completely changed your entire schedule/day last minute. In the U.S., changing weather patterns have brought floods, storms, and huge snowfalls to new areas at different times of the year. Weather—and life in general—is often unpredictable. Things change. For businesses, this can present logistical problems, especially when it comes to managing unpredictable schedule changes. It can create delays and cancellations that throw your entire schedule into disarray, causing confusion and frustration for your team and your customers. Whether it’s unprecedented extreme weather or a last-minute schedule change, no appointment is truly set in stone. The best way to deal with unpredictable schedule changes is to be proactive. Have a gameplan for each scenario that may be relevant to your business. That way, you’ll have an actionable way to deal with the unexpected on short notice. Here’s a short playbook to easily handle schedule changes using a service like Apptoto. This method minimizes disruption to your business and your customers’ lives, no matter the circumstance. Late start If there’s a delayed start to your […]

Case Study: Wayne Metro Community Action Agency

When we profile businesses that use Apptoto, we tend to focus on the most common: healthcare clinics, dental offices, and lawyers. But these aren’t the only kinds of organizations needing help managing their schedules and keeping their constituents updated. We discovered Wayne Metro Community Action Agency and the amazing work that they’re doing to help those in Wayne County, Michigan. By connecting citizens with community programs and assistance, they change lives every day. Of course, that’s only if those who need the assistance show up for their scheduled appointments with Wayne Metro staff. We spoke with Jeremy Biddle at Wayne Metro to learn that they’re using Apptoto as a tool to keep them organized so they can focus on the important work of impacting and bettering lives. Knowing that Apptoto has helped them in their mission is inspiring, and we’re happy to share their story. Can you briefly describe your business? Founded in 1971, Wayne Metro Community Action Agency provides essential services, diversified programming, and community resources to low- and moderate-income individuals and families throughout all Wayne County. The concept of Community Action was initially pioneered in 1961 by President […]

Understanding CAN-SPAM: U.S. Commercial Message Regulation

Now going on its 15th year as law, the 2003 CAN-SPAM Act was originally signed by George W. Bush. As the internet, online businesses, and online marketing were growing, the law was meant to reign in some of the more insidious marketing practices that had become commonplace online. While there is much debate about the overall effectiveness of the CAN-SPAM Act, its main regulations are fairly straightforward. The law’s intent was largely a mechanism to define commercial messages and enforce basic rules about how these messages are sent to consumers online. Let’s dig into the specifics. CAN-SPAM: The Basics At the core, this legislation comprises a few basic components: Definition of “commercial message” — Outlines specifics of which messages should be considered “commercial” and which should not. This is then used to define which messages are subject to the requirements laid out afterward. Requirements for commercial messages — Sets a number of standard requirements that all commercial messages must meet in order to be in compliance with CAN-SPAM. Penalties and punishment for noncompliance — Spells out specific punishments and penalties for companies that run afoul of these regulations. All told, […]

How to Turn Complex Calendars into a Sleek Patient Scheduling Process

Whether your practice books 20-minute, 30-minute, or 90-minute appointments, there are common challenges and hurdles that come with booking, managing, and coordinating time between your business, its providers, and each and every one of your patients. No matter how you look at it, taking on the challenge of improving the patient scheduling process is daunting. We’ve written before about the many drawbacks and pitfalls that come with scheduling. No-shows, late arrivals, mix-ups, and overbooking are just a few of the most prominent issues. The room for error is also enormous. Most importantly, each of these small mistakes can have major consequences for your business and your patients. No one-size-fits-all scheduling process will remove all the stress and uncertainty of running a practice. Instead, you can re-engineer how you manage appointments to create a streamlined, reliable, and predictable system that works for everyone. Deconstructing the scheduling process Of the four stages in problem-solving, generally, the most difficult is the first step: identifying the problem you are trying to solve. In the case of the patient-scheduling process, this is best accomplished by first deconstructing the entire patient experience. Identifying the outcomes you […]

Survey Finds Businesses Sharply Reduce No-Shows with Apptoto

We recently conducted a survey of nearly 200 businesses using Apptoto to get feedback on how well we’re doing and to get insight that will drive our future priorities. We were very pleased with the results! Reviewing the data, it’s clear that we have made an enormous impact on many businesses. We’ve been able to deliver a great experience that has transformed the appointment process from one that requires a huge investment or time and money into one that’s nearly seamless and automated. And in fact, 90% of the respondents were very or somewhat likely to recommend Apptoto to a colleague. We learn a lot by listening to our clients, and this survey has helped us understand our impact and where we can improve. Thanks to everyone who took the time to fill it out! No-shows no more One of the biggest challenges for any appointment-based business is appointment participants who just don’t show up! People miss their appointments for a litany of reasons, but one of our company’s main hypotheses has always been that with the right combination of appointment reminders and nudges, businesses can dramatically reduce no-show appointments. The […]