Scheduling Appointments Using Social Media - Appointment-Plus

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Scheduling Appointments Using Social Media - Appointment-Plus

Scheduling

Appointments

Using Social

Media

Appointment-Plus |Scheduling Appointments Using Social Media | 1


Introduction

Social media services such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn play an important role in the lives

of billions of individuals worldwide. These individuals are not just accessing these sites to

communicate with families and friends or to post photos of a family vacation. They’re using

these sites to research businesses and make purchases,

including scheduling appointments and booking

reservations. In some instances, these sites can be just as

effective as a business, company or organization’s Web site

for generating sales and attracting new customers. Statistics

show that 56 percent of consumers are more likely to

recommend a brand to a friend after becoming a fan of the

business’ or organization’s Facebook page 1 . Additionally, 34

percent of marketers say they’ve generated leads through

Twitter 2 .

The above statistics alone demonstrate the growing role

social media is playing in the success of businesses and

organizations. And with the widespread availability and

affordability of cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS)

applications like online scheduling software, these groups

can not only market their goods and services through social

media outlets, they can also conduct online transactions,

like booking appointments and reservations.

…56 percent of

consumers are more

likely to recommend a

brand after becoming a

fan of the business’ or

organization’s Facebook

page…

As more and more businesses and organizations are discovering, appointment scheduling

software and social media make the perfect fit for increasing sales and keeping appointment

and reservation slots full.

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Why Use Social Media

Social media is a vast ocean of growing prospects that

businesses and organizations of all sizes and scopes of

operation can tap into.

Facebook alone had over 800 million active users in early

January 2012, with 200 million added just in 2011 3 .

Twitter is estimated to have almost 21 million users in the

United States by the end of 2012, with a sizable minority

using the service in part to follow brands 4 . Adding to

these impressive numbers is LinkedIn, which had 64

million North American users in early January 2012.

Did you know…

Total worldwide Facebook users:

800 million (Jan 2012)

Total U.S. Twitter users:

Social media differs from more traditional marketing

methods in that it makes the business or organization

appear more personal to current customers, prospects

and visitors interested in learning more about the

21 million (by end of 2012)

Total N. American LinkedIn users:

64 million (Jan 2012)

products or services offered. It can create an instant

connection and, over time, helps develop a deeper business-customer relationship and trust,

which is oftentimes difficult to achieve through a business’s Web site, advertising or marketing

materials. It’s also a more efficient way to communicate messages, such as news, updates,

current discounts and promotion, coupons and other information of interest to its followers.

Many individuals are influenced by recommendations by their friends, family and colleagues,

which makes social media ideal for connecting with them. Most social media services give users

the ability to “like” or “recommend” a business or organization’s page, which gives the provider

instant credibility for anyone viewing their social media page.

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How to Utilize Appointment-Scheduling Software in Your Social Media

Appointment scheduling software is a Software as a Service (SaaS) application that can

completely automate the scheduling process for businesses and organizations that rely on

appointment and reservation to operate. It does this by allowing individuals to self-schedule

their own appointment and reservation dates and times online, without having to call, send an

e-mail or book in-person.

As a cloud-based technology, appointment scheduling software is a perfect fit with social media

sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other services that allow its users to add buttons

and links to their pages. These software applications typically provide each established account

with its own unique URL link, which takes booking individuals directly to

its online scheduler. Some also provide button links, which contain such

common wording as “Book Now” or “Schedule Now”. Either link or

button can be added to the business or organization’s social media page.

There are numerous benefits to adding a scheduling link on a social media page or site, such as:


Allowing individuals to instantly book their appointments or reservation right from the

social media page, without having to navigate to a business or organization Web site,

pick up the phone, send an e-mail or book it in-person.


Capturing “spontaneous” purchases made by individuals viewing a discount, promotion

or special.


Permitting individuals to book their appointments or reservations at any hour of the day,

not just during normal operating hours.


Greater exposure, especially if the social media page draws a similar or greater number

of visitor traffic than the business or organization’s Web site.

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All of the above benefits make it convenient and easy for individuals to schedule while on a

social media site. This translates into more booked appointments and reservations with little or

no effort on the part of the business or organization.

Conclusion

The prominent role social media has in our society affects how many businesses and

organizations now operate. Those that take advantage of this opportunity have the

potential to operate more profitably, successfully and efficiently. Implementing online

scheduling on social media pages can have an immediate impact on the number of

appointments and reservations a business or organization books, as it provides another

avenue to both promote its services and schedule customers, clients and patients

simultaneously.

References

1. Mashable

2. AllTwitter

3. Social Media Examiner

4. eMarketer

To learn more about online scheduling software

and how it can improve your booking processes, visit

www.appointment-plus.com.

© Appointment-Plus, 2012

Appointment-Plus |Scheduling Appointments Using Social Media | 5

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