Pre-booking is the number one way to build your books. The easiest way to have a fuller book and make more money is to get your existing clients in more often. When you pre-book your customers, it’s simply more professional. Doctors pre-book, dentists pre-book, trainers pre-book, and you should too!
BENEFITS OF PRE-BOOKING
There are many reasons you should pre-book your client’s next appointment before they leave. Pre-booking is beneficial for not only you but also for your customer. Let’s look at the benefits for each.
Service Provider Benefits
Pre-booking builds your book faster.
You don’t need to have a ton of clients; you just need to see the clients you do have more often. Clients who pre-book average 2-3 more appointments per year than those who don’t pre-book.
Think of it this way: If you have 50 openings per week and pre-book your clients every eight weeks, you would need 400 clients to have a full book. 50 openings x 8 weeks = 400 clients
However, if you have 50 openings per week and pre-book your clients every four weeks, you would only need 200 clients to have a full book. 50 openings x 4 weeks = 200 clients.
Which would you rather manage, 200 clients or 400 clients?
Pre-booking eliminates “dead time” by tightening appointment gaps.
When you pre-book your clients, you can manage your appointment book to make your day the most productive as possible. You can avoid those awkward gaps in your day that can’t be filled with another client. By scheduling your client’s next appointment before they leave, you can offer the times that will increase your productivity while still meeting your client’s needs.
Pre-booking allows you to pick and choose the clients you really like and want.
At the beginning of your career, you may take on any and every client to pay your bills, even clients that you don’t love. However, when you pre-book your clients, you can fill your days with the clients and services you really want.
Pre-booking trains your client to build you into their budget.
When clients build you into their budget, you become just as important as their Netflix or Hulu subscriptions. They know how much they’re going to spend each time they come to see you, and you have them on a consistent regimen. So train your clients to subscribe to you.
Pre-booking allows your clients to get in at the time that works best for them.
More than likely, there are days or times of the day that typically work best for your guest. When you pre-book your guests for their next appointment, you can make sure that it meets their needs.
Pre-booking helps your client maintain their results.
How often have you heard a client say, “I should’ve been in here two weeks ago” or “I’m so overdue”? When clients pre-book, they can have confidence knowing that they’ll be able to maintain their results.
Pre-booking guarantees your client a future appointment with you.
Once your books start to fill up, if a client wants to guarantee that they’ll get a certain appointment time, they’ll need to pre-book their next appointment. By pre-booking, your clients don’t have to worry about your books filling up when they need to get back in because they’ll already be scheduled.
ABCS OF PREBOOKING
When you build your books with pre-booking, you need to manage your appointments. To do this, you need to guide your clients to book appointments that maximize your productivity. This means offering appointment times that make the most sense for you and your relationship with the client, not just what the client wants. We call this leading your books. When you think of your appointment times, break them into three different sections, “A” appointments, “B” appointments, and “C” appointments. Typically you’ll want to offer your “C” appointments first and then work to your “A” appointments. Here’s a breakdown of what each appointment type looks like.
“A” appointments are your prime-time appointments, typically evenings and weekends. These appointment times are the easiest to fill and tend to fill themselves. Save this appointment time for first-time clients and newer clients with who you’re still working on building rapport.
“B” appointments are your appointment times that require less flexibility from your clients. For this appointment time, think early morning, over lunch, and late afternoon. Your “B” appointment times are best for regular customers who like you but may not be completely loyal.
“C” appointments are your hardest to fill appointment times. Typically “C” appointments are mid-morning and mid-afternoon. These appointment times are great to offer to your loyal customers – the customers who love you, recommend others to you, and buy products.
HOW TO PRE-BOOK
By pre-booking, you’ll know how much money you will make on any given day – and what your future holds. You can build your financial plans. You can count on a certain income. All because you used pre-booking to build your books. But how do you get started pre-booking your clients?
Follow these four steps to build your own pre-booking plan.
1. Write out a Pre-booking script
Create a script that you’ll use when pre-booking your client. Here is an example of what you could say, “To maintain your color, I’d like to see you back in six weeks. Six weeks from today is August 27. Do you prefer mornings or afternoons?” Just be sure to include how many weeks and the date in your script. And always ask your client what time of day they prefer. This helps you lead your books when you schedule the appointment.
2. Practice Your Pre-booking Script
Practice your script 20 to 30 times a day until you feel comfortable with it. You can practice in front of the mirror, with a roommate, a family member or a teammate. Just take time to practice your script. Writing something down is different than saying it out loud. Clients are smart. You don’t want to sound too overdone. Memorize your script until it becomes natural.
3. Try It Out on Your Clients
Use the script with your clients for an entire week, using a calendar to reference the pre-booking dates quickly. Take note of how comfortable you feel saying it. Is there a section that is consistently tripping you up? Are you becoming more confident every time you use it? Make adjustments as needed so the script feels natural for you.
4. Memorize the Dates
Once you feel comfortable with your script, start memorizing the dates for four and six weeks out (or whatever your normal pre-book timeframe is). This is just one extra step you can take to be even more professional when making pre-book recommendations.
Create your pre-booking plan and identify your “A,” “B,” and “C” appointment times. Then start using your script with every client you have to build your books with pre-booking!
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