What To Do When a Prospect Is a “No Show” for an Appointment
Yes, your time is valuable and No Shows are disrespectful, but just because a person missed an appointment (and may not have called later to apologize or reschedule), doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make an effort to follow up.
Reasons for missing an appointment may be as simple as an oversight, could not get off work, or could not get a babysitter.
Or, if your office scheduled an appointment quite a ways out from the initial inquiry call, the prospect may have decided to pursue their case with another attorney during the time they waited to meet with you. Avoid this scenario by scheduling to meet with the prospect as soon as possible after the initial call. For more on this, read our LeadQ article Consult Appointment Setting: Time is of the essense.
3 Strategies for Following Up with No Shows
1 Follow up by phone to reschedule
People can sometimes be difficult to reach by phone. Leave a message anyway. And use our process for how to best call back a prospect (Read our LeadQ article How Many Times Should You Attempt to Call Back a Prospect). According to quoted research, you should be able to reach them 85% of the time (to reschedule the appointment).
Sometimes, people may be too embarrassed about missing an appointment to call you and apologize or reschedule. A friendly follow up call from your office can quickly break the ice.
2 If the prospect hasn’t arrived by 10 minutes after their scheduled appointment time, try calling them immediately
Sometimes they are just running late, or can’t find your office. And sometimes they may have simply forgotten. If you still have the availability, often you can reschedule for a later time that same day.
3 Send a form letter/email
Ask if the person is still considering pursuing their legal matter – or not. If not, then you’d like to know so you can close their file.
If they are still pursuing the matter, then ask for them to contact you to reschedule at a more convenient time. Remind them that you may be also available on evenings and weekends if business hours are difficult for them.
If you have had preliminary conversations with the prospect, a well-written No Show Follow Up Letter may also serve as a disengagement letter. Remind them that you are not their attorney for their matter at this time, until you have a signed fee agreement between them and your office, regardless of any confidential conversations you may have already had.
Of course if your appointments show up as scheduled, you can avoid the “No Show” follow up. Phone call and text reminders can often reduce the number of No Shows to “few if any”. However, every professional service experiences No Shows, no matter what they do to remind clients of their meeting time. To find out more about strategies to reduce appointment No Shows, read our LeadQ article Ways to Reduce Appointment No Shows.