Creating a new Calendar Automation
In this article:
- Instructions on how to create automated message sends triggered by events in your calendar
When you have linked your calendar to directSMS, you can then set up Calendar Automations to automatically send appointment reminders to your customers.
Go to Calendar Automation > Create Calendar Automation:
Choose what you would like to name this Calendar Automation so you can differentiate it from other Calendar Automations you might set up. For example, you might want to send a different appointment reminder for different members of your staff or for different appointment types, such as the initial consult or a repeat customer:
Choose the Calendars you want to include
Next, you will get to choose which calendars in your account you want to set up this Calendar Automation for. You can only choose between sub-calendars you have created (not calendars that have been shared with you):
Select your calendar
To select the calendar you wish to add, simply click on the toggle switch next to the corresponding calendar:
Next, you'll set up the appointment reminder message you would like to send.
First, choose how long before the appointment start time you would like to appointment reminder to be sent. For example, if you choose "Two days before" and an appointment starts on Thursday at 10 am, your appointment reminder message will go out on Tuesday at 10 am:
Next, determine what kind of interaction you want your recipients to be able to have with your calendar via the SMS. For example, you may want them to be able to confirm and/or cancel appointments. You'll notice that as you select each option, a pre-populated message will appear in the Message Content box. This message will include the relevant keyword fields to trigger the action in the calendar when the customer responds.
The web portal will pick up the appointment date and time fields from the calendar and populate them in the outgoing message in the #appoinmenttime# and #appointmentdate# fields. The keywords required to confirm and/or cancel will also be populated into the message.
You can compose your appointment reminder message as you see fit; however, we recommend that you always include the #appoinmenttime# and #appointmentdate# fields so that your recipients know when their appointment is. The same goes for the keyword fields if you want recipients to be able to confirm and/or cancel their appointments. It's also recommended that you include your business name so that the recipient knows who the appointment is with.
When requesting a response from your recipients, you can customise the automatic response that gets sent back to them.
Do this by clicking on "Next" when you have finished composing your initial outbound message:
Depending on the level of interaction you have selected, you will be moved through each of the automated response templates where you can customise your responses:
Saving and Launching your Calendar Automation
Once you have finished configuring your Calendar Automation, you have the option to Save or Launch your Calendar Automation. Saving will store all the preferences you set and generate the Calendar Automation, but it will be turned off by default. Launching will save all your preferences, generate the Calendar Automation, and turn it on. It will start sending messages for any appointments in your calendar that were in the calendar(s) you specified that includes the customer's phone number in the event title. When a message has been sent, we will update the event in your calendar with a record of that message.
Not what you're after? Try these articles...
- Setting up your calendar for automation
- Automations overview and Settings
- Creating a new automation from a template
- API options