Handling no-shows as a customer service or sales rep is tricky. You want to get your meeting with the prospect or customer, but you also need to follow up and acknowledge that they didn't attend as scheduled.
Writing a graceful no-show follow-up email requires balancing understanding and an expectation of respect for your time. So here are our tips to get it right.
In the first few minutes of a missed meeting, you might reach out via email, text, or even phone to determine whether your attendee will be joining you. If you don’t get a response within ten minutes of the scheduled time, it’s usually safe to assume they’ll be a no-show.
You can send your follow-up email at this point, or wait a bit if you have reason to believe they’ll reach out on their own. However, don’t wait any longer than the time the meeting would have ended. At this point, it’s important to reach out and acknowledge the missed call.
Responding in a timely, respectful manner can significantly increase the odds of a customer service or sales rep successfully rescheduling the meeting.
The tone of your follow-up email is essential. While a no-show is frustrating, you don’t want it to lead to completely losing the meeting opportunity. So here are some things to keep in mind as you craft your follow-up.
Remember to keep your cool if you waited more than 5-10 minutes before realizing they were a no-show. Take some time to let any negative emotions settle before crafting your no-show email.
Follow up without blaming the prospect or customer. You want to avoid making inaccurate assumptions about their reason for missing the meeting. You can only assume that they planned to make the meeting when they scheduled it.
Their reason for the no-show could be anything from a simple scheduling mistake to an emergency, and you don’t want to come across as a jerk if it’s the latter. The more polite you are and the more willing to forgive the flub, the more likely they’ll be to reschedule.
You don’t want to come across as nagging, so try to stick to just one follow-up email on the day of the missed meeting and wait a few days before reaching out again. Likewise, avoid reaching out on multiple channels, including social media. This can come across as spammy or even harassing.
You also don’t want to guilt-trip the no-show prospect or customer. This can leave a negative impression, reducing the chances they’ll reschedule. Guilt-tripping is rarely a successful tactic for landing meetings or sales.
All these things considered, be direct and honest about your desire to meet (if the desire is still there).
If, however, this person makes a habit of being a no-show and often leaves you with radio silence, that might require a different approach. Consider whether scheduling meetings is the most effective use of your time and effort. Leaving more than a few voice messages tells you that calls perhaps aren’t the best avenue.
A no-show doesn’t have to result in a lost prospect or customer. Include the following things in your follow-up email to increase the odds of recouping the meeting with clients and customers.
Be sure to include the value you anticipated the meeting would bring. Refer to the meeting agenda to remind them what topics would be covered in the conversation and why it was necessary to talk about them.
Also, be sure to propose rescheduling. Include information about how to reschedule or send a new meeting invitation. If you have appointment setting software, be sure to include a link.
The follow-up email should include links, relevant documents, and anything that helps motivate your prospect or customer to see the value in a meeting.
Include all of this content in one email. Sending multiple emails can trigger those naggy sentiments.
Below, we’ll share email templates for sending these communications in various situations. Keep in mind, however, that there are ways to prevent no shows in the future, such as:
In-person meetings are also much less likely to result in no-shows. It’s helpful to keep that in mind if meeting in person is an option for you and your attendees.
Example templates can help most sales reps and customer service team members turn around polite, comprehensive follow-ups for no-shows. Below, we’ve put together four no-show email templates that you can copy in exact words or customize based on your needs.
While these may seem like generic emails, it’s important to send one short email to effectively nudge your client or customer to reschedule. Avoid lengthy emails full of emotional sob stories or other implied details.
You don’t know anything about why the other person might miss a meeting. The only assumption your email should have is to offer an alternative route and schedule the next meeting instead.
Sorry we had a missed appointment today. Please let me know a time that works better for you so we can reschedule.
Hi [Attendee’s Name],
I tried calling you earlier at [Phone Number], but it went to your voicemail.
Is there a better time next week to schedule a quick phone catch-up? Let me know, and I'll make myself available at a time that’s good for you.
Hi [Attendee’s Name],
Sorry we missed each other at our scheduled meeting. If you're available, let's try again next week. I’d still like to talk about how [Company] can help you achieve your goals.
Let me know what days and times work best for you, and I'll send a calendar invite. Alternately, you can access my calendar here and schedule the meeting at a convenient time: [Scheduling Link].
Hi [Attendee’s Name],
It looks like you were unable to attend our meeting today. I’d still love to show you how [Your Company] can help you achieve your goals if you can make time in your schedule for a chat.
Are you available for a phone call next week? Let me know what works best for you, or go ahead and use this link to schedule: [Scheduling Link].
I look forward to hearing from you.
While dealing with a no-show can be frustrating, it doesn’t have to be. We hope these follow-up sample email templates and tips help you make the most of your future meetings.
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