Google unveiled its new video calling app, Google Duo, recently which now allows both Android and iOS users to see callers during a call and even before a call with its Knock Knock feature - which is a pretty neat feature in my opinion. One great aspect about this new app is that it works across mobile platforms and has been noted for its simplicity compared to Google Hangouts (Engadget.com).
Although appearing to be geared towards consumer use, the app’s simple features can make it viable for business calls. Innovatively, therapists could find Google Duo useful for offering clients therapy by phone which has proven to be an effective method in cognitive behavioral therapy as noted in Psychology Today’s article “Phone Therapy for Depression”. Yet, one step forward in providing assistance or treatment over the phone by Google Duo is the capability to not only hear clients’ voices and pick up verbal cues, but to also be able to see them, their facial expressions, and gestures no matter whether they are on the go & situated in a public place or in a more comfortable location. Here’s how therapists can incorporate Google Duo in offering therapy appointments by mobile through our appointment software.
Setting Up Your Service
First, make sure you’re logged in to your TimeTap account. Once you are, go to “Settings” > “Services & Classes” > “Add New Service” > and begin completing the information for setting up your service that you’ll offer with using Google Duo.
*To make sure that clients understand that you’ll be using Google Duo for this service, it would be a good idea to make that known in the description - that way clients will know and expect to use their mobile devices.
Once you've completed the flow for creating your service, on the service profile page scroll down to the "Email Merge Fields" section where we'll add special instructions for the confirmation email (*Please note that customizing email templates is available for TimeTap Professional and Business users).
Adding Special Instructions for the Confirmation Email
Once you're in the "Email Merge Fields" section, click the "Edit" button and here you can add special instructions for your clients about installing Google Duo. I've added sample text of what that might look like:
And once you're finished with adding that information, click "Save" and then you'll see to your left where you can copy the email tag "%REASON_INSTRUCTIONS%" which you'll next paste in your confirmation email.
From here, go to "Settings" > "Emails & Messaging" > "New Appointment by Client" and paste in the email tag where you please:
It would also be helpful to add this email tag to the "New Appointment by Staff" email template just in case you or another staff member sets up the appointment for a client and they still need these instructions.
Lastly, before installing the app, let's customize your reminder texts (*Please note that customizing text reminders is available for TimeTap Professional & Business users).
Customizing Your Reminder Text Message
Before we jump into customizing your reminder text message, please be sure to allow clients to request a text reminder when booking an appointment with you. While still under the "Emails & Messaging" tab, go to the "Appointment Reminder Text Message" template to edit your reminder text. Here's a sample reminder text message for Cobblestone Mental Health Center:
From here you can add in any information you'd like for clients to see if they choose to receive a reminder text message when scheduling an appointment with you. Now, let's install the app!
Installing the Google Duo App
Whether you're offering appointments via your Android or iOS mobile device, you can install the Google Duo app and also choose whether or not to use the Knock Knock feature in allowing clients to see you or your surroundings before answering the phone.
You can go to the Google Play Store for Android or the App Store for iOS for installation and be sure to follow the steps for giving permissions & entering in the phone number you can to use.
Setting Up the Knock Knock Feature
Once you've completed setup you can go to "Settings" and toggle whether to keep Knock Knock "On" or "Off". This is especially important to check as you'll need to be prepared for your client being able to see you and or your surroundings prior to the appointment if he/she has the app set up.
And you're ready to get started offering therapy appointments by phone with Google Duo! As mentioned earlier, your clients may find using this app easier to use than Hangouts, and by toggling the Knock Knock feature on, you can warmly greet your clients before they even answer and make the beginning of your conversation more welcoming.
If you found this walkthrough helpful, give us a shoutout on Facebook, Google Plus, LinkedIn, or Twitter! We'll be very happy to know it, and for now happy appointment scheduling with video calls!