Kelly Zugay, Co-Founder of With Grace and Gold®
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For busy small business owners, automations can make a meaningful difference in maintaining better organization, serving clients effectively and efficiently, and creating smooth, streamlined processes overall. Further, automations equip you to create margin in your business — to create a buffer of space and time, which can be extremely helpful when or if unexpected circumstances arise. This week, we’re sharing 5 automations to create within your business — and the systems we recommend for doing so!
5 Automations to Create in Your Business
First, what is automation in the context of small business? According to Keap, “An automation is a means of automatically accomplishing tasks that you or an employee would otherwise have to do manually.”
Automations can help your business to be more organized, streamlined, timely, or effective — and are therefore worth exploring for any type of small business. Today, we’re sharing 5 automations to consider creating within your business.
- Automate responses to lead generation — when you receive an inquiry from a prospective customer or client. According to the Lead Response Management Study, “Waiting even 30 minutes to make contact decreases your odds of qualifying a lead by 21 times, as compared to five minutes.” So, using your desired client management system — 17Hats, Dubsado, Honeybook, AislePlanner — create an automation through which your prospective clients can receive an automated reply when they have inquired with you. When you do, you can ensure your prospective clients are being served well, even when you’re unavailable or even when you receive an inquiry beyond your business hours.
- Automate your newsletter marketing. No matter your small business, developing a newsletter marketing strategy can be beneficial. By arriving in your audience’s Inbox regularly, you can foster relationships, strengthen connections, and share the latest about products and services from your business. Beyond composing and sending a weekly, monthly, or quarterly newsletter — you may also consider developing something called a workflow, automation, or sequence: a series of newsletters delivered to someone who subscribes to your newsletter. FloDesk is our recommended newsletter system, and there, you can create a workflow — a series of emails delivered to your subscribers at any interval of your choice… over the course of days, weeks, months, and beyond. By automating your newsletter marketing, you can remain active and present in your audience’s Inbox — helping your subscribers to get to know you and your business, building meaningful connections with your audience members, and simply knowing your marketing efforts are working on behalf of your business, even when you’re not working. When you offer a free resource, consider offering more than just one email containing the free resource — and instead, offer the free resource, followed by additional emails through which you can continue serving, encouraging, helping, or guiding your subscribers.
- Automate your on-boarding and off-boarding. When serving a client one-on-one, it’s likely there is a series of steps you follow when on-boarding your clients and off-boarding your clients. Using your chosen client management system — 17Hats, Dubsado, Honeybook, AislePlanner — create an automation through which your on-boarding and off-boarding steps can easily and systematically be provided to your clients. If there are any steps you find yourself repeating or completing manually, consider how or if your client management system can complete these steps automatically. When you do, you can serve your clients more accurately, efficiently, and more comprehensively.
- Automate your calendar when phone calls and meetings are scheduled. Using a calendar system like Schedulicity, Calendly, or Acuity, make it quick and easy for your prospective clients or clients to schedule a phone call or meeting with you — and connect your calendar system to your actual calendar. When you do, your clients can schedule calls or meetings with you, and your calendar is updated to automatically showcase your upcoming meetings. Within your calendar system, you can likely automate confirmation emails, email or text reminders, and more. These automations allow your clients to get in touch with you quickly and easily — and decrease your workload, too!
- Automate your social media marketing. While your initial social media posts need to be created by you or your employees, there are a wide variety of systems available — like CoSchedule, Planable, and Tailwind — that allow you to create automations and continue your marketing automatically in the weeks and months to follow.
Today, we explored 5 automations you can create within your business to maintain better organization, serve clients effectively and efficiently, and create smooth, streamlined processes overall.
About Brand It, Build It Podcast, Hosted by Kelly Zugay
Hosted by Kelly Zugay, co-founder of With Grace and Gold, The Brand It, Build It Podcast is a leading small business marketing podcast for small business owners, creatives, and founders. Weekly, brief, actionable episodes will equip you to build a successful, sustainable small business. Since 2014, With Grace and Gold has provided award-winning custom brand and Showit web design and completely customizable Showit website templates for small businesses worldwide.