There comes a time in every entrepreneurial venture where you realize you simply cannot do it all yourself.
Sure, when you’re just getting started you really are the “chief, cook and bottle washer.” But as your business grows, it becomes painfully obvious that trying to do everything is only going to lead to:
- Frustration (when critical tasks don’t get done and deadlines are missed)
- Burn out (when you’re working yet another 12-hour day)
- Overwhelm (when your to-do list is longer at the end of the day than it was at the beginning)
There are many ways to combat this business-growth hurdle, but one of the best is automation. Imagine a completely hands-off system that works for you even when you’re hiking on a remote mountain or lounging at a luxury spa.
But here’s an even better reason to automate: it lets you scale your business. Think about it, the less manual work you have to do, the more time you have to do the money-making tasks such as networking, marketing, and client support.
So what automated systems should you use? The options are almost endless, but start with:
What happens when a new subscriber joins your mailing list or someone buys a product? Do they just sit in waiting on your list until you have time to send an email?
While broadcast emails have their place—especially in time-sensitive promotions—be sure to also set up an autoresponder series to:
- Welcome new subscribers and help them find their way around your site (and your offers)
- Nurture buyers so they know they’re in the right place
- Make additional offers based on what someone has already purchased or shown an interest in
And the best thing? Once your autoresponder is set up, it will continue to work even when you’re not.
Social Media Management
Yes, it’s important to be personable and engaging on social media. But that doesn’t mean you have to log in to Facebook just to post a link to your latest blog or YouTube video. Automate that kind of update and save yourself hours of time each and every month. Not only that, but you won’t have to worry about missing an update, either!
If you have clients, partners, a team, or are often asked for interviews, then an automated calendar is a must. Rather than endless back-and-forth emails trying to find a mutually available time slot, simply send your calendar link and let your client, project manager, JV partner or anyone else choose a time that works for them. Your appointment will automatically appear on your calendar, and you’ll even get reminders (if your calendar supports that).
An automated system you may not have thought of: Templates
How many times do you answer email from potential clients? Or mailing your JV partners about an upcoming launch?
All of these tasks and more become effortless when you create fill-in-the-blank templates that can be repurposed for specific cases/people. While templates will undoubtedly save you time, the real beauty is that once they’re created, you can easily outsource things like email and even sales. Simply instruct your assistant on the proper use of your templates, and you’ll be free to do other, more important things.
One of my most popular opt in offers through the years has been “Templates for Coaches.” I’ve updated this document and added some new templates. While some of the templates would only be used by those in the coaching field, others will be helpful to an entrepreneur in any field. Download them here.
There are dozens of options for automating every aspect of your small business. As you grow, you’ll find new and better tools to make everything run more smoothly. For now, though, implementing these four ideas alone will save you hours of time every month.