Automations are basically when you use technology or software tools to automate repeatable tasks and processes. Now, some people say ‘menial tasks, but I don’t like the word menial, because I think that all tasks are important. No matter how menial they may feel to you. I do feel they are important.
We use technology and software tools to automate repeatable tasks and processes. Did you know The average person spends three hours a day on tasks that could easily be automated? That means, if you worked an eight hour week, half of your workweek, you would be doing things that could be automated. That is just mind-blowing, right?
So imagine if you freed up half of your workweek, and you were able to speed up your projects or get rid of the ugly things in your business that you don’t like to do.
So automating and streamlining your workflow. Customer journey, or lead generation, all those little funnels you have automating and streamlining then equals better productivity. And an opportunity to be able to scale without burning out.
Did you know that they have invented a burger-flipping robot in fast food restaurants, to flip the burgers because it’d be more efficient and quicker than a person flipping it?
So things like accounting, onboarding, and data processing are all examples of things that you could automate. So why? Well, this is so that you are free to drive in more business and revenue and to do the things that you’re good at. It is most important so that you can continue to do the marketing side.
One thing you do have to consider is the cost of the software versus your time. So what is an hourly rate? What are you worth at an hourly rate? It takes you say, an hour to onboard somebody into your system and your hourly rate is $300. But it costs you $100 a year for a piece of software to be able to do it then it’s better to use the software. But a lot of people have software that they’re not using to the full complexity of what that software can offer. So it is important to get to know whatever software you are using. A lot of the software has very good helplines or frequently asked questions, and a lot of them have videos. Your chosen software needs to be relevant to your customer journey, and it needs to be user friendly both for you and for your customer.
Understanding the program and how it works and integrates with your other systems is also super important. As is putting in the time and effort to set it up correctly and test it from time to time. Any system can go crazy, for example, there was one of our subscriptions, which is automation, just suddenly stopped, and you don’t get a notification for that. It just suddenly goes crazy and it stops. So you’ve got to be on top of it. And you got to make sure that you know how to fix these things.
Other things that you can consider for automation are chatbots. But you know, there are pros and cons when it comes to chatbots. They can be used well but some are way overpriced for what they offer. Many business owners who I work with often say to me that a chatbot takes so much time to manage that there might as well be using an inquiry form. So why put another piece of something into your business to manage, when you can simply just use the inquiry form.
Some more things that you can automate are your inquiry form or your contact us form. And don’t forget, I’m a big fan of making sure that you have asked relevant questions in there. So any questions that keep coming up again, and again, and again, make sure that you include those questions in there – this will save you time repeating the same questions.
You could include a quote form, this is good. I mean, this is something that we’re looking at for a cleaning company at the moment, because, for the cleaning company, they often say that they come to clean your carpets, they get there, and the carpets are filthy and need like 10 going overs. But if you ask the person, they’re not going to admit that they are filthy because they’re worried about price, so, you say to them ‘please attach photos’. They now have to upload photos into the inquiry form. This means you get the photos and then you can quote adequately.
You can also automate your events. So taking bookings online, and the follow-up automation.
Appointment bookings, like booking calendars, email reminders, text reminders – this can all be automated.
Onboarding is a really good one. So when a client comes on, instead of me going in and after to email them everything, I can automate that process.
I must say one last thing if you have systems and automation in your business, and you bypass them, that’s usually when the shit hits the fan.