If you find yourself thinking that you either:-
- have no time,
- have too much to do,
- don’t have enough manpower,
then, perhaps, you don’t have systems working properly in your business.
You probably have not used automation to reduce your workload. Maybe you are doing too many things manually.
Just a few days ago, I saw this played out on Facebook. A speaker/entrepreneur’s I followed got frustrated because too many people responded to his post.
What happened was, he posted on Facebook requesting his followers and others to comment on his FB post to get a free guide. This is a strategy to make sure his post shared. What he didn’t considered was several hundred people responded.
Naturally, he had to reply to several hundred people individually. If it isn’t obvious to you, replying to several hundred people individually will take a big chunk of time, and is no fun. So from being an entrepreneur making several hundred per hour, now suddenly, it becomes data entry work.
Quite an unproductive use of time.
That was what prompted me to write this. Software can take care of it so that even if you have thousands responding, it won’t make you feel like the wasting your life repeatedly replying to potential customers.
When you don’t systemize your business, as your business grows, your work will increase! You may start to hate your work which is kind of ironic because you would want to have more customers, right?
Why don’t entrepreneurs systemize
I may be wrong, but I suspect, you don’t even know that it is possible, probably you are so busy working in their business, you don’t have time to explore new possibilities.
Or the other reason could be, “that’s the way I’ve have always done business”, or you are waiting until you see your competitor does it.
If you are going to buy a new car today, you won’t even consider a manual shift transmission. Even if you were to pay $300,000 for a super car, say a Ferrari, a Lamborghini, or any slew of sports car you can think of, you can’t get a manual transmission anymore.
Or maybe you can dump the boring, uninteresting work to your staff. If it were me, I’d rather put anyone working for me towards more productive work, though.
What is automated around you?
You have an electric gate, your air conditioned office temperature is regulated automatically, you may even have a robot vacuum at home.
Why not systemize your business, or at least parts of it?Systems are crucial to grow your business. Let systems take care of things you do repeatedly. Click To Tweet
What are some parts of your business to systemize
One good area to start is in marketing. Marketing is one of the easier parts to systemize because tools are available. Building a marketing and sales funnel can help you to never worry about not having customers.
I experienced this first hand.
In my first business in financial services, I got new clients by calling them. If I didn’t make new calls, no new potential customer will get into my sales funnel. So whenever I got too busy with follow up, took time off because I was unwell, or attended some seminar, I won’t have any business a few weeks down the road.
Besides that, over time, as voice mail and caller ID became more prevalent, I began to secure less and less appointments for the same amount of call I make. People just weren’t picking up their phones anymore.
This can and may happen to your business as well. So I had to think of something else.
Around that time, free content managing systems, or CMS came into the internet scene. CMS allows almost anyone to build a decent website, and I knew I can leverage the internet to get new customers.
It took some time to create a website, and fill it with the necessary content, but once the website is up, new customers started to flow into my sales funnel. And I didn’t have to make that many calls anymore.
In the last year of that business, the website brought in over 50% of new business versus other offline activities (phone calls, roadshows, flyers) combines! And I didn’t really have to hunt for new customers.
By the way, if you had a website but it didn’t bring in any business at all, then you are doing it wrong. On one of my website experiment, I regularly get request to quote even though I’m not providing such services. It goes to show what is possible when you build systems correctly.
The easiest customer servicing Win
If you have been doing business for sometime, you will always get customers who asks that same few questions about your product or service repeatedly.
Although you can reply to individual questions, you can systemize this and create a FAQ, or frequently asked question template. In the initial early stage, off course you want to handle customer’s questions, just so you can create the FAQ.
A FAQ, can be a page on your website, a pdf you create, or an image, or even a video you create, which you can direct to your customer. It will save you a lot of time.
Bandwidth and mobile internet are getting cheaper and faster, so video is a great way to connect with your customers as it involves visual, and audio senses.
In my own business, the FAQ is so helpful that many customer don’t even need me to explain much when I meet them. The already know because of the FAQ.
So, a FAQ is not only something to reduce customer service, but it also helps to get new sales.
Think of possibilities
Think of ways you can reduce man power handling different aspects of your business. You may assume that only large businesses can afford to automate. In some cases, that is true, but even for smaller businesses, automation can help you leverage your business.
If you can’t automate marketing, then I’d suggest you think about the thing you hate most to do, and find a way to either eliminate the work, automate it, or delegate it. Quite a lot of time, the work can be eliminated. Its just because it has always be done, that people keep doing it.
You can grow your business with less money, time, labor or all three.