Using automated business processes to improve your business
Adopting standard business processes frees up management time
Automated business processes oil the wheels
Even small business’s have standard procedures for things like cashing up and controlling the daily takings. Money is critical for businesses, and it therefore makes sense, to control revenue.
In most businesses there is a procedure for taking cash and with that comes some sort of control mechanism.
Everyone in that business understands these principles and procedures and they cannot be deviated from without consequences. Some businesses expand these principles further. They adopt principles such as the telephone needs to be answered within three rings, or quotes need to be supplied within one hour of receiving a quote request.
I once wanted a garage door motor retrofitted. I belong to a business referral network and so I contacted a supplier on the network for a quote. I was told that someone would come out to give a quote. By the next day, the quote wasn’t forthcoming, so I contacted another supplier. This supplier quoted me telephonically. His price was reasonable, but he said he could only fit the motor in three days. It wasn’t ideal, but nevertheless, I agreed.
In three days time, true to his word, the supplier arrived to do the installation. Whilst busy with the installation, a representative of the first company I had approached, called past to do the quote.
I had to tell them it was too late.
Now, why would a company spend a whole lot of money to be part of a business referral network and then let the whole team down by not having a system in place to make sure quotes are done timorously?
The first company that lost out was a small business who operated with 5 teams of installers and the second business who got the job was a one man band who operated with an assistant out of his van.
The story above illustrates the problems that entrepreneurs experience when transforming from micro businesses to small or medium sized businesses.
The entrepreneur typically looses contact with clients and without adequate business systems in place, doesn’t realise the lost opportunities his business faces. ]
His or her focus is on managing the team and complying with the myriad of legislative obligations that goes with having a small business.
Now there is another part of this entrepreneur’s life that you probably have experienced. He is stressing about the cost of his teams, he is focussing on maintaining cash flow in order to pay the business costs and the revenue department their taxes. To do this he needs more business so he is probably wasting money on advertising and referral networks, because the hamster wheel of life that his business has become, demands more and more income.
Now the chaos that this entrepreneur is going through could be mitigated by having the following systems in place:
- A client generating system.
- A customer quoting system.
- A customer satisfaction measurement system.
- A business referral system.
- A credit collection system.
- Now all five of these systems can be automated. Yes automated. The Online Marketer has the skills, technology and experience to set them up for your business.
Imagine a machine, situated in the cloud, churning away and doing all this work for you, making sure that your business is more efficient, more profitable. Imagine a system that identifies problems and draws these problems to your attention so that you can do something about it.
Imagine what you could do with the time that this will free up for you, the worry that it will relieve you from, and the confidence it will give you to work on your business instead of in it.
Let’s make next year a better year.
So here are some practical examples.
Someone Googles ‘holidays in East London’ and they land up on a guest house’s webpage that offers a free guide called “50 Fabulous reasons to include East London on your travel itinerary”.
Someone Googles for solar geysers and lands on a website with a form to be filled in, in order to receive “The definitive guide to how much electricity can be saved by installing a solar geyser”.
Someone Googles for fresh ground coffee outlets and lands on a website that offers a guide called “All you need to know about coffee types and how to choose the best one for your palette”.
In each of the examples above, the person arriving at the website will gladly add their name and email address to receive these guides. Once they do that they have placed themselves on the businesses database.
As the business owner you now have a business lead. You can call them or email them to discuss their needs. This happens overtime someone Googles the product or service you are offering. It’s magic.
PLUS you can continue to communicate with these leads using either newsletters or pre timed automated responses. In effect, you get a secretary in the sky that does your sales work for you.
Now that’s the advantage of an evergreen automated content marketing strategy.
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Digitally First but Physically Enhanced
The swing to digital businesses should be supported by a physical presence. Even if that physical presence takes a new form.