As we all know, running a business can be hard, and juggling ‘all the things’ can sometimes leave us feeling overwhelmed and exhausted. As a Virtual Assistant, I see the difference automation and ongoing support can make to business owners just like you.
So today I’m going to share some hassle-free ways to boost your productivity by implementing five easy [and sometimes free] automation that will make a huge difference to you and your biz!
Streamline Client Appointments with Calendar Automation
Automating your calendar for client appointments is a no-brainer! Say goodbye to the back-and-forth emails or phone calls trying to find a date and time that works for you both.
By using calendar automation on your website or tools like Calendly or Acuity, you can create a personalised booking page that syncs with your personal calendar. Simply set your work hours, buffer times between appointments, and the type of meetings you offer. Then, share the link with your clients, or pop it on your website or socials and they can easily pick a time slot that works for both of you.
These types of tools can also send automated reminders, reducing no-shows and last-minute cancellations. Plus, you’ll receive notifications of new bookings, allowing you to stay on top of your calendar without the need for constant manual updates.
By setting this up, you’ll not only save time but also provide a more convenient and professional booking experience for your clients.
Automate Invoicing and Payments
Say ‘au Revoir to the headache of manual invoicing and chasing late payments. Automating your invoicing and payment processes can save you so much time and help with your cash flow too #winning. There are plenty of user-friendly accounting software like Xero [that’s what I use] and QuickBooks, which allow you to create and send professional invoices, set up recurring invoices and payments, and even send automated reminders when invoices are overdue.
Social Media Scheduling Tools Are Your Best Friend
In this digital age, a solid social media presence is a must for all businesses. But constantly posting content and engaging with your audience is time-consuming. That’s where social media scheduling tools come to the rescue.
RecurPost, Meta Planner or Later are fantastic tools that allow you to plan and schedule your social media posts in advance. This means you can dedicate a chunk of time to content creation and then let the automation take care of the rest. You’ll stay connected with your audience, even when you’re busy with other aspects of your business. RecurPost goes one step further with their evergreen libraries that allow you to “set and forget” content that you post regularly [think blogs, freebies, affiliates etc]
Simplify Customer Support with Chatbots
You want to provide excellent customer support, but it doesn’t have to consume all your time. Integrate chatbots on your website and social media platforms to handle common customer questions and support requests. These AI-powered helpers can provide instant responses and gather information before a real person needs to take over.
Chatbots not only save you time but also ensure your customers receive prompt and consistent assistance, leading to higher satisfaction and loyalty. I use and love ManyChat.
Let Email Marketing Work For You
Email marketing remains one of the most effective ways to reach your customers. Automating your email campaigns can significantly improve your marketing efforts without consuming all your time.
Use email marketing platforms like MailerLite or ActiveCampaign to create personalised email sequences, welcome new customers, and re-engage past clients. Automate your email schedule and let the platform do the heavy lifting, keeping your audience engaged and informed. Think of things like, birthday emails, emails when a subscriber clicks a certain link and so much more …
So, there you have it… automation is the key to unleashing your productivity and freeing up your time to focus on what truly matters: growing your business and serving your customers better. By implementing these five simple automation in your business, you’ll find yourself with more time on your hands.
Remember, you’ll need to research and choose the tools that best fit your specific business needs. Test them out, see what works for you, and embrace the power of automation.
After decades working in mining, aviation and oil & gas, Marie founded Empress of Order, a virtual assistant service, in 2018 and quickly became fully booked. With a background in operations and safety, focussing on processes, systems and procedures, Marie now supports busy business owners and helps them bring order to their lives!
She’s certified by the VA Institute and was named in the Inside Small Business Top 50 Business Leaders in 2020. Marie facilitates a coworking day each month in her hometown of Perth, where business owners get together to work and build connections. In 2022, Marie expanded her empire with the purchase of The Digital Mums Directory, an online membership and directory for female digital experts in Australia, with a biz friend. She lives in the beautiful Perth Hills with her husband Simon and fur-baby Jasper. She can’t function without her morning coffee and loves a glass of bubbles or a cocktail in the evening.