Automation is a bit of a double-edged sword in the business world. On the one hand, it’s a scary prospect. A “what if robots steal our jobs?” kind of scary. Or, “what if something goes wrong when I’m not looking?”
But, it’s hard to ignore the time-saving benefits automation can bring to a business. It can be really handy to automate certain tasks because it can free up valuable time to spend elsewhere. Who doesn’t want a bit of extra free time?
Social media management
While you still need to put in the work at the start, you can schedule a month’s worth of social media posts all at once if you really want.
Tools such as Hootsuite, Sprout Social and Buffer can be set up to provide your channels with a stream of constant updates and shared posts.
It takes time to set this up, but it saves you from having to regularly take time out of your day or week to continually update your channels.
Emails to customers
Sending out individual emails to hundreds of customers when they visit your website or make a purchase is just not a realistic use of your time. It would take you all day and night to do it all manually.
Luckily, tools like MailChimp make it simple to create automatic customer campaigns that are sent out when they need to be.
For example, you can set up an automatic email onboarding series for new customers, or email requests for feedback or reviews from new customers. You can even send an email on a customer’s birthday wishing them a happy birthday or, even better, offering them a nice discount.
This all goes a long way in customer retention. Customers stay aware of you whilst being made to feel valued, but with the heavy-lifting all automated.
When you’ve got a lot of outstanding invoices, it can be hard to keep track of which ones have been paid and which ones are outstanding.
With modern bookkeeping software though, you don’t need to spend time chasing up unpaid invoices. Software like Pandle will do this all for you. All you need to do is create your invoice, with a due date and set up reminders which will automatically be sent out at an interval of your choosing.
For example, remind people a week before the due date, with subsequent reminders after the due date has passed.
It’s a handy way to stay on top of cash flow and ensure that all invoices are settled when they’re supposed to be.
What other tasks do you wish you could automate? Are there any other solutions you would recommend? Please leave a comment below with your thoughts.