Automation is available in all aspects of business. You should definitely automate when it is possible to do so and it doesn’t get in the way of your relationships with your audience and customers. All automation should generally be a way to benefit your customer. If it benefits you, it should not be something noticeable to your customer or cause them any issues.
There is some amazing software that you can use for social media automation. MeetEdgar, Hootsuite, and others are great ways to help you organize and automate a lot of your social media interactions. However, try to only use it to post updates, and don’t forget to answer comments personally on threads that are created by your updates.
Autoresponders like AWeber, Drip, and others offer tremendous automation that is going to be helpful to not only you but also to your customers. For example, you can set up a series in email to help teach your subscribers something, plus you can easily send out special messages based on the behavior of your audience. This is a good thing. However, if someone hits “reply” to that message, please answer it personally.
WordPress offers amazing tools to help you automate so much about your blog. You can have blog posts written in advance, but have them not show up until you choose based on the date you want to publish them. This is automation that helps you, but it also helps your audience get the timely information they want from your website or blog.
One of the most amazing things to automate is your bookkeeping. Bookkeeping is the act of entering information into your ledger or checkbook or spreadsheet (depending on your methods). This can take a lot of time if you do it by hand. But you can use software like QuickBooks, Wave and GoDaddy Bookkeeping to automatically book income and expenses based on how you set it up.
If you sell tangible or digital items, having a shopping cart is going to make your life and your customers’ life so much better. For example, if you did not use the right shopping cart when people pay for something you would have to manually send it to them, plus follow-up emails and so forth. But with good shopping cart software like Shopify or aMember you can make everyone’s life easier.
A ticketing system is a great way to automate some aspects of your customer relationship management process. With a ticketing system, you can usually set it up to offer some self-help options, plus the ability for the consumer to upgrade the support ticket so that they can get individualized help. In addition, a good ticketing system will keep the entire conversation in one spot so that any customer service person can read everything being said. Try Freshdesk, Zoho Support, Help Scout and others.
One thing you most definitely want to automate is data gathering and reporting. You can use many types of analytics software and almost all have a way to automate them. You can check out Google Analytics and look up Automatic Reports for Google Analytics. You can learn more from Google on this.
You’ve heard about the automation available for marketing, like Hootsuite (mentioned above), but you can also run advertisements, and once you get it set up right you can let it go on automation via Facebook Ads and Google Ads. First, perfect your campaign, and then just let it go. Do check up on the stats occasionally to ensure nothing has changed about the results.
As you see, there are numerous types of software that have certain automatic features. You should probably use some type of automation, but avoid using too much direct to customer automation. Don’t forget that building relationships with your customers and being personal with them on social media requires you to do it yourself. If you have a large company, you can hire a team that can help with the one-on-one aspects of interpersonal relationships and marketing.
How do you automate your business and especially your marketing?
I have a whole host of tools and programs that I use that enable me to work smarter and not harder, if you would like to know what I use, I’d be happy to share them with you, together with any advice you may need over a coffee. Just in get touch, saying you want to pick my brains over a coffee and I’ll be in touch.