Automation to Save Time & Money
Automation comes in many forms. Auto-motion – is moving something forward. Every business, regardless of size, can save time and benefit from various uses of automation.
At Savvy Cleaner we are a small team who offer house cleaner training. If we are going to be efficient we have to automate as many tasks as possible. This allows us to use human time and resources to serve our clients.
Take our newsletter for example. It goes out each Saturday. It is set up through a software program called Infusionsoft. If you are receiving it, at some point, you signed up for it through an email form. The email form captures your information and tags it to send you the weekly newsletter. That email capture thingy is automatic. There is no live person on the other end, typing in notes. It happens by a code that a software programmer wrote – to replace a low-level employee. Infusionsoft is expensive for a small company like ours, but costs less than hiring an employee, and more reliable.
I can type the newsletter at any time during the week and schedule it to send out at a specific time on Saturday. One Saturday I was out to lunch with two of my sisters when all three of our phones dinged at the same time. We all looked at our phones and laughed when we saw that I had just sent us all the weekly newsletter. It was freaky because they assumed I was at a remote coffee shop with my laptop, churning out these time-saving tips. When in fact, I was at Panera Bread chatting it up with my family.
Automation Through Templates
Let’s take it one step further – The newsletter is a template. The newsletter goes out each Saturday. How long would it take to reinvent the wheel each week? Try and figure out what to include, how long the newsletter should be and how many images to use? Instead, we use a proven formula with high open and conversion rates as our template.
The particular template we use is this formula is this:
- Header with bio links
- #WorkSmartNotHard Quiz of the week results from last week
- #WorkSmartNotHard Quiz of the week for next week
- 3 topic related tips or tricks
- A topic related House Cleaner Training tip or blog
- 1 topic related Social Media/Internet Marketing tip or blog
- 1 topic related time-saving hack
- What’s going on with Angela – update
- Call to Action
- Subscribe/Unsubscribe info
Now that we have a template we can fill in the blanks each week and bam! There’s your newsletter. There is no guesswork, no wasting time, just efficient content delivered on time.
Automation Through Content
Let’s take it a step further – Where do we get the content for ideas for our newsletter to fill in the blanks? You see that we’ve introduced a #WorkSmartNotHard Quiz for next week. That is the topic of next week’s newsletter. We post our #WorkSmartNotHard Quiz for next week on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin, and Google+. Friends and followers respond with tips, ideas, and questions. This becomes the content for our newsletter, and blogs we write during the week.
Each week we feature 3 topic related tips or tricks from our friends and followers. These tips include backlinks to their website or blog that helps their SEO. An easy way for you to get backlink from us, and gain gobs of exposure for your product or service, is to submit a tip on next weeks topic.
SUPER SECRET TIP:
The more information you include, the more likely it is for us to include you. If you send a full blown blog post, a bio, your links and your photos, that is less work for us to do. We might just post it as is, with our endorsement. Or we might feature you all week on other industry related blogs and podcasts. We might add you to our Feedly lists and tweet out every new blog you ever write with links back to your site. We’re not here to compete with you, we’re here to collaborate with you. Help us, help you.
SUPER DUPER SECRET TIP:
Our newsletter comes out on Saturday. The earlier you submit your tips, tricks, time-saving hacks or apps, the more likely it is for us to include you. Don’t wait until Friday night to send in your tips. The newsletter might already be in the queue so I can go to lunch with my sisters on Saturday. Next weeks topic it is always pinned on my Twitter account @SavvyCleaner. You can submit lengthy stuff to me at AngelaBrown(at)SavvyCleaner.com
SUPER DUPER TROOPER SECRET TIP:
If you are going to submit your brilliance for inclusion – do us both a favor and write a released statement. This will go in your permanent file and say something like: “Hey, I Angela Brown, submit this info with full permission to use as you see fit. This includes all forms of traditional and social media. Please tag me and include my website/blog link at http://AskaHouseCleaner.com“ (insert your own name and your own link)
Then include your contact information for our records. If we have any questions we’ll contact you. Please include your:
Name: Angela Brown (The House Cleaning Guru)
If you want to build an alliance with us, make it easy for us to follow you, contact you and partner with you.
Automation Through Images
We all know that there is more interaction with our audience when we include images in our content. This goes for newsletters, posts, pins, tweets, chats, blogs, and blabs. So how do you automate your image creation?
There are plenty of times that finding the exact image to clarify what you are saying is difficult. Enter #WhiteboardWisdom I took this photo of me holding a blank white board. I have already photo shopped my name and hashtag on the board and saved the photo for easy, future access.
Now all I have to do now is add a sentence of text tailored to my blog and bam! We’ve got an image for a that difficult to illustrate blog or article.
Once you’ve created something fun like #WhiteboardWisdom you can re-post it on Pinterest with a link back to your blog.
Automation Through Readability
If you are going to go to all trouble to create a newsletter – write it in Hemingway so the grammar is correct. The app will also alert you to the ease of readability. This will help your *SEO and ensure that your readers can translate it with a software program into other languages. Here’s where it will save you time – you won’t have to go back at a later date and re-write your content for translation.
*In May 2016 Yoast SEO added a new feature to their WordPress plug in with readability features. Google SEO is now looking at the ease of readability in the content it indexes. We are moving to simple content that is easy to read and understand for blogs and newsletters. Save your $10,000 words for your Scrabble game.
Automation Though Reposting
For SEO purposes, when you post something, it starts with your website and goes out from there.
Post your newsletter first on your website. This will index the content and archive your information. From there you can Pin your awesome photo to Pinterest and it links back to your specific blog. You can repost your newsletter than to Google+, Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter etc.
You can also schedule your social media posts week in advance to run in the background of your business. Programs like Tweet Jukebox, Edgar, Buffer and Hootsuite can automate your social media posting. Of course, you can jump into any social media platform at any time to post live without interrupting the automation.
These are just a few ways you can automate your business. Especially if you are a one or two man show. You can do more with less with automation.
What ways are you using automation to save time and resources?
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