The WiFi on the beach is shit
There is a key misconception when it comes to automation in business. Often, business owners think ‘automation’ is what they see internet marketers use in order to sell $7 ebooks or $3000 online courses.
This leads business owners to believe one of two things:
- Automation won’t work in my business, because I don’t sell online
- If I add automation to my business, I can sit on the beach all day
Neither of these are accurate.
Yes, you can probably still find a way to sell some information online, deliver it through automation and not think about it again. But it is highly unlikely.
More importantly, that is not what I am talking about here. This is not about setting up some automation and then running your empire from the beach.
When it comes to systems and processes, automation and operational efficiency… the aim is simple, but hard:
“Allow your team to deliver their highest value work, without being bogged down by the mindless, repetitive tasks for which they are all overqualified.”
Your goal is to create a money machine: A business that generates maximum sales and profit, with the smallest team possible.
This is not about setting up some automation and then putting your feet up.
Even after you’ve automated all your online lead generation, you still have to sell. Selling is a verb, you have to do it.
Look at some of the biggest brands: Ferrari, Rolex, Apple. Even they have to keep selling their products. Actively selling. They are sure to have some mind-blowing systems and automation in place, but when it comes down to it, somebody still has to sell their products.
Automation does not equal abdication
I’ve seen this in the past. After designing and implementing some automation in a business, the business owner is disappointed, because they are still responsible for the success of their business. Don’t fall into this trap.
A few years ago I worked with a business to create a more automated and targeted online lead generation system.
Once the system was in place, the leads started coming in, at a rate 100 times what the business had before. After requesting some feedback regarding the quality of the leads, it transpired that the business owner had done nothing with the leads generated.
First it was because the leads did not have phone numbers, so we changed the lead generation system to request phone numbers. 72% of the leads generated now included phone numbers.
When I asked for feedback again, it turned out that nobody had made any effort to call these new leads, or even email them.
This business owner thought that as we had now taken over the lead generation process, the business would grow. The business most certainly could grow with a 100-times increase in enquiries, but only if someone then focussed their time on selling.
Automated systems and processes allow you to create an engine running at the heart of your business, allowing you and your team to deliver greater value to the business and to your customers.
If you are worried that automated systems and processes can’t work in your industry or business, you are almost certainly wrong.
No matter what your service or product, there will be aspects of the prospect and customer journey that can be better handled by an artificial member of staff.
Keep this in mind as you go through your week:
Look at your business and find the wasted time and effort, which a few lines of code can do better, faster and more reliably.
Whatever you do though, don’t limit your thinking just because you don’t know how to write the code or which tools to use. Just identify the opportunities.
If you think your business has no use for automated systems and processes, let me know. I’d love to discuss this further and show you where the opportunities are.
Author: Pieter De Villiers
Pieter K de Villiers is slightly obsessed with systems. The systems and process automation he builds for small businesses are transformative, to say the least. Pieter is a Co-Founder of Blue Peg Group and the Amazon best-selling author of “Barefoot Business: 3 key systems to attract more leads, win more sales and delight more customers without your business killing you”.