For most business owners, growth is good: more clients served, more client results, more reach, more impact, more profit.
But I’m sure you’ve already discovered, ‘more’ is a double-edged sword.
If I know you, you’re already working as hard and as much as is healthy. Even adding more staff to help you serve more customers isn’t a straight-forward solution. Smooth systems and repeatable processes are critical, both for finding and attracting more customers, and also for serving them well. That’s what Shaun Whynacht explained when we talked.
Shaun Whynacht is CEO of Blue Cow Marketing, a Nova Scotia company that helps businesses owners implement automations to grow their bottom line and get their lives back. Shaun defines his team more as a ‘business’ agency than a ‘marketing’ agency because their work involves solutions that go far beyond pulling new customers into a pipeline. There are thousands of small activities along the entire customer journey that can be made quicker, easier, and more reliable through automation.
Automation is the key to growing your business without breaking it.
“Growing (your business) does not come from running Facebook ads and finding new people, Shaun explains. “Growing comes from having a process… a system you can run people through.”
Shaun points out that this is the success secret of McDonald’s. The company systemizes things on a minute level, so they don’t waste any time, they minimize effort, while managing production consistently. That’s how they’ve been able to scale.
“…you can bring more people in and know it’s not going to break you in your business. It’s not going to cause more stress.”
What Shaun wants business owners to understand is that Customer Relationship Marketing solutions like Infusionsoft, Keap, Ontraport and Hubspot aren’t always about marketing.
“We don’t necessarily look at what we can automate on the outgoing side, client-facing, but also what can we automate inside…simple little automations (like) scheduling, payment processing.”
Shaun has been a Keap Certified Partner for 10 years and appreciates the full power of CRM solutions: “They focus on those pain points that small business owners have, and that’s what they build their solution around.”
Choosing the right solution typically depends on the size of your team and the complexity of your business. That’s part of Shaun’s expertise, helping business owners choose the right solution and then implement it so it increases capacity.
Wherever automation can eliminate effort, stress, and mistakes, it frees up time (and mental energy) to be creative, get out and network, and evolve the business itself.
“It doesn’t have to stay in your head. The more things you have to remember, those are calories you’re burning, they’re going to exhaust you. Even thinking about something is burning calories. You know, if you ran four hours on a treadmill, you’re exhausted. You can’t function the next day. The same thing mentally happens if you have to keep all this stuff in your head. So you need to offload that to a system and feel confident that it’s going to be there.”
How do you know what to automate? Where do you even begin?
Shaun’s advice is, “you look at listing everything that you would do right down to the littlest tasks and then start to characterize it as, ‘does this task make me money?’ Yes? Okay. We absolutely need to do it. And then you start to prioritize those and say, okay, can I automate that?”
Don’t think that automating takes away the personal touch. My team and I rely on a number of automated processes to serve our Blackstar Wealth clients better.
- Our scheduling tool allows clients to choose meeting times that work best with their schedules, without any back or forth.
- We have a couple of emails that get sent automatically to every new client, which help us collect all the info we need without missing any details
- We get a notice at regular intervals that remind us it’s time to reach out, which is an automation that allows us add more personal contact to our client relationships, rather than less!
So if you’re ready to grow, but can’t figure out how to do that without breaking that outstanding business you’re building, think about what you could automate. Or give Shaun a call.