Several years ago, I purchased a "system" geared towards getting new clients — it was very comprehensive and well-written. Until I got to the last chapter on setting up processes and systems for marketing. There was a chapter title page, followed by blank drawings asking you to fill in what YOUR processes and systems were.
I laughed and then laughed even harder (it was that or cry)…if I had my own processes and systems, I wouldn't have spent several hundred dollars and purchased the system to get them!
When people hear that I'm an expert in establishing processes and systems which result in more clients for small business owners, they immediately get a glazed look.
After all, what EXACTLY are processes and systems? Is this going to be a lot more "geek-speak" or technology that you have to learn or another blank page in an otherwise comprehensive system?
Creating processes and systems is all about setting things up so your business can pretty much run on its own. Of course, there are things that you must do to keep it running smoothly, but your processes and systems allow you to be out of the office, even unexpectedly, without everything grinding to a halt.
Here's an example of just some of my processes and systems:
- "How To" Operations Manual: The manual of all manuals — it includes the step-by-step process that prospects go through before becoming private clients, the Welcome Packet they receive, templates for answering different types of emails, procedures for hiring new team members (and training them). This is THE manual of all manuals and covers everything behind-the-scenes of my business.
- Autoresponders: They're set up to automatically follow-up with clients and prospects after signing up for my newsletter, purchasing particular products or services, etc.
- Scheduling: Not only do I have a wall calendar (and desk calendar) which breaks the year down into business development days, vacations, conferences, and revenue-generating days; my team has a weekly schedule of what they are to do when (whether I'm around or not, so it runs like clockwork).
- Strategic Marketing Action Plan: This is my Marketing Bible. . .it breaks out the activities (new products, new programs, when what needs to be done for each as well as general business building tasks, etc.) by day and is constantly updated.
Add to this my email signature, my outgoing voicemail, the "goodies" which are snail mailed to my clients and prospects on a regular (that is, pre-determined) basis, my holiday mailings, etc. and you have a feeling for the processes and systems which run my business behind-the-scenes.
After all, owning your own business should be about freedom — freedom to have and do the things which mean the most to you.
Your Coaching Challenge
While all of the above is important in creating the ultimate business which allows you to take vacations (without checking in every 10 minutes), take off early to go to a child's school event or even just sit on the deck so you can finish an engrossing novel, my first request is that you create your own Strategic Marketing Action Plan and remember to focus on ACTION and IMPLEMENTATION.
After all, without clients, it doesn't really matter how great your processes are.
If you're unsure of where to begin or what REALLY works, I'd love for you to join me in my upcoming 90 Day Intensive Online Business Mentoring Program where you'll leave with a Strategic Marketing Action Plan AND a whole lot more!
For the past 5 years, Sandra Martini has been showing self-employed business owners how to get more clients consistently by implementing processes and systems to put their marketing on autopilot. Visit Sandra at http://www.SandraMartini.com for details, compelling client testimonials and her free audio series “5 Simple and Easy Steps to Put Your Marketing on Autopilot”.