If there’s one thing the world probably doesn’t need, it’s another article about productivity.
I know it. You know it. We all know it.
There’s no denying the mountain of information out there on how to be more productive.
If you’ve ever sat at your computer pondering the meaning of life while you’re meant to be getting stuff done…
Chances are you’ve sought some advice from the all-seeing, all-knowing Google on how to give yourself a good kick up the butt.
You then would’ve been crushed within an inch of your life by an avalanche of information…
Some, not so much.
From garlic and ginseng, feng shui and desk hacks to old wives’ tales, eating apples, to-do lists and vision boards…
And water, don’t forget about drinking water.
The amount of time we spend trying to improve our productivity often ends up being, well… counterproductive.
Especially when you spend your entire day running back and forth to the bathrooms with a full bladder!
Now, I’m the first to admit that when it comes to my personal life, I’ve got a lot to learn about organisation and time management.
I’m the person that says things and never writes them down, leaves important belongings (think wallets, credit cards, my dog) in random places, and absentmindedly screws up any piece of paper, like a plane ticket or insurance papers, that is given to me.
But in business, I’ve got squeezing every ounce of productivity out of myself and my team down to an art.
I’ll let you in on a secret…
My desk isn’t pristine or perfectly feng shui’d (most days it’s more impoverished uni student than CEO).
And I’m very ashamed to admit that….
I don’t drink enough water. Not nearly enough, I’d be lucky to get a litre at most (please don’t judge me!)
If I may, I’d like to just cut through all the BS theories on productivity and talk about the one thing I know will have the biggest impact on your business and help you reclaim all the the hours slaving away over your keyboard.
Those of you who know me well can probably already guess what I’m on about here.
So, without further ado, allow me to introduce the one thing you need to power your productivity…
I know, I feel like a broken record most of the time, but I can honestly say that automating my business is the best thing I ever did for my productivity and peace of mind.
Not only does implementing automation tools enable you to get your head out of your inboxes and take your hands off the keyboard, but it frees up your time to spend on what you’re best at…
Which to me, is the true meaning of being productive.
If you’re not working within your genius zone, you’re not making the most productive use of your time.
When it comes to automation tools, it’s a bit like with productivity tips…
There a hundreds out on the market to choose from.
But not all automation tools are created equal, so here’s my top picks for systems to take for a spin:
- MailChimp is easy to use for those who don’t have a marketing/techy background
- As it’s one of the cheapest on the market, you are limited in the things you can do with it
- Don’t go with the free version – you won’t be able to achieve the type of automation you need to go hands free
- Price – from $20 month-by-month
- Active Campaign is the next step up form MailChimp
- Offers visual marketing automation, email segmentation and SMS marketing
- Price – from $29 month-by-month for a Lite subscription covering up to 2,500 contacts (the price grows with your email list)
- In my opinion, GetResponse offers the best marketing automation in this price range
- Also covers landing pages and webinars
- $25 month-by-month for a starter subscription covering up to 2,500 contacts (the price grows with your list) and including basic landing pages.
- $49 month-by-month for a pro subscription covering up to 5,000 contacts (the price grows with your list) and including advanced landing pages and webinars with up to 100 attendees.
- This is the system I personally use in my business
- I wouldn’t recommended Infusionsoft for business in start up, you need to be able to justify the monthly cost
- A complete small business CRM and automation tool
- Does advanced email marketing, lead capture and data collection, e-Commerce, marketing and sales automation and a heap more
- Price – $199 month-by-month for a subscription covering 2,500 contacts (the price grows with your list)
If you’re one of those people who could spend days, weeks or even years in the backend of your business and still never even get close to making a dent in all the things you should be doing…
You need to automate now.
In all honesty, automating is harder short-term.
But the long-term benefits (such as taking computer-free holidays and doing what you love everyday) far outweigh the up-front work involved.
The important thing is to jump in with a free trial or demo of a couple of these options, and take a good look around.
Once you’ve found a system you’re happy with, make a month-by-month commitment and start transferring all of your data.
This is the part that can take a while, but I’d like you to set yourself a 30-day deadline in your calendar.
Do what you can in this time, and then go live!
If you wait for everything to be perfect, you’ll never see that increase in productivity you’re looking for.
So enough talking, let’s start automating!
P.S. Excited about automation? If you’d like to learn more about how automation could work in your business, join me at one of my last Doing Day workshops for female entrepreneurs of 2016!
Seats for October and November are filling up fast, so click here to reserve your spot for just $1