The more you can automate, the more you can focus on your priorities. Automation can make any area in life easier ranging from money distribution to making sure every task in your business gets done.
For successful content creators who find themselves overwhelmed with all of the work, automation is often the next step. Many people wish to automate some or all of their work, but regardless of how much you want to automate right now, it will create the potential for dramatic improvement.
I say dramatic improvement because your improvement is based on how you use your newfound time.
Here are some ways that you can automate your content brand.
#1: Post In A Cycle
One of the most tedious tasks for most content brands is coming up with the social media content. Instead of curating new ideas every day, search for the evergreen ideas that you can continue posting in a continuous cycle.
I have hundreds of tweets that I put in a queue. These tweets automatically get sent out, and the cycle infinitely continues. I can add more tweets to this cycle when I come out with new content, but I don’t have to search for additional content for a long time.
I originally kept a CSV file containing all of these tweets with their links. After modifying the dates using Command F, I could then upload the CSV file into HootSuite’s bulk uploader and schedule over 100 tweets in just six clicks.
Since then, I started to use ViralTag which puts all of my tweets into a queue. You can set yourself up on ViralTag, never log in again, and your social media posts will continue to get posted in a continuous cycle.
I only log into ViralTag when I want to add new content or temporarily pause the cycle (i.e. I don’t tweet on Christmas Day).
#2: Delegate Your Tasks
The key to automating any business is to delegate your tasks to others. You can’t automate everything. You can’t send an auto response to every email and expect to build healthy relationships.
To determine which tasks you need to delegate, write down a list of the tasks you do. After you write that list, write a second list of all of the tasks you enjoy doing.
Any task on the first list that doesn’t appear on the second list needs to get delegated.
I tend to make at least one new hire per month. That allows me to assess my needs and grow at a gradual pace. Some day, I plan on hiring 5-10 people every month, and that number will expand in proportion to my business’ growth and needs.
#3: Provide Your Freelancers With Rubrics
When you hire a new freelancer, that freelancer will not fully know what to do. This isn’t a knock on freelancers. Imagine you getting hired but receiving vague instructions. I wouldn’t know what to do either.
And just because a freelancer has been working for you for several months doesn’t mean they fully know your expectations.
To make your expectations and instructions perfectly clear, you need to provide your freelancers with a rubric.
Leave no stones unturned. Make it as clear as possible. For my podcast editor and show notes writer, I provided this rubric for writing the show notes:
In the past, this freelancer would provide me with the show notes, and I would customize them to my standard. My clearly laying out my standard, both of us boosted our productivity.
Feeling inspired, I created a rubric for my Twitter Growth Expert. He was already doing a great job for me, but I felt like we were missing something. I’m improving at communicating with my freelancers, but during those times, I was downright terrible with the communication (it took me a few days just to respond to the simplest requests).
The rubric allowed us to get more clear on my expectations and his work ethic. The end result was more productivity for both of us and more rapid Twitter growth.
These rubrics are more productive for both of us because there’s no question about what needs to get done. My freelancers don’t have to guess anymore, and I don’t have to correct their work anymore. I create a rubric for every freelancer I hire. The rubric that takes me an hour to create will save me several hours every week.
#4: Automating The Inbox
You shouldn’t automate everything that goes in your inbox, but you can get really close. If you frequently find yourself trying to schedule things through email, you’re better off creating an online scheduler using a tool like Acuity.
That way, instead of the back-and-forth “I can do 3 pm this Wednesday. Does that work for you?” you provide your availability and the other person chooses a time and date from your availability that also works for them.
You can take this a step further by hiring a freelancer to respond to most of your emails. Only advance to this step if…
Your inbox is swamped
You have a continuous stream of incoming emails that you need to respond to
If you choose to hire someone, give that person a rubric showing them how to respond to common types of emails. These types of emails depend on what you get in your inbox.
An inbox detox can also solve the problem. In an inbox detox, you unsubscribe to one newsletter every day (except for mine) and then get fewer emails in your inbox.
Automating your business will open up more time. The way you use that time determine the results you’ll get. While this statement is obvious, it carries more weight since automating your business is an investment.
You invest your money to get your time back. To make the automation worthwhile, you need to make more money from your extra time than you spend to gain that extra time.
What are your thoughts on automating your business? Do you have any automation tips for us? Do you have a question for me? Sound off in the comments section below.