Apps I Love: AgileCRM

If you’ve been following along this automation journey for more than about a minute, you’ll already be familiar with the acronym CRM: Customer Resource Management.

Being familiar with the terminology is one thing. CRMs sound great in theory - an easy way to manage customers. Simple, right?

In reality, the process of finding a CRM that works for you can be a long and winding road. 

There’s considerations such as setup and monthly costs, integration abilities, app capacities and more - finding the CRM that’s best for your needs is not as straightforward as just signing up for the first one you land on. All too often, teams can bounce from CRM to CRM, leading to piling costs, sunken time and missed opportunities. Choosing the right CRM for you is an integral part of setting yourself - and your team - up for ongoing success and a harmonious customer management experience. 

One of the elements I find most appealing about AgileCRM is its simplicity....

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More automation resolutions for 2019.

With the new year ramping up and many of us returning to work, I encouraged you last week to consider how simple automation integrations could greatly impact upon your 2019 results.

Since there’s so much automation is capable of, I’m back with more tips on how to make this year your most productive yet. Whether you’re a sole trader and your team consists of you alone, or you’re managing a team of hundreds, automation can tighten and streamline business function on any scale.

 

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Welcome to 2019: Time for those automation resolutions.

Happy New Year!

The Christmas leftovers have been eaten, the wrapping paper gathered, the midnight countdown to 2019 has rolled over - so, what now?

I’m sure many of us have already set some resolutions and are looking forward to this year with a fresh enthusiasm and drive in our step.

Before you dive back into the office and turn off your auto-response, let’s take a look at HOW this year can, truly, build on the wins and lessons of 2018, and how changes to your automation integrations could ramp up your productivity to a whole new level.

Here’s some automation resolutions for you to consider and adopt as your own…

 

 

 

  • Improve your internal communications. Maybe you need to cut down on the amount of back-and-forth emailing through the use of a...
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Merry Christmas from Agility Automation

There’s a little bit of magic that takes place each Christmas - and I don’t mean the Santa-turning-up-without-a-chimney type. It’s the magic that occurs when everyday routines slow, when champagne bottles are popped, and when family and friends gather and reflect on the year that was.

It’s the time we’re able to take out from the demands of daily lives in order to evaluate how we’ve spent our time, what we’ve achieved, and how we can recalibrate in order to step into the next year with focus, intent, and anticipation.

This year I’ve had the privilege of working with businesses of all shapes and sizes. Partnering with teams across many different industries has allowed me to get a glimpse of other people’s journeys and take part in celebrating their successes. When we’re able to work together to find solutions that allow companies to achieve what it is they truly set out to, there’s a great sense of satisfaction for...

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Prepping for 2019: Identify where automation can make a world of difference.

With Christmas upon us, thoughts about the New Year aren’t far behind. For many of us, we start to consider what it is we’d like to achieve. What do we want to build? What do we want to leave behind? What changes, ideas, and innovations can we implement to give ourselves space for expansive and exciting growth? 

For small business owners, the notion of growth can be both exhilarating - and terrifying. Balancing overhead alongside opportunity is not for the faint of heart. There may be natural areas you can identify that are ripe for attention, but the thought of bringing on another employee to give you the muscle you need is prohibitive.

Before the resolutions kick in in earnest, I’d encourage you to take a step back and look at the year that’s been. What’s worked well for you and your team? Where are your pain points? Are there areas where simple, innovative changes could make a world of difference to your output and success rates?

Take the time...

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Set your schedule to autopilot

‘Looking forward to meeting. How’s 3pm Tuesday?’

‘No can do unfortunately… how about 1.30pm Wednesday? Or 4pm Wednesday?’

‘I’m at an all day event. Monday week?’

Spotted in the wild: two time-pressed individuals trying to book in one half-hour meeting. By the time the meeting’s locked, it’s taken almost as much time in back-and-forth, pop-up email distractions, and flipping through calendars to make it happen.

There’s a far better solution.

The rise of online scheduling has given birth to a wave of apps that do what they say they will: simplify scheduling for both parties and remove mental clutter from your daily task list. There’s more than one good option to choose from:

  • Calendly. Calendly’s 100% free, all day, every day. That’s a nice place to start. Beyond that, Calendly works by asking you to set your availability, opening up time slots that can then be booked by clients, coworkers, and...
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Save time with online signatures

Ever get those emails that make you wince purely out of the little annoyances they bring with them?

For me, it used to be those asking me to ‘sign something’. Cue the process of printing the attachment out, signing it, either returning it via fax, or scanning it back in and re-attaching to the email. It was laborious, wasted paper, and meant a simple process interrupted my day when it shouldn’t have. 

You can probably tell where this is going by now… back to the land we normally inhabit: the happy space of automation. Because (as usual) there’s a way to let technology take care of that for you. 

Online signatures remove the annoyance and wastage of printing/signing/somehow returning. All within your browser, you can effortlessly and elegantly sign documents and send them back to the interested parties. There’s a number of added benefits that come with online signatures, too, including the ability to highlight exactly where signatures...

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The ABCs of sales and marketing automation (Part Two).

Jump back a post if you’re yet to read part one of our introduction to sales and marketing automation.

Once you’ve found a great CRM you can trust wholeheartedly with your customer’s data, and you’ve considered what can be integrated to drive data input in and out of that CRM, it’s time to ramp up to the next level of what automation can offer to your business - marketing automation.

Marketing automation is a dream come true - when it’s approached with the same kind of understanding and consideration that any other kind of marketing would be treated with. Automation isn’t a one-size-fits-all for your business solutions. If you don’t have an effective understanding of your customer base, existing and potential, or you’re unsure how to communicate the value of your product or service, automating your systems isn’t going to solve these issues.

However, when you DO know why it is you do what you do, and how it will be of...

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The ABCs of sales and marketing automation (Part One).

automation marketing sales Sep 12, 2018

This is the first in a two-part series focused on the ABCs of sales and marketing automation. Take a look at the introduction here.

Hopefully, you kept that list handy I mentioned in my last post, noting down manual activities related to your sales and marketing functionality which you’re finding yourself repeating on a regular basis. I want to introduce you to some simple tools which could turn these manually repeating tasks into a thing of the past. 

There are thousands of automation solutions, products and services available on the market. Saying yes to every app or system will have an inverse impact on your business to a strategically considered and carefully implement automation solution. 

The easiest way to feel empowered rather than overwhelmed is to work from the ground up - focusing on the big-picture sales and marketing automation tools that could make the most effective changes, and moving into the minute detail as a secondary stage.

With this in mind,...

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The ABCs of sales and marketing automation (a primer).

There’s really no business activity automation can’t improve.

As an automation expert, there’s nothing more satisfying for me than the change people experience when automation’s working hand-in-hand with their daily efforts, bringing about results that are greater than the sum of its parts.

Automation’s about working smarter, not harder, and when it comes to combining your sales and marketing efforts with automated approaches, this is where it can truly excel.

Sales = the action of selling something. Automation = the technique of making a process or system operate automatically.

Sales automation = the automatic operation of sales.

It’s an attractive proposition.

There’s another equation that should be coming pretty apparent right about now… sales automation = the potential to increase profits without adding any additional manual work.

True sales and marketing automation applies simple logic to the overall sales process that’s...

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