It's the same old story. You don't spend as much time together as you used to. You're trying to get that "loving feeling" back, but, as usual, you've got too much on your plate. There are leads to follow, faxes to send and business trips to plan. It doesn't leave room for much else.
Fortunately, it doesn't have to be that way. You can fall in love all over again - with your business. And doing that means that you'll be able to spend more time at what you're really good at - which means you'll also be making more money! And isn't that the whole point? But in order to do that, you're going to need to free up some time.
Here are a few tricks:
· Put systems in place to save you time. Even looking for passwords or addresses can eat up valuable hours. A system can be as simple as getting into the habit of always sending new customers a thank you note. To be certain the system will work, make sure you get in the habit of inputting new customers in your marketing database so your customer relationship (CRM) software program can remind you when to follow up next. You can also have your CRM program remind you to send incentives or thank yous for referrals.
· Don't try to do it all. You went into business because you had a dream. So why are you still your own secretary? Thanks to cyberspace, a virtual assistant can help you clear your plate. Working from remote locations, virtual assistants provide small businesses and entrepreneurs secretarial support and office management. Unlike on-site employees, they take up no space, will work on a retainer and can do as little or as much as much as you need, from project planning to event and meeting coordination.
· Let software work harder so you don't have to. You know that in order to keep the customers coming, you have be rock-solid in following those leads. So once you get those phone numbers organized, a good CRM program will remind you when you need to follow-up with customers. An even better one will send your emails and faxes according to prompts, leaving you more time to do what you love. When shopping for a CRM program, stick to companies that offer web-based software. According to the author of The CRM Handbook, Jill Dyche, web-based CRM software is more flexible, accessible and secure than PC-bound software, saving you not only time, but headaches and needless worry.
Getting back to basics and making a few changes allows you to spend more time increasing your bottom line and as a bonus, you might just get back that "loving feeling"!
About the author
Clate Mask is president of Infusion Software which produces ManagePro CRM -- a Web-based customer relationship software package that helps entrepreneurs and small business owners double or triple their sales by automating and improving their marketing, sales and client management. For more information or to take a test drive, please visit http://ManageProCRM.com/go/see
Author: Clate Mask
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