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When it comes to marketing your on-line business you need to be sure that you have all angles covered. From my experience based on first hand insight working with start-ups and from all the start-up advice and terminology out there, the keyword that you’ll often come across is ‘Automate’.


Whether you’re running your on-line business as a side venture aka ‘Sidepreneur’ alongside your 9-5 job, juggling parenthood, and more than likely sacrificing social time, concentrating on making your ‘hobby’ a profitable business can often be very difficult, time consuming, and demanding.

You’ll soon begin to realise that automation is the key driver to not only successfully managing your business, but also allowing you free time to enjoy a lifestyle out of work…making the whole process ‘Stress Free’ and a lot more manageable.

So it’s time to let Go… and automate, to help you compete more effectively

What can I automate?

In a world where we can take a back seat and let technology take over here’s a brief insight into how entrepreneurs can automate their business:

1. Social

Like any business you’re going to have to promote your brand. To achieve this you’re going to have to get social.

Now especially if you’re a ‘sidepreneur’, you’re already thinking I don’t have time to send out regular Facebook posts or Tweets. Don’t worry, there are plenty of social media automation tools out there to help keep you consistent with your social activity and ensure you’re keeping your audience engaged.

So if you’re looking to automate and schedule your social activity look to these social management dashboards:
Hootsuite: Offers 30 day FREE trial. Collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks from Facebook, LinkedIn, and recently integrated with Instagram et el.
Tweetdeck: Specifically for Twitter, you’ll be able to organise and engage with your followers efficiently.
Buffer: Automagically share content you add to buffer across to your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.
Sprout Social: 30 day FREE trial. Helps you to seamlessly collaborate across your social channels.

On the whole, many of the social dashboards will allow you to:

•Manage multiple social media accounts
•Schedule posts at your desired time
•View analytical insights into the effectiveness of your social campaigns.

2. Email Marketing

Nitty gritty jobs like email marketing campaigns to your audience can often be forgotten about as an integral marketing ploy to engage and attract your customers, and most importantly build relationships. It’s a tactic you can’t simply can’t ignore! If you have given customers the opportunity to join your mailing list, the chances are you will accrue email subscribers over time so make use of these contacts. Don’t allow your email list to be dormant, after all email marketing is important for any lead generation strategy, helping you to drive sales.

You’ll be able to:

• Manage your email contact list
• Segment your list
• Customise the look of your emails
• Manage multiple email templates
• Review analytic reports of email campaigns

With a wide range of providers at your disposal you can start taking advantage of that client list you’ve gained and schedule emails with email service providers like:

As a SaaS email provider MailChimp offers The Free-Forever plan, perfect for start-ups with tight budgets. Optional plans are available to suit your business size and budget.
Free for 30 days, Get Response say it’s the ‘The world’s easiest email marketing’ platform, and with the innovative email creator you’ll be able to make your business more attractive to your audience.

3. Shopping Cart Abandonment

Now there is nothing worse than potential customers browsing on your website, placing items into their shopping cart only to abandon at checkout! You’re left wondering why and if they will ever return.

With automated shopping cart abandonment emails you can re-engage with those potential shoppers and remind them about the products they added to the shopping cart. Ask them if they’d still like to purchase, and offer an incentive to encourage them to do so. Placing your offering back into the consumer’s mind-set provides the potential to land a sale and ensures your business is competing as effectively as possible with your competitors.

Stay Tuned as Part 2 of ‘Is it time to automate’ covers back-office automation.

by Tanya Wasiuta on 21/07/2015

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