Episode #329: Turning on Autopilot for Your Biz
TAYLOR BRADFORD: You’re listening to episode number 329 of the Boss Girl Creative podcast. Today I’m talking about how to turn on autopilot for your business. On to the episode.
Hey, welcome to Episode 329. I’m your host, Taylor Bradford. Thank you so much for tuning in to today’s episode, which is all about how to turn on autopilot for your business and what that actually means. Before I dive into this episode, just letting you know that the Inner Circle membership is on a waitlist. Currently, if you’d like to get your name on the waitlist, go to bossgirlcreative.com/InnerCircle. The doors will reopen December 1st. You do not want to miss it, so get yourself on that waitlist. The membership is a monthly membership for $27 a month that gets you access into the group. It also gets you access to a live Q&A every single month, a business book club, office hours that happen weekly between you and me via my Voxer audio channel, and so much more. So definitely put your name on that waitlist. Do not miss out when the doors reopen. Go to bossgirlcreative.com/InnerCircle.
Okay, let’s dive into how to turn on autopilot for your business and what that actually means. So turning on autopilot, that doesn’t mean that you’re not going to be actively still working in your business or on your business. It just means that some of the things that you do some of the tasks, getting people either on your newsletter or to your website to sign up for that thing that you sell. That’s the part that you can turn on autopilot.
So there are three levels to this that I’m going to talk about today. First level is content marketing. Second level is lead magnet and automation. And third level is affiliates. So those are the three levels that we’re going to be talking about today. I’m going to go through each level, and then I’m going to talk about how the three levels relate within my own businesses. So for the new roofing business, for Boss, Girl Creative, and also for Sugar Creek, in hopes that it gives you some ideas on how to make this work in your own business.
So if you think about the three different businesses that I run, they are three very different businesses in very different niches, but also three different types of businesses. So the roofing is a local business—boots on the ground – legitimately boots on the ground – or boots on the roof. However you want to look at that – and so we’re actively looking to get new customers and get them new roofs. And then the second business, Boss Girl Creative, is solely online. There is no storefront to that. It is solely online, run by social media, listening to the podcast. And then Sugar Creek is service-based. Yes, I have a product with rentals, but it’s really the service that you’re getting versus an actual physical product. Because at the end of the day, I come back and take the rentals and bring them back to my warehouse. So there’s nothing kind of left over, if you will, with Sugar Creek. So three totally different businesses that I’m running, so I’m hoping that as you’re listening, you can slot yourself and what you do into one of these three types of businesses that will help you as I talk about them.
Okay, so let’s talk about the top level of the funnel, which is your content marketing piece. This is blog posts. This is social media posts. This is your newsletter. So your content marketing is what you do to get eyeballs to you on the services and the products that you sell. So I know that in a busy world – or in a perfect world, I should say not a busy world – in a perfect world, we would be creating content, weekly, daily, whatever that might look like. That would be a perfect world. We’re not in a perfect world, and we have busy lives. We have lives, and sometimes creating new content just gets to be a challenge. This is where your archives come in and do the heavy lifting for you. Now I’m not saying don’t give up on creating new content because I absolutely think you need to be creating something new at least monthly, if not weekly, but get your archives doing the heavy lifting.
So what and how do you do that? I suggest you use some type of social media scheduler that will push out your old content for you, that archived content for you. Now there is a level of actual setup and keeping that funnel running behind the scenes, but utilize your old content and craft new things from your old content to push out on social media or share in your newsletter. Do not let those archives fully die. Like, you worked hard on them and new readers, new followers right now, probably don’t know you have the archives, and this is your opportunity to get them deep within your blog. Deep within your content. This is a good thing.
So here are some social media schedulers that are out in the world. Some are free; some have paid subscriptions. You figure out what’s best for you. And this is not an end-all-be-all list. I know that I’m going to forget some, but here is some to get started with. Tailwind specifically does scheduling for Pinterest and Instagram. I believe you have to have two separate accounts to do both of those for this purpose. I think Tailwind is really smart for Pinterest and not necessarily for Instagram. I think there are other platforms that you can use for Instagram. I personally use Later for Instagram, but it’s totally up to you. There’s Hootsuite, SmarterQueue, Sprout Social, Buffer, Missinglettr, Social Bee, Sendible, Agorapulse, and Meet Edgar. Again, this is not an exhaustive list. I know that there are plenty more out there. But find something that will best work for your scenario, for your situation, and for the social media platforms that you need to schedule your content through.
So again, take the content that you’ve already written, already spent time on, craft new messages behind that content, and get it scheduled out on social media so that the social media scheduler is doing the heavy lifting to get potential new eyeballs back into that content so people can discover you. Now I will say, when you are creating that new content from your archives, you need to make sure that your actual lead magnet is up to date in those archives. So whatever it is that you’re wanting that person to do, once they land on that blog post, you need to make sure it’s up to date and gets them into a funnel that makes sense right now. Because maybe you wrote that thing two years ago, we need to make sure that your lead magnet or your opt-in offer, whatever it is that you’ve got attached to that piece, is relative and is current. So just make sure to go back and double-check. If not, make that update.
So the goal for the content marketing piece, the top of the funnel is to set a schedule for crafting your new content. So whether that’s monthly or weekly, or every other week, and then focus on crafting those five to 10 value pieces that you can repurpose and reshare out on your social media. Consistency is always key, but I don’t want you to fear being inconsistent. So create a schedule, whether that’s in an actual physical planner, or through some kind of Google Calendar, or whatever calendar system that you use, and kind of just map that out. What is that gonna look like? Create that plan because without a plan, you’re just gonna try to roll the punches, and inconsistency will be something that you will continue to battle. And I don’t want you to fear that. So set that plan put it in motion, and just set that time aside to do this part. This is how you turn on that autopilot.
Alright, level two is your lead magnet, and then your automation that happens after your lead magnet. So what is a lead magnet? It is simply something that gets somebody on your email list or gets somebody to buy something from you, whether it’s a product or service. What is that thing that leads them to where you want them to go? That’s what you want to figure out. So people are on your website, now what are they supposed to do? Get them on your list? What are your opt-in offers that are going to get them on your list? What is that main lead in? So the goal is to get them on your list, and the reason why this is always the goal is because this is a thing that doesn’t ever go away. There’s no algorithm to your list. Instagram is constantly changing. Facebook is constantly changing. Pinterest is constantly changing. Twitter, it’s been the boyfriend that you probably shouldn’t given up. Twitter hasn’t really changed. It’s not really an algorithm to Twitter. It is literally live-tweeting.
But the goal is to get them on your list so that you can then trigger that automated email sequence that answers the how the what and the why related to the thing that you sell. Your focus on that how, the what, the why in that sequence has to be how it helps them, how it solves a problem for them how it will make their life easier. This is the focus on those automations. It has to be the focus because this is where you’re building that like, know, and trust factor, once you grab them from whatever lead magnet that you are providing to them. Share details about the thing. So in those automation emails, share details about the thing you’re selling the product or the service, and then also answer questions that they might have. So if you can think about what people have asked you about the thing that you sell, and the thing that you make, what are those questions and put that part, put those answers into that automation. This is important. Focus on how your thing helps them. Focus on how it will make their life easier. Focus on problem-solving for them because this is about them. It’s not about you. It’s about how your product is a game-changer in their life. It’s got to solve a pain point for them.
Okay, next level is the affiliates. So I want you to consider crafting an affiliate program for the thing that you sell, whether it’s a product or a service, where you offer a percentage commission in exchange for people referring buyers. So the buy actually has to happen in order to trigger the commission. That’s important. And then automate that sequence so that you are helping them best be the most crafty cheerleader behind your product. Help them help you. Make it easy for them to share graphics. Make it easy for them to share out on social media.
So the goal for an affiliate obviously invite your current customers to be a megaphone for you to be an affiliate and then create an automatic sequence once they get set up to be an affiliate for you or create a referral-based system that’s automatic that tells them how to best cheerlead for you. How to best be a megaphone for you. So that could be tips on how to promote your product, your service, your membership, whatever it is that you sell. You can create promo graphics that they can easily get and share out on their social media. You can also create swipe copy so that you are actually creating the message that they go out and share on their social media. Create a template where they can automatically insert their testimonial into a graphic that you make, make it easy for them to be the megaphones behind your business. Because they will reach audiences that you can’t currently touch. Because they are friends with these people, maybe their family members or co-workers or whatever. So their friends, their family, their co-workers already, like know and trust them and when they start talking about your product and service, that’s an immediate ‘oh my gosh, they like that thing, Okay, I’m gonna go buy that thing from that person because they liked that thing.’ That’s how affiliates work. It’s really, really powerful. And the third step to this autopilot situation that we’re working through.
Okay, so let’s talk about how these three things work and function within my own businesses. So you guys have heard me talking over the last few weeks about the new roofing business that we’ve launched. It’s brand new. It’s – I’m starting from scratch, and so I’m creating these things as we’re moving forward. So with content marketing, I’m not necessarily going to actually create blog posts. While I do think it would be lovely to tackle the insurance aspect of roofing, I don’t necessarily want to be like a known as a whistleblower. Like, our goal is to best help our customer get apples to apples on their roof. And so, I’m not going to necessarily be creating blog posts, per se. There might be some content that I create that is just out there and lives more of a Q&A style thing of things I want you to know are things you should know about the insurance world and the roofing process and what have you. But I’m not going to be actively writing blog posts for our roofing business. I don’t necessarily think that we need to be educators, per se, but I do believe that some pieces of content will appear on the website at some point in the future. But what we will be doing is sharing before and afters of our customer homes and their testimonials and setting up our social media to automate this part.
So as we start to build our customer base, and I start to get pictures of the before and afters and their testimonials, I can create an automatic system of sharing those things out on social media. The goal with this is to get new customers to our website to schedule a free roof inspection. This is the goal to get a new customer. So our lead magnet and our automated emails, what I can do is if I can get them to our website and get them to schedule a free roof inspection, I can capture their email with their permission, and then set up a drip campaign that shares like home tips to tackle each season, or taking care of your home and how to do that in each season. And then craft a sequence, maybe of one or two emails, once I give them that tip email or that tip download or whatever it will be, that encourages taking care of their home through their roof, and what that looks like and what that means and how you can’t necessarily see hail damage from standing on the ground, you actually have to be up on your roof. But if you’re not a professional roofer, I’m not going to encourage you to get up on your roof yourself, etc.
And then the third piece to the funnel that we just talked about is the affiliates. Well, this is going to be our happy customers. Our happy customers are going to be our megaphones for our roofing business. They will receive referral bonuses for every new client that we work with, and we’re going to share our happy customers out on our social media. People like being acknowledged. We want to acknowledge them. So this is the affiliate part to our roofing business.
Alright, let’s switch gears over to Boss Girl Creative. I know for a fact that I need to update my own sequence. Because right now, it was probably written a couple of years ago, and I just need to go in and make a massive overhaul of it. So that’s on the to-do list. But my content marketing piece is the weekly podcast and my monthly newsletter. But what I have been failing to do lately is repurposing and re-sharing my archives on my Facebook, on my Pinterest, on my Twitter. So the goal for Boss Girl Creative is to get them to my website, sign up for my newsletter, and sign up for my membership. Ultimately I want them in the Inner Circle membership. That is the true goal. But I do need to get them on my newsletter in case they don’t put themselves on the waitlist for the Inner Circle membership or sign up when the doors are open. I want to be able to actively still communicate to them monthly and also weekly through the podcast, so that hopefully the next time the doors are open, or they feel called to get on the waitlist that they do so so that I can bring them into the mix when the Inner Circle doors are open again if you want to be on that waitlist which is happening right now go to bossgirlcreative.com/InnerCircle.
So my lead magnet and my automated emails are going to reflect that I want – ultimately want people in the Inner Circle membership. So at one time, my lead magnet was giving out a Before You Hit Publish checklist. But I need to update that because I don’t think that that is a strong indicator of what I want them to ultimately do, which is to join the Inner Circle memberships. So I need to update the actual lead magnet part that I want to send out. And then also again, like I mentioned, update my drip emails that occur once you’re on my list. And I think there’s three of them, but they definitely need a big overhaul.
So one thing I’m considering is giving away one of my masterclasses as my new lead magnet. I have two masterclasses that just sit there, and they probably need to be rerecorded because I believe I did that a couple years ago. But I think that’s what I’m considering for my lead magnet. Ultimately, again, the goal is to get them into the Inner Circle membership, whether that’s on the waitlist or through the doors, and I need to craft something that ultimately leads them into the Inner Circle membership. So something I’m still working on trying to figure out.
And then the third level of this automation is the affiliate program that I have for the Inner Circle membership. So current members, for every new member they refer into the program -so new members are able to refer members into the Inner Circle membership, even when the doors are closed. So their referral bonus is a one-to-one 30-minute strategy session that they can take advantage of. So that is the current referral aspect, the affiliate piece, to this three-level automation autopilot thing that we’re talking about.
And then finally was Sugar Creek. The content marketing aspect is that we share a wedding or a styled editorial every single week. We do have a monthly newsletter. We feature three images that focus on the rentals that were used, either in that wedding or in that styled editorial out on our Instagram and our Facebook every week. And then, we also pin the relevant images from the wedding, from the styled editorial to my Pinterest, both with Sugar Creek and with The House of Sugar Creek because that also brings people to the website. So the goal to get potential clients to our website, that’s the goal for Sugar Creek.
So the lead magnet and the automation aspect, I don’t have one, but I think I need one. And this is something that I have considered for a really long time and kind of struggled because I actually have three different types of customers coming to Sugar Creek. So I’ve got a wedding client, I have a vendor, and I have a non-wedding client. So I need a lead magnet, basically, for each one of those types of people, which can get kind of confusing. So I think it’s going to basically be if you ask to be on the newsletter and you select what type of client you are, then you’re going to get that free lead magnet. I don’t – I think that’s kind of clunky, and I haven’t really figured out if there’s a better way to do that or if there’s one lead magnet for all three, and then the sequence drips based on the type of client they say they are. Again, it’s – yes. Anyways.
So for a wedding client, what the drip sequence could include is areas of focus that rentals are a part of. It’s so fascinating to me when I speak to a wedding client or a potential wedding client, and I say, “Okay, let’s talk about the various areas of focus within a wedding, where rentals might be a part of.” So various areas of focus, and they’re like, “Oh, I haven’t thought about that, oh, I haven’t thought about that.” Their key ideas are something at the altar, something you know, within the reception, but there are other areas that they’re like, “Oh, I never thought about that, or I don’t have a plan for that yet.” With a vendor, I think it would be really cool to share how and why to best sell rentals to uplevel their client events and how it’s more than just needing a florist, and the florist isn’t the person that brings out all of the rentals. I think there is a disconnect there between vendors. It’s very interesting. And then for the non-wedding client, potentially showing them various tablescapes or how to set a table properly, something like that.
So with the automation aspect is a series of emails that show how Sugar Creek can fit into their world beyond weddings because Sugar Creek is basically a one-off client type of business. I don’t get repeat business very often. I do from vendors, but getting my brides to come back and rent from Sugar Creek. The amount of money that is spent in a wedding is not traditionally what you spend in a backyard dinner party or a birthday party or what have you—so trying to get them into the world of how they can utilize Sugar Creek beyond the wedding because I do want repeat business. It’s just a hard thing to tackle, a hard thing to get.
And then for the affiliate part for Sugar Creek, you actually as a client, when you book our rentals, you get added into the super-secret society of Sugar Creek, where you earn Sugar Cubes for each client referral, and you get to stack your Sugar Cubes. So a Sugar Cube is a percent discount off a future rental, and the more they refer, the more Sugar Cubes they can stack – up to five Sugar Cubes on a future rental. This encourages them to think beyond the wedding of backyard dinner parties, just like I mentioned, and baby showers and birthday parties, etc. So I’m trying to get them to think beyond their wedding and how they can use Sugar Creek in the future. They also receive perks. So for every one referral that they send, they get the Sugar Cube, and they also get a perk. For every three referrals, they get a perk plus the Sugar Cubes. For every five referrals, they get a perk plus the Sugar Cubes. So the Sugar Cubes actually have an expiration date. You don’t want them to dissolve. And that is the affiliate program for Sugar Creek.
So I hope that this has helped you start to think about how to turn on autopilot for your business. I hope this has given you some ideas. I hope this helps you revamp your current whatever it is that you’re currently doing. If you found this episode valuable, I hope that you’ll share it with your business bestie. That is the best way for new listeners to find the podcast Boss Girl Creative. And until next time, don’t forget to put yourself on the waitlist for the Inner Circle membership. Go to bossgirlcreative.com/InnerCircle, and until next time, I hope you have a great rest of your week.