Online Business Management

Keep Your Business Organized with a CRM Program

Keep your business organized with a CRM Program. Staying organized is paramount if you want to run a successful business, especially if you have multiple clients. Investing in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software program is one such way to stay organized while building your client relationships.

In its simplest form, a CRM program is like an online address book, or an old fashioned Rolodex (remember those?!) that keeps your client’s information all in one place. Basic info such as address, email, phone number, and birthday can be collected when they sign up for your services. Then, as you get to know them better, you can also ask for various personal or business information that can help you know your clients in a deeper way.

Many CRM programs have spaces for notes and next steps, such as follow up phone calls or sessions, so at the beginning of each day your CRM will provide an automated to-do list based on those next steps. Have you tried to keep all these details in your head or logged into your phone calendar? You will know that sometimes items get missed or forgotten, which can damage your credibility. Automating the to-do list process saves you time, money, and embarrassment.

Adding a Personal Touch to Your Client Relationships

Building a client relationship also means building a friendship with that person. Yes, YOU are the owner and the one with the expertise but that doesn’t mean you can’t be friendly outside of business. Learn about their business or their life; ask about their family; wish them a Happy Birthday or Happy Anniversary; ask questions about their latest vacation. Any little tidbit of personal information that comes up in your sessions, emails, or other conversations can be noted in your CRM and added to your to-do list. A simple email with, “Welcome back from vacation! Let’s get your next session booked,” adds a personal touch to your relationship.

Have you ever considered sending birthday cards to your clients? If you gather that information during the onboarding session, note it in your CRM program. Then every week or month, you can do a search for birthdays and send out cards. Sending eCards is certainly simple but also consider sending handwritten birthday cards with a simple message. That’s one way to stand out from the crowd since everyone’s email is jammed these days.

What Else Can a CRM Program Do?

Very often CRMs have an email system integrated so you can send individual messages or bulk messages instead of paying for a separate email provider. These email services also allow you to segment your clients based on what packages or products they purchased so you can run dedicated campaigns just to those people touting your latest products.

CRMs also offer ways to track leads so you can follow up with them on a regular basis or send them emails specific to their needs. This is especially handy since you always want to gather people into your sales funnel and you don’t want anyone falling through the cracks.

As you can see, CRM programs can handle a variety of tasks that keep your business organized. One note: there are dozens of CRM programs so do your due diligence when researching. Pricing structures vary considerably but also, choose a program from an established company that offers support and security updates.

Get More Tips for Personalizing the Client Relationship

Even if you’re just starting to research CRM options, you can still personalize your client relationship with tips I’ll share when you book a Strategy session with me. Spend up to two hours with me where we will work together to plan & create strategies to grow your business. Curious if we would be a good fit for each other? Check the services page on my website or go HERE to connect for a coffee chat. What could it hurt? Looking forward to talking with you soon!

VA, OBM, or Strategic Consultant?

My beginning was in a dream. Seriously, I actually had a dream years ago, woke up, and wrote what I dreamed – which was of me doing the work I was great at but remotely from home in my own business.

But I didn’t know where to start. So I went back to school to finish my degree. In one of my business classes, I had an assignment to create a business plan. So I thought, why not just put your dream in a business plan. Couldn’t hurt, right? It did so well, my professor wanted to enter my business plan in a national business competition. I did not know at the time that what I had a dream of would become its own industry: Virtual Assistant (VA)! I was working on small projects here & there but I had a full-time job as well so I didn’t want to rock the boat and go all in.

Fast-forward a few years, and for the last time in my corporate career, I was caught in another layoff. While I continued working on small projects, I applied to many job openings. Oh, I got the call backs for even 2nd and 3rd interviews but could never quite land the jobs. Divine intervention? I am sure it was! I had to take the plunge and put my many skills into my dream.

Of course, I started off wrong! But my mistakes can be your gain. I started my business offering a few different services. Too many different services as a matter of fact. I gained clarity after taking so many courses, revamping my offerings, and re-launching. Through it all, business grew fast and over the years, it became clear to me that I needed to leverage my knowledge and experience because my clients were often looking for something more that what the VA industry knew as a Virtual Assistant. They were looking for or needed an Online Business Manager (OBM).  I wished I had invested in a business coach much sooner. As I said before, my mistakes can be your gain.

You may be wondering what’s the difference between a VA and an OBM. You SHOULD be wondering what’s the difference because I’ve seen so many business owners often say they need an “assistant”. They then proceed to come up with a wishlist of OUT OF SCOPE duties of a VA they were looking for.

What is the difference between an OBM and a VA?

OBMs are managers. They strategize and then assign tasks to the team for implementation. VAs are implementers who carry out the tasks, usually with detailed instructions. 

OBMs are responsible for the daily operations of the entire business or project. VAs are responsible for only their work or tasks. 

OBMs lead teams which often include a VA. VAs are team members. 

OBMs work with the business owner to discuss strategy and priorities. VAs get things done without control over workflow or priorities.

OBMs focus on Management. Inherently, they must shift from doing all the things to managing. VAs focus on doing…or Implementing.

Entrepreneurs and business owners usually hire VAs when they’re ready to grow and need help with various tasks and projects. VAs are wonderful and invaluable! Most times, when growing a business, this is where business owners should begin.

Often when the business owner becomes overwhelmed and can’t or doesn’t want to be the one who is managing the day-to-day operations, they want someone who can step in and take over this responsibility. This is when an OBM would be ideal! The OBM would essentially become the right-hand man – or woman in my case. 

Strategic Consulting

So you might be saying to yourself, “I’m looking for a higher level of support but I’m not quite ready for an OBM”. You’re very hands-on, or not comfortable with turning over the managing of your “baby” to someone else, or you may not be financially ready for an OBM yet. Maybe you’re looking for clarity and support to get your business to the next level, but you don’t know where to start. Are you full of ideas, but feel paralyzed when it comes to taking action? Or you know you want to SCALE, but the idea of hiring a team is overwhelming. You feel…STUCK.

These are the EXACT struggles many of my clients have faced before they began working with me. This is my Zone of Genius. I help entrepreneurs gain clarity and provide solutions for your Business Systems, Operations, and Team.

I have spent the last few years working with some of the most amazing business owners in the world to help them create systems and implement strategies that foster growth.

If you’re ready to dig deep and do the work, together we will sort through the ideas in your head, the challenges you are facing, and break them down into actionable steps to get you where you want and NEED to be in your business.

Ready to discuss the possibilities? Click HERE to book a FREE discovery call.