With any business, regardless of whether it is a marketing company or not, an ever-increasingly technological world means you must constantly evaluate business processes and modernize your marketing business to conform with expectations from your business partners as well as taking advantage of all the new technology has to offer in how you bring in new customers/ clients!
A modern back end, all those pesky activities that keep the lights on and bills paid, ultimately makes your business more efficient and also makes your life a lot less stressful.
From payment platforms to automatic invoicing, as well as automating new tasks demanded in the digital age, this article shows you the best ways to keep your business on the top of its game when it comes to the back end!
Getting Payments from Clients
One major function of a marketing company is to take payments from clients.
In the bad old days, that meant sending paper invoices through the mail, your client entering that information into a bill payment system that ultimately cut a check, which was mailed to your business. The whole process might take days or weeks, creating a cash flow problem. More businesses fail from poor cash flow than poor sales [up to 82% of small businesses fail due to cash flow problems].
Today, you have a host of options for collecting accounts receivables and many of them result in a much faster collection that those previously available.
Sure, you might collect accounts receivable in person or via mail, as in the past, but through the magical world of the internet, bill collection is faster and, possibly, easier.
But no matter how you do it, collecting account receivables is an important function, and there are now many amazing platforms that can make this process easy, efficient, and cheap to improve cash flow and increase margins. Not only do these financial platforms ease cash flow, but they also automate the backend, which reduces the need for manual processes that are slow, expensive (since you have payroll for workers operating manual systems), and fraught with the potential for errors.
My current invoicing system handles all my billing and tracks unpaid invoices so I know quickly if a bill is past due and can adjust my efforts on the part of clients who aren’t current. That is a big time-saver, plus it ensures I don’t incur additional costs that I might not recoup from delinquent clients.
Total is a great example of new options for businesses to manage their finances from pricing through payments. Total is an all-in-one business finance platform that allows you to draw up pricing estimates, send invoices, and take payments through an app or merchant account.
You can choose to order a hardware system or the mobile platform to modernize your marketing business, but these all-in-one platforms are a real lifesaver and time saver when it comes to a marketing business.
Image Source, Pexels
Find the Perfect Invoicing System
Before taking payment, the first thing you need to do is send an invoice. If you are lucky enough to be inundated with many clients and need to send many invoices, sometimes multiple in a specific time period, invoicing can be pretty tricky–keeping current on billing, tracking paid and unpaid invoices, and updating estimates of cash on hand takes time and other resources that businesses may not have, especially in small businesses where everyone is stretched to meet the needs of customers.
But now with the help of invoicing and payment platforms available through the internet, there are many tools that are often free, or very affordable, that offer smart and quick solutions to help schedule and work out different invoices.
PayPal is a great example of one such system and the one I recommend to modernize your marketing business. PayPal is available through a mobile and desktop application. For mobile, you’ll also want the PayPal Business app to access all the features available through the desktop portal. PayPal creates invoices and manages them, reminding you when an invoice is past due and notifying you that a payment was made on an invoice. PayPal also automatically sends reminders you and to the client when they fail to pay an invoice on time, which allows me to adjust my efforts for these clients.
The cost for PayPal is reasonable. There’s no upfront fee. Instead, PayPal takes a small percentage from payments or, in the case of international clients, takes its fee by a small reduction in the exchange rate. The one criticism I have of PayPal comes at tax time when PayPal’s reporting is less than user-friendly.
You can send repeat invoices, different invoices, and any invoice that you need to send, there will be an app out there that can help solve the source of your stress!
Manage your Social Media Pages in the Best Way
As a business owner or marketer in a business, you understand the importance of a good social media presence. To many businesses, this is the front face and the front door to a business in many people’s eyes. Customers and prospective customers explore the business and even interact with the business to form a relationship with the business that brings value to both parties. So, keeping a good social media strategy is key!
But, the back-end effort needed to maintain a valuable social media presence across multiple platforms can strain any company and is especially hard for small businesses. To be successful, your social media marketing must be sustained by valuable content shared across platforms on a consistent basis. That might take hours everyday between crafting unique messages that resonate on the different social platforms, creating long-form content for your website, and monitoring performance so you can improve over time.
Automation is the key to managing the time and resources necessary for successful social media tactics.
For instance, did you know what most social media platforms have tools that help you analyze the audience and what they are doing with your social media posts? From that data, you can build and structure your strategy to help maximize the efficiency and success rate of your social media strategies! It is all possible and all free too!
Also, when you have time, schedule your posts through services like Hootsuite, Buffer, and ContentCal. So, when you are busy meeting clients, your social media is still current and fresh, and new media is being presented to your potential customers on an ongoing basis. And, best of all, these tools come with a very reasonable price tag. Buffer even brings in content from others in your social sphere to make it easy to maintain the 80/20 mix between non-promotional and promotional content that’s key to building your influence online.
Feel the Benefits
Last but not least, feel the benefits when you modernize your marketing business! Using such systems as a back-end for your business, especially if you are smaller, is so beneficial in maximizing your efficiency and minimizing your stress.
Need marketing help to support business growth?
We welcome the opportunity to show you how we can make your marketing SIZZLE with our data-driven, results-oriented marketing strategies. Sign up for our FREE newsletter, get the 1st chapter of our book on digital marketing analytics – FREE, or contact us for more information on hiring us.
Hausman and Associates, the publisher of MKT Maven, is a full-service marketing agency operating at the intersection of marketing and digital media. Check out our full range of services.