Have you ever found yourself staying up late, in order to reply to the 100 unread emails you have. Or better yet, scrambling between documents trying to find the info you need to send for a client? If so, you are not alone!
No matter what stage you’re at in your business and what industry you are in, it can be hard to set boundaries for your work. That’s why it’s so important to find the right tools that can help you to be more efficient with your time and energy!
That is why today I want to share with you a tool that has completely revolutionized my start-up business.
I want to introduce you to HoneyBook.
HoneyBook is a business management tool that allows independent business owners to manage projects from start to finish in one place. You’re able to utilize templates to keep yourself from writing those emails and creating proposals in bed at midnight, and it gives your clients one place to access everything they need to work with you.
Before Honeybook, I had several different programs I needed to access just to get one contract out. Between the template in a Google Doc, then moving it to Canva to make it pretty, and then again moving it over to another program that allowed for digital signatures. It was a mess. I was also working from a spreadsheet to track the leads I was communicating with and updating it constantly for each potential client and where we were in pipeline to get them to sign up with me. I was tracking and updating it constantly and yet I still missed on following up with people or sending the right files on time.
So, today I want to share with you how I got started with HoneyBook so you too can get organized, get some time back, and ultimately grow your business without working those crazy hours!
The first place that helped streamline my daily work was to start managing all new inquiries inside HoneyBook. I tend to get inquiries from so many different places, and I was spending way too much time tracking this information on spreadsheets and then asking the same questions to these leads over and over, and looking back to find their info later.
So it was a game changer for me finding out that there are three easy ways to automatically add new inquiries into HoneyBook.
The first way is by people completing a contact form. Although your website probably has a built in contact form, it is likely it is not directly linked to a system that will tract leads for you. So first, I recommend adding the HoneyBook contact form to your website. You can customize the questions so you get all the information you need upfront, and new submissions are automatically added to HoneyBook for you.
A second method to add new inquiries directly to HoneybBook is adding your direct link to your bio on social media! This allows you to share your form without any embedding necessary and is a great way to get the info you need from folks who slide into your DM’s.
For those inquiries coming through email, you can check out the HoneyBook’s Chrome Extension. With this installed, you can automatically add new inquiries to HoneyBook without leaving your Gmail inbox! I have it installed and it has saved a lot of time and effort. I can create their project right away and everything I need will already be in HoneyBook.
Once new inquiries have been added, the project pipeline is your best friend! This is a dashboard that gives you a bird's eye view of where all your projects currently stand - from first inquiry to project completion. I live on this dashboard so I am always up to date on where all my projects are in my process.
As we all know getting a good lead is just the first step, now you have to make sure you are following up with them and pushing them along your pipeline.
So the next question you need to ask yourself is: “How do I like to follow up with my new inquiries today?” Do you like to send an email to introduce yourself, or do you prefer to schedule a call? Do you like to send them a pricing document to review your services or do you prefer to ask them some questions and get more details? Every business is different, so you need to make sure you understand your process and what you want to happen next.
It’s super important to me that new inquiries get followed up with quickly, but I always want my replies to feel personal. That’s why having templates set up in HoneyBook comes in handy!
Send an email: The faster you respond, the more likely you are to book that client. What’s great is it’s super easy to add your personalized email templates into HoneyBook, so you don’t have to write the same intro over and over. This is a great way to make sure all new inquiries get the info they need quickly.
I have quite a few different templates loaded into HoneyBook for different occasions. There is no limit. So as you work and find yourself repeating an email more than once, make it a template and simplify your life.
Schedule a call: Meeting face-to-face on Google Meet with a new potential client is a great opportunity to build a relationship and establish if there’s a mutual fit. HoneyBook’s scheduling tool saves me so much back and forth! All I do is pre-set my availability and pop in my custom meeting link to my email template. My potential clients select a time that works for them and get confirmation and reminders automatically.
Send a questionnaire: Another feature I have found so helpful is their questionnaires. Often I need to get some more details from my clients to help me prepare for a meeting or before moving forward with a contract? You can use questionnaire templates to make sure your clients answer all the important questions that you need answers to. That way you can make sure they’re a good fit quickly.
Send a brochure: Brochures are a wonderful way to present yourself and your services to potential clients. Paper brochures are awesome, but they can get expensive and become outdated quickly if you adjust your services or pricing. So I really appreciate these virtual brochures within HoneyBook. When a potential client receives a brochure that I send, they'll be able to select a package or list of services that they're interested in. This has allowed me to show them all that I have to offer, while giving them the chance to select what is best for their organization. Having a digital brochure through HoneyBook allows you to showcase you services and makes it so easy for your potential clients to work with you!
Bonus, Automations that will save you hours!:With all the things you have on your to-do list for every client and project, every bit of automation can help. HoneyBook automations have allowed me to automate the steps I want while still giving me complete control where I need it.
Automations allow me to automate my first replies to inquiries, automatically send next steps when a client makes a payment, and send a questionnaire asking for feedback when a project is complete.
Automating these steps in my process gives me so much peace of mind and has freed up an incredible amount of mental space so I can focus on moving my projects forward.
Okay, so you’ve added your client into HoneyBook and you’ve followed up with them appropriately. You’ll probably find (as I did), that this speedy yet personalized and professional communication sets you apart, and it doesn’t stop there!
When it’s time to book, if you don't have a good system set up then sending a contract and invoice can be a lengthy process for you and your clients. Before HoneyBook, I used to send my clients a contract and invoice separately, and sometimes I would receive a signed contract but no payment, or vice versa. Such a hassle to follow up. Enter the HoneyBook proposal file.
The proposal merges these two steps by combining the contract and invoice into one file! I just insert my template, review the payment schedule and contract, make adjustments where needed, and send.
When a client receives my proposal, they can review the services, sign their contract and submit their payment - all in one place! This has saved me so much time and makes booking so easy for my clients. It used to take me hours to put together a contract and invoice, but it only takes me a few minutes now that I use HoneyBook!
And better yet, if you used the digital brochure feature I mentioned earlier and your clients select the package they desire from it, a proposal and contract are automatically created for you with their selected packages. I still take the time to review the payment schedule and details but it's a pretty seamless process that has saved me big time.
There you have it! With a little better understanding of the HoneyBook tools and how they work together, you are ready to get booked quickly and efficiently. There are more features within the program that I haven't even addressed yet, but these highlights alone have made my investment into the program a life change. It might take some time and effort to get all settled in at first, but I promise it’s worth it! With my help and the help of the world class HoneyBook team you’ll be there in no time!
And if you are interested, you can sign up for a free 14 day trial to test it out and get familiar with the platform. Do yourself (and your business) a favor! Get 50% off your first year by starting a trial with my link below. You’ll wonder why you didn’t do it sooner!