Most people have a lot they want to (or need) to accomplish on a daily basis and we all have some tasks that we choose to put off for as long as we can. In this week's blog, Ways to End Procrastination, we discussed steps you can take to end the vicious procrastination cycle. This companion newsletter provides tips on how to create a plan for automating some common business tasks so you can get more done.
In this issue:
Having a plan really does help fight procrastination. Here's an example - you meet someone at an event or you find out it's someone's birthday. You want to send a follow-up message to keep in touch, but that task requires more effort than you can give it at the moment so it gets pushed further and further down on the "to-do" list, to the point where it may not get done at all. Maybe you weren't sure what to say, or how to say it, and you had so many other things that you needed to get done...
What if you planned in advance for these occasions? What if you could have chosen from a pre-designed birthday card or an 'It was nice to meet you' message and sent them something within minutes of your encounter? In today's busy workplace, it's unusual for people to respond so punctually, so your message is sure to be memorable!
The key to being able to respond quickly to business situations is to anticipate your needs and prepare suitable correspondence in advance. Having a portfolio of well-designed emails (and eCard templates if you're a CorpNote member) allows you to quickly customize and send messages as the need arises.
Think about what your common business tasks are for the entire year, and what you can do now to prepare for their occurrence. Whether you send eCards, regular email or postal note cards, we recommend creating – or working with your art/marketing team to create – template cards with a choice of pre-composed messages that make it fast and easy to send a follow-up. Plus, having a nicely designed card is a great way to connect you to your company's brand or logo.
Since we're a business-oriented greeting card company, here is a list of common business situations that we see on a regular basis:
A little preparation now can save you a lot of time in the future and you will be less likely to procrastinate a task that is easy to accomplish.
CorpNote has many built in features that can help you automate the timely sending of a thoughtful communication:
Message Helper. Our message helper enables you to create, retrieve, and search for commonly used messages that you can easily insert into your eCards. You can even save messages you use most often and they can contain formatting like color, size, lists, and hyperlinked text. Check out our Message Helper Tutorial for more information.
Card Templates and Categories. Creating templates is already a huge time saver but did you know you can assign them to categories which will help you get to them even faster? This is especially helpful if you have a lot of different types of templates.
Recurring Cards. Setting up recurring birthday, anniversary, reminder and holiday eCards will ensure your communication gets sent even if you forget. You can choose to have recurring cards sent in a specific order or you can randomize the card design and message. See our recurring eCard tutorial for more details.
Custom Card Designs. Many CorpNote clients create (or have their marketing department create) custom card designs that are branded to their company for different occasions and upload them into the CorpNote system. Rather than creating each type of eCard as you need them, it's much more efficient to create a “set” of cards for the most common situations you encounter. The look will also be assured to be more consistent if you create them all at the same time.
You can upload as many as 36 custom designs to each CorpNote account and use them in an unlimited number of eCard templates.
Multi-User Administrators can upload custom card designs and create eCard templates to share with their members. Templates make it easy to ensure consistency in your user's communication. As a multi-user administrator, you can create eCard templates and share them with any user assigned to your account. This includes QuickSend templates. Learn more about sharing templates.
Depending on your job, you may have encountered the "business card pile- up" dilemma. You go to a networking event or party, people give you their business card and you plan to follow up...but it just doesn't happen.
Keeping in touch after a networking event is one of the most procrastinated business dilemmas. What do you say? How do you say it?
I have a friend who has several shoe boxes full of business cards. When I asked him what he does with them, he looked at me and said "I want to do something with them but it's been so long and I just don't have the heart to throw them away. Maybe they will be useful someday." If you are also a "shoe-boxer," maybe it's time to move forward and implement a new strategy.
This next tip is for anyone who does networking/sales events, trade shows, marketing, public relations and any other business situation where there is face-to-face contact.
Send a Follow-Up Immediately. This goes back to the tip above where you can prepare commonly used messages in advance. If you know you routinely do customer service activities, have a message prepared in advance for when you are leaving a job site or after a phone call. If you are attending a big event like a tradeshow or networking breakfast, put the time for "follow-ups" in your calendar before you even attend the event. For example, you can schedule a two hour block of time for your first day back in the office to do your follow ups and do as many as you can in that time. If you don't schedule this time, odds are it will never happen.
Did you know that CorpNote has a tool called QuickSend — a complete solution for sending pre-composed eCards quickly and easily right from your cell phone? By using QuickSend at an event, you can easily and immediately send a message to people you meet.
QuickSend lets you pre-design and customize cards, in advance, from the comfort of your home or office. Then, when you're at the event, just enter your contact's name and email address (and other optional company info if you wish). They will instantly receive your pre-designed eCard complete with your company branding and contact information. After the event, all the QuickSend contacts you enter can be automatically saved in your online address book, complete with the information on where you met them.
QuickSend can also be pre-set for birthday eCards so you can send a card as soon as you find out it's someone's birthday.
Learn more about QuickSend eCards For When You're on the Go.
Ways to End Procrastination
People get behind because they procrastinate and then they procrastinate because they feel overwhelmed that they are so far behind. So how can we get everything done and still keep our sanity? Here are Tips for Ending Procrastination
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