ALL THE TIME IN THE WORLD:
Taking back your time
p o ss i bi li ti es
Because I am committed to spreading these ideas, you have my permission to reproduce
them for colleagues, friends or clients. Please keep my name and contact information on
them. If you want to use them for any other purpose, please contact me at: Possibilities,
223 N. Guadalupe #278, Santa Fe, NM 87501 USA, 505.983.2843, website:
www.billohanlon.com; email: Bill@billohanlon.com
Other websites of Bill’s to check out if you are curious:
The USA vs. the World
Average Annual Vacation Days
26% of Americans take no vacations at all [Boston College Survey]
Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per
year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers [ILO
70% of working fathers and working mothers report they don’t have enough time for
their children. [Family Matters Survey; The National Partnership for Women & Families,
62% of workers routinely end the day with work-related neck pain, 44% report strained
eyes, 38% complain of hand pain, and 34% report difficulty in sleeping due to work-
related stress. [Integra Survey, 2000]
People work approximately 8 weeks longer per year than in 1969—in the space of a
single generation—but for roughly the same income (after adjusting for inflation)
[“Work, Stress, and Health,” National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health
40% of employees work overtime or bring work home with them at least once a week
[“Shifts in Work and Home Life Boundaries,” Xylo Report, 2000]
Almost all the increase in free time we got from 1965 to 1985 went into additional TV
viewing. Categories that declined include reading, visiting, and going to church, clubs,
and cultural events - activities that build community [American Demographics,
The US is the only nation in the industrialized world with no minimum paid-leave laws.
European law provides each worker with 4-5 weeks per year of paid-leave. Nonetheless,
Europe has had a higher productivity rate than the U.S. for 14 out of the 19 years between
1981 and 2000. [U.S. Federal Reserve Board]
According to online surveys of more than 4,000 people, conducted jointly by AOL and
the Opinion Research Corporation and reported in 2005:
41% of Americans check e-mail first thing in the morning
18% check e-mail right after dinner
14% check e-mail right when they get home from work
14% check e-mail right before they go to bed
40% have checked their e-mail in the middle of the night
More than one in four (26%) say they can't go more than two to three days without
checking email, and they check it everywhere:
In bed - 23%
In class - 12%
In business meetings - 8%
At the beach or pool - 6%
In the bathroom - 4%
While driving - 4%
In church - 1%
In 2005, a psychiatrist at King’s College in London administered IQ tests to three groups:
the first did nothing but perform the IQ test, the second was distracted by e-mail and
ringing phones, and the third was stoned on marijuana. Not surprisingly, the first group
did better than the other two by an average of 10 points. The e-mailers, on the other
hands, did worse than the pot smokers by an average of 6 points. [“Can’t Get No
Satisfaction,” New York Magazine, Dec. 4, 2006]
Value tip: Go to http://www.wolframalpha.com/ and put in your birthday in the search
box and press return. This will give you the number of days you’ve been alive. How have
you used that time so far? How will you use the days you have left?
IDENTIFY WHAT IS ESSENTIAL
ELEMINATE WHAT IS WASTEFUL (OF YOUR TIME OR
Identify What is Essential
Questions to Ask
What do you love to do?
Who do you love to spend time with?
What/who have you neglected that you would like to re-engage with?
What could you do or stop doing that would free up the most time in the future for you?
What typically spoils or distracts from your ability to be present and focused on what you
are doing in the moment?
What/who is the biggest energy or time drain in your life?
What is the biggest money drain in your life?
What things do you dislike doing, put off, or avoid but that need to be done?
What drains your energy on an ongoing basis?
What might release or give you energy?
Where might you get the most energy bang for your buck for the least effort?
Four steps to figuring out what is essential:
1. Where's the energy?
Do regular energy checks for activities in your life. Is this activity draining your
energy? Is it giving you energy?
Obviously, do what you can to change the balance of your life toward energy-
giving and energy-renewing.
2. Ideal day, direction or objectives
What is in your ideal day?
What would you be doing regularly in that ideal day?
Where would you be on most of your ideal days?
Who would be around on most of your ideal days?
How can you gradually get more elements of your ideal day in your current or
near future life?
How can you gradually move more n the directions or objectives that you have?
What first steps would you take to make them happen?
3. How much bang for the buck?
What activities give you the most result for the least effort and time?
4. How much contribution could or will it make?
How much contribution to the world or others will this activity or direction make?
Areas for Elimination or Curtailing
Where have you been:
Neglecting people, yourself or activities that are not good to neglect?
Spending too much time on that particular area or activity?
Doing “empty” activities; that is, ones that don’t bring you longer-term satisfaction or
Buying too much? Spending too much?
Taking on responsibility for others in ways that aren’t good for you or them?
How to Eliminate or Curtail
Decrease frequency of activities
1. Tell the truth about your current frequency [count or record if necessary]
2. Commit to a reasonable (or dramatic if you think you can pull it off or stick to
it) decreased frequency on that area
3. Try it for a limited time (a day, a week, a month) and adjust as you discover
what works and what doesn’t and whether or not you keep your commitment
Decrease information (sometimes called “going on an information diet”)
1. Determine areas where you have too much information coming in too often
2. Begin to decrease gradually or dramatically
3. Notice if the quality of your life/happiness/effectiveness is impacted at all by
4. Adjust as necessary
1. Too many options can be paralyzing or unhelpful
2. Try limiting options
3. Adjust as necessary
Eliminating tasks or activities
Automating tasks or activities
Offloading tasks or activities
Decrease debts of recurring expenses
Promise as little as possible
Get clear on agreements and timelines
Schedule as little as possible and as short as possible
Master saying “No” with comfort and grace
Learn to delay for habits of knee-jerk “Yes” responses or people-pleasing habits
that don’t serve you or others
Becoming more efficient and effective/productive
Do hard or avoided tasks first
Do bottleneck tasks next
Do tasks that would have the most impact on your most important goals/directions next
Arrange your environment physically, spatially and with the right materials to support
tasks and efficiency
Streamline recurring tasks
Checklists, video or audio records of task steps for complex tasks you do every once in a
while (and might forget how to do)
Discover your optimal rhythms (time of day/night to do certain activities; up and down
times; work/productivity phases that work best for you)
Value tip: Completion can bring energy; incompletion can drain energy. Each time you
walk back or think of an unfinished or undone task or commitment, it can drain a little bit
of your energy or attention. Completion can free some energy to do other things. Choose
some small incomplete tasks and test this principle out to find out if it is true for you.
Questions to Ask
How can I do this better?
How can I this faster or more efficiently?
How can eliminate any aspect of this?
Can I stop doing this?
Can I do this less frequently?
Time and Energy Wasters Elimination Worksheet
Top time-waster and energy-draining activities:
Top time-wasting and energy-draining people:
Top time-wasting and energy-draining environments/conditions:
Short-term experiments eliminating time-wasters and energy-drains:
What do you do over and over that you might be able to automate to save time or energy
or even to do better?
Can it be digitized?
Can it be put on computer?
On the web?
Digitally recorded (audio or video)?
Can you eliminate any steps to make it faster, easier or better?
Value tip: Think of learning productivity or automation software as an investment of
time. A bit of time invested now may save you hours each week later. Search Google for
video tutorials (you’ll find some free, some paid).
Here’s my plan for automating:
I plan to
I will need to:
Catch-22: You don't have enough money to hire some outside person/place to do things
Suggestion: Invest small amounts of money strategically to create more money, free up
time to earn more money doing things you are good at and love
What are you doing that could be done by someone else?
What are you doing that could be done better or faster by someone else?
What are you not getting done that could be done by someone else?
Could you find someone to barter with (you do something you enjoy doing more or are
better at for them)?
Could you hire someone you already know to do these things?
What amount of money is getting the task done worth to you (in time, energy and
money)? You could figure this out just monetarily by determining your hourly rate.
Are you willing to outsource tasks on a one-time basis or an ongoing one?
Can you give up personally controlling all tasks?
Is it okay to outsource outside the US?
From a VA from the Philippines on Tim Ferriss’ blog:
I am a writer in the Philippines employed by a BPO company which caters to clients in
the US needing virtual assistants, and I speak on the latter’s behalf as I get to observe
As “laborers” in the Philippines “making the cost of Americans’ dream activities less and
so affordable”, a VA’s life is not all that bad so there really is no need to guilt Tim Ferriss
and others like him who rely on virtual assistants. The VAs in our company may get just
a pittance of what personal assistants get paid in the US, but it is still a win-win situation
because the cost of living here is after all not as high as the US’s. This case with the VAs
and others like them is not the vile, repulsive thing that child labor is.
Those of us in BPO companies are professionals happy to be able to stay in our country
doing work we like. We are aware of the gulf between our pay and yours, but you see,
with our salaries, we get to live like your average young professionals. We make rent,
send our kids to school, enjoy time with friends, indulge in hobbies, dress decently. Here
as in anywhere else, your lifestyle is a choice you make.
Reasons Why Not To:
I can do it better myself
I can do it faster myself
I don't have the time to explain to someone else how to do it
I'm the only one who can do the task
I can't trust someone else to get it done
I like doing it
The last time I tried delegating, it went badly or didn't work
What should you outsource?
Things you don’t know how to do or don’t do well
Things you dislike doing and avoid
Things that someone else could do just as well and much more
How to delegate/outsource: Start with small, inexpensive tasks. Learn how to give clear
instructions and corrections when the task isn’t done the way you wanted. Once you
develop some confidence and trust in the person/place, begin outsourcing bigger or more
sensitive and crucial tasks, always remembering to give corrections and/or see parts of
the big tasks before they are complete to ensure you are not wasting your money or that
they aren’t getting the task wrong.
Document what you know how to do in detailed and specific ways
Get specific in your requests
Mid-course check-ins and quality assessments
Prioritize in order of urgency and importance
Give specific feedback (positive and negative) about how the task was done or the
objective was reached. Give it as quickly as possible and without rancor. Use phrases
like: We need to make sure next time that ______; We need to be more ________; We
have to ________; I would rather have you ________
If it is a task that will be repeated in the future, have the person document how it is done
(in case you want someone else to do it or you want to learn how to do it yourself or
safeguard the knowledge in case of problems with that person).
Create rules or decision criteria for things that are repeated (like screening emails and
deciding which ones to pass on to you or how to respond to some easy and typical ones).
Revise those rules as needed.
Pay promptly. This will usually help you get better service in the future as it establishes
you as a good and reliable customer.
Websites/links: Elance (http://www.elance.com); Guru (http://www.guru.com);
BrickWork India (http://www.b2kcorp.com); Do My Stuff (http://www.DoMyStuff.com);
RentACoder (http://www.rentacoder.com); GlobeTask [$8.00/hour]
(http://www.globetask.com); Webgrity [$1.00-$1.20 per hour]
(http://www.webgrity.com); Secretary Israel (http://www.secretaryinisrael.com/);
Personal Friday (http://www.personalfriday.com); VMG BPO (www.vmgbpo.com); Your
Remote Assistant (www.yourremoteassistant.com); Tasks Everyday
+news_top+news+index_small+business; Free 1 -week trial: http://www.asksunday.com/
Books/programs: The Four Hour Work Week by Timothy Ferris; Cloning Yourself for
Fun and Profit by Edward Savio (www.cloningyourself.com)
Here’s my plan for delegating:
I plan to
I will need to:
Automate your appointments
You can put appointment scheduling and changing online easily and relatively
inexpensively. These services are secure, can schedule appointments up to 2 years out,
can provide web presence for your appointments or host them on your web site, can send
out email reminders and changes and can integrate with your personal or online calendars
(such as iCal, Google Calendar, or Outlook). Some take credit card payments.
From a survey conducted by HourTown, one of the services:
93% Of people have experienced trouble while attempting to schedule with a local
business in the past 60 days (phone tag, unable to reach them promptly, spending an
excessive amount of time, frustration).
79% Of people would prefer to book online.
42% Of people have a work environment that prohibits them from scheduling personal
appointments during normal working hours (No privacy, too busy, etc.)
Check out these services:
Pricing ranges from free to $29.95/month
Prices range from free to $39.95/month
Prices range from $6.95 to $159.95/month; free trial
Prices range from $9.90 to $11.90/month; free trial
For less costly options or for your personal scheduling with friends or family, try iCal
(comes with Macs) or Google Calendar (http://www.google.com/calendar), software or
services that allow you to “publish” you calendar and let other people dynamically
interact with them.
Your NOT TO DO List
If you can spend a perfectly useless afternoon in a perfectly useless manner, you have
learned how to live. –LIN YU-T’ANG
What things are you doing that you would like to stop doing in your personal and
What things are you doing too much of?
What things would you prefer to delegate to others?
My plan to implement my NOT TO DO list is:
Value tip: Can you begin to build in “fallow times,” that is, times when you are not
doing anything in particular; nothing productive; even nothing of obvious value or
goodness; just doing nothing?
My NOT TO HAVE List
Possessions can demand more time than we realize. Sometimes it seems as if possessions
have us rather than the other way around. If you buy electronic gear, or skis, or a food
processor, or a hundred other similar items, you must spend the working time to pay for
the item, for all associated taxes, for a home big enough to store all these possessions,
and for their upkeep. You then need to spend the personal time to shop for it (including
whatever research you do), to use it, to maintain it, protect it, and eventually dispose of it.
Item by item, this may not seem like a great burden, but as the possessions accumulate,
so do the total time demands.
What things could you sell or donate that you haven’t used for a long time?
What area of your home could you go through and get rid of stuff to lighten the load?
To whom could you give one or more of your possessions that would benefit them while
lightening your load?
What possessions are not good for you to have or keep?
What could you do to accumulate less stuff?
Where/how could you borrow or share stuff to decrease your possessions?
By when will you take the first steps to have less stuff?
Getting Organized: Capturing, Tracking and Reminding Yourself and
Others of Tasks, Deadlines, Information and Commitments
One of the things that takes time is being disorganized. One of the components of getting
organized is setting up systems to track and remind you of appointments, promises and
timelines or deadlines for tasks or projects. There’s no need to get fancy. Just find the
down and dirty method that works for you. For some, it will be a small notebook that you
carry with you at all times. That might be all you need for capturing.
Electronic methods might work a bit better as ticklers and reminders, since they can be
programmed to send you emails or make noises to remind you. I use a very low-tech
method of remembering to take things I need to take when going out for errands. I put
them in front of the door where I will see them before I leave the house. You might put a
rubber band on your wrist or a post-it note on your bathroom mirror as a reminder.
Otherwise, you need to develop a habit of checking your calendar or project task list
I use a Mac and an iPhone and capture commitments with my calendar program (iCal) or
a small notebook/pen I carry with me at all times (I am a writer, after all, but I use this
method mostly for information and tracking commitments). I use XPad for capturing and
organizing information on my Mac. I use Address Book for capturing contact
information. I use Things (both the Mac application and the iPhone version; which sync
with one another) for tracking To Do tasks and short and long-term projects [it is based
on the Getting Things Done system]. When I arrive home or have a moment, I take out
the notebook and transfer the notes or commitments to the relevant program. Otherwise, I
forget about it or have a number of little pieces of paper in piles around that I may or may
not look through in a timely manner. I like this combination since most of these programs
sync themselves between my two computers and my iPhone.
It will probably take some experimentation to discover what combination works for you.
Persist and develop habits and systems. These can save you lots of time (and hassles and
money) once you get them down.
Organizing/Task and Project Management software
You can use software to organize to do lists and projects. This can save you lots of time
and often money. Try a few out and see what works. Most are free or have free trials.
Some simple and inexpensive ones:
XPad (for Macs)
iCal (for Macs)
Comes with all Macs, includes a scheduler and To Do list with alarms and reminders
Efigio ToDo Organizer (for Windows)
Shareware (donate if you like it and use it)
OmniPlan (for Macs)
Shared Plan (For Windows or Macs)
$199.95; free trial
Call this service and it will send you an email
Helpful to remind yourself of things or track commitments (create Google Cal events)
Value tip: Set up Google Voice (http://www.google.com/voice; free) or RingCentral
(http://www.ringcentral.com/; starting at $10.00/month) to reduce expenses and time with
Your Relationship With Time
I had a colleague who once said, “If you want to do brief therapy, the first rule is to go
slowly.” Sometimes going more slowly paradoxically creates more efficiency or better
results or just gets you to have the experience of time abundance or unhurried time. Try
slowing down to get more time.
Leave with more than enough time to get to where you are going on time.
Try driving the speed limit.
Do the dishes by hand.
Write handwritten notes and letters rather than emails for personal,
emotional and important communications.
Honoré, C. (2005). In Praise of Slowness: How a World-wide Movement is
Challenging the Cult of Speed (Plus). London: Orion Books. New York: HarperCollins.
See also: http://www.theworldinstituteofslowness.com/
Train yourself to get up 15 minutes earlier each day. Use that time for something that
creates energy or pleasure. Or use it to just think or meditate. Or do a small amount of
exercise. Or leave early for work and miss the worst traffic. [Tip: Start with getting up
just a few minutes early and extend it gradually; if you like the time, get up even earlier
over time; Second tip: Try setting an alarm to tell you to go to bed or sleep.]
Questions to ask:
What is your relationship with time?
Would you like that to shift in any way?
Have you ever had times when you felt an abundance of time? How did that happen?
How could you get that or some of that back in your current and future life?
When did you have the best sense of time in your life? How could you get that or some of
that back in your current and future life?
Do you ever have unscheduled, non-task-oriented moments or times?
Who do you know that seems to have time abundance or a healthy and good relationship
with time or attitude to time? Can you incorporate any of their strategies or attitudes in
your own life?
SET UP DIGITAL PRODUCTS FOR
AND AUTOMATE SALES,
MARKETING AND ORDER
PUT YOUR KNOWLEDGE INTO DIGITAL FORM
GET AN ONLINE SHOPPING CART
SET UP AUTOMATIC MARKETING SYSTEMS
Getting more time by setting up ongoing sources of passive income
#1 The Two Critical Ideas: Passive Income and Automation
There are two critical ideas that form the backbone of creating more time through
automated sources of income.
1. Create sources of passive and residual income to free up your time and eliminate the
need to be physically present to generate the income
2. Automate the entire process of sales and delivery
The first involves creating things that produce income whether you put in time or not.
Digital product sales
Ad income on blogs or websites you own
Books that earn royalties
Real estate investments that are managed by professional management companies for you
or by someone you can count on to do the job consistently, well and dependably.
Since I am most familiar with product sales, we will focus on that here. [There are other
books and experts on real estate investments and financial investment tools.]
The second involves setting the marketing, sales, and order fulfillment to happen
automatically, so that money just shows up in your bank account after you set it up.
#2 Start to design and create digital and distance products and services
One of the cornerstones of creating more time through automated income is to create
digital products and distance services. Why? There are two main reasons. First, they can
be delivered automatically (in the case of digital products) or from any location (in terms
of distance services such as coaching). This frees you from the need to be stuck in a
physical location (and perhaps saves you office rent) as well as automates your
marketing, sales and fulfillment processes and thereby saving you time.
Second, digital products and services often have a much higher mark-up and profit
potential than physical products. For example, you do not have to pay to have someone
pack and ship them.
Here is a list of the typical products and services that you can sell:
E-Mail tips (like the one you are reading now!)
You should probably start with e-books and e-reports since they are a short leap from
simple word processing that you probably know well.
Once you create a word processing file, you need to turn it into a prettier and non-
changeable file in the form of a PDF. Macs have the ability to create PDFs from any file
(just choose Print from the File menu and then choose the little PDF button next to the
question make in the left hand corner and choose Save as PDF or compress PDF).
Windows users need to use another process and one easy way is to visit the website
www.cutepdf.com, which gives you the ability to convert files to PDF at no cost.
Other digital and distance products can be slightly more complex to create (but well
within everyone's reach). We will cover them in detail in future emails.
Pricing Your Products
The other issue is how to set pricing. Pricing on the Web and for information-based
products and services is determined by perceived value rather than by a markup on your
cost of producing the product. I have paid $97 for an e-book I thought I would get more
than $97 of value from.
In the end, of course, people will vote with their dollars and pay what your product or
service is worth to them, so you will need to experiment with different pricing and
bundles (perhaps including bonuses to create a compelling offer). That is another nice
part of digital products: once you create one, it doesn't cost you any more in time or
money to produce more of them. So they lend themselves to pricing experiments and also
to be available as bonuses since you are not losing money making or sending them out.
The next easiest for most people to offer are teleclasses, telecourses and phone
consultations. These are nice since some people are still intimidated by the Web but
everyone knows how to use a telephone. The disadvantage, of course, is that you need to
put in time to provide the service (and one of our goals is to help you free your time from
income-generating activities). Still, you do at least free yourself from having to be in any
set location, so you can do your income-producing activity while you are at the beach, on
vacation, in your pjs at home or wherever you happen to be. And it will be possible to
turn many of your teleclasses into digital products that you can sell later.
I use an amazing service called InstantTeleseminar
(http://instantTeleseminar.com/productInfo.asp?x=781496). They offer you a free
telebridge line (that is a telephone line that can take up to 200 callers at the same time),
tools to record your calls (which you might want to do to create a digital product if the
call lends itself to that), and the ability to control various things during the call (like
muting, getting questions before and during the call).
#3 Sell your stuff online & collect the money automatically with an online shopping
Another component of getting more time is establishing an online shopping cart that will
automatically collect money from your sales as well as deliver digital products and
confirmations to your customers. Shopping carts are online systems that can store your
products, receive payments from customers, deliver the products to them and, depending
on the cart, automate your marketing process.
Make sure you get a cart that will capture email addresses and organize them for you as
well. I had one that didn't capture email addresses and organize them and as a result, I left
thousands of dollars on the table over the ten years I had that shopping cart.
Why did I leave money on the table? Without my customer's email addresses I could not
follow-up with other products and services from which they might benefit.
Setting up your cart
If you haven't set up a shopping cart yet, plan on doing so soon. It's a kick to go to sleep
and wake up in the morning to discover that money was delivered to your bank account
overnight from online sales and know that you didn't have to put in any time or make any
effort to make that money.
When you set-up your cart, you will "upload" (transfer) your digital product to the
shopping cart's computers for storage. Once you set up and upload your product on the
shopping cart system, the system provides you with little snippets of web (html) code that
you or your webmaster can put on or in your blog, your website, or email for your
customers to click to buy your product.
When the customer clicks the link, they will then be prompted to put in their payment
information (either a credit card or PayPal account). They will then be sent another link
or be taken to a page where they can "download" (get the product over the Internet into
their computer) the product they just bought.
A few hours or days later, the money they paid for your product, minus a little in
processing fees, will be delivered into your back account (or your PayPal account,
depending on how you have configured things).
After the sale, the shopping cart can also send follow-up emails that can answer any
questions your customers typically have or stave off any problems by providing the
customers with typical problem scenarios and how to resolve them. The system can also
do follow-up marketing and sales, offering the customer other products or services that
might interest them.
The best shopping cart systems, in my experience and view, are:
1. E-junkie.com: http://www.e-junkie.com/?r=4300
2. 1shoppingcart.com (also called Web Marketing Magic):
This shopping cart system is very inexpensive to use. It starts at $5 per month for 10
products or fewer. It's even free for a 1-week trial so you can try it out to find out whether
or not it's for you
And you can scale it all the way up to 999+ products for more money - $125/month and
up. The system also offers a place for you to market your products on their website and
to sign up others (as affiliates) to help you sell them in exchange for a cut of the profits.
I use 1ShoppingCart (actually, I use a private label version-there are many private labels
with different names for this service, but they are all exactly the same service). I already
have 100+ products I sell, but my cost at e-junkie would be only $25/month at e-junkie as
opposed to the cost of a professional account on 1ShoppingCart for $99/month.
This service is a bit harder to learn, but that is in large part because it has many
capabilities. It can host your digital (or physical) products, deliver the orders, capture
email addresses and contact information from your customers automatically to build a
mailing list, create an email list of people who are interested in your products or service,
create and deliver email autoresponders, enroll people as affiliates (your salespeople who
market and sell your products and services for a but of the profits) and tell you what and
when you owe those people payments, send out your email newsletters and give you data
on how many people received and opened those emails, create special bundles of
products, create and track your advertising and marketing to let you know what is
working and what isn't, and create special product discounts.
If you only want to use it to host and deliver your digital products, it's fairly easy to set
up and learn, although e-junkie is a bit easier.
Autoresponders: Automating email and freeing time
One of the keys to automating your email life and also for marketing is to use
"autoresponders." An autoresponder is an automatic system that sends out email
messages at regular intervals or responds automatically to incoming emails. Most of us
have received autoresponders when we have ordered something from an online store like
Amazon.com or when we get an “away from the office until ___” message from someone
to whom we have sent an email. The response comes almost instantly. That is
accomplished using sophisticated software. In recent years this software has been made
available for "the rest of us." You set up your autoresponder messages and put them on
auto-pilot and forget them.
Some online shopping carts (such as the one I use, called Web Marketing Magic-
autoresponders built in to them or you can use a dedicated autoresponder service or the
one built into your email program/service.
You can use autoresponders for many purposes:
To automatically reply to people and cut down on your email time and energy
Email tips to be delivered via an autoresponder, for a small charge or for free
(sign up for free trial of one of mine; Send an email to: PossiBill-
firstname.lastname@example.org; or PossiBillemail@example.com; or PossiBill-
firstname.lastname@example.org; or ). You can unsubscribe from any of these at any time.
To verify online purchases
To give instructions about how to access courses, teleclasses or how to use
products people have bought
To offer people other products or services once they have bought something from
you or signed up for some information or service you offer
You can use an autoresponder to send a no-cost sample and then to deliver a series of
sales messages and other information about your product. Research in many fields shows
that people often need six "touches" or contacts about a product before they buy. You
will find that a few more people buy your product with each message that you send out.
You may also find that you use autoresponders for other purposes, such as confirming a
sale (like Amazon does) and marketing another product or service once a person has
bought from you. People are more likely to buy from you a second and third time
assuming they had a good experience the first time and like your product.
Web Marketing Magic (www.webmarketingmagic.com/app/default.asp?pr=9&id=78775)
has an autoresponder built into its ecommerce package and they offer a 30-day trial of
their service for less than $5.00. They also allow you to buy the autoresponder separately
for a smaller fee per month (as this was written, it is $29).
Set up Tracking and Reminder tools for tasks and commitments
Invest time/energy/learning to free time
Gather the right tools to implement whatever you have decided will work for you
Start small (5 minutes/day; 1 thing per week; etc.)
Approach all this as an experiment; keep taking action, noticing internal and external
results and adjust
Follow your energy and follow results