As a copywriter, writing isn’t the only thing you do—there’s a whole lot of BS behind the scenes you get stuck doing. (Like ask me how I feel about administrative tasks. 🤪 Yuck.)
All this busywork isn’t the stuff that makes you money—but it still affects your bottom line because it needs to be done.
The problem is that a lot of copywriters who are stuck in the messy middle think that an actual person needs to do this busywork. I thought this too. We’re told to “hire a VA!” as soon as we start making any kind of money, but the thing is that you often actually need systems and processes—and automations—before you need people doing this work. In other words: You probably don’t need to hire a VA just yet.
Instead, nail your processes while you’re a solopreneur, but still think bigger picture for when you do need more help. This will force you to identify gaps and inefficiencies in how you work, which means you can fix them. And the busywork can be automated before bringing team members on.
My point is this: Getting your processes and systems in check makes everything better, more efficient, and set up for scaling easier. My tool of choice in the early days that still helps things run smoothly now: Dubsado workflows.
Everything I do and help my clients and course students through follows this flow:
After working with, teaching, and coaching literally HUNDREDS of businesses of all different kinds, I’ve found that following this process is what works best.
The BUILD stage is when you focus on the foundations you need to sell consistently.
But the biggest thing to note about this process is that it’s not linear. Meaning that you don’t just go through each phase of BUILD, GROW, and SCALE one time. As your business evolves over the years, you’ll naturally need to revisit the phases. Ie. Sometimes you have to go back to BUILD after you GROW and learn which direction you want to take things.
It’s a constant process of refining, analyzing, tweaking, testing, and improving over years (if you’re in it for the long haul like me). But when you have good foundations in place, revisiting these stages doesn’t mean burning everything down.
Want to offer something new? You can do that.
Want to target a different audience? Let’s f*cking go.
So if you’re a service provider, freelancer, or copywriter like me and want things to run smoother, having a proper CRM makes all the difference.
As a copywriter, you end up with tons on your plate—and lots of it isn’t just writing.
My Dubsado workflows have changed a lot over the years, but they’ve also stayed largely the same. I know… You’re probably thinking WTF Jill, that’s a contradiction? It is. 🙃
A clearer way to say this: These days, the process that clients follow on a typical project is very close to what it was when I first went full time in my business. The differences is in the details:
So while the overall flow of my Dubsado workflows has stayed the same…
The specific tasks have shifted to allow for more collaboration, and less involvement from me specifically on every single step.
When I was just a solopreneur, Dubsado prompted me with to-dos. It automatically covered a lot of the busywork with clients, like onboarding, offboarding, sending emails, invoicing, etc. Now, it does all of that, but also helps track progress in conjunction with my second-favourite tech too: ClickUp.
So if you’re a solopreneur and you don’t know where you plan to grow you business, I can still bet that Dubsado is a good investment for you. Because it can grow with you. And having an automated Dubsado workflow will save you a ton of time regardless of the size of your business.
I’m a firm believer that you don’t need to work more or harder in order to scale. You need to work smart with the capacity that you have, focusing on the sh*t that actually matters. If you want to make big money in your business, you need to get hyper clear on what your big money responsibilities are. If you want to hit 6-figures in your business, you need to know what tasks are worth your time and what you need to get off your plate.
Then make it happen.
For me, setting up streamlined Dubsado workflows was like hiring and training. I got really clear on what I wanted this tool to do for me and told it exactly how to do each step.
When I finally was ready to hire help, my VA could focus on things that were a lot more impactful than sending emails and onboarding clients—Dubsado STILL handles that with minimal involvement from us.
When you’re focused on the things that you truly need to be doing in your business, you can make such a bigger impact.
A lot of my time right now is spent doing a few things:
Even with my extremely limited schedule, I have the time to do these things because of the Dubsado workflows (and some other things) that are set up behind the scenes.
And the biggest benefit to all of the above ☝️ is that if you aren’t burnt out from doing all the things, you can show up in your role so much better. If you feel good, it will show in the results you provide.
Dubsado can be super overwhelming if you’re new to the platform. I highly recommend getting help from the professionals (Charlotte Isaac is my go-to and she has an awesome step-by-step course). To give you some ideas before you dig in, here are 3 must-have aspects of your Dubsado workflows as a copywriter. These are not only so that you can save time as a solopreneur, but to make everything work a lot better when you do hire a team.
Signing and onboarding a new client these days only takes me the time of the discovery call (20-30 minutes) plus another 10-20 afterwards to customize their proposal and client portal. That’s insanely efficient! Especially considering that everyone gets a custom proposal.
When a lead hits my inbox, they are guided through the intake journey. After our discovery call, I whip up their proposal in just a few clicks, attach the correct forms and terms to their proposal, and send it in a single email. If they check yes on the proposal, the contract and invoice steps are auto-populated, and they’re set up with a private client portal.
I’ve even automated the process to add this client to our Google Drive, including their relevant doc templates. They also get set up with a space in ClickUp… all without me doing anything. It’s pretty cool.
As a copywriter, how many times have you sent the same review instructions when handing over project files to a client? Stop recreating the wheel, and think about how you can streamline this process.
My Dubsado workflow includes a step to customize and send project deliverables and review instructions to the client. When I implemented this step, clients started giving such better feedback that often we don’t need to hop on calls or do more than 1 round of tweaks.
Now, it only takes a few minutes to personalize this step, and I don’t even do it personally a lot of the time. Our SOPs are so clear that it’s easy to delegate this step.
Okay this one is SO IMPORTANT because without canned email templates in my Dubsado workflow, the above 2 aspects of my processes wouldn’t be possible.
How much time do you spend perfecting the exact same email?
Or waiting for your biz bestie to give you feedback on a tough one that you have to send? To then rewrite it yourself approximately 12 more times before you’re satisfied it conveys the appropriate message?
Oh, and what about those late reminder emails you feel so awkward about sending to a certain client? So you put it off and stress TF out because you don’t get paid on schedule.
Save time and headspace by templatizing all that!
You can actually steal my exact canned email templates here if you want. Copywriters love these!
When you have your systems and processes in place, it makes EVERYTHING run so much better—and makes more possible.
Now, I work 15 hours a week while running a 6-figure business. How? My Dubsado workflow and the team keeps things on track while I focus on fun stuff outside the office. If you want to see what it looks like to have all the systems and processes in place so you can do the same, take a look at my weekly schedule.
PS. If you’re curious about the other tools in my tech stack, you can see them all here.
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