The old adage still rings true. “You’re only as strong as your weakest link.” And for many wedding planners, your weakest link is time and project management.
You wouldn’t guess that businesses that thrive on being detail oriented and systematic in planning the lifestyle events of clients, actually struggle with managing the day to day tasks of their business. We’re planning pros! Right?
The #1 concern wedding planners face is time! In order to maintain the high standard of customer service they strive to give their clients, the actual business side of the business begins to struggle. Many find themselves responding to the similar emails over and over, creating planning documents late at night, and let’s be honest… copying a pasting tipping guide from the internet.
The opportunity for creating a branded workflow exists with the help of Aisle Planner, a little time investment, and a quality, experienced virtual assistant. By using the tools that already exist in your Aisle Planner interface you’ll be able to create a streamlined collaborative approach to business tasks and managing the needs of your current and potential clients.
Here’s 7 Tips for Using Aisle Planner with a Virtual Assistant!
You likely already know how to do this. You know you can add your clients to the interface. But are you adding your assistant into the system to help you manage the needs of your clients? If you don’t wish for your wedding creative virtual assistant to have access to your password create an email account for your assistant with your business name and use that to add your assistant. This will allow you to maintain control of the account but also take advantage of their help.
Set up that assistant account to receive inquiries from your website and any other lead generators as well. Train your wedding creative VA on your inquiry process and how to add potential clients to the roster. Once you, as the lead planner, have moved the client through the booking process, your virtual assistant can then use that information to set up their profile and begin customizing that wedding.
Let’s take this one step further by using the already built in templates within the Aisle Planner system. Spend time working with your wedding creative VA to set up your templates to include forms like; your initial inquiry response, follow up responses, and even contracts. Existing templates allow your virtual assistant to quickly respond to leads and new clients with your voice, in your way, and with your name. Then track any responses. Once you’ve gone to the booking stage, your assistant can use the lead information to create contracts and send onboarding information. Releasing these small repeat tasks will incredibly increase your productivity.
The Aisle Planner system doesn’t currently function in a way that allows the addition of calendar appointments or tasks that are not related to a current wedding. BUT… here’s a smart work around that will allow you to hack the system in a brilliant way. Create a “mock” wedding using the name of your business. Add your assistant and any other counterparts of your company to that “wedding”. Use the checklist to assign tasks, add calendar appointments, and communicate with your assistant. You can modify the checklists in many ways and assign particular tasks to associates within your business. It’s also a great way to create checklists for yourself and for those tasks only you can complete.
The notes section inside of your “mock” wedding is a goldmine of project management awesomeness. Use each of the notes sections to communicate with your virtual team by adding notes, progress, content, and collaboration thoughts. You can use this area for drafting templates, keeping up with other online profiles and bios, or sharing progress on ongoing tasks. You can create notes by project or even by task. You’ll receive a notification anytime notes are added or changed.
One of the most time consuming tasks in Aisle Planner is adding vendor contacts and information. You can add them each time you work with a new client, but we all know that there’s a handful of vendors you refer every single time. Allow your wedding creative virtual assistant to set up those contacts within the Aisle Planner system. If you network or meet someone new, sending over new information will be much easier when you already have a catalog of vendors in place. It also means that when a client books your favorite vendor their information already exists inside the system. This small task frees you to continue booking more clients and in turn make more revenue!
If you haven’t already taken advantage of the Aisle Planner Publishing option — you should be. I know what you’re thinking, you don’t have time! But outsourcing submissions not only allows you to move onto the next important task for your business, it creates a catalog of the work you’ve already done and creates another way to market your growing business. You get your gorgeous weddings published, reap the benefits of new inquiries, but without the work.
These are only a few examples of how a wedding creative virtual assist can work virtually within your Aisle Planner account — saving you time and energy. They can also help clients update changes to timelines, add client documents, enter email correspondence, or clean out notifications — forwarding along pressing tasks. The options are endless! We’ve even helped wedding planners set up the Aisle Planner system from scratch to begin working with their clients.
With a tool like Aisle planner, the help of a wedding creative virtual assistant, and little bit of trust in your qualified hire, you’ll be on your way to strengthening your weakest time and project management link.