GUEST BLOG Dominika Lazdowska – Kickstarting Automation: Essential First Steps for Modernising your Service-based Business

by | Dec 11, 2023 | Business Building Musts, Interviews, Small Business Help

Kickstarting Automation: Essential First Steps for Modernizing Your Service-based Business

I’m here to share a little story with you.

Can you picture the most artsy kid in your class growing up? Yep, that was me! I would never have believed you if you had told me that in the future, I would build websites and work fully digitally. I was bad at IT and would fear the teacher asking me anything in class because I never fully understood HOW to do certain things. More importantly, I never grasped what kind of wonders tech could do for me and the huge impact it could have on my life.

So today, I am here to tell you: you don’t need to be special; you don’t need to be Einstein to make the most out of tech in your life. And I am going to tell you HOW and also WHY you need to automate in your life. Automation, in this context, refers to using technology to perform tasks without manual intervention, making processes smoother and saving you time.

Let’s start with the ‘WHY’ automation will sooner or later have to enter your life.

The ‘why’ of automation is rooted in the fundamental desire to enhance our quality of life. It’s about working smarter, not harder, and carving out more space for creativity, strategic thinking, and personal growth. By automating mundane tasks, we are freed to focus on activities that truly matter and that require a human touch—those that spark joy, ignite passion, and foster connections with others.

Beyond personal benefits, automation is a key driver for business growth. It streamlines operations, reduces errors, and ensures consistency, allowing businesses to scale and adapt. For entrepreneurs and service providers, automation is not just a convenience—it’s a strategic imperative that underpins customer satisfaction and competitive advantage. It’s about ensuring that every interaction with your business is a reflection of your commitment to excellence and efficiency.

So, when we talk about the ‘why’ of automation, it’s not just about the time saved; it’s about the value added to every minute of your day.

Now let’s move on to the ‘How’ to start using tech as a service-based businesses in three baby steps.

As a service provider, there is plenty to automate. Let’s start with the basics. You have clients, clients who come to you for a service. In order to provide a service-based service, you need info from the client because most likely, it is tailored, or you at least want to understand if the client is right for you and whether the service is suitable for them. My early-day clients would want to have a standard “contact me” form on their website, with four questions: name, last name, email or phone number, and the message box. This enquiry form, a tool on a website where potential clients can submit their details and questions, is great to start a conversation, but what comes next? The standard answer is that they would either continue the email exchange or call the client. And this is where the first automation opportunity starts.

Identify your first baby step automation opportunity

Go back to your email exchanges or calls with clients who did fill in your form to make use out of your wonderful service. What patterns do you see? What information is crucial for you to provide the most amazing service to your clients AND understand if they are the right clients for you? Write them down; choose the top 5-8 questions that are easy to answer but indispensable at this stage. Make it simple and make it fun. You don’t need to know everything at this stage, only the essentials to identify if you can 1) help the potential client, if 2) it is your ideal client. Now that you have them, make sure to include them on your enquiry form. Think about the time saved on writing carefully crafted emails or conversations that did not go anywhere… and you were left frustrated with all the time invested into a client that was not for you in the first place.

And I know what you are thinking: “Oh, my clients choose me and adore me for who I am as a person. I want to give them the opportunity to get to know me. I like chatting with my clients before moving on to a more official form or working together, etc.” And that’s absolutely fine; you can still give them those opportunities but make sure that when you gain their trust, you politely ask them to fill in your form. Why? Because it is a crucial step in your process. You want to have your client data all in one place; you want to follow your process so that you don’t have to waste your time thinking about what the next step is, where do I go from now? Trust me, your clients can feel and tell if you have your processes figured out or not, and they came to you in the first place because they want a leader and authority to execute an amazing service for them.

A little baby step upgrade: make your clients feel taken care of and get your customer service to the next level.

We are moving on to the next stage now: automatic replies to a website enquiry.

To those rolling their eyes: It works wonders. In whichever way you can, whether it is done through your CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system—a tool used to manage all your company’s relationships and interactions with customers and potential customers—or your email marketing platform, make sure that the moment they fill in your enquiry form, they receive an automated email from you to make them feel well taken care of and secure, again signalling that you know exactly what you are doing every step of the way and THEY also know what’s the next step and what they need to do.

Imagine a scenario where your ideal client is shopping around and comes across both your website and that of your competitors. You have a busy day and are working away on your client’s project (it happens all the time, right?). The website enquiry comes through, but you don’t notice it until a few hours later. Your competitor is faster on that specific day and attends to your client first. With the automated email reply, you are immediately at an advantage because your client knows that 1) you have received their enquiry 2) you have communicated your wait time or next step, next action required, or simply a warm welcome so that they get to know you a little 3) they know how long it will take you to get back to them.

All this happened while you were working and did not cost you any extra time. It put you at an advantage without hassle and worry.

Last step, that will help your business most in the long run.

The final step is to link your form to a CRM. That’s why it’s crucial at some point to direct your potential clients to the enquiry form. With a CRM in place, you can further improve the customer journey with additional automations, allowing client on boarding to happen seamlessly while you manage other tasks. This method is particularly efficient with standard pricing or packages, but even if you provide custom quotes or have a more bespoke pricing model, the benefits of having all client details in one place are substantial, saving you considerable time that would otherwise be spent on manually inputting client information. When it comes time to draft a custom proposal, you’ll find the necessary details already organized within your CRM, reducing the chance of errors and eliminating manual work. It’s a seemingly small but incredibly significant step, especially at the beginning of the customer journey. It establishes a professional tone for both you and your client.

But this is not everything! The opportunities here are endless! Here are some additional advantages that could be highlighted:

  1. Enhanced Client Segmentation: With CRM integration, you can categorize clients based on various criteria such as service type, project size, or client preferences. This allows for more personalized communication and service offerings.
  2. Improved Service Delivery: By having all client interactions and preferences logged in one place, you can tailor your approach to each client, resulting in improved satisfaction and retention rates.
  3. Streamlined Scheduling and Appointments: CRMs often come with scheduling capabilities that can be synced with your calendar, allowing clients to book appointments without back-and-forth emails, and enabling you to manage your time more efficiently.
  4. Client Retention and Loyalty: By using the data stored in the CRM, businesses can identify opportunities for upselling, cross-selling, and repeat business, fostering long-term client relationships.
  5. Legal and Compliance: Keeping client data in a secure CRM helps in complying with privacy laws and regulations, such as GDPR or the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs), by ensuring that client information is handled securely and within legal frameworks.

You’ve just scratched the surface of automation. Eager to dive deeper? Let’s connect for a free chat to unlock the full potential of automation for your business. (no strings attached) You can book it here.

Already an automation pro? My guide, ‘Scaling Smart,’ is the next step to grow your online business even further. It is a roadmap for developing scalable and sustainable semi-passive income streams in a service-based business.

Book A Free Call | Download the Guide to Scale


Dominika Lazdowska is a brand and web designer with a heart for innovation and empowerment. With an eye for design and a mind for business strategy, she blends aesthetics with efficiency to craft not only visually stunning brands and websites but also streamlined processes that save time and amplify productivity. Her mission is simple yet ambitious—to assist women in harnessing the power of technology to create more space for growth in their service-oriented or hybrid businesses, both professionally and personally. Through her work, she has had the joy of witnessing clients transform their operations and unlock new opportunities for revenue, all while staying true to their vision and values. Whether it’s finding those hidden pockets of automation potential or strategizing on semi-passive income avenues, her goal is to empower female entrepreneurs to build a business that thrives on innovation and adaptability.

Doa Loa Design


IG: @doaloa_design




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Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!


Brilliant – it’s on its way – thanks!

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