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Inbox Zero Everyday | How to Outsource Your Email Management and Get Your Life Back

Ever been frustrated by the amount of emails you need to reply too? Ever known you really need to be doing something else, but can’t because you need to reply to some email? Or missed an important email because you inbox is overrun? Yes? Then this video is for you!

We’re going to teach you how to get Inbox Zero without having to do any work yourself.

There is one crucial thing all entrepreneurs need more of if they want to grow…

TIME ⏰

We all need more time to work ON our business not IN it.

And for us, and probably you as well, one big time suck was replying to emails.

👉 Watch the video


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If you’ve ever been frustrated by the amount of emails you need to reply too, ever known you really need to be doing something else, but can’t because you need to reply to some email, or ever missed an important email because you inbox is overrun, then this video is for you…

We’re going to teach you how to get Inbox Zero without having to do any work yourself.

There is one crucial thing all entrepreneurs need more of if they want to grow…

TIME ⏰

We all need more time to work ON our business not IN it.

And for us, and probably you as well, one big time suck was replying to emails.

So for the past couple of months we’ve been outsourcing our emails to Claire Grace and her team of VAs.

To be honest, we procrastinated on this task, and we procrastinated not because we didn’t want to do it, but because we didn’t really know HOW to do it.

So how do you outsource your emails?! Does it cost a lot? Will you lose control? How do they know what to say?! Let’s answer those questions for you now.

Because after a couple months of putting it off, we dedicated some time to sorting it out… and it’s been amazing 💪

Email was a huge time suck for us, and outsourcing this task has given us so much more time to work on developing our business and dedicating more time to the ATOMIC community.

So, let’s make sure emails doen’t bog you down anymore either. Here’s the 4 steps you need to take if you want to outsource your inbox – then we’ll explain how it all comes together at the end!

Step 1. Grant access to your inbox

You need to grant your VA access to your inbox. They need to be able to read and reply to your emails. You could just give them your password, but… we actually use G Suite by Google, which we love! It allows you to grant access to your inbox to other people in your organisation, so all we had to do was set Claire up on Claire@andrewandpete.com and grant her access to our inbox without having to share our password. Simple!

If you don’t see the Grant Access option… make sure it is switched ON in your Google Admin Console.

Step 2. Housekeeping rules

It’s definitely worth setting up some basic housekeeping rules before getting into the actual outsourcing of emails.

The next thing we did was set-up some basic rules for the general management of the inbox, things like…

  • Is the VA replying as you, or as them
  • What is your tone of voice for emails?
  • How regularly do you want your email checked?

For us, we decided it was best if Claire replied as herself on behalf of us, rather than faking a personal reply from us.

But we still talked to Claire a lot about how we approach replying to emails, so she could match our tone of voice and brand as much as possible… and going over some old emails that we had sent previously helped with this.

We also decided that we wanted our emails checked once a day Monday-Friday.

Step 3. Set-up Folder or Labels

This is really important as folders or labels (as they’re called in Google Mail) help you categorise your emails.

It’s easy to overcomplicate this, you could have folder for every client, every project, every full moon… but if you’re anything like us, we like to keep things as simple as possible 😁

So we have two labels:

  • Andrew and Pete
  • Claire

And emails get categorised depending on who needs to reply to the email, us personally or Claire… more on how that works in a second.

Step 4: Create your Standard Operating Procedures

You’ll probably be able to categorise your emails broadly in some way, and the next step is to create Standard Operating Procedures (or SOPs for short) for each type of email, that your VA can implement.

Here’s three examples of emails we get regularly and the SOP for each:

  1. Someone pitching to speak at ATOMICON: The SOP is ‘keep file on record, thank them for applying and tell them the application process is closed, and to feel free to pitch again in January’
  2. A potential customer asking about ATOMIC: The SOP is tag as Andrew and Pete (because that’s someone that we want to talk to personally)
  3. An online purchase receipt: The SOP is to forward to Andrew and Pete’s Bookkeeper using Hubdoc

For a lot of the SOPs too, there’s template email responses that Claire can use.

And The SOP itself is simply a shared Google Doc that Claire can have open right alongside our inbox.

How it all works

So, bringing this all together, here’s how the whole process works.

Every day Claire goes into our inbox, in the afternoon and labels all emails… Andrew and Pete or Claire depending on who needs to reply to the email.

She then replies to all the emails she can handle herself using the Standard Operating Procedures.

If there are any emails that she can handle, but she needs more information from us, she’ll either drop us a quick message if it’s quick or urgent, or once a week on Monday we hop on the phone for 10mins and go through them all.

From our point of view, when we log in to our inbox we just go right to the Andrew and Pete label, and respond to the ones we need to personally respond to (which is a fraction of what it used to be) saving us hours of time and overwhelm to actually focus on income generating tasks instead.

Once we’ve replied to them, we remove the Andrew and Pete label, and thus get inbox zero.

When they reply… Claire simply relabels them.

The whole process is SUPER SIMPLE, but so effective. All those tiny emails like forwarding receipts to our bookkeeper, and booking in podcast interviews add up to a huge chunk of time, all of which someone else can help us with!

The cost of this service as well, is probably cheaper than you think, and in fact… we look at it as an investment. All that time saved, we’re not twiddling our thumbs! We’re using it to convert more sales and grow our business.

So to us it’s not really a cost!

Let us know what you think… are you starting to feel differently about emails?

Could you outsource your inbox? Let us know in the comments!