Over the past 25 years, I have helped thousands of business owners grow their businesses and build systems that allow their business to thrive even when they aren't in the office. And one of the easiest ways to achieve this kind of growth has to do with the creation and implementation of universal business systems, or UBS for short. These are ever-changing documents that will lay out certain things within your business, how to do them, what resources are needed, and note whom to contact should someone need additional information or need to close the loop on the task in question.

The overall goal is to have a document that would allow anyone in your team the resources necessary to do any given task within your company, which is a huge advantage when you are short-staffed or have a team member out on vacation or on extended leave. Now, how you choose to document the resources and steps for a particular task will vary depending on the task itself. You may find a word document appropriate, a video recording, or even a self-guided report or spreadsheet. Feel free to experiment and find what works for you and your team.

So today I want to share with you four important things that you should document in your marketing department. 

1. Email best practices

This could include things like companywide email signatures, carbon-copy protocols, and how to designate when an email is top priority versus an FYI situation. Having your company's best practices written up will give new team members a guide to follow from day one, which will get them on board quicker with less ambiguity. 

2. Social media posting best practices

This could include how to post on your own social platforms, whom to tag, hashtags that you would like to include in certain situations, how often to post and where, etc. Some companies may also include verbiage about personal social media accounts, and conduct that they would like their employees to refrain from on social media platforms. Whatever you want to convey, put it in writing and update often on the basis of your needs. 

3. Website controls and processes 

When the IT person goes on vacation, you are going to be thankful that you documented the controls and processes surrounding your website. You may also want to include procedures for where and when updates are to be made, to avoid conflict and data corruption. Include details on data backups, vendor names, and contact information and account login information. 

4. Campaign best practices and checklists

Over time, your marketing team will learn a lot about what works and doesn't work for your customer base, and as you experience turnover it's easy to lose all that knowledge with your team members. To keep moving forward, keep a running document of tests and campaigns that your team has run, taking note of what worked, what didn't, and what tests they would like to try next time. In addition to that, keep checklists of common marketing tasks like email campaign creations so you can have another team member fill in if someone is out sick or on vacation. 

Once you streamline these four things, you can focus on more high-level tasks that will help create growth in your business.