No-code automation is changing the way business is done! It removes all the complexities from tedious processes and replaces them with pre-built workflows. This means it’s easier to get more done in less time.
Here’s a quick overview of how automation works: Once an automated task is set, the tools respond to a specific trigger to replace repetitive manual processes, and reduce the chances of errors.
‘Automatic’ is an agency that helps small businesses scale using automation and no-code, founded by David Flynn.
Here’s his story!
Hi, I’m David Flynn! I'm the founder of Automatic, where I help agencies scale by leveraging automation and no-code tools.
Prior to going full-time with Automatic, I worked as a data architect at a manufacturing company where I learned the fundamentals of data management. The skills I acquired there were instrumental in my ability to implement no-code solutions well.
My very first client in the no-code space was a marketing agency looking for platforms that would allow them to make their marketing metrics accessible to their clients without sacrificing privacy or too much manual effort.
I used Bubble to build them a custom portal that allowed their clients to login and see their campaign metrics and trends. Within a few months, I had agencies reaching out with very similar requests.
Each platform had slightly different requirements, but generally consisted of having a customizable onboarding experience and allowing the client(s) to see specific data based on permissions. Behind the scenes, this required building admin functionality like inviting clients, setting up permissions and configuring the onboarding questions.
Templatizing our implementation process
After building 2 or 3 of these custom portals for agencies, I realized it'd make more sense to build out a template and offer the implementation as a service to the agencies.
So far, it's generated lots of interest from agencies and exposed an opening in the market. While there are multiple "client portals" for agencies, few do everything that an agency needs.
We've successfully implemented the template for a couple agencies so far. In the coming weeks, we plan on launching our template so that agencies can have self-service access to the portal.
There are multiple "client portal" platforms on the market, some with incredible features. However, none of these had the features that my first few clients were asking for.
How Automatic came to life
I decided to take the best features from each of these client portal platforms, add in a few missing pieces, and launch a new product – Automatic! The new platform includes configurable onboarding steps, client-based access to data or actionable items, and custom data reporting.
The primary tool we used to build the platform is Bubble, however we leveraged other tools to make it even more powerful. We use Zapier and Integromat to make it easy for agencies to integrate new data for clients, Slack for notifications, and are considering using Xano on future versions to increase flexibility of the platform.
One of the biggest challenges was, and still is, making the platform customizable without too much manual input from our team's part. A vital feature is that each agency can set up their portal to their own requirements, but this adds significant complexity on the backend of Bubble.
We've overcome it by using logical database design and taking the time to plan out the capabilities. However there are still things that require manual input from our team. When required, we offer customization as a premium service for agencies to ensure the portal meets their requirements.
My advice to makers
Just start building! There are so many educational resources out there, which is great but they can become a distraction. My recommendation is to start by doing, then use those resources to solve specific challenges you face along the way. Be aware of the "I'm still learning about it" trap!
Thanks for sharing your story with us, David!
You can follow his journey on Twitter here.