Automation Academy by James Sowers

Automation Academy

Automate the necessary, but time-consuming business activities that limit your earning potential


Maximize your earning potential by automating non-billable activities. 

Spend less time hunting for leads, scheduling meetings, or chasing down feedback and more time delivering client work.

Setting up our automated workflows has helped freelancers reclaim as much as 5-10 hours per week.  

Interested? Let's get to work! 

Stop Wasting Time on Low Value or Non-billable Activities

Most freelancers and consultants fall into the same trap when it comes to managing their time:

They get bogged down taking on "important, but not urgent" tasks like finding and pitching cold leads, managing their calendar, onboarding new clients, or chasing down client feedback.

Sure, these things are important, but they aren't the most valuable use of your time.

In most cases, your clients pay you for your technical skills and/or your domain expertise. 

In other words, you get paid to:

  1. Execute a specific task at a high level, or 
  2. Provide highly insightful (and influential) advice on a business strategy or process

If you don't take steps to maximize the amount of time you spend on these key functions, you are limiting your earning potential. In other words, you're leaving money on the table.

Listen...there are "low value" activities that are required to keep your business running smoothly, but that doesn't mean you have to handle them all yourself. 

In most cases, automating or outsourcing these tasks will save you time, energy, and headaches and help you earn more money in the process.

If you’re ready to take back control of your most valuable asset - time - and free yourself up to focus more attention and energy on doing the work you love, you’ve come to the right place.

 Register Today

Step-by-step Instructions for Automating Four of the Biggest “Time Sucks” for your Business

We built Automation Academy to give freelancers and consultants a step-by-step guide to automating certain workflows that are notorious for eating up their precious time, energy, and attention.

Our mission is to give independent creatives the training and tools that they need to stop worrying about things like responding to emails, scheduling (and rescheduling) meetings, and chasing down invoices so that they can focus on growing their business.

As an Automation Academy student, you will receive:

  • Introductions and Recommendations for Modern Automation Tools
  • Descriptive Overviews of Core Business Processes and the Value of Automation
  • Walkthrough Videos That Show You Exactly How to Set Up The Automations In Your Own Account
  • “Plug and Play” Swipe Files Designed to Help You Launch These Automations Immediately
  • Guidance and Support From a Large (and Growing!) Community of Like-minded Freelancers
  • Lifetime Access to Our Private Community of Over 1,500 Ambitious Freelancers ($118/year value) 

There is no doubt in our minds that the investment you make in this course will pay for itself 10 times over as long as you implement the automations we share with you and use the time you save to serve more clients or complete more of the high-value work that you're known for.

Ready to regain control of your time and make more money in the process?

Let's get started!

 Register Today

Hear From Some of Our Early Access Students

Our course participants come from all walks of life. Here are just a few examples of the types of independent creators we serve:

  • Students or employees at big corporations who are dreaming of making the leap into full-time freelancing
  • Part-time freelancers who deliver client work on nights and weekend while working a full-time job
  • Successful consultants and agency owners who are managing six-figure businesses 

They all have one thing in common...they want to spend more time engaging in the creative work they are passionate about and less time managing the administrative requirements of running a business.

So, we decided to build the web’s best resource for helping them reclaim their precious time and devote more of their energy to doing the work that they love.

And, according to our students, we nailed it...

Those are actual testimonials from real members of our early access group who used the lessons in Automation Academy to level up their freelance business.

Sound like something you’d be interested in?

We’re ready to help you get started.

 Register Today

What's included?

Video Icon 17 videos File Icon 8 files Text Icon 3 text files


Automated Lead Generation
Introduction (Read Me First!)
[DOWNLOAD] Pre-Made List of Freelance Job Sources
7.63 KB
Your Freelance Job Feed
9 mins
Prioritize Your Leads
8 mins
[DOWNLOAD] Our 17-page Cold Email Strategy Guide
206 KB
Swipe File: Cold Email Scripts for Three Common Situations
102 KB
Template: Cold Email Outreach Sequence
113 KB
Hands-free Meeting Scheduling
Introduction (Read Me First!)
Your Automated Scheduling System
15 mins
Workflow Walk Through (Client Perspective)
8 mins
Implement Your Automation
8 mins
Customize Your Scheduling Process
4 mins
Integrate A Conference Call Service
9 mins
One-Click Scheduling and Sharing
3 mins
Automated Lead Qualification and Onboarding
Introduction (Read Me First!)
Your Automated Qualification Process
13 mins
Enter Prospects Into Your Workflow
17 mins
Walk Through The Workflow
17 mins
Import Our Pre-made Template
10 mins
Swipe File: Client Qualification Workflow Emails (PDF)
114 KB
Swipe File: Client Qualification Workflow Emails (Microsoft Word)
1.37 MB
Integrate A Custom Client Questionnaire
14 mins
Template: Client Questionnaire (PDF)
167 KB
Template: Client Questionnaire (Microsoft Word)
1.37 MB
Integrate Your Scheduling Automation
7 mins
Workflow Walk Through (Client Perspective)
7 mins
Automated Client Follow-ups
Your Client Follow-up Automation
19 mins
Workflow Walk Through (Client Perspective)
8 mins

Build A Thriving Freelance Business

Actionable strategies for ambitious freelancers who want to take their business to the next level.


Can these automations work for agencies too?


We use these exact automations to power the workflows in place at our own software development agency.

Most of the language used in lesson content is oriented around the individual freelancer, but the underlying theory is universally applicable, whether you're a solo provider, a small shop, or a full-service agency.

In fact, most of these workflows are probably even more valuable for agencies, because we all know that as the number of active clients and projects you have increases, so do the chances that something will accidentally slip through the cracks. 

If you're an agency owner who is on the fence, you can rest assured that the lessons in Automation Academy will be helpful for you and the workflows that we teach you to build can scale up to keep pace with your growth.

I don't have time to set this up. Can you help me?

You want the short answer? Maybe.

When it comes to automation, there are often many different ways to get the same result.

Obviously, we couldn't create a course that covered every possible arrangement of tools and processes. If we tried to do that, the thing would probably never see the light of day!

We focused on building a course around a handful of tools that we actually use and have gotten value from. But that won't necessarily meet the needs of every person who wants to integrate automation into their business.

That's why we've set up two ways to get help if you prefer to use a different set of tools or you just don't have the time to build out the workflows we cover.

Option #1: After you sign up, you'll get access to a private Slack channel where all current and past Academy participants hang out. This is the perfect place to get help setting up automations or ask questions about using alternative tools.

Option #2: In some cases, you can hire the Digital Freelancer team to set up the automations for you.

The best way to explore this option is to email with the subject line "Automation Academy" and let us know two things:
  1. What processes do you want to automate?
  2. What tools and software are you currently using to run your business?
We'll come back to you with an honest, no-B.S. recommendation based on your individual needs.

Fair warning: A done-for-you service is always going to be more expensive than a do-it-yourself solution, so you should expect to pay us more than the cost of Automation Academy to solve your problem.

What if I don't use the tools you recommend?

That's a valid question...and a smart one for you to ask!

We're fully aware that many freelancers already have some of these tools in place. 

For example, we recommend Drip as an email service provider because of its powerful automation capabilities. If you're using another email provider, like MailChimp or Aweber, you're going to have to make a choice:

  1. Keep your current tool and sign up for a free plan on our recommended tool.
  2. Migrate your data and switch to our recommended tool. (Note: Many service providers are aware of how painful a migration can be and will offer to do it for you if you're switching to their platform)
  3. Recreate the automations in your current tool on your own - aka the "DIY method"
  4. Get our help setting up that same automation using your current tools. (Note: This isn't always possible, but if it is we can work out a reasonable fee and still give you access to all of the Automation Academy benefits.)

If you have any hesitations about signing up for Automation Academy because of this question, please email and we'll give you our personal recommendation...totally free.

What happens after I sign up for the course?

Let's say you sign up for Automation Academy today.

Here's what happens next:

  1. You'll get immediate access to all of the course content, which includes written lessons, videos, and swipe files. You can move through these lessons as quickly (or slowly) as you'd like.
  2. If you're not already a member, you'll get an invitation to join our private Slack group of 1,500+ freelancers for FREE. (Usually $9/month)
  3. Inside of that Slack group, you'll be added to a private channel where you can interact with other people who have signed up for Automation Academy.
  4. You'll have direct access to our course instructors, who can help troubleshoot any issues you might run into while setting up the automations.
  5. You'll be grandfathered in to any new lessons we add to the course - forever. We'll add your name to a list of Automation Academy members and notify you of any updates.

Sounds like a great value, right?

What if this doesn't work out for me?

We do everything we can to help you successfully implement our Automation Academy lessons for your business, but it's not a perfect fit for everyone.

Let's say you start going through the course and you end up hating some of the tools we reference...or the automations we cover aren't pain points for you....or you just can't seem to get the automations working properly, even with our help.

There is a chance this could happen, and that's totally okay. We only want you to pay for Automation Academy if it helps you streamline your business and generates a positive return on your investment.

If for whatever reason that isn't the case, we'll refund your money. Just contact within 30 days of signing up and we'll issue you a full refund.

I'm just getting started as a freelancer. Is this course right for me?

Short answer = in most cases, yes.

Whether you're a part-time freelancer, just starting out, or a seasoned veteran, automation is almost always a value-added investment.

For example, if you freelance part-time in addition to working a full-time job at a traditional employer, your time is even more valuable. Automation can be a great way to help you maximize the impact you can make during your nights and weekends.

One of the less intuitive benefits of automation is that it makes an extremely powerful impression on your clients. It shows that you have a system and a process for everything, and that you run your business like an experienced professional. 

Regardless of how mature your business is, the value of this impression cannot be overstated.

So for almost every freelancer out there, Automation Academy is a smart investment.  The only scenario where we wouldn't recommend signing up is if you aren't sure about whether or not you want to continue freelancing long-term.

In that case, we recommend that you give freelancing a fair shake and determine whether or not it is a viable career path for you right now. When you're ready, Automation Academy will always be here to help you take your business to the next level.

Are there any other costs related to purchasing the course?

It's pretty tough to give a definitive answer to this question, so unfortunately we have to respond depends.

The most important thing for you to be aware of is that the tools we recommend all have a free plan that will allow you to get started with our recommended automations. 

However, there are some features that are not available through these free plans that you might be interested in paying for. 

Here are a few examples:
  • Most email marketing services have a free plan that is limited by number of subscribers. If you have more than XXX subscribers, you may had to upgrade to a paid plan.
  • Many services that allow you to create online forms require you to be on a paid plan to add remove their logo and add custom branding to a website form.
  • Some calendaring services limit the number of event types (Ex: 30-minute introductory call vs. 60-minute coaching call vs. 90-minute podcast recording session) you can have on a free plan. If you want to have multiple event types, you might have to upgrade.

So, the total investment you make into these automations will be based on your individual needs and preferences.

It is important to remember that although these tools might require a modest investment to get the full functionality you are looking for, the time you will save through automation will allow you to recoup that cost many times over.

And, if at any time you're not happy with a particular service, you can always cancel your plan and/or seek out an alternative solution.