5 of my favourite tools for running a business

5 of my favourite tools for running a business

I am a total nerd when it comes to all things technology, apps and tools. I thought I'd share the ones which I rely on every day. I'd love to know what ones you love so I can try them out! So please let me know in the comments or in social media. 

For daily task management – Todoist 

I tried a lot of "to do" and task management apps but none of them quite clicked with me. Todoist isn't perfect but it's the best I've found.

It's free and the set up is a very simple to do list which you can categorise into projects. Each of my clients/projects has a different colour dot and so it's easy to see what needs to be done and when.

I print out my to do list each morning and I find it makes my day so much more manageable being able to see my lists of tasks. 

I've also started numbering my to do list (once it's printed). I pick three "must do" items for each day and get them done. Then, I pick another three. It can be really daunting when you have a list of 20 items so focussing on only three (which seems like nothing!) makes it manageable.  

 

For social media scheduling and reporting - Sprout Social

Sprout is one of the more expensive tools out there but there's a couple of reasons I love it. Firstly, the reporting capabilities are really great. It's easy to use. There's a queue function for twitter which makes it really easy to add a whole bunch of content to your schedule. 

I can't find another tool which does every thing Sprout does. I've tried Buffer and Hootsuite in the past but I find Sprout is the best all-in-one tool.

It also has scheduling capabilities for Instagram. I've previously used tools like Schedugram (which is fully automated). However, when I checked with my insurer (With Jack), Ashley told me that if a client's account was deleted because I was using a tool which goes against Instagram's terms of service, then I'd be liable for that loss. My stomach actually dropped when I got that email! So now I use Sprout which posts via push notification, in line with Instagram's terms of service. 

 

For creating great social media graphics - Canva

I'm pretty sure everyone knows about Canva by now but I couldn't miss it off this list. It's such a great tool for creating quick, beautiful social media graphics. You can also use it for posters, fliers, email headers – they have a template for most things! 

I'm even using Canva now for proposals and for audit templates – the finished product looks so much more professional than a basic word document. 

 

For writing great content - Hemingway

  Hemingway – a great web-based tool to help improve your writing

Hemingway – a great web-based tool to help improve your writing

I mentioned in my previous blog post that I'm doing a copywriting course at the moment. I take a great deal of pride in my writing but I there's always room for improvement. (If you want to check out the course, it's called Copywrite Matters by Belinda Weaver).

I digress. Hemingway is a simple tool where you can copy and paste your text into the site and it grades your readability. I tend to write really long sentences so it's good to get a quick overview of where I need to correct myself. 

Poorly written copy really bothers me, and I think these days there's no excuse when there's so many easy/free tools to help. 

 

For tracking travel - MileIQ

I drive a lot for work and find tracking mileage incredibly frustrating and dull. MileIQ does that automatically without me having to do anything. It runs in the background of my phone and tracks where I go. It knows when I'm driving (how?!) and keeps a record of all those trips.

Once a week (or so) I simply go through all the trips and swipe left/right depending on if it was a work or personal trip. It is so easy to use that I just signed up for the paid version which is about £5 per month.

I hope you enjoyed that round up! I actually have a few other tools to share – including one which is my absolute number one – but that deserves a whole blog post of its own! Plus I'm going to write a post on SEO tools which anybody could (and should!) use. 

I'd love to know what tools and app you use, tell me below or on social media. 

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