Your team is the heart and soul of your business. These apps, tools, and programs could provide some much needed CPR to get everyone going in the same direction. These are all applications I personally use on a daily basis. Subscribe to hear about our other posts coming in the next few weeks.
“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” - Bill Gates
As a business owner you know how frustrating it is to have a team that is fantastic at their jobs, really enthusiastic, and hardworking but just can't get the numbers up. 9 times out of 10 this is down to the systems you have in place and the communication between members.
Tasks such as admin, project management, and expense claims waste time. We don't want precious hours spent on these tasks when they can automated using these programs.
This is a breakdown of the apps I use in my business to reduce time wastage, improve communication with my team, and assign work to specific members.
But first things first, you need to understand your team... To do this you need to learn to listen to them and understand their psychology, use the link below to get a FREE 30 day trail for audible, once you're signed up get Why Motivating People Doesn't Work...and What Does: The New Science of Leading, Energizing, and Engaging By Susan Fowler: Get Audible FREE
#1 - Trello
Trello is a task management tool that lets you allocate tasks to different boards and labels.
The free version of Trello lets you create as many boards you want, invite as many staff members to your board as you want, and create as many tasks as you want. If you have a small business with under 20 employees this is the best app on the market for you. Some business owners refrain from delegating simple tasks to employees because they don't think they'll be done straight away or to the standard they want, on Trello you can add a due date set to the minute you want the task done and a checklist or description to follow. You can also link Trello to email accounts so people get notifications when a card has been added to their board or a for a monthly subscription you can use something called power-ups, these power-ups allow you to connect your other applications and accounts such as Slack, Sendinblue, and Shift. All of which are included in this article.
There are so many add-on applications that Trello has, it would be impossible to describe them all today. All that is left to say is that even the free version of this app would hugely increase productivity in your office by simply reducing time wasted on allocation of jobs and admin tasks.
Head over to Trello to find out more or even try it out!
#2 - Sendinblue
Email marketing is one of the most time consuming tasks for business. Sendinblue allows you to pre-load your weeks emails and select particular people to send them to.
Mailing lists can get messy and we don't always keep track of who is subscribing and unsubscribing. For small businesses keeping your customers up to date about new products or changes in services. One of Sendinblue's secret weapons is that once a person has subscribed to your list, it pulls information about the users prior actions on your site and organizes them into different campaigns so you can perfectly target them with products or services they are interested in. If you sell products to the general public you need Sendinblue to get repeat business from customers.
These are the basic uses of Sendinblue. We use Sendinblue to interact with readers on this website, if you want to know what the emails look like make sure you subscribe at the bottom of the page.
The main benefits of installing a Sendinblue procedure are that you don't have to worry about adding people to the list as a simple HTML embed onto your website will act like a signup sheet for customers, also if people wish to be removed from the list they can easily click a link and unsubscribe.
Finally, you can easily set up email templates that you can reuse and reproduce for different campaigns. Check out Sendinblue HERE!
#3 - Evernote
We've all been there, watching a webinar, in a meeting, or think of a new idea. Where do the notes go... On your hand? In a notebook? Wherever you take notes they aren't always easy to find when you put them down.
Evernote is the best note tracker application out there, you can upload pictures of handwritten notes, pdf's, or even emails. But the best part is, its free! AND its memory space is huge, you can keep notes for as long as you need them. I recently needed to lookup a note for my rental agreement from 3 years ago, I just put in the search "Rental Agreement" and in 2 seconds the PDF popped up.
In a world that is trying its best to reduce waste and paper use, Evernote is doing its part. How good would it look if you went into the office on Monday morning and there wasn't a stack of printer paper with scribbles on, or a draw full of notebooks taking up space. Even if you write down your thoughts, all it takes is a snapshot into Evernote and then you can recycle that page so it doesn't accumulate as the week goes on. Rather than frantically searching the pile of paper on your desk, you can use the amazing search feature in Evernote which picks up keywords and note titles to find exactly what you need.
#4 - Loomly
Loomly is the most well rounded social media management software we've found on the market. You can have all your social media accounts on one dashboard, then organize posts to automatically publish through the month. Just check your post calendar and select which day and which account you want to post on.
With the analytic tools you can see how much traffic your posts are getting, how many conversions you get from post to follows, then from followers to website clicks. Loomly allows you to easily create adverts and set spending caps then post them to all social media platforms, once you've ran an ad Loomly gives you data and recommendations for your next posts so you generate more engagement. This is a feature exclusively on Loomly.
Along with all the analytic tools Loomly offers, you can also enjoy 24/7 support, free webinars and learning materials, and a dedicated account manager. All of this can be given to you FREE using our exclusive promotion link HERE!
A sophisticated storage system is a must have for any business, big or small. Google Drive is a free option for this that integrates with your desktop so you can still access files while offline.
#5 - Zapier
The word of the year is... Automation!
Automation in my eyes is taking tasks such as admin, emailing, following up, and content creation, and delegating them to someone or something else. We all know that time is money and that there are only 24 hours in the day, this means if we can set up an application to do simple tasks while we concentrate on something else, it gives us more time to generate more money. Zapier is a relatively new application available on all devices that does just this.
Zapier uses API links to connect apps and websites so they can talk to each other and share information. Jobs can be completed by this application without the need for you to login anywhere, enter any information, or even click the go button. A simple "Zap" I use is to connect Sendinblue with my new subscribers. The small time I invested into making this zap has saved me hours of unwanted input of data, writing emails and contacting people, it is simply set up to act when a new person joins my mailing list through the sign up sheet, Zapier connects that with Sendinblue and sends a welcoming email that I had previously drafted. This is just one of the thousands of apps and websites Zapier has an API link with.
You don't need to be a master of computers to get started with Zapier as you can do a lot with one step Zaps, but if you are going to delve into the wide world that Zapier has to offer I would recommend watching some videos or learning from there portal, just to make sure everything runs smoothly.
You can always check your Zap before it goes live to test it will work how you intend, you can also contact customer support to have them look into what is happening. The best learning tool as always is YouTube, millions of people are trying millions of combinations of links, so you'll be able to find just what you need. Like I said before... The time spent creating these procedures is time saved in the future! It may take a little bit of time to get the programs exactly where you want them, but once they are in place, you don't have to move them and you don't have to spend anymore time on boring jobs.
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