You read that right, free tools. I have done the legwork and found the top tools out there. You can benefit from immediately and for free.
Starting a new business will cause you to spend a lot more than you planned. Plus building up your income may take a lot longer than you had hoped. That may not be what you want to hear, but it is for your own good. I have heard different variations of the same advice time and time again. And I have experienced this first hand!
What does this mean for all of you?
It means that you should pay careful attention to anything of value. Especially that you can pick up for free. I want to share six of my favorite tools for your business. These will make your world a lot more organized and efficient place.
Check these out:
There are quite a few good options out there for building a list. MailChimp is the service that I got started with. It has a good basic version. They recently decided to add all of their automation features to their free plan. This list building service is very user-friendly. It integrates with a lot of different programs out there which makes it very versatile as well. If you are looking at building an email list for your business, this is a great place to start.
I have used a few of the workflow management tools out there. Trello is the favorite that I have seen. It is intended to manage all of your tasks on a different day, week, etc. It really becomes important if you are working with multiple clients. Also, if you have a growing team that needs a clear path showing what their responsibilities are. Again, super capable free version. I don’t know that I will ever need to upgrade this.
Slack is potentially my favorite program of all time. I get excited just thinking about it! It is a messaging app for teams to keep in touch with one another. It has a messenger. Plus a new video feature similar to Skype as well. Slack works very well from mobile or desktops and everything updates in real time. You can share files of all kinds with groups of people or via direct messages. I use it to talk to three team members in different time zones. It works very well for all of us.
4. Google Calendar
I would be so lost without my Google Calendar. It’s not terribly exciting, but it is very effective. I like the fact that it updates instantly across all devices. I can also share it in “view only” or “edit” mode with my team. It keeps me organized in my personal and professional life. I would be less sane without it.
This is a scheduling tool that integrates with Google Calendar. If someone wants to schedule some of my time, I can send them a link. The link shows them my availability and they can choose what works. Calendly then updates the calendars of both parties. This eliminates the need for countless emails trying to find a mutually agreeable time and date. This will give you a more professional appearance to your clients too.
I still remember how happy I was when I realized that there were social scheduling tools available. I started with Hootsuite. Eventually switching over to Buffer because I found that it was more user-friendly. Plus visually it looked “cleaner”. I also ran into some technical problems with the old service provider. I have experienced none of which with Buffer. They also have a really good podcast out too. It’s easy to see why I like everything that this company does. I would suggest giving them a really good look before going with another.
My sincere hope is that everyone reading this was introduced to at least one new software to try out and enjoy for FREE. All of these programs can be upgraded to a more robust paid version (except for Google Calendar) so you can stick with familiar platforms that will grow with your business. I have tried others along the way and stuck with the ones that worked the best for my business.
If you are seeking a bit of support in your startup, perhaps one or more of these tools will be just what you have been looking for.