As an innovative and savvy entrepreneur, the chances are that you devote a lot of your time – both personal and professional – to the process of building and improving your businesses. From marketing and sales to IT functions and customer service, the minutes you have left over to evaluate the next steps for your company are probably quite scarce. This means that in the face of mounting competition, you need to find new ways to stay ahead of the curve.
Part of building a better business, means working smarter – not harder. For most businesses, this involves automating some of the tasks you need to get done, and making the most of the various available resources on the web today. With that in mind, we’re going to share just some of the best tools that entrepreneurs can use to put the spark back into their business, and save a little time too!
1. Buffer for Social Media Management
Content distribution is a critical part of sustaining a successful content strategy for your business – but man is it time consuming. Constantly figuring out new things to post on social media so you can build your authority and engage with your audience means taking time out of your busy schedule at least once a day to log into all of your various accounts.
Ignore the copious amounts of manual labor, energy, and time involved with social media marketing, and get someone – or rather something – else to do it for you. Buffer can schedule your social media posts across several networks, according to your specific timing, so you can stay focused on the more pressing aspects of running a business. Even the free version of Buffer lets you schedule up to ten posts per profile on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, and Twitter. Of course, if you want to upgrade your experience, the premium option is hardly going to break the bank, for $10 a month, it lets you schedule 100 posts per profile.
2. Xero for Bookkeeping
With Xero, your company can create, automate and send your own customized invoices to your clients whenever and however you like. This means that all your general money stresses are handled for you in a matter of clicks. With the help of professional bookkeeper guidance, this means that you not only keep on top of all your finances within your business, but you can also limit your risk of losing money to mistakes in your accounts.
Xero offers an interactive dashboard that is quick and simple to use, as well as various customizable options for your invoices such as a “Pay Now” button for instant payments.
3. Evernote for Organization
The messier your business is – the harder it is to run.
When it comes to marketing, the same rules apply – making organization critical. Ideas for your next awesome project could come to you at any hour of the day or night – and if you’re not able to prioritize and organize your notes, you might miss out on the chance to capitalize on upcoming opportunities.
Evernote is a popular tool for people who need to capture inspiration, ideas, and trends fast. It allows you to enter information and store it in an easily-accessible location, that you can get to do from your tablet, laptop, or smartphone within a couple of taps. It’s ideal for everything from market research, to storing content ideas, conducting competitive analyses, and brainstorming.
4. Mailchimp for Email Marketing
It might seem a little outdated – what with the presence of social media marketing largely taking over the digital world – but email marketing is still imperative to the success of most business endeavors. While building your brand on various platforms like Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook is still important, you can be somewhat limited by those channels – making it difficult to move your prospects through the relevant sales funnel.
Email marketing, on the other hand, allows for an intimate interaction between consumer and brand that gives you the control to nurture various leads. Of course – setting up and sending out professional-looking emails takes a lot of time – time that most busy entrepreneurs simply don’t have. Mailchimp therefore represents an excellent alternative – one of the easiest available pieces of mail software for newbies to learn – it’s filled with amazing templates and automation features that make running your email campaign easier than ever.
5. Canva for Design
Finally, you probably know by now that visual content is becoming an increasingly popular form of marketing – from infographics and customized illustrations to fully-designed sales proposals. Visual content represents a great way for young businesses to earn credibility and improve their professional appearance.
There are a number of great tools on the market that make editing your graphics easier – but one of the simplest to use is Canva. It comes with a fantastic library of illustrations, fonts, images, and templates, as well as a pool of graphics that you can easily drag and drop to make infographics, images and flyers in minutes.
Image Source: Pixabay