I am a self-confessed gadget junky. I enjoy trying out all kinds of new gadgets, computer programs, and applications. As we ease into 2018, I wanted to share a few of my favorites with you.
Deviating from listing obvious choices such as Microsoft Office, Google Chrome, or other well-known software applications I listed a little more off beat ones. Most of which I use on a daily basis.
Evernote: Evernote is by far one of the most-used programs and apps on both my phone and PC. It lets you make different file folders based on the subject matter which makes searching for content very easy. You can also add tags to your files in order to allow for a more refined search criteria.
Evernote can be used as a filing system for documents, PDFs, websites, and emails. There is a clipping tool for Google Chrome that allows you to customize how you store content clipped from the web. And there’s even an email link to forward or cc emails to your files.
BuzzSumo: I use BuzzSumo for all of my content marketing and SEO campaigns. It lets me identify high-trending topics, activity on different social media channels, and influencers by both topic and industry.
BombBomb: BombBomb is a video email software that allows you to send highly personalized emails. You can easily record and send video emails from Gmail, mobile, or the web.
Sending a video is a great way to add that “personal touch” and get face-to-face with more people. It will help you convert more leads and shorten the sales cycle.
1Password: It’s no big secret that everything we do online requires a password. And I used to be the worst about using the same basic password for everything.
But when hacking became much more sophisticated and prevalent, I realized I needed to come up with different and more complex passwords. But how do you keep track of 20 different passwords?
1Password has been a lifesaver in this area because they will save all of your passwords for you with just one click.
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FS Pro 2020: This Word plug-in has pre-designed templates to help you write concise documents in the Information Mapping format. You can easily create meeting minutes, SOPs, proposals, and more. And you can even make your own designs using their drag-and-drop features.
Slack: Slack makes it easy for teams to collaborate without having to deal with endless email threads. Instead of having to remember to hit “respond to all,” Slack acts as a robust chat room where everyone can see everyone else’s comments.
You can also upload files for the entire team to see or send private messages. There are many other features that I am still exploring; I currently use the most basic form but continues to expand its functionality every time I use it.
Grammarly: I can’t say enough good things about Grammarly; I love it because it keeps me in check. Most of you know I am from Texas so English is somewhat of a second language for me. With Grammarly, you just drop your text in, the program evaluates it for you on many different levels and then points out any issues.
And if you use the browser plug-in, it will be deployed on all text boxes you type in. The paid version also has a plagiarism checker to ensure your content is original.
Calendly: Calendly allows me to provide a link to my calendar for people to schedule appointments with me. This link can be used in emails, newsletters, and even on my website. Its features are easy and functional and reduce the need for back-and-forth emails or voicemails.
Paperless Post: Paperless Post sends online thank you and note cards. I use this all the time as an instant follow-up with prospects or other people that I meet during the day.
My Fax: My fax lets me send and receive faxes through my email and phone. And while the number of faxes I send and receive has definitely decreased over the years this is still a cost-effective way to maintain access as needed.
Dragon Naturally Speaking: Dragon significantly reduces the time it takes to create a lengthy document. This speech-to-text program makes it easy to dictate documents, emails, and other text-heavy situations. And it can be especially helpful if you’re a poor speller like myself.
MileIQ: MileIQ is very helpful for tracking mileage for either company reimbursement or tax purposes. This automatically logs your trips for you and allows you to classify them as either personal or business. It’s especially helpful if you’re like me and can’t remember to write down your beginning and ending mileage for business trips.
Google Alerts: This app allows you to set alerts to monitor content on a wide range of topics. You can set your email notifications for every time it happens, once a day, or once a week. I have mine set to topics like sales, marketing, senior living, assisted living, etc.
Dropbox: This is another program I have not used to its full capabilities; I mostly use it for file sharing with employees, contractors, and clients. The business version is a little more pricey but I think it’s worth it because it’s HIPPA Compliant.
Dropbox is also great to use as backup protection. You can work on files from one location and have them available on all of your devices. It also lets you customize your sharing options and whether or not you want to give other people editing access.
Sirius XM: You’re probably already familiar with Sirius XM but did you know you can also subscribe to it on your PC or phone? This can be helpful when you arrive at your destination but want to continue listening to a program. And you have access to all the major news outlets and genre-specific music selections.
Google Translate: This app translates both the written and spoken word. It’s very handy when you are trying to communicate with someone who speaks a different language and you don’t have access to a translator.
Urban Dictionary: This helps me communicate with my kids and grandkids without constantly having to ask, “What does that mean?” I also use this when I see acronyms and I have no idea what they stand for.
Hootsuite: This is a great tool for social media management; it allows you to manage multiple social media accounts in one place. I frequently find articles I feel will bring value to others. Instead of trying to remember to post it next week, I can quickly schedule it and forget about it.
Hubspot: Hubspot is one of the best and most robust CRM programs I have found. And while I have barely scratched the surface of its full range of features there are many I regularly use.
It lets you easily store and customize different email templates to send to your contacts and it Bcc’s your email from Outlook to update the contact activity automatically. There’s also an Outlook plug-in that integrates seamlessly with the program.
Syncplicity: Syncplicity lets you share files and syncs your data across all of your devices. I originally started using this program to sync my data from my desktop and laptop computers. I now use it mostly for backup and accessing files while I’m on the go.
AWeber: This is a mass email program I use both for my emails and newsletters. It’s very easy to use and offers a lot of great features, like scheduling and personalization.
I chose AWeber over competing products because it’s easy to use and connects to the Unbounce platform. This makes it simple to gather emails from signup forms and then drop them directly into the AWeber database of your choosing.
NordVPN: NordVPN is a virtual private network and has gateway servers in many locations around the world. The technology is a little over my head but it’s a necessity since I work in public spaces and use cellular data connections most of the time. It provides an extra layer of security in spaces that are easy for hackers to access.
Well, there you have it. Hopefully, this list was helpful for you and gave you insights into software applications you weren’t previously familiar with.
Do you use any of the apps on this list or is there anything you think I should know about? Please feel free to comment and share your favorites with me!