New ways to work
Technology is constantly changing and new online business tools are being developed all of the time in order to make small businesses more efficient, faster, slicker and quicker.
New technology has transformed the way that we do things here at The Entrepreneur’s Godmother. A lot of the changes have come about from having such a young and innovative team and I must say that it has changed the company for the better, especially in terms of time management!
I wanted to share the top 10 online business tools that we use with you! Some of these tools are completely free and others have an initial free trial – all of them are worth having a look at!
‘Trello lets you work more collaboratively and get more done’
Trello allows you to organise and prioritise your tasks into different boards, lists and cards so you can see an overview of everything that needs to be done, making it great for time management and working together. We use Trello all of the time here at The Entrepreneur’s Godmother and use my quadrant system for delegating tasks called ‘Alison Edgar’s Big Balls’. Anything that is important/ urgent is a basketball, something that it important but not so urgent is a tennis ball and something that is less important is a ping pong ball (the reason they are in ball sizes is that the most important job, the basketball, would hurt the most if you were to get hit in the face with it!).
‘Where work happens’
Slack provides a simple way for teams to communicate with each other. There are different channels to organise conversations, making sure that the right people are involved at the right time. We use slack to contact each other every day because it’s quick, easy and it unblocks our emails (one of the biggest time thieves of any small business owner!).
3. 9 Spokes
‘The smart dashboard for easier business decisions’
The 9 Spokes smart dashboard is an amazing tool as it connects all of your business software in one place, revealing key metrics across essential areas of your business such as cash flow, website traffic, social media followers and even more. Having these simple insights gives you a great overview of how your business is performing, so it’s easier for you to make the right calls. For transparency, 9 Spokes have sponsored our Guide to Starting a Business online course and the reason we chose to work with them is because we really believe that their product is great for the entrepreneurial community and it’s free!
‘Wave goodbye to your busywork’
Zapier helps to connect your apps through moving information between them automatically so that you can focus on your important work. For example, we use Zapier to connect our CRM to Slack so if someone on our Free Micro Course replies to one of the emails, I then get a notification from Slack saying that this has happened meaning that I can respond to them straight away. This creates a great interactive experience to help fulfill customers’ needs.
‘Brings businesses and customers closer together’
Zendesk is an online customer service platform which aims at creating personal and purposeful customer relationships. We man Zendesk Monday – Friday 9-5 and as soon as someone goes on our website we hear a ‘knock knock knock’. We then send the visitor a message to ask them is there is anything we can do to help them. It really is a great tool and we have secured business through using it as it enables us to interact with our customers in real time and we feel that it helps us to provide better customer service.
6. Active Campaigns
‘Marketing automation that listens and learns’
We use Active Campaigns as it integrates our customer relationship management (CRM) with our email marketing really well. It also provides us with detailed reports for the success of each campaign, giving us great insight for what does and doesn’t work. It also lets us have a section for our contacts, automations and deals.
7. BeLive TV
‘Engage your audience on Facebook Live with an amazing live broadcast’
For those of your who are part of my Facebook group the ‘Entrepreneur’s Can Clan’, you will know that I love doing Facebook Live! Not only does it enable me to share my expertise but it also provides an opportunity for me to interview some amazing people (Steven Smith, Simon Crowther and Bryony Thomas to name a few!) and makes for some great interaction with the Clan. I was recently introduced to BeLive TV and I have to say that it’s great! It enables you to put people’s comments on the screen for everyone to see as well as having a dual-screen mode so you can interview someone from a different location.
‘Save time managing your social media’
Buffer is a great social media management platform which I use every single day. It makes it possible to have a strong online presence on multiple social media accounts at the same time, whether this is to promote my live workshops, online courses, blogs or updates about what Team Godmother and I are doing. It’s also a great way to track the performance of your posts!
‘Speak loudly. Speak Visually’
Visme is a great tool which enables you to take boring data and turn it into fun infographics and presentations. We use Visme to turn our blogs into engaging and attractive posters or infographics that we can then give away as a content upgrade. For example, take a look at what we did for our blog on ‘How NOT to Make a Cold Call’.
‘Easily create beautiful designs and documents’
Canva is an amazing tool for creating innovative social media graphics, posters and even more! We use Canva to make our promotional graphics for our events such as our weekly Facebook live and much more!
These online business tools really have transformed the way that The Entrepreneur’s Godmother runs, both internally and externally! I hope that you find this list useful and find something that can potentially help to improve the way that your business runs!
I would love to know what apps you use and why in the comment section below!