Tools of the Trade

7 Free And Kick Arse Tools Bloggers Should Be Using

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I love gidgets, gadgets, apps, and tools. For business and for personal use 🙂

I think as a business owner, you need to know of any platform/program/app that could make your life easier. With that in mind, I am always on the prowl for things that can do just that. Here’s some of my favs:


7 Free And Kick Arse Tools Bloggers Should Be Using



1. TwitCleaner Weeds out the “junk” out of your Twitter Followers and leaves you with the active and viable ones. Why would you want to follow someone who hasn’t posted in 837 days? Out with the old, in with the new. http://thetwitcleaner.com/

2. Google Docs: I pretty much like “Google-anything” but I do like the shareable aspect of Google Docs especially the Spreadsheet. This handy little bugger works great for sharing info, important links, or blogging schedules with clients or multiple Admins.

3. Google Alerts: A social media expert told me once “Google your name constantly to see what’s being said about you or your biz.” Great idea, but who’s got time for that crap much remembering to do it. That’s where Google Alerts comes in.  Set alerts up for your name and your business. You can also set it up for industry words to track news and updates in your field. You want to know when someone mentions your company so you can respond accordingly and this service delivers that notice right to your inbox.
NOTE: Make sure you pick targeted keyword. Broad terms will give you millions of daily alerts. Enclosing your keyword or name in ” will help.


4.Freshbooks: I am bookkeeping illiterate. A scary prospect for a business owner. Freshbooks is an amazing system to keep track of your hours and your clients. At the end of the billing cycle, all it takes is a few clicks and Freshbooks will tally your hours/projects/rates and fire an invoice off to your client via email. Freshbooks is free if you have 3 clients and under. www.freshbooks.com

5. Skype:I recently told a newbie VA to GET SKYPE. Skype will be your best friend, I told her. Don’t rack up the minutes on your phone. Use Skype to speak with clients and business partners. You will find out that you will be on the phone a lot in the early days trying to make deals with just about everyone in the universe.Skype is free but more extravagant plans are available. http://www.skype.com/intl/en-us/home/

 6. Hootsuite: Skype may be your BFF, but Hootsuite runs a close second. Hootsuite is a social media dashboard that allows you to connect to multiple social networks from one website. This free platform allows you to schedule Tweets, LinkedIn updates, Facebook posts, and now even Google+ updates way in advance leaving you free to do other things…like sell stuff or take care of clients. HS is free, but there are upgrades for-pay versions as well. http://signup.hootsuite.com/signup-pro/

7. Mail Chimp; Building an email list is still important for any business. Remember you own your email list, you don’t own your twitter followers or facebook fans. MailChimp has a great platform and makes creating and analyzing campaigns really easy. However the best part is it is free up to 500 subscribers to your list. So when your just starting out it is perfect to test out all the features of an email marketing campaign without actually paying for anything.
Even as you upgrade the prices are very reasonable and comparable to most other services. http://mailchimp.com/


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What’s your favorites?


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