Tools I Use Daily
There are so many great tools out there that can help you to market your online business more effectively, but with so many options available it can be overwhelming. Here are the top tools I used daily, that I believe every entrepreneur with an online business should at least be aware of.
1. WordPress Website
In 2015, a website is an absolute MUST for any entrepreneur. This is your storefront for your business. It’s a view on YOU. A great WordPress site will enable you to create content that is useful and valuable to your readers, it can allow you to collect email addresses of potential customers or business partners and it can be the hub from where you share your content onto the various social media networks. If you don’t have a website yet, this is number one on your list.
(If you’re stuck on how to get your WordPress site set up, I offer services in this area, please get in touch via the contact form on this website).
2. Elegant Themes
If you have a WordPress website or blog, you will need a nice looking theme to display your ‘storefront’ to its best ability. Elegant themes offer 89+ different WordPress themes for one low price of $87, which is great value as most good themes cost around $50 each normally.
My recommendation for WordPress themes would always to choose one that is ‘responsive’. This means that it should alter its display to suit mobile or tablet devices automatically, making the reader experience top quality and requiring no zooming or panning around in order to read the text easily.
I’m using the ‘Divi’ theme on this website (at time of writing), which is the most advanced template I’ve come across. Literally EVERYTHING is customisable, which makes it very easy to work with.
You can check out all of the available Elegant Themes by clicking the image below.
3. GetResponse Email Marketing
“The money is in the list”. This is so true! If you don’t yet have a list, now is the time to start building one. Having a way to collect your visitors ‘ email addresses is an absolute must if you want to turn them into loyal customers. Once you have someone’s email address you can market to them daily or weekly, sending them great content and resources that may be useful to them, then when appropriate you can send them your offer or business pitch.
I use GetResponse to manage my list and to send out my newsletter and automated emails with and I find it extremely easy and intuitive to use. Included with GetResponse is the ability to create email sign-up forms that you can embed on your website and landing pages that you can send visitors to, to promote a specific offer or interest.
Click here to get set up with GetResponse and you will receive £20/$30 as a gift from me 🙂
4. Facebook Fan Page
If you are using your personal Facebook page to promote your business, stop right now and get a Facebook Page (often referred to as a Fan Page) set up. On your personal page you have a limit of 5000 friends. You’re going to want more than that many people to be interested in your business in the long term aren’t you? Also, without a Fan Page you won’t be able to place Facebook Ads to grow your audience or to target buyers.
If you don’t have a fan page, head straight over to Facebook now and get your page set up, it only takes a few minutes. Make sure to include a great description that includes the main keywords for your business in the ‘About’ section, get a good graphic made for your header and start posting content that adds value to your target audience’s day. Don’t forget to invite all your friends to ‘Like’ your page once you have it set up!
5. PostPlanner Social Media Sourcing and Scheduling Tool
Posting on social media can really drain you of time, so it’s lucky I found a tool that takes the hassle out of it. PostPlanner is a great tool that actively finds popular social media content for you, ready for you to simply add it to your posting schedule with a couple of clicks of your mouse. By scheduling in advance you take the pressure off yourself to always be on the look out for great new content, leaving you free to concentrate on other more productive areas of your business.
I recently wrote a post showing how my use of PostPlanner had dramatically increased my Facebook page engagement and reach in a matter of days, you can check out my review of PostPlanner here or simply head over to PostPlanner here to find out more.
6. iStockPhoto Photo Library
If you are a creator and want top quality photographs for your website or marketing materials, iStockphoto is one of the best sources of images. You can search for any keywords and it will show you all the related images. You can even tell it what predominant colour you want in the photograph and whether it should be horizontal or vertical orientation. The good news is that recently iStockphoto changed their pricing policy, so now an XXL image costs the same as a small one. This is great if you want a few large images for your project!
Images cost around £8 each at the time or writing, which is pretty fair considering the quality you can get for that.
To the right is an image I recently purchased from iStockphoto to use in my clean eating quiz on my nutrition blog. I added some simple text and hey presto, a professional looking image.
7. WordSwag App To Create Cool Graphics For Social Media
If you’ve not heard of WordSwag yet, you might be missing out on the best free app for designing cool graphics! It’s great for creating images for quotes, memes or motivational content.
With WordSwag, you add stylish graphics over the top of one of your photographs or a stock photo from the free photo library that comes with WordSwag. Once the image is saved you can then share it on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest or wherever you like.
WordSwag is currently only available for iPhone users but there are other similar tools available that perform similar functions. Another one I use is called ‘Typography’.
Search your phone’s app store for ‘cool graphics’ and I bet you will find some similar apps.
Here are a couple of examples of graphics I designed in 2 minutes flat using Typography (first one) and WordSwag. Effective aren’t they?
8. Adobe In Design
InDesign is an advanced tool for those wanting to create high quality publishing items such as eBooks, newsletters and brochures. It is by no means the cheapest tool out there but it is what I use so I am including it here. If you are registered as a student you can take advantage of Adobe’s student pricing, which means you can get the whole Adobe Suite for a few hundred pounds rather than the thousand or more it costs the average Joe.
If you think you might want to use this tool to create your own products with, have a look at Adobe’s student policy and see what sort of courses or institutions allow you to take advantage of the student pricing. It might be worth investing in your education as well as getting this great tool, all at the same time 🙂
Again, this is an amazing tool from Adobe and I got it as part of the Suite of programs when I was registered as a student studying nutrition. If you like the idea of having a professional photo editing tool but can’t extend to the price of Photoshop, look up Adobe Lightroom as it includes a lot of the features of Photoshop and is also a great photo library organiser. It’s relatively cheap too, at around £60 I believe. And if you need any tutorials on using Lightroom, my friend Andrew Gibson has some great articles on his photography website at www.andrewsgibson.com
I hope you have enjoyed learning about the top tools for entrepreneurs that I use daily, hopefully you will have found a new tool to enhance YOUR online business that you too can share with others.
*Links to other company’s products in this post may be affiliate links that I may earn a small commission off, however I NEVER recommend any products I don’t love or use myself. My views are always genuine and honest.