Useful Tools to Save you Time

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As a social media professional, I am always seeking ways to make more efficient use of my time.  I belong to a couple of forums and groups that often discuss free tools or low-cost options.  I would like to share a compiled list here with you:

  • Hootsuite – one of my faves – up to 5 social media accounts for free, up to 20 for $5.99 per month
  • If This Then That – will help you do just that with about 11 social platforms – ex. if [Twitter mention] then [thank them] – will work with Facebook pages.
  • Buffer – share your posts at a later time on any Twitter account or Facebook personal pages
  • Dreamstime – free photos for use in your materials – they also have photos for purchase.
  • DIIGO – similar to Dropbox for websites you want to save for later – lets you bookmark in a cloud favorites by keyword.  You can even highlight things, place sticky notes on pages and share it with connections.
  • FanTools – the free side lets you set up one Twitter and one Facebook page, upgrades available for planning, coupons and deals.
  • YouSendIt – sending large files through email is no longer a problem, use YouSendIt.  You upload, the receiver downloads.  You must stay under a size limit for it to remain free.
  • Morgue File – more free photos. Has a connection with Dreamstime.
  • CutePDF – makes pdf files for any of your printable documents for programs that don’t already convert them.
  • Join.me – screen sharing
  • Skype – video calling and screen sharing, have a group video conversation for a monthly fee.
  • IWOWWE – video email and conferencing.
  • MailChimp – e-newsletter system free up to 2000 emails
  • FreshBooks – on-line accounting, up to 3 clients for free, up to 25 clients $19.95 mos.
  • BeFunky – photo effects editor
  • Zoho – CRM on-line tool.
  • Gimp – photo editing software – you download it.  You don’t need Photoshop with this one.
  • Inkscape – modify vector art similar to Illustrator.
  • ClipArt – open clip art library
  • AVG – anti virus
  • Adobe Browser Lab for website testing
  • WeTransfer – for sending files
  • PrimoPDF is also free PDF converter
  • Hamster – another Free video converter
  • MyPictr – Avatar creator – for profile pictures on social networks – not sure if its up to date but you can manually change the px size
  • DaFont – Free Fonts
  • OpenOffice – The Free and Open Productivity Suite
  • LastPass – Online Password storage.
  • Malwarebytes – Don’t run windows without it – not free
  • Nitro PDF Reader – recently added thanks to SME club thread
  • Toggl – Time tracking, great when you are billing by project
  • Avast! – Anti-virus, some free, but all the bells and whistles cost
  • Audacity – Sound recording and editing
  • TeamViewer – Screen sharing and more.
  • Jing – screen capture. pro version for a small upgrade is no longer available.  Will have to switch to Snag-it or Camtasia.
  • FileZilla – FTP management
  • CCleaner – keep your hard drive clean and optimized
  • Synergy – use one mouse and keyboard to connect multiple computers (from Zoho)
  • Any Video Converter – convert any video, aptly named
  • Dropbox – store and share files online
  • Google Docs, Calendar, mail, keyword tools, alerts, analytics, insights for search – access docs that you share, share with others, check your calendar, multiple email accounts from you desktop, phone, or laptop, find what keywords you need to use, set up alerts for anything you want to track from the web and blogs, add analytics to your website and track traffic to your site, .
  • Evernote -remember everything, anywhere
  • Readitlater – don’t have time to read that article now, save it to readitlater.
  • SimpleNote – similar to Evernote, jot yourself a note anytime, anywhere
  • KeePass – another password compiler
  • Free Conference Call – teleconferencing line available 24/7. Each call accommodates 96 callers on an unlimited number of 6 hour free conference calls.
  • SuveyMonkey – free survey tool
  • Evite – free party planning tool
  • Producteev – task management app, helping to organize office days. It’s cross-platform, desktop and mobile.
  • AnyMeeting – web conference meetings
  • Bit.ly – link shortener and tracking
  • Box.net – add files to this on-line application and link it to your LinkedIn profile
  • Scribd – post your pdf files and documents to share on your social networks if you don’t want to post them on your website.
  • Visual.ly – create your own infographic
  • Get Listed – enter your business name and zip code.  The tool finds the location sites on which you are or aren’t listed.
  • Timeline Image Tool – helps you build custom tab images without needing design software.

What have I missed?  What do you like best?  What wouldn’t you use?

 

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How many LinkedIn Connections do you have?

LinkedIn Connections help broaden your networking reach!

It is real easy to tell how many LinkedIn Connections you have if you have less than 500. The number shows up on the headline area of your personal profile. But what happens once you reach that magical 500+ number that most people strive to achieve?

Why do you need so many connections?

Part of what makes LinkedIn so useful for anyone is the fact that someone knows someone that might need your services or product. The greater the number of connections, the further your reach is in the LinkedIn network. 30% of the 360m users (as of this writing) are in United States. How can you reach the person you need to reach if you network is small and closely held. Today for LinkedIn to work, you need a minimum of 500 connections. How can you find out how many more than 500 you have?

It is more difficult to find out what that number is. One of the previous versions of LinkedIn used to have the listing of how many contacts you had on the right hand side of your status update stream. When they moved the Home page around, they lost that bit of information.  Now you have to go to your Connections page, click on the settings and find out how many contacts you have there. It will also tell you how many of your email contacts are in your network as well.

Watch this brief video to see where you need to look to find out how many LinkedIn Connections you have.

 

June 16 LinkedIn Workshop

Join the June 16 LinkedIn workshop to learn how to warm-up cold leads!

Do you need some updates to your LinkedIn profile? LIworkshop200

Everyone needs to spend a few minutes on social media a few times a day. Does that include your LinkedIn profile? You bet it does. Making tweaks and knowing the right updates to make will help you show up better in search results.

Do you need to learn how to warm up cold leads?

Have a meeting coming up with someone you have never met? Trying to find some potential clients?  Find out more about the power of LinkedIn to help you find and warm-up leads. This hands-on LinkedIn workshop is the place you want to be to help you use LinkedIn better. We will go over your profile to help you establish the best use of keywords to be found, how to invite new connections, how to track connections using the CRM function in LinkedIn, and how to use the search features in LinkedIn to your business’ benefit.

When:   June 16, 2015 8:30AM to NOON Includes continental breakfast.

Where:   Valley Industrial Association, 2000 S. Batavia Ave., Ste. 110, Geneva, IL 60134

What:   Bring your laptop.

To register visit http://time2mrkt.com/payment-center

Find the 6-16-15 LinkedIn Workshop Registration $40 Per Person

Type in your name, select Buy Now  You will be taken to Paypal to register.

Questions? Call Dee Reinhardt – 708-822-2152

Using Google Drive

Want to know more about Google Drive?

Watch the video below to find out more about using Google Drive to enable better collaboration on documents. Or you can follow the tutorial steps listed.

It works best with a gmail email address and in Google Chrome, but if you have an enterprise email address in the Google platform, it will work also. So the very most basic step is to log into your gmail account. Then follow these steps:google drive tutorial 1

  1. Hover over the 9 little squares.
  2. Find the Drive triangle and click.
  3. Drive will open to a new browser window. Navigate to that.
  4. On the left side, you will see a menu of items that includes your documents, items that have been shared with you by others, photos, recent documents, starred (favorites) and trash. Use these area and create folders within as you would with the document manager in your version of Windows.google drive tutorial 2
  5. Once you have your selection open, just pick the document upon which you want to work.
  6. The document will open in a new tab. Browse to that tab.
  7. There is a WYSIWYG editor that you can use. Some of the items are not as robust as the original “Office” software in which the original document may have been created, but you have almost every capability. If the document is created in Drive, there is no differentiation.
  8. Multiple people can be in the document at one time. You would see a box with an initial in it of who the other people are. This is great for collaboration.
  9. Check comments or share the document from the next area.google drive tutorial 3
  10. When sharing a document, make sure you know the google email that the person uses to access their drive and/or calendar. OR you can share a link with them to access the file.
  11. You can also allow them to be able to edit, make comments only, or just view.google drive tutorial 4

Watch the video

Another Facebook Change

How will this Facebook Change impact your use of third party tools like Hootsuite?

This time the change isn’t directly on Facebook, but affects your use with third party sources like Hootsuite. Read this article Owly

What the article boils down to if you don’t have time to read it is:

  1. You will no longer be able to see your personal feed in the News Streams.
  2. Only group administrators will be able to post to groups from third party tools (of which Hootsuite is one.)

Most of the time this will not affect most people, but if you manage a number of platforms through a third party tool, this means that you won’t be able to use it to manage your personal Facebook. It doesn’t appear to be affecting company pages, YET!

One of the things that I love about Facebook is that almost everyone is using it. The thing that I hate about Facebook is that it is always changing. Sometimes not for the better. Sometimes I think they change just to change. Sometimes I think they change because they are trying to please their stockholders.

No matter the situation, if we want to play in their field, we have to learn to roll with the punches!!

Changes to Hootsuite

Hootsuite updated the way you save drafts.hootsuite

If you use Hootsuite to schedule any of your posts or monitor your social platforms, be aware that they have made some changes to the drafts option. Once you have imported all of your previous drafts, using the saved drafts function is just a bit different. Watch the video below or follow these directions:

  1. In the left dashboard menu, select Publisher, then Drafts.
  2. Sort or filter your drafts by selecting a specific profile.
  3. If you don’t want to keep a draft, delete it with the X.
  4. Select the draft you want by clicking the pencil, you can edit it or add additional platforms like normal.
  5. Send it now, or schedule a date for the post. At this time, the Auto-Schedule feature doesn’t work with the drafts.
  6. To save the draft for future use, check the box at the bottom right to “Retain copy of draft message.”
  7. Either X the top right corner to close or “Clear” the compose box.

Watch this video.

What I like about this new option is you can sort by platform. Since I manage multiple business profiles, I can select the company for which I want to post and see all of the drafts that are available. This also allows an easier way to edit and save drafts. One thing I don’t like is the lack of the auto-schedule feature. That could change. Another thing I don’t like is I can’t see when I have other things scheduled when I am making the post. I will have to do some mental note taking or paper note taking to make sure I am not doubling up on a scheduled time.

If you want to read all of the details check this article.