Top secret: Tools and tips for small businesses

Top secret: Tools and tips for small businesses

Here are some tried and tested options that I have dabbled in over the years when working for others and now working for myself. We all love a free or cost effective way of producing professional looking work, as well as systems to make our working lives easier. So here are some of my secrets shared!

Canva

It is very easy to fall in love with Canva, it will allow you to produce simple imagery that you could very well believe has been created by someone with an eye for design. I use Canva regularly for crafting social media posts and images in blogs, I use this for myself and my clients. The templates are cool, there are so many to choose from, you can also import your own images. Canva is easy to use and it is straightforward to duplicate your image for consistency across a series of posts and to save it as a social ready PNG. Image sizes can be chosen based on your needs, for example the Instagram post size is already there waiting for you, you don’t even have to google it and set the size.

Zoom

I have Zoom downloaded to my phone, it takes seconds to schedule a meeting. I do not know this system inside out by any means but have found it does the trick for video calls. Super simple, video calls are free one-on-one, for a group conversation there is a 40 minute cut off on the complimentary package.

Mailchimp

Everyone has heard of Mailchimp for sending your email campaigns. I still cannot get over how much is included in the free package: forms, email templates, automation, segmenting your lists, the reporting functions, it is all there. Mailchimp couldn’t be easier than it is and being such a well known system means there are a tonne of YouTube how to’s and the Mailchimp guides are so idiot-friendly. Each step is outlined to make sure you can get the most from Mailchimp. The drag and drop editor allows for complete fuss-free customisation, allows you to produce some great looking emails and it makes it so easy to add your opt ins and so on to get you closer to achieving GDPR compliance.

We Transfer

Another reliable and efficient system in my experience (touch wood) which has a free option for sharing big files. We Transfer will allow you to create boards, store your images and send them via an emailable link. You can send your collection of images and many megabytes straight from We Transfer to your recipient, or you can keep the link and share at will. Paid for allows you to send bigger files and will store your links for you to dip in and out and resend as necessary. Something like a full colour brochure and all its packaged up files will probably exceed the free sharing limit.

I am currently investigating options for electronic document signature, I have looked at a few, if you have any recommendations from experience I would love to hear them. If you have any royalty free imagery sites you have come across which have a modern and clean look I would be very interested to hear about those too! Drop me a line and thank you for sharing.


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