It’s the age of technology (and COVID-19 *facepalm*) so it’s imperative for entrepreneurs, SMMEs and modern start-ups to make use of all digital platforms at their disposal- and the tools that go with them. The truth is, those who aren’t embracing technology, particularly given the current global pandemic, run the risk of being left behind. Embracing digital tools sooner rather than later will enable you to begin your journey towards further opportunities for growth and integration in future. Basically we’re saying, ‘if you aren’t digital yet, then what actually are you?’ Don’t freak out, we’ll get you started.
Project Management Tools
Managing a remote workforce is no walk in the park and emails just don’t cut it. You should be using a cloud-based program that is dynamic and allows your team to collaborate and work on projects in real-time. Applications like Trello and Jell are great options as they let you share updates and set daily tasks and schedules- making it easier to align projects and your life.
Ok, emailing is not *that* redundant, but it’s difficult to use when having conversations between employees and clients as well as keeping track of relevant topics. Like, ‘um, which thread am I supposed to be reading now?’ That’s why you need Slack, super popular at the moment and ideal for messaging ‘like a boss’- also cool for its other apps and integrations offered, like assigning tasks and taking surveys and polls.
Website Builder and Performance Monitoring tools
Your business website is the front door to your store. It showcases your product or service, implies legitimacy and acts as a channel to share information and news. If you aren’t tech-savvy or a whizz at website ‘stuff’, don’t sweat it, you just need Squarespace. This app allows you to create a clean, mobile-optimised site that you can build. Heck, go wild and add an online shop while you’re at it.
Naturally, you will also want to keep track of how people are using your website. Get hooked up with tools like Chartbeat and Google Analytics that track your visitors; see what pages they are clicking into and more.
Customer Relations Management and Marketing
A customer relationship management (CRM) tool will allow you to log and track every aspect of every relationship you build- but in a less creepy way (questionable). CRM software like HubSpot helps you stay organised and top-of-mind with customers. Another great way to stay in touch with clients and build your database is through newsletters- effective digital marketing tools are Mailchimp and Constant Contact which also offer insight and tracking. Long live emailing!
Having a social media presence is vital when building brand awareness, collaborating and marketing your business. That means posting, engaging with other users, responding to customer questions and feedback, and otherwise being active to show your commitment to the platform. Hootsuite can sort you out there: it’s a great social media management tool that allows you to monitor feeds, schedule posts, interact and engage, and view analytics. The whole bang shoot.
Video Calls and Conferencing
Now that terms such as ‘social distancing’ and ‘self-isolation’ are the buzz words, meetings and conferences are better off virtual. A video call allows multiple parties to join in from anywhere in the world. Zoom and Google Meet and GoToMeeting are popular options when considering the goals and purpose of the meeting. Bonus: you can totally get away with wearing pyjama pants or…no pants during a business call.
With SO many digital platforms and weird and wonderful applications out there, it can be a little overwhelming. If you need help, hit us up at firstname.lastname@example.org.