First Published in INC. Magazine

For public relations and marketing go-getters, time is our most constrained resource.

An Atlanta public relations and marketing kinda morning

Your “weekend” mornings might go a lot like mine. For example, last Sunday I commissioned a logo for a new venture capital firm in Atlanta. Sent a mass email. Reviewed a speech. Had breakfast with the family. Developed a list of prospects for a growth stage client at Write2Market. Approved two articles for the online magazine for female entrepreneurs. Got on a plane.

Productivity boosters

Our public relations team constantly looking for the latest apps to make more of their limited attention. Here are some of the productivity apps that I and some of my Write2Market team are enjoying right now. Used right, these accelerate outcomes and make the most of your time:

1. 99designs 

That Sunday morning’s logo for my new venture capital firm was dealt with by 99designs. Our inhouse design is good, yet if you need speed–99designs often does good enough. For me, a cup of coffee later on Sunday morning, I had 13 new designs, five of them usable with modest tweaks. Over the week, a total of 54 options came in, for $377.

2. Xero

Xero booted QuickBooks at our agency–and that’s a timesaver in itself. Xero is native accounting in the cloud. It gives me a financial dashboard even on my mobile phone. I can project if I can afford that next hire in about three minutes using actuals. I love it.

3. CallRail

Do customers try to reach your company by phone? Then you need this! Callrail is in Write2Market’s tech public relations practice, which is how we learned about this amazing tool. Call tracking and recording is a missing link for many growing companies. It was for mine. With this affordable tool, you’ll know not just who is calling, but also which web search or page the person is calling from. It’s opened up a world of insights on lead generation at Write2Market.

4. Upwork

Upwork allows you to outsource well-defined tasks such as data entry, research, design, and content. For us, the best feature is that you can source talent across the world, so you and your team can get some shuteye while lots of tasks still move forward.

5. Buffer (a public relations “MVP” for me)

Have you ever read an article on your laptop and wanted to share it? Buffer makes it easy to share on multiple feeds at once or to schedule future posts.  Write2Market uses Hootsuite, Sprout, Marketo, Pardot, Zoho, Hubspot or others for heavier social scheduling and a few other tools, but Buffer is my personal go-to. I get great feedback from busy executives I introduce to it. Suddenly, it’s easy to share the fascinating stories they’re reading.

6. ClickToTweet (a real content marketing favorite)

ClickToTweet makes it really easy to share a complete pre-made tweet.

7. Yet Another Mail Merge

When I need to send a personal note to a small group, such as a board or a committee, this is my tool. Your email will be sent directly from your Gmail account and the email addresses in a Google Docs spreadsheet. When I say quick, I mean I can send a merge mail from my draft folder in the time it takes the flight attendant to tell us to shut down.

8. SalesLoft

This application builds quick prospect lists and helps you track outreach. When you are ramping up content marketing, SalesLoft really helps. For example, a client at Write2Market was recently hunting CMOs at specialty retailers to invite to an upcoming webinar. SalesLoft helped us find them using LinkedIn search and then transferring data and adding email addresses to a spreadsheet and to Salesforce.

9. Feedly and IFTTT

Jennifer Bonnett, founder of StartupChicks and program director at Atlanta Technology Development Center (ATDC), says she “automates content marketing. I use Feedly to peruse relevant blogs. Then, when I save for later, IFTTT automatically saves to an  Evernote folder. My virtual assistant picks up articles in that folder and writes a synopsis for our blog, with a link to the original source. IFTTT.com automatically posts to Twitter and Facebook, which in turn IFTTT.com automatically retweets/likes as me personally.” This is also super helpful to test content marketing concepts for outreach before you scale an approach at an enterprise level.

10. Laminar Pro

Images on social are important. There are so many tools out there to help, but testing them all can waste your time. International photographer Ross Oscar Knight, who has a studio and photography school in downtown Atlanta, relies on an app that’s a couple of years old. “I don’t always have time to import my images on my laptop to make changes,” he says. “Laminar Pro gives me access to my most-used touchup tools so that my images looked polished, even if they’re just for the web.”

 Originally this article was published in INC. Magazine