KEY TAKEAWAYS COVERED IN THE PODCAST
- Canva is a free tool (with a paid version) that allows you to create social media graphics. With pre-loaded templates that are tailored to each social media platform, this is one of the most useful tools you can use to create engaging images for your socials.
- From an agency point of view, Content Cal is a great platform as it allows you view your content as a grid. It also gives your clients the option to view and approve posts before they go live.
- Social Bee is a social media scheduling tool that has a lot of different functionalities to help you schedule engaging post. Whilst it is not the simplest tool to use, the functions it offers more than make up for it.
- A Color Story is a great app for image editing as it allows you to have more control over the images (more so than editing within the Instagram app), and you can save filters to create to a more consistent feel.
- If you like to plan your Instagram feed in advance, Preview is a great app that allows you to do this.
- For royalty free images that can be used in social media posts, try Unsplash, Pixabay and Pexels.
- Biteable is an online program that allows you to create videos using stock video, your own videos, images and text.
- Mailchimp is a great email marketing service for people that have not done email marketing before as it’s simple. For those looking for a little more, Drip is another great option. If you’re looking for a complete service, try Infusionsoft – especially when it comes to automation and ecommerce.
THE ONE THING YOU NEED TO REMEMBER ABOVE ALL ELSE…
No matter what business you’re in, there’s a tool or system out there that can make your life that little bit easier.
HIGHLIGHTS YOU SIMPLY CAN'T MISS
- Content Creation Tools 03:52
- Social Media Scheduling Tools 06:52
- Instagram Tools 09:05
- Free Stock Image Tools – 11:35
- Video Creation Tools 12:30
- Email Marketing Tools and Platforms 13:42
- Landing Page Tools 15:50
- Other Helpful Tools 16:30
LINKS TO RESOURCES MENTIONED IN TODAY'S EPISODE
For more information on the resources mentioned, visit the following links:
- Content Cal
- Social Bee
- A Color Story
- Cut Story
- Manage Flitter
- Amazon AWS S3
Hello and a super warm welcome to today’s episode of the podcast. How are you? I hope you’ve had an awesome day and things go well and you’ve been productive. I always love hearing from listeners and hearing what their businesses do and how I can how and the kind of information they want. So always feel free to reach out to me come and say hi come and drop me a dm in Instagram or somewhere else and I would love to hear from you. I’d love to hear how you use the podcast and what sort of things you would like to see in future. And you know what the other thing I’d really like to hear from you is who do you want me to interview? Who do you think is a great podcast guest? Now I have been super lucky to have some phenomenal guests on the podcast so far. I’ve got yet more lined up for you. I seem to be doing a lot of interviewing at the moment which is brilliant. And talking to the most fascinating interesting and knowledgeable people. But I would love to hear your recommendations of who you think would be a really good podcast interview who you want me to bring on to share their knowledge and their advice with you. So do please let me know. I’d be fascinated to hear. Also just in case I get them on make sure you are hitting subscribe on whatever device you’re listening to and therefore you won’t miss any episodes coming up just in case I get them. So today’s episode is going to be a bit of a practical one. Now it’s not the most exciting subjects in the world but it’s a absolutely essential must listen because I’m gonna be taking you through all of the online marketing and social media tools and systems and platforms that I use in my business every single day that make my life so much easier. They save me money and time and you know what I’ve tried a million of them and I have wasted that a lot of money on lots of them as well. So I want to tell you the ones that I now use that are my favorites. Some of them I’m sure you’re absolutely going to now buy it because I’ve talked about them before and some of them you may not have heard of or you may be on the lookout for a system that does the particular thing that I’m talking about. But I thought it would be super helpful to take you through all of the different things I use and what I use them for. Now obviously with this episode there’s going to be lots of information around the fact of these different tools and where they are and where you can get them. So what we’re gonna do is I’m going to stick to kind of what the tools are and what they do for me. And then in the show notes which you can find at Teresa Heath-Wearing.com/40 I’m going to be linking up to all of these different tools and we’ll be sending you off to go and get all the details from the various different ones because also there’s no point me going into pricing or some of the kind of you know new functionality or whatever because the chances are if you’re listening to this podcast in six months time it’s not going to be correct. So I’m literally just going to talk you through what I do what I use them for why they’re brilliant and then I will put all the links in my show notes. So I’ve tried to group them in different types of things I use them for and some it’s gone okay and some are just completely random and I just need to tell you what they are but I’m going to start off with content creation. So what do I use in order to create all the images and things you see that we put on social media for us and clients. Well I’ve talked about this before and I love it and it’s Canva so come over as a free tool with a paid version and I do pay for it. It’s not a huge amount of money or not currently huge amount of money. I think it’s about 10 dollars and basically the paid version just gives you a few more other facilities such as being able to save fonts. So if they don’t have your brand font you can actually upload the font to it and also it enables you to save your brand colors. There’s a few other things that are good but those are kind of the main reasons I like paying for it. But the free version is just as good and we use this to create all of our social media content. It has preset sizes of all the different types of content you want to create. It knows what size of Facebook cover photo is it knows what size and Instagram post says and it has those already preset up which you can then go in and just use and duplicate those pages really easily to keep producing that content.
So for me Canva is a must. Even though I have a designer that work the team obviously I’m not going to get a designer to create every single social media post we ever do. So the way we work is I normally get the designer to give me an idea of sort of what he would come up with and then I’d get him to give me the elements. And because you can upload things to Canva i.e. you can upload a logo or icons or something particular that you might use particular images then I’d get him to if he’s done any icons or anything like that I get him to produce them and put them on a transparent PMG. That’s just a file name. If you’re talking to a designer they’ll know what that is. And that means I can upload them. And when I put them onto something the file is see through. So therefore it’s not got a big white box around it or a black box or whatever. So canvas for me is top of my list one of my favorites. I talk about all the time and I love them. The next thing that saves lots of time in our world is obviously scheduling tools. Now I know not everyone’s a fan of scheduling social media. We obviously have to although saying that we do for clients and THW. But actually I don’t tend to schedule much of my own stuff. A lot of my stuff is done naturally. The only problem with that is sometimes if I’m super busy then it can be inconsistent and I might not post or if I’m away doing an event then I might be on Instagram stories all the time. So obviously that’s the kind of fall down and by me not scheduling using one of these tools.
So we have tried numerous tools over the years and all different types of platforms in order to schedule our social media content. And we’ve come up with a few that we love and always come back to or have been with for years. So the first one is buffer I love buffer. It’s very simple very straightforward and yet super effective. Also it’s not hugely expensive and they have different plans for different types of level of requirements. So for me it’s a great one to get started at. It’s a great one to try for not much money. Again I think they have a plan that starts at about 10 dollars a month and then see how you feel and if it works and you need to up it then you can. But at least you get to try at that lower cost. The other scheduling tools that we use or were big fans of is ContentCal we really like this from an agency point of view because with ContentCal it allows you to view the content on more of a grid. And it seems much more visible than the other platforms. It also gives you some authority to allow the client to see approve comment decline all various aspects of your social media posts. So it’s a really effective tool for agencies in particular but anyone that scheduling again pricing wise there is a free version. There is also a free version of buffer to set as well. And again you can decide what sort of pricing you need for the kind of amount of scheduling or number of accounts that you have. The last one that we really like that we use is social be. And again it’s a really cool scheduling tool. It does have an awful lot of facilities. And if I’m honest it’s not the most beautiful or easy is looking platform to use. However they do have a lot of cool functionality in it which really makes up for the fact that it’s not as maybe straightforward as something like ContentCal or buffer. But those the scheduling tools we use and like I said I’ve used loads of others there are loads out there and these are the three that I find are my particular favorites. The next one is Instagram you know I’m a huge fan of Instagram and I use Instagram an awful lot and therefore I do have a few different apps that I use to enable me to better manage that account and also better plan my content. So the first one I use is for image editing. Now you’re going to wonder why I edit my images in a different app not Instagram. Well this image editor just allows you to have a little bit more control I guess over the image. It also means I can be really consistent with my images because you can save certain filters and there’s different things that you can do with it. So for me I use an app called color story and like I said it just enables you to have a bit more control over the image and make them more consistent when you’re uploading them.
So I think that was probably you know a few pounds if that in the App Store and I use that on my iPhone and Android phone that I have I have two phones. Yeah. And it was available on both. So you should be absolutely fine getting that one. The other one I use is called preview because I like to see how the image is going to look against all the other images before I upload it. You might I need to get out a bit more and maybe I do but I just like to make sure that it fits the colors are fine. I haven’t put that type of image up recently and also it enables me to plan ahead so I’m not just looking at the next one image I can be looking at the next six or 10 or whatever. So if I’m planning my content via Instagram I find this one really helpful to get a visual idea of how those images are going to all look once you’ve posted them. The other thing I use for Instagram Stories is an app called cut story. And again I think there’s a free version and then to get the actual branding off you have to pay. And this just cuts up your video into 15 second chunks which can obviously be super helpful if you’re recording a video or you have a video that somewhere else of that is more than 15 seconds.
You basically just get the video on your phone. You open the app you choose the video then the app will chop it up so that each video is 15 seconds long so super helpful for stuff like that. Okay. The next tools that I use the next sort of websites that I use are when I need to find images. Now obviously there are paid for stock image websites like Shutter Stock and Getty. But let’s face it no one wants to pay for an image if you don’t have to. But obviously you need to be very careful that you’re not using images that you’re not meant to use because believe me I’ve heard a million examples of people getting letters through the post basically telling them they owe a lot of money in royalties. So the websites that I use in order to find free images are Unsplash pixabay and pixels. They’re my favorites. Again there’s lots of different ones out there but I tend to find that those three normally give me what I need now. My favorite overall is unsplash but that’s because the images tend to be more I guess Instagramable type looking images they’re a little bit more arty and I partically they like them whereas something like pixabay tends to be a bit more stock images looking anyway those three are great resources and ones that we use all the time. Don’t get me wrong we do occasionally buy images if we can’t find what we need. Okay next one is video editing. Now I’m not talking about recording for long videos and editing suites and that sort of thing. I’m talking about producing little videos for social media. Now we have a few different ones that we use in the agency we tend to do more of this than I do on my own stuff.
But the platform that we use for this is Bitable useful platform. Online websites where basically you can use aload of stock video you can add in your own stuff you can add in your own images you can change tags you can pick music and again really simple to use. A great way to create some nice videos for social media and the other one I use is for my podcast. So if you’ve ever seen my podcast being advertised on social media you’ll see that I use a small video that has a kind of signed wave moving on it and I use that to promote the podcast and that is produced on a website called Wave.co. And what you do there is you upload an image you upload your audio file and then you choose what type of wave you want i’e what sound wave you want and then they kind of merge altogether and give you a video to download. And I do pay for that one and there is a free version if I remember rightly but it’s how many minutes per month you’re going to want to use that that one’s costed on let’s move on to more marketing type platforms than necessarily just social media.
The big one for me is email marketing. What are you using to send out your emails and to automate some of your processes. Now early on in the business when I wasn’t doing any email automation I used MailChimp. It’s a great platform. They’ve certainly developed themselves over time. They’ve got better than they were. And it has a huge free section. So I think if it’s still right it’s about two and a half thousand contacts that you can have in there for free before they need to charge you. Although you won’t get all the functionality but as a starting point and if you don’t want to pay for automation MailChimp is a great one for sending out newsletters. The next one I would recommend that we use is drip. This one has some really good automation features. It has some good campaigns that you can build. It’s a really good and simple system to send emails to store your data in and to basically understand who you’re talking to and get those emails out to them. The cost wise varies depending on how many emails you’ve got in there. But I would say cost wise. It’s a middle of the range cost. Trip has lots of functionality. And if you’re wanting to do any kind of automation or linking up with your landing page or doing pop ups on your Web site then drip will be able to do all that for you. And it’s a great system. However the last one I recommend that we are moving to is infusionsoft. And the reason we’re moving to infusionsoft is because it just does a little bit more. And it has a little bit more functionality so infusionsoft though is quite a step up in price. So hence why our used drip for such a long time. And then when the need came about I’ve then upgraded to infusionsoft. But it’s a great system to some very clever and smart stuff. It can have checkout pages. It can manage people’s payments. It can do recurring payments. It can do some really really cool stuff. So I’d highly recommend that if you’re looking at selling online and you want to really understand your customer then that brings me nicely on to my landing page builder which I don’t need to talk about as I’ve mentioned a million times over the I Love Lead pages. And even though infusionsoft can build landing pages I still choose to pay for and work with lead pages because I love that all super easy super straightforward and a great tool for building landing pages for things like sale pages for lead magnets anywhere where you want them to do something specific and you don’t want that on your Web site. Then lastly I’ve got a few random ones for you which didn’t really fit into any of my categories. The first one is manage flitter. Now I use manage flitter to help me keep track of and tidy up my Twitter account. I obviously follow an awful lot of people on Twitter because I tend to follow most people that follow me or I certainly went through a big phase of doing that and therefore I have a really high number of people that I follow. And obviously I want to make sure that if someone is an active or their account is doorman or actually their spam that I’m not following them and I can clean that up. So I use managed flitter to be able to do that and to keep on top of my account the next random Web site that I use in the business all the time is Rev.com. And also now I’m using something called Trint as well. These are both websites that take audio files and transcribe them. So actually they’re going to transcribe this audio file on every podcast I do I get a transcription for two reasons One it helps with SEO because it’s on my Web site but to if someone wants a transcript let’s say for an episode like today’s where I’m giving lots of different information then they can go to the page and just get the transcript. There’s no need to give me your email address. You can just get that absolutely fine. So Rev and Trint.
Are two different websites. I’ll tell you why I use both the way that Rev works is someone actually listens to this audio file and then they physically type what I say God help them. Could you imagine but the way that Trent works is it’s a computer and it tries to hear what you’re saying and creates the transcript automatically. Now the reason I still use both of them is Trent is good for an episode like today’s episode where it’s just me talking. It doesn’t always get it right. I have to say I talk quite fast and especially because I’m saying names it will often spell them wrong. So there is an element of me having to go in and tweak what they’ve written but it’s considerably cheaper than using Rev. Hence why I it however when I’m interviewing someone I use Rev because of the fact that those audio files are harder to hear and understand and I want to make sure that you can see the difference between me speaking and the person I’m interviewing speaking and Rev does that but it breaks that out and it puts the name next to each person. So that’s why I’m using these two different systems for that. And then lastly the last platform I want to tell you about is where I upload and store anything that I’m providing you as a download. So obviously I have lead magnets I have information that you can download for free and they need to live somewhere so that every time you download them they’re there. Now you can do this on your Web site but it depends on how much storage space you have on there and hosting. And to be honest things that I don’t understand enough of in order to tell you on here. However we decided to go with Amazon AWSS3. This is a storage site where basically you can upload files like audio or video or just text files PDF’s whatever they might be and then they give you a link in which you can then use to put on things like emails or lead magnets or whatever it might be. And it’s just better than perhaps having it all sat on the back of your site which ultimately will still cost you money. Usually the space and potentially I don’t know someone else might have to tell me but it might slow your site down. So for me Amazon AWSS3 is great. And you know what. It hardly costs anything but it is based on how many downloads of that thing you do. So if suddenly you get huge and people are downloading your stuff all the time you do need to be aware that your cost is going to increase. But I am literally paying pennies at the moment per month. So for me this is working great. So I know that was a little bit different from my unusual type of episodes but I felt it was super important to talk you through some systems I use in order for you to understand hey maybe there might be a system out there that can make your life a little bit quicker or a little bit easier or when it comes to things like design and the quality of things as to how I get the level that I get.
And it’s because I use these really good systems and these really cool things and you know what I would love to hear what you’re using.
Have I missed out or not seen or not experienced an amazing tool or system or app that you use that you think the whole world should be using this because it’s so good and it saves me time it saves me money it makes my life easier whatever it might be. Please come and let me know and I would love to share it with my audience. Next week I am interviewing the lovely Madeline Sklar and we’re talking all about Twitter and please promise me if you don’t like Twitter or you don’t think you want to use Twitter that you don’t skip that episode because we’re going to change your mind. I promise you I can’t wait to see you then have an amazing week and I will see you soon.