Courtney Seiter is a great fount of information on social media and culture. She is a writer and editor at Buffer, focusing on the intersection of social media and workplace culture. Her writing has appeared in TIME, Fast Company, Lifehacker, Inc. and more. On the side, she’s the co-founder of Girls to the Moon, an amateur DJ and an excellent dog petter.
What’s on our list? 19 Things we can’t live without!
1. Buffer. Okay, refer to our story on Buffer. Buffer allows us to post content to multiple social media platforms in one easy click. There’s even a handy browser tool that allows you to post while you are reading. Link all your social profiles and share immediately or schedule posts for later. Also Buffer has a beautiful social media image creation tool called Pablo.
2. Socialoomph.com. Our secret tool. Socialoomph also allows us to post and schedule content as far in the future as we want, and as often as we want. When friends say, “I see you on social media all the time; I don’t know how you do it,” I just smile and say thank you!
3. Latergramme.me. This tool allows you to schedule your Instagram posts in advance. Once your posts are scheduled, you only need to publish from your phone.
4. Feedly is a news reading app that delivers news from RSS feeds. I am still missing Google Reader but this is a good way to harness quick access to articles.
5. WordPress is the blog platform I use for both LipstickEconomy.com and our website. We have used WordPress for six years and often use it as the platform for websites we are building. You can’t beat its open source platform and easy-to-use content management system.
6. Google Analytics. There are great new demographic and behavioral features in reporting now.
7. FreeConferenceCall.com. Yep, it’s free. Conference calls for up to 100 people for six hours, although who would want to be on a call with that many people. You can also record calls with MP3 playback. Recording is helpful when you do interviews or don’t want to take notes. We also use UberConference which has similar features and document sharing, also free.
8. DropBox and HighTail. Dropbox is used for storing and sharing files and photos with clients and partners. HighTail is great for storing and sharing large files easily. We use HighTail for transferring large graphic files quickly and easily.
9. Google Drive. I use Google Drive for several organizations and clients where we need to easily share documents and files. And you know, it’s free and awesome.
10. Timetrade.com or ScheduleOnce are great tools for setting appointments online. Excellent tools when you are scheduling interviews for groups of people.
11. Grammarly or Hemingway. Great tools for checking your grammar, your verbosity and your penchant for run-on sentences.
12. Basecamp. We use Basecamp for managing large projects with our clients. Basecamp is considered the most popular project management software.
13. Emma and MailChimp for Email. Why two? Well, they offer different things for different clients. Emma is changing constantly with great new features. One of the things they offer is beautiful templates and custom creative. Emma’s reporting is easy-to-read and they work well with franchise organizations. Besides, they are a Nashville company! Mailchimp is free for lists up to 2,000, good reporting, easy-to-build templates and cute illustrations of chimps.
14. Canva and Pablo 2.0. Both build amazing graphics for social media. We love and use them both. Powtoon is also a great resource for quick little videos with templates ready for customization.
15. SurveyMonkey. Research is important for all businesses. SurveyMonkey is good for informal research, formal research and even collecting contact information.
16. LinkedIn is both social media and a contact resource. Download your connections to start your contact or newsletter list.
17. Evernote. Free note-taking app that is perfect for someone who saves everything.
18. My iPhone. My phone, my camera, my lifeline. What else can I say? Also a portable charger for traveling.
19. Hubspot, Salesforce or Contactually. CRMs for the real world based on the size of your business and pocketbook.
Testimonials may be one of the oldest forms of marketing and for good reason. Testimonials are a way of capturing word-of-mouth in digestible stories. The power of authentic testimonials continues to be important in marketing. And the facts support it. Some 90% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know and a whopping 70% even trust unknown users.
That’s why healthcare advertising depends on testimonials. We do a good bit of research with hospital patients and we frequently ask where people get dependable information on healthcare. And 85-90% of those we ask say Friends and Family. Testimonials are just a way of growing our universe of friends and family.
But testimonials have to deliver the goods. The target audience must perceive the testimonial is real, from someone like them. The message must be authoritative, trustworthy, credible, very specific about results, and relevant to the audience. Video and photography help deliver the authenticity of the testimonial. Academic research shows that people are more likely to believe a statement if it is accompanied by a photograph, so the images of your case study need to be the centerpiece of your testimonial.
Recently we asked patients of Redmond Regional Medical Center in Rome, GA to tell us their Redmond story. And the response has been overwhelming. We heard some incredible stories like Barry who had a major cardiac event while driving down the highway at 50 miles an hour. And Scott who had a massive heart attack running up the high school bleachers. And Elaine who thought the nurses who treated her were angels. Even more people have stepped forward to be screened for possible heart and stroke symptoms. So that more hearts and lives continue to be saved in Northwest Georgia.
Brand Wise has been working with Integrity Solutions to bring their brand new relevance for today’s marketplace. The company provides sales training, customer service and coaching solutions for many Fortune 500 companies.
The brand needed a new face and new ways to reach their target audience. Integrity Solutions now has a new brand identity, a brand strategy, a new website, a content strategy and new ways to communicate with their audience through social media, email campaigns, and new delivery systems like Populr. Brand Wise worked alongside Ah So Designs to provide a website that is just as responsive as Integrity Solutions. Ross Jones at 2theTop Design provided SEO expertise and Marla Ink Productions provided succinct new white papers for the website.