Top 10 Apps to Keep You Productive
Ultimately, having more time – we all need more time – in the business world is the ideal scenario. You’ve heard all of the suggestions – work smarter, not harder. Only check your email every couple of hours, stop wasting time in meetings. We could fill libraries with all of the opinions and mantras found across the internet. But how do the super-creative and the highly-productive get through the nine-to-five and daily grind of multiple emails, project deadlines, the numerous meetings, and the unexpected items while preserving their energy? It makes sense that in the digital marketing world we live, they optimize technology.
Although there isn’t a ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution, we have compiled a list of our top 10 productivity apps and tools (in no particular order) to help you organize your work-life and save you time in the long-run.
An ‘easy to get started’ tool that helps users plan and organize smaller projects and team goals. This app is arguably one of the most popular priority management tools out there because it categorizes your tasks by showing what needs to be done, who needs to do it, which tasks are priorities and also which ones have been completed. Trello also breaks down your tasks into more manageable parts, which ultimately makes them easier to handle!
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $9.99 per user, per month.
Are you the type of person who uses the same password for every application so that you don’t forget? Using one password for every site you visit isn’t safe. Plus, remembering and searching for your passwords is a massive time waster. The solution? LastPass – a password vault, password generator, unlimited cross-device password vault syncing and all of this in the form of a mobile app, desktop software, or a browser extension. No need to waste time fidgeting with your logins and passwords ever again!
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $2 per month.
A project management tool that has a similar interface as Trello, but has a rich history as a powerful project management and team coordination tool for medium-large businesses. Basecamp uses visual cards to separate the different teams and projects, features threaded messaging, pings, to-do lists, centralized schedules, document and file storage, and an area that allows client feedback while keeping your internal content separate. This tool does take a bit of setup, but it’s definitely a tool your organization will grow to love and will grow with your organization.
Price: $99 flat rate per month.
Brain dumping – a technique many of us are familiar with in the creative industry. This technique is used to write down tasks as they come to mind and filing them later for reference. Pocket is a great app to help with the prevention of forgetting those tasks, or ideas and also allows users to put them out of their mind while they focus on tasks at hand. The ‘Read It Later’ option is great for saving videos, articles, or pictures for later viewing – it’s basically the next generation of bookmarking.
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $4.99 per month.
A fairly new online tool – Grammarly proofreads your content for you. This app helps you with your spelling, grammar, sentence structure, plagiarism, and more. When users install the web extension, Grammarly will correct anything written in a web browser – including your Tweets! The premium version contextually scans your text for mistakes and typos while suggesting ways to make your writing better.
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $29.95 per month, or $11.66 per month if billed as one annual payment.
Do you remember the days of MSN? Slack is a new-aged instant messaging service that takes it one step further by offering both direct and group messaging. Slack also offers file sharing, conversation archiving, and integration with a variety of services such as Zendesk, Asana, cloud storage, and more! At FirstPage Marketing, we love this app for items that require quick messaging because it won’t interrupt someone’s workflow by stopping at their desk.
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $6.67 per user, per month.
Have you heard of the term ‘phubbing’? It’s the practice of snubbing others or tasks in favour of our mobile phones. The ForestApp acts as a phone blocker and helps you stay focused by putting your phone down for a set amount of time to stay focused on the more important things in life – whether it be work or personal. If you stick to your task without getting distracted by your phone for the set period of time, you grow a tree. If you fail and pick up your phone during the timer, the tree dies. The point? As the app name implies, you can build a forest of trees and look back on how productive you’ve been over the past weeks! Bonus: The Forest team partners with a real-tree-planting organization, to plant real trees on earth.
Price: $1.99, in-app purchases.
An all-in-one tool for the Social Media mavens in your workplace. SproutSocial is a social media management software that keeps everything in one place. Offering users monthly scheduling and publishing tools for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google+, reporting tools, and even engagement! Their new ‘Smart Inbox’ brings all of the messages and notifications from all of your social profiles into one single stream. You can reply to messages, like and reply to comments, follow other users, and filter out negative comments. It really is the ideal tool for any employee who creates social media content for their clients.
Price: $99 per user, per month.
Have you heard of the 1-3-5 method? If not, this method is a minimalist productivity technique that helps you prioritize your to-do list. The idea is to get the biggest things done instead of leaving you with a massive list and no idea where to start. At the beginning of each day, write down one big item, three medium-sized items, and five smaller items to get done that day. The beauty of the 135 List app? You can use it across multiple devices and even create your own lists including grocery lists, travel goals, shows you want to watch, or even books you want to read!
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $2.50 per month.
Have you ever wanted one place to keep all of your links, thoughts, images, and ideas in one place? Evernote is a cross-platform, note-taking, article-saving, idea-organizing and sharing service that allows the users to take notes, upload photos, audio, video snippets and organize them into notebooks. This is a cloud-based platform so it can be easily synced across your different devices. The free version gives you 60MB of content storage.
Price: free, premium plans also available starting at $46.99 per year.
ProTip: it’s always important to add new apps and tools to your toolkit one at a time. This is particularly crucial to remember with browser extensions because some apps have a way of negatively interfering with existing apps (especially if you add more than one at a time).
It’s not always easy to stay on top of your to-do list, but with a little help from our friend ‘technology’, you’ll always be ahead of the game!