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At Done By 5 we are always on the hunt for the best tools available to small businesses. The right tools make work easy and efficient for everyone and that keeps us happy, our clients happy, and our client’s clients happy. As virtual assistants, happy is all we could ask for. With the speed of tech these days, there is a solution for everything, and if you haven't found the app or software to solve that one pesky problem, chances are it's right around the corner. These new programs help push the envelope of what's possible for small businesses and it’s fun and inspiring to track the innovation. Some make marketing and PR almost effortless, others help seamlessly run all the backend of a small business, and others help build and keep the personal client-owner connection that is so unique to small business.
Since February is the month of love, the Done By 5 team wants to share the 5 platforms/ tools that we love to use and why we think every small business should be using them.
5 Tech Platforms Done By 5 Loves for Small Business
Teamwork - We say this A LOT but Done By 5 loves Teamwork! This task management platform is at the core of not only our team, but many of the small businesses we work with. True to its’ name, task management, Teamwork allows you to set up, prioritize, and assign tasks to team members or even clients. Here are 3 key features of Teamwork’s task management that we love:
1. Recurring tasks: You can set up recurring tasks (ie daily, weekly, monthly, etc.). This allows you to not fret about remembering those things that come up every so often but are vital to running your small business.
2. Subtasks: Within each task you can create subtasks. This is key if the project is multi-stepped or a collaboration that can’t move forward until approved or someone else has completed their portion of the project.
3. Notes within tasks: Between text messages, phone calls, emails, social media etc, it is hard to keep up with the bombardment of information we all get on a daily basis. Putting notes under projects is great because everything everyone needs to know is right there and you don’t have go back searching for the email or other various places the key information may be.
If managing a team or a small business with many moving parts or clients, having a task management platform should be at the core of how you run your business and communicate. Check out their site and see what other ways Teamwork can help you and your small business.
G Suite- When starting your small business, we recommend that G Suite be the absolute first platform you sign up for. Google created G Suite with small businesses in mind. Here you can set up a brand-consistent email with “@yourbusinessname.com” and it is an easy platform to use, allowing you to assign emails to each team member. But email is just the beginning, it allows access to google drive for cloud base storage, google docs and sheets that your team can share. This is a great place to store systems and protocols making your SOP’s readily available to anyone on your team with all access folders.
The thing that we love best about G Suite, and the google platform in general, is the fact that...well...there’s an app for that. You can download the individual apps to your smartphone and have your business at your fingertips. If you find yourself commuting on a train or having a spare moment in your day, you can read over a Google Doc your teammate shared with you, or access something quick for a client. The great part is that Google Docs not only allows you to edit the document, but you can also highlight sections and make notes in the margins for others. You can even tag someone via their email to notify them something in the document is calling their attention.
Google docs is great because team members can work collaboratively and remotely at the same time on a project. This is key for when we are brainstorming for a client. We are able to ask questions and build off of each other's knowledge and experience to create something more in depth and well thought out than if we were just doing it alone.
Sign up for G Suite and use these promo code for a 20% discount
(because who doesn’t love a deal!)
G Suite Business Plan
G Suite Basic Plan
Squarespace- The is a web page design platform that makes building a beautiful branded website easy and effortless. When setting up new pages you simply pick a layout and it guides you through inserting text and photos. If you are having problems or are trying to create a specific look, their “help” section gives you a step-by-step tutorial on how to do it. Squarespace also tracks analytics and gives advice on SEO, which helps increase your visibility.
Squarespace is also great because once the site has been created, it is easy to transfer backend management to the client while allowing us to stay on as contributors. That way clients have the ability to keep their sites up-to-date and have more control over their back-end but it also gives us access to take on any revisions/updates or address an emergency. It is easy enough for the clients to manage on their side but also allows us to help out when needed.
Canva- Ever wonder how small businesses or bloggers create amazing branded images or booklets. Chances are they are using Canva. Canva is a graphic design platform that allows you to create beautiful graphics quickly and easily. Commonly used graphic sizes for platforms like Facebook and Pinterest or other documents like menus, booklets, or business cards are presized with templates. There are premade designs that you can modify for you business changing color, words, and font, or you can completely start from scratch. It is quick and easy to upload your own photos and brand-specific fonts and colors to create awesome graphics for your website, social media, and any printable business materials.
Postable- Postable is a new find for the DB5 team and we are just loving it! Postable allows you to create cards online that are then printed and mailed for you. There are many cards to choose from and they are constantly adding new ones, if you can’t find what you are looking for, you can always use Canva and upload your design into Postable. They also use script fonts that are close to handwriting to give a more personal feel. Postable is now the Done By 5 go to for birthday cards and notes for our clients and family.
We use all of these platforms frequently, if not daily. They are integral to our small business and play a key role in how we represent our clients. They make it easy to be rockstars at our job (but they're not the only reason, we're actually rockstars). We love them because they streamline our business and make things simpler for us and our clients, and they allow small business owners to get back to doing the work they do best and the work they love.
Do you use any of these platforms or do you have other favorites? What platforms for your small business do you love and why?
Do you find yourself feeling overwhelmed with your small business and interested in implementing some of these programs? We would love to help, set up a free 20 minute consultation with Michelle to see how we can help get you back to doing what you love.