Running My Business on the Go

One of the reasons I started this agency was to build a team of passionate and talented marketers who are equally passionate about life outside of work. Offering my team the ability to set their own hours and be in control of their projects was essential. I feel the flexibility and autonomy will lead to them producing their best work.

It was also important for me to provide them the opportunity to learn and take on new challenges, as well as making sure they have the tools they need to perform. Scroll down to read more about the tools & apps needed to run a remote Digital Marketing Agency.

Remote work has increased by 55% over the past five years and 91% (!!!) over the last decade. Remote working is the new normal. A reliable laptop and strong WiFi signal means today’s workforce can produce from anywhere. While there are plenty of benefits to remote work, there are also drawbacks.

The PROS of Remote Working:

  • Flexible schedules
  • Less stress and anxiety.
  • Work-life balance (caregivers and stay-at-home parents can be with family)
  • Remote workers on average make $4,000 more per year
  • Companies also save big on real estate and supply costs
  • Companies can hire talent anywhere giving them a wider range of candidates
  • Remote workers have lower turnover rates and are more likely to stay in a position longer
  • Better for the environment. A win for everyone!

The CONS of Remote Working: 

  • Workers can struggle with time and project management
  • There’s no “Off-Button.” It can be hard to separate home and work life
  • Less time outside and less social interaction.
  • More paperwork and money management.

You’ll notice I use the words “quick” and “easy” quite a few times in this post. My goal in writing this was to help alleviate some of the stresses of remote work (too much on your plate), so that you can enjoy more of the benefits (more time for YOU).

I reached out to my team and, together, we compiled this list of our favorite tools and apps that make work easier when we’re on the go:

Tools & Apps for Running a Remote Digital Marketing Agency

Take your online presence to the next level.

Mobile Management:

  • Mailchimp: Mailchimp is a CRM and email management system. We use this for our own email campaigns as well as for most of our clients’ communications. The app is easy to use and lets you take care of the details from your phone.
  • Pages Manager: I don’t recommend trying to manage your business page from your usual Facebook app, especially when you manage more than a dozen, as we do within the agency. The Pages Manager app is optimized for scheduling from your phone and is easy to use. Best of all, it’s less cluttered than the Facebook app and you won’t be distracted by what’s on your personal feed (we’ve all been there, it’s okay)! Here is where you can respond to all incoming messages and comments across Facebook and Instagram.
  • Facebook Ads: When you manage multiple ad accounts for numerous pages, being able to quickly switch from one account to the other through the Facebook app is an easy way to see how campaigns are running or make quick edits without the clunky login of Business Manager on the desktop (Chances are you already have enough tabs open).
  • Google My Business: Use this app to manage your Google Business page. It’s not without its flaws, but it allows you to confirm that scheduled posts are showing up on your page and allows you to respond to incoming messages if you’ve turned that feature on (we recommend doing this so you can reply in a timely manner).
  • Google Analytics: This app does not give you the full dashboard you’re used to seeing from a larger screen, and I wish it were more customizable, but it’s great for giving you your analytics data in a hurry, like during your meeting when your client wants to know how campaigns are performing right NOW.

Scheduling:

While we typically schedule content from a desktop computer so we can have a full screen to work with and standard keyboard, these apps allow you to make edits and last minute adjustments on the fly, because we all know changes are bound to happen even though content has been pre-approved.

  • Later: For Instagram, we highly recommend the Later app. It also works with Facebook and Pinterest, and Twitter, allowing you to easily upload images, get optimized hashtag suggestions, and take advantage of their “Link in Bio” feature when you upgrade to a paid plan. Monthly plans start at $9.
  • Hootsuite: A great all-in-one tool for scheduling, monitoring, and analytics. Hootsuite lets you schedule posts when you on over 30 social networks, and its analytics tool helps you find and schedule posts when your audience is most engaged. Premium plans range from $29-$599/month.
  • Social Pilot: There’s a “client management” feature on this platform, making this a great option for agencies. Social Pilot also gives you content suggestions based on your given industry, and prices start at $10, making this a very affordable option. We love it because it’s one of the few scheduling tools that allow you to schedule content to Google My Business.
  • Sendible: Great for scheduling posts and giving you analytics. You can also set up automated replies and DMs, check brand mentions, and link your account to Slack for faster in-house communication. Plans start at $29.
  • Tailwind: A must for Pinterest pros, Tailwind lets you bulk upload images for faster pinning and uses image technology to identify trending images and give you suggestions. The Plus plan is $15/month and also available for Instagram. Pinterest is a whole other animal when it comes to planning content and scheduling out your pinnable posts. It’s great for anyone looking to drive traffic to their website by providing valuable blog content that people search for on this visual platform.

Video & Photo Editing: 

Note: These apps are free to download and use, but upgrading your membership will give you even more variety and design options. 

  • Quik: Combine up to 200 photos, videos, and live images into your perfect video. Highly customizable and easily integrates your GoPro footage. There is a premium option available.
  • Animoto: Perfect for Instagram and Facebook stories, giving you the option to easily integrate your branded content.
  • Canva: If graphic design scares you, I recommend Canva because it is so easy to use. You can customize colors, fonts, photos, and more. Canva gives you many sizing options as well so you can make anything from business cards to full-length posters, and animated posts. The Pro version provides access to a wider library of images, graphics, and fonts to work with.
  • Adobe Spark: I struggled with where to include the Adobe Spark apps (Post and Video), because there is so much you can do with them. You don’t need any design experience to make videos, create collages, and make animated stories with these apps. Bonus: Cloud backup lets you easily save and share your work.
  • Hype Text: A must for creating animated texts. There’s so much you can do with Hype Text to create some truly unique animated photos.
  • Mematic: Memes are some of the most sharable content on social media, and Mematic makes it so easy (and fun) to make and share them.

The best editing apps for Insta Stories:

Note: These apps are free to download and use, but upgrading your membership will give you even more variety and design options. 

  • Over: Easily and creatively overlay texts and stickers to your photos. Over has an impressive variety of background images and customizable options.
  • Unfold: Cohesive branding is key, especially on social media. Use Unfold’s modern, classic templates (many of them are free) to create a sleek look across your stories and posts.
  • StoryArt: Another very easy app for stunning IG Stories with fonts, filters, themes, and other customizable design features.
  • Typorama: Lovers of Typography, this app is an absolute must for you! Get 100+ font options, 50+ typographic styles, advanced styling tools, and stunning quotes for your stories.

Collaboration & File Sharing: 

These are a great way to send files from mobile to desktop. Quickly and easily share materials with other team members or clients.

  • Google Drive: Quickly and reliably share documents, photos, videos, and audio files. Control who has viewing and editing access. Google Drive also gives you the option to view and undo changes from the last 30 days. All you need to access Drive is a Google account.
  • Trello: Perfect for project management, Trello lets you assign tasks and monitor progress. The integrations with dropbox and Google allow you to share files, images and projects pretty easily. The ability to assign tasks and collaborate with team members or clients helps to alleviate emails which is one of the best things about it. I typically use this as a file sharing tool, uploading photos from my phone to use later from the desktop, or vice versa.
  • Slack: Slack is another must for small-business. Use “channels” to create teams, and securely instant message and share files. It is remarkably user-friendly.
  • Dropbox: “Drop” a file into Dropbox and you’ll have instant access from any device logged into your account, making the transition from desktop to mobile fast and easy. You will have to pay for Dropbox Business, but the extra storage, user access, and features like unlimited recovery make it a worthy investment, particularly for small-businesses. We recommend using this tool for larger files, or high quality photos.
  • Messenger: Most people are likely already using Messenger making it easy to integrate into your business communication. Messenger allows you to send money, share photos, drop your location, and integrates many of Facebook’s other popular features.

Business: 

Be the most efficient small-business owner you can be.

  • LastPass: Save and manage your passwords all in one place with easy access on-the-go. Multi-step authentication gives you extra security and auto-fill allows you to log-in faster. LastPass offers premium options and features.
  • Freshbooks: Send invoices and make payments to clients and contractors. Track funds and organize expenses. Freshbooks makes accounting fast and easy. Prices start at $15/month but is a must for business owners with team members that are required to keep track of their hours and invoice you for their time. There’s a built in timer that helps you keep track of time spent on specific projects that get added onto your invoice with just a few clicks.
  • Square: Buy a portable card reader and accept payments anywhere; a must for retailers and anyone selling goods at tradeshows or local markets.
  • RescueTime: Track how much time you spend on websites and apps. Tracking helps you create detailed invoices and gives you tools to maximize your time. The standard RescueTime app is great and premium features start at only $6/month.

Travel: 

Make the most of your business (or personal) trip.

  • Eventbrite: Find local meetups with like-minded professionals and events to match any budget.
  • Facebook Local: Search for top-rated coffee shops or coworking spaces from locals who truly know the area.
  • GasBuddy: Search for your closest gas station.
  • HotelTonight: Find affordable last-minute deals.
  • AllTrails: Features 100,000 curated trails for the nature-lover who wants to explore.
  • Download the MindBody app when you’re in a new city. This one will help you find a yoga class or day spa if you’re in need of a massage after your long flight or are in need of a place to workout.

So, now, it’s your turn. Tell us which apps you use throughout your day and which ones you couldn’t live without.

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