It won’t be shocking for you to know that as a digital marketing agency, we spend a lot of time on computers, tablets, and phones. To make our lives easier and our work more efficient, we use a tonne of different tools and apps that we’ve become pretty dependent on over the last couple of years.
So here are our favourites. Without these tools life at Digivate wouldn’t be the same. Got any others that we don’t know about? Get in touch and let us know!
Tom – Social Media Manager
If, like me, you see an article every day you’d like to read but never have the time, then Pocket is the tool for you. The Chrome extension allows you to save web pages to be read on any device at a later time. We have an internal social media news email which is sent around every day, I save them all to my Pocket account and read them on my way home!
2. Sprout Social
Sprout or Hootsuite, chances are you’ve had this discussion if you manage social media accounts. We’ve gone for Sprout as it’s what both we and our clients are used to from a reporting perspective.
The Chrome extension never lets me down, Smart Search is a useful tool which I use every day and switching between accounts is painless. The new notification system took some time to get used to, but I wouldn’t have it any other way now.
Josh – Digital Marketing Strategist
I used to have a good memory as a kid, but not any more. I don’t know if my forgetful father’s genes are finally expressing themselves or I’ve just spent too much time at the pub over the years. Either way, when it comes to remembering things I need all the help I can get!
Having Evernote is like having a second brain. It’s on my computer and smartphone and I use it for everything. The search functionality is fantastic. Whether I want to access a favourite recipe, an article clipped from the web, or a book recommendation from a friend, I can find it in seconds.
Spotify doesn’t necessarily make me more productive, but it does make work more enjoyable. I have it on every waking hour, almost. I’ve always been a big music fan and listened to many genres, but Spotify has opened up my appreciation even further. It’s an awesome music discovery tool and if anyone ever took it away from me, I would cry.
Milly – Account Manager
Toggl is the ultimate instrument of productivity. It’s a time-tracking tool that allows you create different projects for different clients and allocate time accordingly.
Warning: when you start using Toggl you may feel a slight sense of urgency. However, this soon transforms to satisfaction when you know exactly where you’re spending your time. You quickly become accustomed to hitting that start and stop button and you will be less likely to get distracted.
My favourite aspect of the app is the reports section where it gives you a colour-coordinated, visualised report of how much time is spent on each client/project for a specified time period. Toggl has become a daily work necessity for me.
I’m all about making lists. Asana is a virtual notebook where you can list your tasks and deadlines in one place. Clicking into each task will reveal the given description along with any attachments that may be needed. You can use this as a personal tool or you can also use it together as a team to work on collaborated projects.
Rather than having tasks and important information over email (where they tend to get lost, forgotten about etc), Asana provides a space to keep things simple and enables clear communication.
Ben – Head of SEO & Social
7. Page Monitor
I use Page Monitor which is an extension for Google Chrome. I mainly use it to help with some aspects of SEO and content marketing campaigns, but it has a wide range of uses.
It’s a simple app that monitors a list of your specified pages, either in real time or on a schedule. It notifies me every time a page changes in any way, with a toolbar icon and the option of a desktop alert too. That capability is really useful when you’re waiting for some content to go live, or to change. Or if you’re expecting a website to add a link to a client.
It’s also useful for keeping track of link removal campaigns when we are approached by clients who have been burned by Google for unnatural links.
Ros – Account Manager
8. Snipping Tool
The snipping tool might be one of the most underrated programs on your PC these days but, as a marketer, I love it. It’s hands down the quickest way of grabbing images from the internet, emails and pretty much anywhere you can think of. Like Photoshop, you can select either by drawing a rectangular box, grabbing a whole screen or by freeform drawing. It’s then just a simple matter of saving the image and using it however you want.
I find it most useful for quickly grabbing images to add to social media posts but as long as you credit the image you could use it for blogs, whitepapers, pretty much anything.
9. Big Stretch Reminder
I don’t know about you but most days I find that by the end of a long day sat at my desk I’ve got sore eyes, a crick in my neck and my shoulders ache. Big Stretch Reminder has pretty much revolutionised our office. Every few minutes a different colleague will suddenly down tools for a few seconds, have a stretch, take a quick walk or even just sit with their eyes shut for a minute.
Big Stretch Reminder is essentially a plugin that reminds you to take a quick break every 20 minutes. It follows the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes spend 20 seconds looking at something 20 metres away so that your eyes get a break from the artificial light of your computer.
My eyes feel so much better at the end of the day when I use it and it tends to get me to stretch a little more as well so I don’t get back pain form sitting down all day!
Sean – Social Media Intern
For those of you who have lived in another country or just generally like to view international content Hola-Unblocker can be a massively helpful tool. We’ve all clicked through to a link before that comes up with the infamous message “Sorry this content is unavailable in your location.”
Hola-Unblocker allows you to view this location dependant content by affectively rerouting your IP address through a proxy server, but these details aren’t important let’s get to the set up.
You can either download Hola to your desktop and run it as an application or you can add it to your Chrome browser as a plugin. Once you’ve done this, the icon should show up in the top right hand corner of your chrome browser.
To use the plugin, simply click the Hola flame icon, a list of countries will appear, select the country from which you would like to mimic your IP and viola you are browsing from another location.