Recently I caught up with a PR manager at a large, well-established brand. I listened intently to her frustrations and empathised with the mounting pressure of handling daily tasks.
This is something we hear about a lot at Flaunter – from brands and teams of all sizes! Surprisingly, large brands often have very small in-house PR teams trying to juggle a huge amount with limited resources, emerging brands are usually run by one or two people wearing five different hats at a time, and agencies are under pressure to deliver more and more specialised services in shorter time frames, with increasingly high expectations of ROI.
We’re all juggling the realities of running/growing/managing a business, so we all know the pressure of trying to achieve as much as possible each day with limited resources.
Thankfully, there are a bunch of tech startups out there that have honed in on improving our ability to deliver on everyday tasks and have developed brilliant tools that automate, streamline, simplify and generally make life much easier.
To share the love, I asked some of the Flaunter team to choose the favourite tech apps that they can’t live without.
Loved by Mie – Senior Account Manager
Yesware gives my Gmail superpowers. It allows me to track emails (including links clicks and attachment opens) and know when and how many times an email has been read. The tool also allows me to set up emails to send later, create email templates and personalise bulk emails. Now I know which messages are working (and which ones need tweaking) at every step of the sales process.
Loved by Aimee – Brand and Media Manager
Intercom is the epicenter of our user management system – and a total lifesaver. I can track user activity in real time, give support through live chat and manage our help center all in one place. Essentially, it allows me to have my finger on the pulse at all times, making everyone’s experience on Flaunter as awesome as possible.
Intercom has also changed the way we onboard customers with guided email campaigns based on their activity. This means that we can automatically deliver the right message to the right people at the right time. Win!
Loved by Margot – Marketing Manager
Plann is an Instagram planning tool that we use to rearrange, organise, schedule and curate our insta profile and stories. It’s so good to be able to see what our feed will look like in advance and get insights on our performance. I’ve found it particularly useful to figure out what colour schemes and posting times work best for us. ALSO, they have a feature where you can literally snoop on your competitor (or favourite Instagrammers) to figure out what they are doing and why it is working (or not)! Love it.
Loved by Saurabh – Lead Engineer
A super simple virtual pinboard and project manager, Trello helps me in ways that post-it notes and diaries just can’t. Trello allows me to stay on top of pending tasks, work-flow and forward planning. I can also log daily activity and share progress with the rest of the team. This is especially helpful when I am working on a large project because everyone has full visibility and can ask questions or give feedback in one place.
Loved by Margot – Marketing Manager
Essentially a FREE analytics tool that helps us (and practically everyone else with a website) better understand our web traffic. We concentrate on traffic sources and user flow in particular, however, there are endless insights to be uncovered if you’re ready to really dive into the data!
Loved by Mie & Aimee in particular
Prosperworks is our relationship management tool that stores everything we know about leads and our customers (who are obviously the most important part of our business!)
The system automatically pulls in all contact information (including company details) and email conversation history from Gmail. This means that the entire team has full visibility for each contact – plus it means no more manual data entry (woo!). Prosperworks is a ‘must have’ tool for our sales, marketing and customer management teams.
Loved by all!
Slack is a messaging app that is.always.on. It’s completely transformed our inter-team communication, doing away with an endless stream of emails and phone calls. We also depend on being able to quickly chat with our external freelancers and contractors in a group forum.
Besides the many integrations and add-ons Slack offers, we also find it incredibly helpful to have a searchable chat history. Considering we all have a million conversations happening at once, it is great to be able to quickly type in a few keywords to locate a something that was mentioned months earlier.
NETWORKS – LINKEDIN & MEDIUM
Loved by Gaby – CEO and Founder
Given my background in PR and as a startup founder, I have always appreciated the power of a wide and supportive network. It is a huge advantage to have the ability to ask for help, offer support and learn from others.
LinkedIn is absolutely essential for building your personal profile in business. It is one of the first places anyone will look when they want to know a little more about you (other than what the sunset looked like from your Positano balcony this afternoon – thanks Insta). Try to regularly connect with people in your industry and put yourself out there by starting the conversation with a new connection.
Medium is less of a tool and more of a super helpful resource. It’s a publishing platform that allows real people to write about their experiences and knowledge on practically any topic you can think of. Publishing my own stories on Medium has opened up a whole new world of learning and I’ve met some incredibly interesting people.
While G Suite isn’t exactly a newsflash for anyone, it definitely deserves a mention in our most loved apps. From the huge range of products on offer, we mainly rely on mail, calendar, sheets, docs and slides. Everything is, and always has been, filed in G Suite – making it available to the whole team no matter where they are in the world. It is flexible, transparent and easy.
Pro Tip: It is super helpful to set up a consistent method for naming folders and documents so that it remains organised and things are easy to find in the future. For example, we try to stick to the naming convention: ‘Title – Topic – Date’.
Canva… for when you don’t want to engage the graphic designer. A super handy app that helps us create design assets for our EDM’s and banners.
Xero… for when you need to be an accountant but really don’t want to go back to uni. Xero makes money management much easier and more transparent – it handles everything from invoicing and bills to bank recs and payroll.
Scrunch… for finding the right influencer for your audience without scrolling aimlessly through Instagram. We use it to verify our influencer and blogger users and reach out to new influencers who would benefit from our platform.
PIXC… for quick and cost-effective deep etching of brand images. Simply upload your hi-res images, and let the PIXC fairies take care of the rest.
We’ll continue adding tools to this list as we go. If you have tools that you can’t live without we’d LOVE to hear about them …
Image: art direction + styling: Amanda Shadforth, photographer: Natalie McKain