Recommended Tools

When starting my business I had no idea what tools or resources to leverage in order to run my business more effectively. Therefore, I spent a lot of trial and error on various platforms to find ones that would allow me to streamline my business, save money, increase productivity and more. The tools listed below are what I have found to work the best for me and my business and highly recommend them.

Note: Some of the links below are affiliate links which means I do receive referral credit, points or commission if you sign up using my referral codes and it comes at absolutely no additional cost to you.

Backoffice

17hats

The 17hats program is a back office system that stores client information, personal note, emails, invoices, contracts, questionnaires, tracks time spent on calls, sales, accounting and more. I love this program! There is a desktop and iPhone version available. 

Dubsado

Dubsado is a back office system that is very similar to 17hats and stores client information, personal note, emails, invoices, contracts, questionnaires, tracks time spent on calls, sales, accounting, has a client portal and more. There is a desktop version only. 

Email Marketing

ConvertKit

ConvertKit is a platform to send newsletters, capture emails from opt-ins, segment VIPeeps for special mailing and automate mailers, remove subscribers from certain sequences after purchase, tag subscribers and more. It allows for intricate sales funnels, ability to create beautiful landing pages and more. I LOVE ConvertKit and am so glad I switched from MailChimp. It is a more robust system, but it is extremely user-friendly. The one downfall is that coding is required to customize your newsletters to make the more appealing. The newsletter templates are very basic but on the upside, they're less likely to be labeled as spam by your subscriber's email system. 

MailerLite

MailerLite is a platform to send newsletters, capture emails from opt-ins, segment VIPeeps for special mailing and automate mailers. It does allow you to create landing pages and has a simple drag and drop feature to create newsletters with ease. It is a free platform up to the first 1,000 subscribers. It's pretty basic and a good one to start out with but you will most likely need to upgrade which is why I highly recommend ConvertKit.

Graphics

Canva

Canva is a graphic design program that allows you the capability to create various types graphics and content for our business. There is an option to apply filters to your photos and more. I love using Canva and find it to be extremely user-friendly. There is a free and paid version of the program. I personally like the paid version because it saves my branding, content and allows me to share the designs with my team. 

PicMonkey

PicMonkey is a photo editing application that allows you to edit, enhance, retouch photos as well as make collages and more. They do offer a free and paid version. I don't use this as often as Canva because I personally am not a fan of the platform. I don't find it to be as user-friendly as Canva and it doesn't have all the features that I personally need for my business. It does have a desktop version and an iPhone app. 

Legal

The Contract Shop

The Contract Shop is where I purchase all of my legal docs from when it comes to running my online business. They offer website disclosures, coaching and consulting agreements, and more. Part of the reason I love purchasing from The Contract Shop is that it's easy, affordable, and you receive life-time access to updates. Meaning, you don't have to purchase the updated version as it's included with your original purpose. Highly recommend this one for your legal needs.

Online Booking Calendar

Acuity Scheduling

Acuity Scheduling is an online booking calendar that allows your prospects. It does have a free and an upgraded option. The upgraded options include text message notifications, branding elements, automatic email reminders, calendar syncing, payment processing syncing, contracts and more. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version.

Setmore

Acuity Scheduling is an online booking calendar that allows your prospects. It does have a free and an upgraded option. I have used the free version and it works well. It'll sync to your Google calendar so that you always stay up to date on all appointments. The upgraded option includes SMS reminders, online payment processing, recurring appoints or classes and more. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version.

Payment Processor

PayPal

PayPal is an online payment processor that allows you to collect online payments for your products or services.  This service is free but does have a small fee that is taken from your payments that are being processed. It does have the capability to transfer to your bank account and it does sync to various platforms for the collection of payments. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version. I currently use this as my primary payment processor and haven't had any issues.  

Stripe

Stripe is an online payment processor that allows you to collect online payments for your products or services. This service is again free but does have a small fee that is taken from your payments that are being processed. It does have the capability to transfer to your bank account and it does sync to various platforms for the collection of payments. I don't use this as a primary payment processor but have it as a backup for any clients that don't have a PayPal account. 

Productivity | Time Management

Asana

Asana is a free task management tool that I have used in the past. It works great when you have a team and you want to keep up to date on its progress. You're able to see projects go from start to finish and it helps you stay organized, increases productivity and time management. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version. 

Passion Planner (use kayla@kaylabrissi.com as the referral email) 

A Passion Planner is my physical calendar that I keep with me. I utilize both a paper calendar and an online calendar to stay organized. The Passion Planner allows you to schedule appointments, map out your goals, track your monthly, weekly, daily progress and more. I seriously LOVE my Passion Planner. I recommend getting the undated version so that you're able to start and stop at any time during the year so you aren't wasting money on a calendar that you can only use for a portion of the year. 

Toggl

Toggl is a free time management application to track and monitor time spent on tasks. I use this quite often when I want to see where I spending my time. It sure is an eye-opener to see where a lot of my day is wasted. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version.

Relationship Marketing

MemberVault

MemberVault is a content marketers dream! It is virtually a one stop shop for all of your content that'll allow you to build relationships with your users and allow you to sell your digital products and services. It is a relationship marketing platform that can house your eCourses, Resource Library, Membership Site, Digital Products, Freebies, and more to provide a unique and professional experience for the user. It integrates with several email marketing platforms as well. MemberVault does provide 2 products free for life and if you would like access to the unlimited products you will need to upgrade to $69.99/mo or $699/yr. It has a desktop only version. However, it is available for the user on both a mobile device and a desktop.

Social Media Automation

Amplifr

Amplifr allows you to schedule all of your social media content on all the major platforms and receive detailed analytics for each post and platform in one central location. It also allows you to create content tags so that you can keep track of all the important types of content that you're sharing. This program costs $5/mo per social account created and will give you a two-week free trial to test it out. It'll work on laptop or desktop, iPad or Android tablets, and it's an IOS native app but has the capability to be used with Android in the web browser. The following social platforms are available for scheduling: Facebook personal page, Facebook groups that you are an admin of, Facebook Page, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, and more. It does have a mobile app for IOS or you can utilize the web browser for an Android and a desktop version is available too.

Buffer

Buffer allows you to schedule all of your social media content on all the major platforms in one convenient place with analytics. It can save you a lot of time if you hate scheduling content as it also has a content library where you can "re-buffer" content + add it to a queue. The analytics are good and simple to read if you're not into reading your analytics. The other main perk of this application is that you can schedule to auto-post your Instagram. You will NOT receive a push notification to post your scheduled content to Instagram. It'll post it for you! Life saver! Buffer offers a free version for 3 social media accounts with the ability to schedule 10 posts to each platform per month. Not exactly enough for a thriving business. Therefore, I recommend if you're bootstrapping it to do the $15/mo option where you can schedule up to 100 posts/mo per platform. The following social platforms are available for scheduling: Facebook personal page, Facebook groups that you are an admin of, Facebook Page, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, and more. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version available.

SmarterQueue

SmarterQueue allows you to schedule all of your social media content on all major platforms with some basic analytics. It is a more robust platform but can save you a lot of time if you hate scheduling content as it'll repurpose content for you on your behalf from your content library. It also allows you to create content tags so that you can keep track of all the important types of content that you're sharing. This program starts at $19.99/mo and gives you a two-week free trial to test drive it. The following social platforms are available for scheduling: Facebook personal page, Facebook groups that you are an admin of, Facebook Page, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version available.

Hootsuite

Hootsuite allows you to schedule all of your social media content on all the major platforms and receive detailed analytics. With the free version, you can select up to 3 platforms. With an upgraded version (Pro or Business), you're able to choose up to 50 platforms. The following social platforms are available for scheduling: Facebook personal page, Facebook groups that you are an admin of, Facebook Page, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+, Twitter, and Pinterest with the installation of Tailwind. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version available.

Grum.co

Grum.co allows you to upload photos from your computer and they will be published in your Instagram account on the required day and at the right time. It costs $9.95/mo. This platform also allow you to place all of your hashtags as the first comment on autopilot. Therefore you can legit set it and forget it until you're ready to hop onto Instagram to engage during your relationship building time. Complete automation which means no pushing your post through to Instagram like other platforms. It has a desktop version only.

If This Then That (IFTTT)

IFTTT is a free platform that allows you to create applets for just about anything: social media, for the home, business organization and more. It's insane the amount of things this program can do. I used to use it to streamline all of my social media content so that I didn't need to use the paid version of Hootsuite and all of the major platforms are being hit with content multiple times of day. It made my streamlined process a breeze. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version available. 

Storage

Dropbox

Dropbox has a secure folder for file uploads and sharing documents with my team. I use it to store all freebies that I offer to my tribe as well as all of my graphics and downloads for my business. There is a free version and then a paid option for more storage. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version. 

Evernote

Evernote is the mother of all apps, or at least it is in my opinion. It's a fantastic way to stay organized. Save notes, tasks, ideas, inspiration, images, or anything you find online with ease. It syncs with your phone and computer automatically which is perfect for my on the go lifestyle. I use this for content creation, saving links, receipts for my business and more. There are free or paid upgraded options available. It does have a mobile app and a desktop version. 

Video

Loom 

Loom is an amazing tool to have in your tool belt for recording videos. It is a free program where you can earn referral credits to unlock certain features of the program. The uses are unlimited as it can be used for both screenshare and video recordings. I have used it to record short tutorial videos for clients or my mastermind programs as well as record a response to an email that I received. There is a desktop only version available.

Zoom

Zoom is a great video conferencing program. They have both free and upgraded options available. One that even includes webinar features. You can use Zoom in a variety of ways but I have used it primarily for group conference calls, recording longer training videos, coaching calls, and more. When the recording is done, Zoom will provide video, audio, and text files for use. It does have a desktop and mobile app. 

 

Website

Squarespace

Squarespace is an amazing platform for hosting your website. It's user-friendly, has beautiful pre-made templates and doesn't require HTML or CSS coding knowledge. All templates are customizable and easy to update when needed. The entire package deal includes your website, business email and domain name. I recommend using the Hayden theme. There is a desktop version in addition to specific mobile apps for various features such as analytics, blog and commerce.