North of river or south of river.
Collingwood or Carlton.
Parramatta or Cantebury.
Gucci or Chanel.
Nike or Adidas.
Coke or Pepsi.
McDonald’s or Hungry Jacks.
Android or Apple.
Rivalries. They’re all around us. There’s no right or wrong (unless you ask your rival, of course). It all comes down to personal preference. Admittedly my love for Android started as a fierce opposition to conforming and getting an iPhone. That’s always been me though, taking a stance and not following the crowd. I used to have an iPod before music was readily available on phones. Back then, I had a Nokia phone but still kept my distance from popular models. I’d go for phones that were a bit edgy, in appearance and in tech.
As busy women on the go, let me share with you my top five must-have apps that help me move forward in my business. And don’t worry Apple fans, they are all available to you too! I don’t like to discriminate *wink*
My Android love affair.
My first smartphone was a Samsung Galaxy (gen. 1, circa 2011). It was great until it wasn’t. I sent it back to Optus and cancelled my contract. Then I got a HTC One and moved over to Vodafone. I loved it. Best phone. Even after I smashed the screen (before cases were actually available for it). After that, I went back to Samsung because there weren’t any HTCs on the market. I didn’t last the Samsung contract out (again) because the phone kept overheating and crashing. Not ideal if I was out and about with a baby. Was able to go back to HTC (late 2016). Kept said HTC until a couple of months ago. First phone I’ve had out of contract. It was great until it would go flat at 94%, or when it was at 0% it would get stuck in a boot loop. I’ve now got a Google Pixel 3. Lordy. If I thought HTC made great phones…Let me just say I have never wanted to take so many selfies.
Of course, there’s more to a phone than just its camera (but really, check the specs of the Pixel 3…whoa!). And I could go on and on about the awesomeness of the Pixel 3, but I am here to talk to you about apps. Apps that I find really useful and cannot do business without.
My must-have (Android) apps for business
Outside of the usual Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest apps, these are the ones I find to be really useful in business.
Staying focussed can be difficult. Especially when you work from home. I love using Forest to keep me on track. Basically, for every 20 minutes (or however long you set your time for) that you work, you grow a tree. It stops you from getting distracted by social media or games on your phone.
I’m the first to admit I don’t use this every day but on the days I’m really struggling, it’s my go-to. They even have a Chrome Extension. I find I use the Chrome Extension more than my phone, but they are synched (I have the paid version of the app, it was only a few bucks).
I’ve been using Bitly for as long as I can remember. Perfect for keeping URLs short. Copy and paste your URL into the generator, and it spits out a short URL. Best part is – without having to pay – you can customise your URL. Here’s one I prepared earlier (shameless plug for our wedding being featured on Polkadot Bride): https://bit.ly/hollie-alex-pdb
Again, available for Android, iOS, Chrome, and has a desktop/web version. I have a free account but get some great insights.
The screen dump from my phone is blank because I only registered an account for Mayday VA as I wrote this post – haha! I have used it for years for my old/on hiatus business, Little Goldfish.
Disclaimer: Lord Google tells me that Bitly is only rated two stars on the App Store. Android, however, 4.3 stars on Play Store.
Sometimes we all need to use stock images in our biz. And you know what, they’re actually a perfect way to help build your brand identity. I’m a huge fan of them. They can help bring a truly cohesive look to your biz. The folks at Unsplash have an app for both Android and iOS. It’s recently undergone a name change on Android, you’ll find it under Resplash. In the App Store, you’ll find it under Unsplash.
Let me start off by saying that I do not use this app for the viral content. I use this app (and the web version) to host the majority of my website images, and have done for years. Say what!? Yup. I don’t really keep many images on my website. There’s a whole other post on that coming really soon (and I’ll update this section with the link when it’s up). I use the app to upload images from my phone – screenshots, camera roll, et cetera. Once they’ve uploaded, I can get the appropriate upload links and drop them in. Voila. Picture is now in my post. Imgur is available for Android, iOS, and desktop/web.
Facebook Pages Manager
I know, I know. I said at the beginning of the post that these apps weren’t going to include the normal social apps. And this one is no exception. The Facebook Pages Manager app is much more powerful than the regular Facebook app. You get insights. You can reply as your page (which you can no longer do from the regular app). Available for Android and iOS.
What do you think?
Are you completely surprised at the lack of planning apps? I’ve just realised that there are a whole bunch that I missed, but that also means more value for you because I can give you a whole other post dedicated to planning and organisation apps! And hey, I’m human. I’m allowed to forget things here and there. But seriously, I forgot them because of the way my phone is organised. I opened the ‘Business’ folder on my home screen and picked my top five apps from the 15 in there.
I’d love to know your five most-used apps for business outside of social media apps, and whether you’re Android or Apple.
Hollie Barac is a creative, tech-savvy, organised virtual assistant. She helps women move forward in their business with customised WordPress websites and specialised creative services. Hollie will soon be offering mentoring services in streamlining planning and organisation in your business. Download your free copy of Hollie’s Business Renewals List and never miss a renewal again.