As some of you know, my day to day work involves writing (novels and online articles), managing a few blogs, and doing PR for author and publisher clients. Research, handling online brands, and managing social media accounts is part of the job and multitasking comes with the territory. Imagine about a dozen social media accounts that I manage, always having about fifty tabs open for research purposes, and brainstorming a few different projects every day. Yup, that’s right, it’s a bit of a mess 🙂
To make sure I keep up with everything, never lose any online reference I’ve found, and never misplace that random post-it I jotted ideas on, I use a few web tools and plugins. I use several, but these three I’ve picked are the ones I couldn’t live without. I use them so much, they are part of the process, and if I have to make do without them, everything takes a lot longer.
OneTab – all your opened tabs safely stored on just one
This one was a life saver. I didn’t find it on my own, this was a recommendation from my boyfriend who was scared by the number of tabs I had opened at one time. All my social media pages and tools, and then research stuff, response sheets and other Google docs… You get the picture. With OneTab, you open as many as you like, then click the blue icon on your Chrome or Firefox extension bar, and voila, all listed nicely in one tab. If you have separate windows open with multiple tabs each, they will be visually separated in OneTab.
This plugin makes it easier for you to navigate through the large number of tabs and also makes sure you don’t miss any important resource by mistake. If you click a link in OneTab, it will open it in another window and remove it form the list. TIP: If you want to use a link a few times before removing it from your saved tabs, then right-click it and open it in a new tab. This way, it won’t be removed from OneTab.
Hootsuite – Easily manage multiple social media accounts
When it comes to Twitter, Facebook, and Facebook and Google+ pages, Hootsuite has been my go to web tool for years. One tab to manage them all, easy scheduling, lots of great options, and pretty much a dream. I’ve even started using it to post on Instagram, because I can select photos right from my computer and typing the caption for the images from a normal keyboard is always better than a touchscreen.
Hootsuite’s free version is limited to five social networks that you can manage. But that’s more than enough in most cases.
Trello – Boards to write down ideas and manage projects
Anything that has to do with a project can be done in Trello: jot down ideas, brainstorm them, store information pertinent to each project, replace email conversations on how to do things, etc.
I use Trello to jot down story ideas, character names, plot twists, and other things that have to do with the stories I write. I also use boards to save details on repetitive tasks – giveaway prizes, details on submission guidelines for blogs and other publishers, upcoming event dates, etc. Another great use is to have boards for the blogs I manage where i write down post ideas. It helps to keep track of what I’ve written and what I’m yet to write.
These three tools have been a godsend in terms of enhanced efficiency. I save a lot of time and can keep track of things I am working on or I’m supposed to do. Not to mention how much easier everything runs on my laptop because between OneTab and Hootsuite, I probably have fifty less tabs open at any given time.
What tools and plugins do you use to increase your efficiency? Have you tried the ones I’ve listed and, if yes, what do you think?