brand clarity exercise

tools + resources

tools and resources

These are the tools and resources to make your solopreneur adventure a lot easier. Everything you find here, I use myself and can therefore honestly recommend.

//disclosure//
Please note that some of the links are affiliate links which earn me a small commission. This means by purchasing something through a link you make it possible for me to run this blog and create more awesome stuff for you.

solopreneur tool set

business

Google Suite

paid, starting at $5/mo.

 

Google Suite comes with a professional email address ending on your domain name, Google drive with 30 GB storage and Google calendar. I like to write all my blog posts in Google docs because it has a really simple user interface. You can access your files from everywhere which comes handy when you’re not at your desk 24/7. Google drive also allows me to work together with clients. I can easily give them access to the files they need, create forms for them to fill out etc.

HelloSign

free and paid, starting at $13/mo.

 

With EasySign you can get your clients to sign your contracts electronically and super quick. I have a template contract in which I just edit the client information. Once it’s uploaded into HelloSign, I just need to add my signature and create a space for the client to sign and I just send it over.

Wave

free

 

If you need to send estimates and invoices this tool is gold. You can create a template with your logo and custom brand colors. Now writing an invoice only takes two minutes for me. Clients can pay you through Wave directly which speeds up the process. Even transforming an estimate into an invoice takes just one click.

Sendowl

paid, starting at $9/mo.

 

If you want to sell a digital product, Sendowl is a great choice. Just upload your file, set the price and you’re good to go. Sendowl integrates with lots of other tools. You can connect your email marketing platform e.g. so people can sign up for your email list during the checkout process. Sendowl doesn’t charge you transaction fees. Though you have to pay your normal Paypal or Stripe fees. Buyers can use credit cards, Apple Pay or Paypal to pay you. The checkout is automatically in their language and the price is converted into their regional currency.

Mailerlite

free and paid, starting at $10/mo.

 

Writing your newsletters has never been easier. Mailerlite comes with a drag and drop creator. Your emails will look so much more professional. You can add social buttons, images, or a signature all with just a click. Mailerlite is free up to 1000 subscribers. 

Calendly

free and paid, starting at $8/mo.

 

Schedule client calls with Calendly. It integrates with Google Calendar or iCal. Just set your schedule and send clients a link to reserve their place.

design

Adobe Creative Cloud

paid, starting at $9.99/mo.

 

Although I’ve used lots of other design software throughout my career, nothing can beat Illustrator or Photoshop. I create almost everything for my blog and biz with Creative Cloud. It’s my go-to for editing photos, creating blog and social media images and of course for all design and branding work for my clients.

Adobe Spark

free

 

A simple and free solution for non-designers who want to create their own images for social media. Spark has templates for all image sizes and is very intuitive to use. You can easily create short clips and videos as well.

Snapseed

free

 

Snapseed is my go-to app for editing Instagram photos. You can correct white balance, edit with curves, add contrast and even add text to your images. And the most important, it's easy to use.

Unsplash

free

 

On the look-out for high-quality, royalty-free stock images? Check out Unsplash!

Apple Pages

free

 

The best tool to create any form of content upgrade or e-books. You can use templates or create your own layout. Pages is a great tool for non-designers because of its user-friendly interface. Export your files to PDF and send them out to your audience. As simple as that.

tools and resources

blogging

Siteground

paid, starting at $3.95/mo.

 

I am with Siteground ever since I started this blog. I haven’t even tried a different web hosting company because I am 100% satisfied with their service. It’s really affordable and I never had any trouble e.g. my site being down or it loading slow. Plus, their customer service is extraordinary. If you have questions, they always respond immediately.

Beaver Builder

Paid $69/ yearly license

 

When I came upon this tool, I was unbelievably happy. HTML has never been my forte. So creating a landing, sales, services or just any page on my blog would take me centuries (maybe not centuries but definitely way too long) and the result was often far from what I wanted and even farther from looking professional. Beaver Builder changed this. It’s a plugin for WordPress which allows you to create a page and even posts in a drag and drop editor. No more fumbling with code.

Grammarly

free and paid, starting at $29,95/mo.

 

I use Grammarly to check my blog posts for errors before loading them up to WordPress. No matter how good you edited before, there's always something that slips through. Don't worry Gammarly will find it.

Yoast SEO

free but there's also a paid premium version

 

It's a WordPress plugin that helps you to optimize every post and page on your site for SEO. It works like a checklist, giving you hints at what you're missing to get the best SEO possible.

Sumo

free and paid, starting at $29/mo.

 

I love SumoMe sharing buttons. I know, they offer lots of other features but I only use the buttons. You can place them where you like and change the color to fit your brand design. Social sharing made easy.

Calendly

free and paid, starting at $8/mo.

 

Schedule client calls with Calendly. It integrates with Google Calendar or iCal. Just set your schedule and send clients a link to reserve their place.

social media

Tailwind

free and paid, starting at $15/mo.

 

Tailwind is probably the tool that saves me the most time. Pinterest can be a real time-suck. But with Tailwind I just sit down once a week and schedule all my pins for the whole week in less than an hour. It’s so easy to use (always a big bonus) and has some great features.

 

Tailwind tells you the best times to post and you get great information from their analytics feature e.g. which boards and pins are doing well and how your pins are converting. My favorite feature is board lists. You can create lists of your top boards or group boards which allows you to schedule 1 pin to several boards in one click.

Buffer

free and paid, starting at $10/mo.

 

I’ve tried lots of different tools to schedule Twitter and Facebook posts but in the end, I am sticking with Buffer. Why? For me, it’s the easiest way to schedule my own blog posts and other people’s content. The browser extension allows you to quickly fill up your queue will browsing online, even on your phone.

Planoly

free and paid, starting at $9/mo.

 

Even though you can’t really automate Instagram posts, I find that a planner like Planoly can help to post consistently. With Planoly, you can see what your posts actually look like in your feed. This is very handy if you try to stick with a certain style. You can then write your caption, add hashtags (Planoly helps you to find the best hashtags) and set a time for posting. You can also check how your posts perform in terms of likes and comments in your analytics tap.

Linktree

free and paid, starting at $6/mo.

 

Get more than one link in your Instagram bio and use it to its full potential. How? Linktree sends your followers to a seperate page in which you can add as many links as you want e.g. latest blog posts, your products or services or other social media platforms.

IFTTT

free

 

Automation is your friend. Especially when it comes to social media. With IFTTT you can create recipes to help you connect different platforms and tools. I mostly use it for social media e.g. to post my Instagram images automatically to Facebook or create a tweet when a new blog post is published.

free resources for solopreneurs