5 Mobile Apps for Modest Business Owners
Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
There’s Richard Branson -- and then there’s me.
There’s a world of difference in the way we work. He has style, charisma and panache; I have statistics, content strategy and performance metrics!
He wears makeup and does TV interviews and photo shoots. I never wear makeup.
The point I am trying to make here is that everyone is different. True, we have in common that we are entrepreneurs -- but not all of us are cut from the same cloth.
So the business tips, growth hacks and leadership articles that may apply aptly to someone who has an outgoing personality may not be necessarily feasible or practical for someone with a modest personality.
The same goes for mobile apps. For instance, I don’t find much use for Jira or Evernote, and they are good apps, recommended to me by a lot of people who swear they can’t live without them.
This post is dedicated to modest CEOs and entrepreneurs, who like me have had many not-so-good experiences of using highly-recommended mobile apps.
1. The small meetings savior
I often have quick impromptu meetings with clients or associates. As you can imagine with most impromptu meetings, there is a lot of back and forth, and since I don't have a public announcement system or a team of associates hanging around me, it gets quite difficult.
So I set up a real fast video meeting with Fuze. I call it a small meetings savior because it can host and manage up to three participants, 12 video feeds and 1GB of cloud storage. The best part is that it allows content sharing, so I can send and receive PowerPoint presentations, Word docs, PDFs and high-resolution images from the app itself.
If however you need to scale, check out Fuze Premium, which can support up to 250 participants and has enterprise management features.
2. International calling app
Flyp allows you to get multiple numbers for your phone. You can make calls or send texts to the U.S. and 15 other countries where Flyp is available (more countries will be added to the list soon).
You don’t need pre-paid cards or special SIMs to use this app. It works over cellular channels, so it turns all your calls into local calls, covered by your current service plan. It does not incur data charges.
This app is a great help if you have clients across the world, and you need something more reliable and professional than VoIP solutions and at a good price.
3. Travel alert app
I have to travel extensively on account of client meetings and pitching. To make the most of the time, I am either on my laptop, catching up on books or taking power naps. In either case, I am always worried that I will miss my stop.
GPS Alarm notifies me when I am approaching my destination. You can register location alerts by indicating the coordinates of your destination on a map. Also, you can decide where you want to be warned based on location’s radius. This gives you full control over the travel alerts.
On the face of it, it might seem silly to be using this app, but it allows me to work / sleep peacefully -- and saves me a lot of anxiety.
4. Foreign language app
How do you say, “Have a good day” in Dutch?
We have clients from Poland, China, Russia and many different parts of the world. Since I don’t have a string of interpreters at my disposal, I make do with Duolingo.
This app allows me to find good phrases from different languages which I use from time to time in my emails and other conversations. It adds a personalized touch to my emails and makes our conversations friendlier.
5. Zero distraction app
You know how there are times when you want to focus on an important task at hand with no distractions. OFFTIME allows you to block your calls, texts and notifications, send auto-replies and restrict access to distracting apps.
Besides it allows you to find out what apps are killing your productivity by monitoring your app usage. So the next time you are shooting angry birds at bad piggies, you must remember you are being watched.
This app was selected as one of the 100 "Best Apps of 2014" by Google.
All the five apps mentioned here cover some major issues that startup entrepreneurs face i.e. planning, communication and productivity. Most of them are work-in-progress apps, so we may see some new and exciting features added to them regularly.