Friday Freebie #7 – Notebook

Every now and again we like to share a little discovery with our followers that we think might be helpful in your day to day lives! We have received no incentive or payment to give these little plugs but we genuinely use these tools and products day to day and thought we would share a few with you here! 

This week on the Friday Freebie blog we are covering a really cool little note taking app that we’ve been getting to grips with this last couple of weeks…

The app itself is called Notebook (duh!) and you can find it in the app store right now for free download. To be clear – we’ve come across loads of these kinds of apps in the past from Evernote upwards and have always found at least one major flaw we that can’t quite look past – invariably seeing us scurrying back to our Marvel Comics Notebook and scrawling illegible notes on its pages!

We’ve been using Notebook though for a couple of weeks now and have found it to be a really useful and crucially – a really workable app. The app doesn’t offer anything groundbreaking in terms of its functionality – it takes notes, photos, to-do lists, audio etc and organises into some really tactile notebook style layouts.

The app syncs across devices seamlessly allowing you to move your work between devices and all told its already saving us hours!

Check it out by searching NOTEBOOK in the app store now!

Friday Freebie #6 – IFTTT

From time to time we like to take two minutes to share a range of free resources, tools and apps that we have come across in our day to day work and thought we’d share. We have received no incentive or request to do so – these are just some tools that we use that you might find useful this week we are featuring an app called IFTTT!

This week on the Friday Freebie slot we’ve got a really useful little tool that I recommend to clients time and time again (not least last week during our content marketing workshop with the Nene Valley team) for helping to make their digital marketing a little less of a daunting experience – IFTTT.

IFTTT is a really useful little app that has been knocking around my marketing stack for a long time now. To give it its full title – If This Then That – the app allows users to join up all of their digital services to create really useful and helpful little workflows.

These could be really simple little social media link ups such as

  • Auto-posting your Facebook posts to Twitter
  • Publishing Instagram photos as native photos within Twitter
  • Posting your Tumblr posts to Facebook and Pinterest

…all of which can help you to save hours over the space of a month by not having to republish your content to multiple platforms multiple times. By setting up the right chain of activity within the app (all of which is controlled by a series of really intuitive wizards) you can simplify all of your social media in a few minutes.

The range of possibilities afforded by the app though doesnt stop at social media – the app can also sync up with all kinds of really interesting web services on the backend as well and provide all kinds of other helpful things…

  • Maybe you want a tailored weather report based on the locations saved in your calendar for any given day?
  • Maybe you’d find it useful to have all of your Instagram photos save to a dropbox folder?
  • How helpful would it be if you could automatically collate all of your Google alerts into a handy to filter and navigate spreadsheet saved in your cloud storage folder of choice?!

Well all of these and an infinite amount of other possibilities are genuinely super easy to set up and get to grips with right now. Check it out in your app store of choice and see how you can start getting to grips with it! Alternatively you can find more information at IFTTT.com

Let us know in the comments below how youve found new ways to use the app in your day to day work!

In the meantime to see how we can maybe help give you a few eureka moments of your own – get in touch with us today!

appear.in

Friday Freebie #5 – Appear

The latest in our series of Friday Freebie blogs, where we share a new discovery each week for our customers and visitors to make use of in their working day. As ever we have received no incentive or request to feature these products, they are simply products we have found very useful and want to share with people. 

This week on the Friday Freebie blog we are covering a really useful new plugin for Chrome (and other browsers!) for allowing simple and easy video conferencing.

Being a small business we often find ourselves working collaboratively with lots of different people or different companies on particular projects – often with the key members of those teams being spread geographically in different places; only this week for instance we’ve been getting to grips with a new project for a client in Toronto, Canada!

In situations like this its crucial for everyone to be able to touch base and work on ideas together and we were recently introduced to an awesome new platform for exactly that.

The service is called Appear (appear.in) and is an excellent service for anyone using Chrome, Firefox or Opera to browse online. The service allows seamless video conferencing for up to 10 (I believe) participants at any one time.

To get cracking, all you need to do is visit appear.in and use the simple box to create a new ‘room’. You can then invite anyone to this room and you can be quickly up and running in no time.

The platform even allows for screensharing as well to open up even further collaborative opportunities. Honestly we’ve only just begun scratching the surface of this site and have already found it to be quickly indispensable.

We highly recommend checking the service out for yourself very soon!

Friday Freebie #4 – Music for Creators

To make up for the fact that our ever expanding to-do list prevented us from posting a new blog last Friday, this week we decided to give you a little twofer for the Friday Freebie. As ever we have received no incentive to promote these products, they are just tools we make use of on a regular basis and thought we would share with the wider world…

This week we decided to focus the Friday Freebie blog on a couple of options available to people creating video content who might need some music to complete their latest piece of work. With so many people creating video now on their handsets and laptops, little touches like music underneath the clip can really help to give your clip a bit of extra production value.

Here to help in that regard is the awesome and ever-prolific Logan at Music for Makers. Logan posts a new, free 90 second snippet of music every week (delivered to your inbox) which means every week a new professional quality music track will appear for you to make use of. We signed up for the tracks recently and have been really impressed with the quality and diversity of tracks being delivered. How he comes up with new stuff week in, week out is pretty impressive and you can (/should) support him by signing up to receive full length tracks in return for a small fee.

For those of you out there with a bit of musical know-how and some time on your hands – another option might be to look at creating a piece of music for your project. Even for folks with no musical ability there are a number of apps available to create music in minutes. We recently created a short two minute video clip for a client and composed the musical bed for the clip entirely in an app called Auxy.

In Auxy, you simply use grids of musical loops (all of which are easily adjusted and edited at the click of a button) to compose your musical compositions before exporting the finished track from the app to be loaded into your video clip. We’ve been having a lot of fun experimenting with the sounds and options available to create some really cool little clips. Feel free to share your experiences with us on Twitter this week maybe?!

In the meantime – feel free to reach out to us to discuss any creative or digital requirements you might have – and we will see you back here next week!

so very creative social media

Friday Freebie #3 – Buffer

Each week in our ongoing series of Friday Freebie blogs, we spotlight a new free tool, resource or website that we think you might find useful.

This week on the Friday Freebie we have a really useful tool for helping to get on top of your social media updates.

If you are responsible for the social media output of your company you probably know the pain that come from trying to keep on top of your social media posts. Even with a bare minimum of social media presence you might be trying to juggle Instagram, Twitter and Facebook as a minimum. Throw in Youtube, Linkedin, Pinterest and others and before long you can be drowning in drafts.

Over the years we’ve tried a few different systems for keeping on top of this content. For a long time we were a big fan of hootsuite although to be honest after a while we found that Hootsuite had become a little fussy in terms of a user experience without really adding a huge amount in the way of additional functionality.

After experimenting with a few new platforms we eventually came across a great package called Buffer. Buffer is a social media platform that allows you to schedule your social media activity and leave it to run. The platform offers two packages (A free package which allows you to schedule up to ten posts per platform or a PRO package which allows for a much bigger 100 posts per platform) to which you can connect up to six social media channels; Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin and Google plus.

Once you’ve connected your channels you can cross publish updates to the different channels simultaneously and queue up to 10 posts per platform on the free package. There are some neat bits of functionality available on the free platform including the ability to send content at optimised times to ensure maximum engagement with your output. In addition, the paid level of service also has a great system for finding relevant content to your audience automatically allowing for easy sharing, retweeting etc; a really useful way to supplement the content you are generating each week.

To show you how easy that all is, here’s a super earnest video from the buffer team themselves!

Throw in a mobile app for scheduling on the move and its a seriously well equipped little package. We’ve been using it now for a couple of months and have been really pleased with the results. You can find out more by clicking over to buffer.com

In the meantime – let us know in the comments below if you’ve got any great tips for keeping on top of social media duties. Or to talk to us about how we can take the headache out of social media by managing your presence for you, contact us today.

Friday Freebie #2 – Prisma

In the latest in our series of Friday Freebie blogs, this week we present a new photo editing tool that we’ve been having a lot of fun with this week.

If you’re anything like us you probably love experimenting with the camera on your smartphone. As cameras have continued to improve on expensive new handsets like the iPhone, app developers, bog software houses like Adobe and even camera manufacturers themselves have been quick to get in on the act to develop new apps to enhance the creative process for budding photographers wanting to get snapping with their smartphone. 

This weeks Friday Freebie tip is just such an app – Prisma. Prisma is a really simple little photo editing that allows you to create some brilliant effects with just a few simple clicks. 

The app itself is a really simple one to use. In short you simply use the apps camera to take a photograph or select an existing photograph from your camera roll. From there you simply scroll through the filters available at the bottom of the screen before adjusting the amount of effect you want to apply before sharing. 

 



You can either save the images to your camera roll first or share them directly onto social media from within the app. 

All told its an app that can very quickly offer some really fun, creative effects for people looking to create striking, artistic images on a budget and very quickly. 

I’ve put some images below to demonstrate some of the effects that can be achieved with the app. Tweet us @soverycreative with some of the results from your experiments and in the meantime – we will see you back here for more Friday Freebies next week! 


Friday Freebie #1 – Freedcamp

So we decided that this year we were going to set ourselves a number of resolutions for the business as well as some personal goals for the year ahead. These resolutions were a combination of some larger goals (hiring new staff) to small goals (mastering the new Instagram ads platform) and one of the resolutions we made was to share more here on the blog.

One of the ways we thought it might be useful to do that was to start a new weekly blog called the Friday Freebie. Here we thought we could share a little tip every Friday for a free new piece of software, browser plugin or some other little tool to help make your working life just a little bit easier!  Its important to note here – these aren’t PLUGS, we haven’t received any incentive to write about these products – these are all products that we genuinely use on a day to day basis that we think might be useful to our clients and visitors to the website.

This week to kick things off we thought we should share a little tool called Freedcamp that we’ve been using. Freedcamp is a really useful project management platform in the vein of a number of other similar platforms like Asana or even more comms based platforms like Slack.

Using Freedcamp enables you to set up project groups and subgroups, assign tasks to users, track progress, hold discussions, store files – all manner of really useful little tools. There are also other modules that you buy to upgrade the free version to a more bespoke, ‘pro’ tool.

We’ve been using the free version for about 6 months now (after trialling a number of different / similar platforms) and have found the system to be something of a godsend. Signup is quick and easy and we’ve been inviting our clients to join their project groups to keep them instantly apprised of progress and to enable them to have input to a project instantaneously.

All told – we can definitely recommend this as a really useful addition to a small office – its even more attractive when you find that they recently just launched a mobile app too to enable you to have the same range of actions and options direct from your mobile handset.

You can sign up and try the system over here.