I can't get enough of mobile apps. Every time I hear about a new one, I immediately download it. The prospect of a new app with new functionality excites me the way a little kid gets excited to have ice cream or candy.
Now that I'm a marketer, I'm always looking for apps that go beyond the flashy and cool functionality and can make my work easier. I look for apps that make me more efficient and effective as well as ones that help me stay connected to my job.
So by now you may be thinking, "So what? I have all the social media apps too. I've got Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc." But I'm not talking about those apps -- I'm talking about the apps that can considerably improve your marketing game.
Not sure what I'm talking about? Continue reading below, as I've compiled a list of 12 mobile apps that you, as a marketer, should be downloading today.
Originally, Evernote was a place where you could keep and organize your notes and sync those notes with all of your devices: desktop computer, mobile phones, and even tablets.
Now, though, Evernote has expanded to allow you to save clippings from webpages, share your notes with colleagues, friends, and family, and have tagging features to organize your notes.
Sure, these are cool features, but why is the app superior to others like it? Here's our take.
Marketers are always on the go, right? We have impromptu meetings in the hallway about our latest campaign. We have impromptu meetings at conferences where we develop relationships with other marketers and potential partners. We need to take notes and write down our thoughts whether we're on a plane or out with friends.
Well ... Evernote satisfies all of these needs by allowing you to use the same lists whether you're on a mobile device or tablet. Moreover, the app allows you to tag those lists so you can easily find them later.
This app can make your life significantly easier. Yeah, it keeps track of our to-do lists (with an option for check boxes I should add), but it also allows us to organize our notes and share them with our colleagues who may be working on a project with us.
Have action items from the meeting? Just send along the notes with a list of next steps. Think of something on the fly? There's a link to type a quick note that includes an option to add pictures, a checklist, and set a reminder. It's literally easy as pushing one button to share your content.
It's 11:00 at night. You've finally finished your presentation that you've been working on for HOURS. You send it to your colleagues, and what happens? It bounces back because the file is too big. That's where Dropbox can help.
Dropbox allows you to upload large files and share links that anyone can use to download the file. You can also share folders with coworkers for continuous collaboration.
So where does the mobile app come in? Well, anything you upload from your computer can be accessed at any time from your mobile app. You can then make changes and re-upload anything you want to share with colleagues.
But how it really helps marketers is with its reliability. Marketers know that when they upload something to Dropbox, it will be safe and others will understand how to access the files. When you want to save something to Dropbox really quick, you can. The reliability and user experience of the app are what makes it king.
3) Google Drive
I'm sure you've been in this position: You're at a business dinner without the comfort of your laptop. A question comes up that you should know, but you don't. Even worse, you know the answer is in the Google Doc that is still open on your computer! Fear not marketers, as there is now a reliable Google Drive app that can help you out.
Google has also made a few updates to make the app better for marketers. You can access multiple Gmail accounts on the app (which is useful if you have a personal and work account that you want to have access to), and you can also have multiple people editing documents from the app, just like you can do on your desktop.
Further, you can upload images, documents, and spreadsheets when you are on the go and open documents that you receive on your phone through Google Drive.
This app helps marketers quickly make edits and collaborate with other team members even when they are not in the same place. Whether you're traveling for business, commuting to work, or even just out for a lunch break, you'll be able to access your materials and respond to any urgent matters with Drive.
Marketers are always answering their emails on the go. But usually, you have a native mail app that you can use. However, the Gmail app is so much more powerful.
In this app, you can have multiple accounts, archive your mail, and have access to the most powerful mail search I've seen. You also still have your priority mailbox and labels set up so your emails are organized. When you're out and about and need to find that one important email very quickly, the Gmail app won't let you down.
What makes this app stand out from other mailbox apps is that it recognizes that its users are busy and need to complete actions quickly. You can archive mail in one tap. You can add a label to your mail in two taps. You can switch between accounts in two taps. Essentially, everything you need to do when checking email can be in no more than a couple easy steps.
Download TaskRabbit and your life will change (okay, that was slightly hyperbolic -- but still pretty true). It's a service that allows you to post something you need help with, and when you do, people can offer their services to assist you. Whether that's picking up lunch for a meeting, moving to a new place, or building your IKEA furniture, TaskRabbit is available to help.
The app is fantastic because of its simplicity. You click a category you need help with, type in the address, date, time, and how much you are willing to pay, and then post the task.
It's also easy to respond to tasks once people bid on them. It takes less than 2 minutes to post something and the app will notify you when people respond or have questions about your task. You can even see how your TaskRabbits are rated by others who've used them in the past.
For marketers, this app can really save you when you are in a jam (I know it's saved me!). Even though you're more likely to find a TaskRabbit if you post your task in advance, there is still a good chance that someone will pick up your task last-minute.
So, if you realize you're understaffed at an event or need more volunteers to carry swag and other supplies, you can quickly post a task from your phone and watch someone pick it up.
Flipboard is an app that allows you to browse through the news, images, video, social networking sites, and shared links on your phone. You have the option to create your own curated content, otherwise known as magazines, connect your own social accounts, or browse through the listed topics.
The design of the app makes it extremely easy to use. You simply swipe through the news stories just like you would through the pages of a magazine to get to a new article. If you want to see a certain topic, such as Technology, as you see above, just click that tile and then you'll have the chance to browse through the top tech stories. You can also create your own topics, as I've done above with BuzzFeed.
For marketers, it is very important that we stay up to date on the latest news and trends in our industry. Flipboard makes this easy by organizing the content we need to know into categories and allowing us to create our own categories. It's hard to block off time at our desks to read the news, but Flipboard lets us bring the news with us on the go and in an organized fashion.
Miss the days of Google Reader? Well, you're in luck, as Feedly is quite similar. Though you may typically use it as a web tool, it's a very powerful app. Feedly lets you add publications to your feed and then populates the latest stories from those media sites.
The Explore feature of this app makes it stand out. Marketers usually have a few go-to sites bookmarked to keep them updated on the news. But you never know when another outlet will have breaking news or a different perspective on a particular topic.
When using the Explore feature, it will take a broad topic that you're interested in, such as technology, business, or sports, and show you the latest articles posted about that particular topic.
For marketers, Feedly and Flipboard are both great ways to stay in-tune with what's going on in the industry. But, if you're someone who stays up-to-date on the news both on your desktop and mobile device, Feedly may be a better choice for you. Anything that you add on your web browser will automatically be updated in your mobile phone.
Scan is an app that lets users scan QR codes. After trying out a few other QR code apps, you'll realize this one works more efficiently than others. QR codes are a tricky thing. Even though they're being used more and more by marketers, they don't always work for the people trying to scan them.
Marketers need to be aware of the apps for QR codes for two reasons. First, they need to understand the user's experience when they use QR codes in their marketing materials. Second, they need to have these apps to test out their QR codes to make sure they are working.
Use Scan and your QR code worries will disappear, as this is one heckuva reliable and resourceful app.
Uber is a mobile app that calls for a taxi or town car based on your location and allows you to pre-pay for the ride from a credit card stored in the app.
With recent feature updates, it also allows you to split the ride with friends who are with you and write notes in the receipt if a ride is work-related. At the end of the ride, a receipt is emailed to you.
This app makes taking a cab ride easier than we could have ever imagined. In one click, you're calling a taxi to your location (without actually calling, of course), and you don't have to worry about having enough money on you or figuring out how much to tip.
For marketers, this can come in handy when you've got partners, VIPs, or customers coming to your office. You don't want them to pay for their transportation, and using Uber you can take care of it without any hassle or invoices. You can also call for a car during rush hour and avoid trying to flag down a taxi when most taxis are full.
Uber also provides marketers an opportunity to offer promotions. For instance, the service can easily whip up promo codes that you can use in contests or for transportation during events. If you don't want transportation costs to be a problem, simply talk to Uber about giving out a promo code to your attendees.
10) Salesforce Classic
There are a few apps you can download from Salesforce, but probably the most useful one is Salesforce Classic.
With this app, you can do many of the basic tasks you need to do with the software. You can view contacts, opportunities, tasks, events, dashboards, training, and help. Though you can't do anything too intricate, the basic parts of the software are the most important when you are on the go.
Marketers constantly need to stay up-to-date with the progress of their sales team -- and they can do so easily using this app.
For example, if the sales team is having a bad month, the marketing team will need to know immediately and figure out if there is something they can do to help with the problem. This app allows marketers to make those types of decisions from wherever they are.
Quora is a platform that allows members of its community to post questions and answers about various topics. It's available on your browser as well as a mobile app. You can also follow people, topics, and questions to find out more about information you're interested in.
At all times of the day, people are commenting on topics that relate to your industry (or even your business specifically). Being able to access Quora to answer a quick question or dispute something about your company is important.
Quora also offers the opportunity for you to become a thought leader on a particular topic. Since others can follow you or a specific topic, it's a great way to get your name out there and show you're truly knowledgeable about your company and/or industry.
HubSpot's mobile app gives you a snapshot into the software you would see in your browser. It lets you analyze your data, stay caught up with your leads, track your campaign's progress, and connect to your social accounts.
At any given time, marketers need to know how their marketing efforts are doing. That could be looking at the progress of your leads, figuring out how many visitors came to your site, or monitoring progress of your monthly and quarterly goals. HubSpot lets you put all of this detailed info in your pocket so you can check whether you're in the office or working remotely.
What other mobile apps can you think of that can really help marketers? Share in the comments below!