As a starter, I am always on the lookout for powerful tools to help me get more done in less time. Here are 7 resources that I’ve used and I think are worth sharing:
If your business serves customers / clients within a certain locality (e.g. your city),you should check out GetListed.org. This is a great resource to quickly verify that your website is listed in the locally oriented search engines, such as Google Places, Yelp, etc. And if you are not, it provides a link to get registered. 100% free. How to works: Go to GetListed.org, enter your business name and zip code, and click “Check My Listing”. It’s that easy.
If you are looking to hire high quality overseas freelancers, oDesk provides a great platform to find, interview, hire, manage and pay contract workers at hourly rates typically far less than what you find in the states. You can find contractors for pretty much anything from software development to bookkeeping to online marketing; and can hire them for a day, a full time position or anything in between. I personally hire overseas contract workers on oDesk for transcription of videos and have had a very good experience. My advice is to interview and test out several contractors before deciding on one.
As a business owner, you invest in your website content. What you don’t know is how many people are lifting your content from your site. Are your site visitors copying your content from your site and pasting it on their blog or in an email? Tynt is a free tool that allows you to track every time when your content gets copied from your site. A cool feature of the tool is when your content is being copied, Tynt automatically appends a back link (that you customize) to the copied content so that what it is pasted, the content automatically includes a link back to your site. With this free tool, you know which content on your site is the most popular, as well as passively generate back links to your site.
4. Text Broker
If you are looking for good content writers, you need to check out a site called TextBroker.com. There, you can access their large network of talented local (US based) writers who will write your content. Many of the are writers on this site are teachers, nurses, and other folks looking for some extra cash. You pay the writers by the word, and the rates range from $0.012 to $0.067 per word ($6.00 – $33.50 for a 500 word article). All content that is written for you is approved by you, so that you can ensure that you are only paying for content that meets your needs.
Becoming seen an authority on a topic related to your business can be difficult and take a lot of time. Plus, working with a PR firm can be very expensive. Yet, there are scores of reporters out there who are looking for sources of information for their articles, including information about topics that are related to your business and for which you are an expert. There is a website called HelpAReporter.com or HARO which closes the gap. You can sign up on the site as a “source” for free. Three times a day, every day, you receive an email from HARO with requests from reporters looking for sources for their articles on topics of your choosing. Reporters from The New York Times, to ABC News, to HuffingtonPost.com are looking for content for their articles, so this is a great way to get your message and your business out there. Did I mention this is free?
If you are looking for an easy and smart way to get your logo designed, check out a site called 99designs.com. 99designs.com does crowd sourcing for creative design. On the site you create a design contest where you invite the designers on the site to submit their design according to your specifications. You decide how much you want to pay and you only pay for the design that you like. They also offer brochure design, web design and product packaging design. So for only a few hundred dollars, you can get your logo professionally designed risk free
Some of the best start-up education available is from successful entrepreneurs who have been in the trenches and have figured it out. If you haven’t already been to the site or seen his interviews, I highly recommend that you check out Andrew Warner’s site: Mixergy.com. Andrew conducts live interviews of entrepreneurs to who have made it and those who have failed. He has them walk through their story from the very beginning all the way through to the climax of the story. By listening and watching his interviews, you get to learn the decisions these entrepreneurs made that led them to success, or failure. I highly recommend it.
Full Disclosure: Some links on this page include affiliate links where I will receive a commission if you purchase their product from a click of my website – Corey.