ABOUT BRANDON

Hi, I’m Brandon Uttley. I am a seasoned web marketing and public relations professional. I write about social media, new branding thinking, cool tech tools and more. For regular updates, please sign up for my email newsletter below.
Brandon Uttley

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Get More Out Of Your Data Plan

Onavo Extend is one of those must-have apps for anyone using an iPhone or Android phone. It compresses data (including images and text) to help you get more out of your plan.

The company claims you will get up to five times more out of your 3 or 4G data plan without changing the way you use your phone. Keep using your favorite apps, sharing photos and browsing the web—but with less “dings” against your monthly bandwidth limits.

Cost: Free

Send Clients Voice And SMS Appointment Reminders

If you want a better way to remind clients about upcoming appointments, JustRemindIt is an excellent system. It let’s you schedule and send automated reminders by voice or text message.

And by clients, that could mean many people:

  • Colleagues you work with (who are forgetful)
  • Clients you serve through your business
  • Prospects you are meeting with
  • Family members (such as someone who needs to be reminded to take their medicine)
  • Coaching clients (who pay you to keep them on task, exercise regularly, etc.)

All you have to do is enter the recipient’s name, phone number and timezone. Then enter some reminder details by simply typing a message and setting the time you want to send it. You’ll have the option to select either Voice Call or SMS. You can speed up the process using templates or by setting recurring reminders.

They also have an iPhone app to make it easy to set up and send reminders on the go.

Cost: There is a free plan that provides five free reminders per month; small business plans range from $9.99 per month for 65 reminders, $19.99 for 150 reminders or $39.99 for 350 reminders. The business plans let you create custom greeting messages, show your company’s phone number on caller ID and send repeat reminders to the same clients.

Find An Email Address In Minutes Using Rapportive

Rapportive
By now, you may already know about Rapportive. It’s a great addition to a Gmail account (or Google apps email). At a glance, it will give you links to your contacts’ social media sites and even a few of their recent updates.But what I really love Rapportive for is its slightly-hidden secret in helping you discover virtually anyone’s email address in minutes. If you are in sales and marketing (who isn’t?), this is invaluable, since getting to someone’s inbox directly can be golden.Basically, whenever you start to type an email in Gmail, if the address is a “match” in Rapportive, you will instantly see their information in the sidebar. That’s great, but how do you find out someone’s email in the first place? You could attempt to guess it, but that is hit-or-miss and time consuming.

The fastest and best way I’ve found is to use a killer spreadsheet called an email pemutator, together with Rapportive. This allows you to quickly generate a bunch of potential combinations of someone’s email address, which you then plug into Gmail to validate.

Rather than explain this in detail, read this comprehensive blog post from Distilled. Just follow the directions (watch the video) and click the link to get the free Google Doc spreadsheet that you’ll need. I promise, this stuff works like magic. But as they say in the post, “With great power comes great responsibility.” You wouldn’t want to use this to spam people, and you better have a great reason to email someone out of the blue who doesn’t know you!

Cost: Free

Know When Someone Opens Your Email

There’s nothing more frustrating than sending an important email and wondering if the person actually opened it. Well, wonder no more! Signals, made by Hubspot, let’s you see who opens your email.

Signals integrates with Gmail (and Google Apps accounts), Apple Mail, Outlook for Windows, Outlook.com and Outlook Web Access. Signals also hooks up to Salesforce and Hubspot, letting you know instantly if you have a lead or a warm prospect visiting your site.

Cost: Free (200 notifications/month); $10/month/user (unlimited notifications)

Open Office Documents On Your Smartphone or Tablet

Want to be more productive on the go? Quickoffice lets you run Office documents on mobile devices (Androids, iPhones and iPads).

Once you sign in with a Google Account, you can save your work in Google Drive and access your files from any mobile device or computer.

Use Quickoffice and a Google Account to:

  • Create and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint files
  • Access files in Google Drive and on your device
  • Open and view PDF files
  • Share files through previously shared Google Drive folders
  • Attach files to emails

Cost: Free

Discover Popular Videos with 5by

I’ve been enjoying 5by, a video curation tool that’s like Stumbleupon-meets-YouTube. Especially when I’m busy, I can count on 5by to serve up a few tasty videos that are share-worthy.

Cost: Free