Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Best Alternative to Photoshop, CorelDraw & GIMP Online

I Say- Best Alternative to Photoshop, CorelDraw & GIMP Online
If you are a digital marketing professional generally you are required to know how to handle software’s like Adobe Photoshop/ Illustrator, CorelDraw or GIMP to immediate level. But to be effective in using these tools need lots of investment in term of money (for the courses) and time (practice). Photos are important essential of a digital marketing content. Thus if you are not efficient in using these popular tools you would end up being dependent on some freelancer or an agency. And so henceforth we see the importance of online photo editors, by using these website you can create photos just like a pro. It’s no secret that people prefer visual content. Articles and social media posts with images get over 200% more shares than content without visuals. Creating images for social media is not as difficult as it may sound, and there are plenty of tools to help you along the way. These sites can be helpful in redesigning and enhancing your photo with the better appearance, the conventional artistic touch on the photo print itself or desktop version is not enough, it is possible for you to upload your photo or enter the URL of an image on the internet. Once you upload your photo or a picture you can resize, rotate or sharpen it. You can add sharpness and color to it. Do whatever you like to enhance its quality to your liking and download it and keep it online for all your future requirements. After all, the photo editing is not merely for special occasions, but it is an everyday online requirement. Some of the websites which can help you with the same are listed below:
1. Canva- Having said that, Canva is a great tool to start with. Whether it is about creating a design from scratch or editing an existing photo, Canva offers a wide range of features.

2. GetStencil- GetStencil/ Stencil is different from Canva with their installation speed, direct sharing on social media platforms, all-inclusive-pricing plans, and integration with Buffer.

3. PicMonkey- It is a popular photo editor and design maker, making image creation easier. You can make your photos look good with the available filters and fonts. The extra beautifying touchup tools, exclusive overlays, and frames are a boon. PicMonkey allows you to ‘undo’ and ‘redo,’ allowing you to make a lot of experiments on the way.

4. Pablo, by Buffer- Are you looking to create beautiful images easily to make your posts pop up? Pabloby Buffer helps you in making your images beautiful, especially in your social network. Buffer is a web service for the pages and profiles of Facebook updates, Linkedin, Twitter and social networks. You can update multiple profiles simultaneously. You can even plan ahead and update directly from any other page you like instantly. Pablo has all the features that you might be looking for in an online photo editor.

5. Snappa- It is a faster way for marketers and entrepreneurs to create graphics without using graphic designers or the photoshop, useful for ads, social media, display ads, landing page.

6. BeFunky- You might be familiar with the mobile version of  beFunky, as there’s an app for both iOS and Android. However, you can use BeFunky on the computer, too– in any web browser that supports Flash. BeFunky has three modes: Photo Editor, Collage Maker, and Designer. You can play with the first two, but for social media images you will need the third one.

7. Desygner- Desygner is one of those apps with a lot of smart details that help it rise above the competition. Another area where Desygner stands out is file format support. It can work with PSD, PDF, and PPT files, and import images directly from Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, Dropbox, and Google Drive. Once your image is done, you can download it as a JPG, PNG, or PDF file, share it on social media or via email, and even get an embed code for your website. Apart from templates for social media headers and posts, Desygner also offers templates for Facebook, Instagram, and Google ads. You can use it in the browser, or download the mobile apps (for iOS and Android).

8. Fotojet- Fotojet looks and feels like a mix of Canva and BeFunky, but seems to work much more smoothly than both. Design elements are neatly organized into categories, and if the ones provided by Fotojet are not good enough for you, the search option is right there to help you find more. The options for editing clipart are reasonably detailed, and you can change the color and transparency of the design elements in your image. You can use Fotojet to create collages and edit photos, and it’s really practical that it lets you use fonts from your computer (alongside the default ones). Fotojet integrates well with Facebook, so you can log in with your existing account and import photos from it.

9. Relay- While Pablo is for users who prefer simplicity, Relay is a full-fledged solution for branded content marketing. As such, it’s more focused on managing your visual materials than on editing them. With Relay, you collect and divide images into projects. Every project can contain multiple photos, fonts, colors, text snippets, and even SEO keywords. Those are your branding assets. This is somewhat similar to the “Your brand” option in Canva. If you modify one of the shared assets, Relay will update them automatically in all images and projects. For example, if you decide to change your brand color, you don’t have to do it manually everywhere. On the other hand, if you’re not particularly good at color matching, you can use Relay Themes. They are presets or “bundles” of design elements that you can rely on instead of tweaking every detail.

10. Polarr- Polarr is an online photo editor so powerful that you could consider it a Photoshop alternative. Although its interface is unconventional, the features are standard for a photo editing software. If you end up feeling confused, Polarr has fantastic tutorials that take you through the app, and there’s a guide that explains various photography-related terms in plain English. Polarr also has iOS and Android apps, as well as desktop apps and a Chrome extension.

11. Fotor- Fotor is another simple alternative that comes with 5 major and powerful features named, photo editing, photo collage, graphic design, HDR, and beauty retouching. The photo editor comes with tons of tools like crop/resize, rotate/straighten, 1-tap enhance (HDR), etc. You can also apply various filters and effects such as funky, webcam, cool, lomo, etc. to make beautiful designs.

12. Gravit- Gravit is another powerful online designing tool to create social media images, greeting cards, business cards, illustration, logo design, infographics, and more. It also lets you make website designs, smartphone screens, Kindle covers, etc. All you have to do is create a project and choose any template to proceed with your design. Change background, add images, shapes, 100+ unique icons, custom text with more than 700+ fonts to give your design a stunning look.

13. Social Media Image Maker- It is another simple application that lets you make ideal images for social media. It doesn’t exhibit all the features of Canva, but in term of making social media images, it is definitely an alternative. Create astonishing covers and profile pictures for Vimeo, Skype, Google+, YouTube, Flickr, Pinterest, Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Gravatar, Facebook, Xing, and more. Select a template and upload an image from your PC to start editing. After that, you can crop the image perfectly for the social media template you’ve selected.

14. Social Image Resizer Tool- Actually, it is a simple online tool to resize social media image and not a perfect alternative but still, if you want to create custom images for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, and youTube, then you can use this tool. In addition to that, it also allows you to create favicon and custom size images. The best part of this tool is that along with covers and profile images, it also lets you create images for social media tabs, links, posts, highlight, board thumbnail, channel art, image feed, and much more. All you have to do is upload an image from your PC and choose a size from different social media templates. When you’re done with resizing, you can save your designs as a JPG, PNG, GIF, and ICO. Ultimately, it is a tool to create optimized images for social networks by resizing them with respective templates.

If you have tried any other online photo editing tool apart from these, let me know how and why that can be a great alternative to these listed above.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Free Tools For Your Startups

Free Tools for increasing Your Startup Productivity
So it’s was add of one more day in startup industry history and few startup’s got funded with huge amount by different giant investors from around the world. The co-founders of these startup’s became millionaire and billionaire in a day, are few stories which will come to your ears after a kick start startup’s get funded.  These stories are like grapevine, but the reality is that there is huge effort involved in achieving this success. Each activity needs detailing from the very start whether it is Marketing, Finance, Operation or Manpower Handling. No company is built alone and neither with huge number of people from starting, it’s usually few like minded people/ entrepreneurs who come together becomes co-founders who fails learn and then starts again. In all these process they take help from few available software to make their work easy. Whether it is about keeping a track on daily cash flow for books of account or CTA (cost to acquire) customers. Actually there are bucket full of free tools that can be used for different departments but I will mention only few that are on basis of my personal experience and feedback from my network. Let’s give a glance to these tools which are divided department wise over here.

1). Marketing

a) Social Media
* Hootsuite- Hootsuite is an amazing social media and engagement management tool, it allows you to manage and monitor all your social media platforms in a single place. It’s specially useful for its social scheduling features, that allow you to plan and publish your social media activities way ahead. Hootsuite even has a feature that analyses the best times of day and auto-schedule your posts according to it. The free plan is normally enough for most users.

* Buffer- like Hootsuite even Buffer is an amazing social media and engagement management tool, it allows you to schedule post, manage and monitor.

b) Analytics: - Google Analytics is a very useful tool to get all the data you need to make intelligent marketing and business decisions. It gathers all your website, mobile app, email marketing, adword campaign information.

There are few more than the one listed above tools for managing social media accounts click to find out.

* Canva is marketed as amazingly simple graphic design software and it really is that simple. Canva is an online application that can be used to create all sorts of graphic material such as banners, beautifully designed infographics and much more. Canva is free till your needs are basic.

* GIMP- Whether you are actively considering a move away from Photoshop, or simply hoping there is a non-proprietary tool for reading your Photoshop images if you ever decide to stop subscribing to Adobe’s cloud, you’ve probably wondered about GIMP. It is a free, open-source, image editor. The reality has changed dramatically over the last couple of years. GIMP now has a very competent user interface, as well as an extensive and powerful set of features. Its openly extensible nature means that in some areas, like running well-known image processing algorithms on your photos, it actually outshines Adobe Photoshop.

* Snappa- Just like canva a user can surf from 40,000+ photos & graphics. But downloads limited to 5 per month with Limited templates and only two social accounts are allowed.

d) Email
* Mailchimp is an online, email management tool that allows you to create professional email campaigns without any design or coding experience whatsoever. Mailchimp is free for new businesses and limited usage.

* Pepo Campaign- You can Send newsletters, transactional, email workflows, design beautiful emails, and analyze advanced reports. You need to connect your AWS account easily get a dedicated hassle free account.

e) SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
* SEOQuake is a very useful browser extension. I have been using the tool for a couple of months now. It gives insight of Backlinks, Pages Indexed in Google, Whois Data, Robots.txt, Keyword Density reports, SeoDigger data, and more.

* Check My Links- is a useful tool that scans all links that crawl through your webpage, and finds broken ones. This simple, but useful browser extension, is primarily developed for web designers, developers and content editors but today is extensively used by marketers.

Find out other tools for SEO in depth. 

f) Content Idea Suggestion- If you have no idea about how to get killer content ideas these tools mentioned below you help you out are Google Trend, Buzzsumo, & Ubersuggest.

g) Keyword- Keywords are important and there are few tools that helps you in finding those free of cost and those are Google keyword planner, Bing keyword planner &

h) Appy Pie: - It is a cloud-based, visual, drag and drop mobile app builder that enables users who have no programming skills or experience to build HTML5 hybrid apps that run on Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry devices; publish their apps in Appy Pie Marketplace, Apple App Store, Google Play, and iTunes; and monetize their apps with ads.

2) Human Resource
a) freeHR- Well, you don’t get much more straightforward than that name. The system is totally free, with no limits on number of users, how long, or how much you use it. The cloud-based nature of freeHR allows it to play well across multiple devices and mobile apps, and the ability to get alerts and send responses from a phone or tablet are strong suits of this product. Employee self-service is also a focus with the ability for employees to request vacation and sick time themselves, clock in/clock out, track their own employment contracts and documents, and keep all their personal records updated. However, it does not seem to include any modules or functionality for payroll or recruiting, so keep that in mind.

b) Zoho People- This HR tool are free for limited employee logins and employee profiles. Zoho is a large, established company, and its HR offering reflects that with its polished look and feel and functionality that includes time tracking, leave management, and employee information and self-service.

3) Finance
a) Wave- Wave is the tool that will help you to get in one place everything you need to successfully run your business from tracking sales and expenses through billing customers and getting paid to paying your employees. With Wave you get free and easy accounting, invoicing and basically everything else that you need to manage your small business’ finances.

b) GnuCash- It is an open source, completely free accounting program that you can download directly to your computer. However, this program is more user-friendly and flexible. Its usefulness is in its reporting: it comes packed with report templates, making it easy to generate everything from a basic profit and loss, to much more complex reports. It also generates graphs that help you track your finances more easily. It has all of the tools a small business owner needs to track finances and plan for the future. Best of all, it is device agnostic and beginner friendly. It is designed to be easy to use, and if you do want to access it on the go, you can download the Android app.

c) Freshbooks- If you’re looking for an invoicing tool, then you should definitely give Freshbooks a try. For starters, the software is incredibly easy and fast to use. But, there are some unique features that Freshbooks offers, such as having the ability to see if a client has viewed your invoice. Freshbooks also allows your business to accept credit cards, set up a schedule for recurring invoices, generate estimates, track monthly expenses, and capture billable hours. And, if you need a little more assistance.

4) Operation
a) Google Drive- It is a secure cloud storage and file backup system. It allows you to share files across all your company easily and without hassle. Google Drive creates a file on your computer you can easily use to share files with your teams. It’s free for up to 15GB storage.

b) Dropbox- Just like Google Drive, Dropbox offers you the option of sharing files with your team. Dropbox Basic, with 2GB storage is free.

5) Project Management
a) Slack- Slack is team communication made easy. Besides offering direct messaging capabilities, Slack allows you to create channels to centralize your company’s information according to the departments, share archives and much more.

b) Evernote- I’m mentioning Evernote first time and would probably may mention it again in the future. It is a great tool for self management you can create lists, add comments, pictures, audio notes and much more. One of its greatest assets, though, is that it offers you the possibility of syncing across all your devices. Evernote’s free plan allows you to sync across two devices, which is more than enough for most people.

So these are few tools which can help you in increasing startup productivity. If you think there are more which would have been added to the list. Do comment below. Share it if you find it informative.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Handling negative feedbacks on Social Media

How to handle social media negative feedback by customers
A very popular Action Movie of Hollywood had a very powerful dialogue “With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility” by now I’m pretty sure you have identified the movie. Great but my motto for posting the blog today is not to give review on the script or acting skill, as there are people who all are far better and great in their works than me. Well on that note I move forward with what I’m interested in and have knowledge about i.e.; Marketing & Digital Marketing. With the continuous and rapid increase in social media user and evolution on how company using this platform for marketing, be it a MNC (Multi National Company) or SME (Small and Medium Enterprises), Manufacturing or Service, Real Estate or Banking, Entertainment or Freelancing everyone wants to be present where their customers or end consumers are present. With the rapid increase in social media user in last decade have forced all size of companies & enterprises to come onboard. Since the distance between the producer and consumer have decreased with action taken on the relevant platform, now the producer are able to speak about their offers as well as the accessibility simultaneously the customers/consumers are able to share their post purchase experiences. If the customer/ consumer satisfied with your product/ service that platform gives you the opportunity of viral marketing or word of mouth. But something goes wrong and you fails at customers/ consumers expectation that platform can become a nightmare for the company. How a social media can become nightmare for company today could be understood by the case study of KFC & Samsung Galaxy the recent one. The case of guy finding a rat as KFC product and Samsung Galaxy s7 Note exploding after getting heated made the company to troll for negative online. It was a period and still today the company is making efforts in all possible way to get back the reputation which they lost. Use Tools For Managing Social Media Accounts and keep track on the feedback Thus it very important that you should follow some these tips mentioned below.

  1. Respond no matter what- It’s very important that the complaints and issues your fans posts on your wall are addressed. Ina0ctivity on your part will appear as though you’re trying to ignore the issue and sweep it under the rugs. Being unresponsive does nothing more than incite more anger and increase the chance the user will come back with even more angry wall posts. Also since your community can see that angry post. If you don’t reply, it appears as though you are unconcerned with customer support, which can be very bad for your reputation. A response that shows respect and understanding for customers’ concerns will indicate your intention to rectify any problems. Thus address all posts even the negative ones.
  2. Be patient and understanding- While dealing with your upset fans, you must remember that you are closer to your industry, products and services than they are. What may seem like basic, common knowledge to you is often foreign to the end user. It’s advisable to take a step back and put yourself in your customer’s shoes. This can go a long way in understanding why he or she is frustrated. It may not be your company’s fault that the customer is upset. Whether or not the fault is from your end, a simple apology will go a long way in keeping the customer’s business. Instead of trying to figure out where the blame lies, take step towards turn upset fans into loyal customers by making their experience better.
  3. Contact the Customer Privately- Sending a private message or email or direct message to the customer opens up more options for you to address his or her complaints. Your goal should be to extend some sort of token letting the customer know you’re sorry that he or she is dissatisfied with your company, and you’re willing to make it right. Whether that means offering the number of the manager’s direct phone line or a discount on the next purchase, moving the conversation from public to private allows you to give the customer a personal touch that signals that you care. Because offering things like direct lines and special discounts publicly can lead to invitation where other people starts creating problems just to get that special treatment, so it’s best to keep these practices off the wall.
  4. Consider asking the fan to remove the post- You can ask and inform your customer that you’ve discussed the issue privately, the problems have been sorted, and step have be taken against the faultfinder if any involved, and so once again, your happy customer. Since your wall is an integral part of your web presence, the customer may be unaware of the fact that how important it really is to your reputation. If he or she is satisfied with the resolution you’ve reached and grateful for the time you’ve spent making things right, there’s nothing wrong with privately asking the person to remove the post. Most of the time, he or she will be happy to remove the angry wall post.
  5. Respond back to the original post- As a general rule, of the Facebook page admin, you should not remove the negative posts. It never that everyone is going to have a positive review about your product or company. Social media users know this very well, and if they see nothing but only positive comments, they’ll assume that your company is deleting the bad comments. If you don’t feel comfortable in asking your customer to remove the post, you do have the option of publicly responding back to that post. Then better express happiness in the resolution you’ve reached and thankfulness for her business. Even a negative post can turn to be a good thing, as long as the last comment is positive. And so your reputation among your community will soar when they see how well you take care of your customers.
  6. Let your community respond- Allowing your community to respond for you is really the end result of all the earlier steps. It requires ample of time, energy and patience with your fans, and definitely a fantastic product. After you’ve engaged with your fans for a period of time by answering their queries and offering support, you’ll notice that your fans will be more active on your page, even to the point of assisting each other. What’s great about getting this community support is that there’s a genuine credibility when fans endorse your business for you. They become your eager virtual support agents, answering questions and solving problems before you have a chance to. But this is a level you can only achieve if you’ve nurtured and supported your community always.
  7. The Last Resort- If the offended party is unreceptive to your customer service attempts; blatantly hostile and only active in your community to start arguments, banning/ blocking the individual is the only last-resort option. And anyone leveling expletives or racial slurs against your staff or fans should be blocked/ banned. Your staff and your fans don’t deserve to be subjected to the unwanted abuse, and in the end, they will respect you more because you took the initiative rather than continuing with that.
Common mistakes that are committed while handling negative comments:

  1. Trying to manipulate forum- While trying to get rid of comment & handling the Negative comments the easiest option which marketers feels that can solve their issue is to post some positive comments. The marketers have a perception that this post would cause older post to slide down and when people visiting the page will not notice it. But mind it today customers are very intelligent today if they see a usual pattern they will go in depth and by seeing the language, profile, date, time they can easily make out that the post are just a manipulative sort off. Take for example of site like mouth shut which is one of the most popular when comes to company review, they have started to do a quality check from their even and when they find something fishy they will mark the post as fake. Which can be a reputation spoiler.
  2. Not Answering- Be it whatever the situation is do answer and address the queries. One important thing which is usually ignored is the time taken to reply on the post. The turnaround time should not be very long. The sooner is best but it should not cross maximum 24 Hrs.
  3. Starts replying at open forum- As mentioned above do not start addressing there itself at the open forum where everyone can be spectators to your conversation.
  4. Same answer- When you address or reply someone on open wall/ forum be sure that you have a standard answer in your place. If something additional needs to be put go offline or use Direct Message.