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We’ve been around the block a few times…in the digital sense, that is. Within our team, we’ve probably used every tool available to man (and woman) for their digital marketing. Here are just a few for you to ponder.

What is your favorite WordPress plugin and why?

ShortCodes UI – a super intuitive plugin that allows you to easily re-use snippets of code in both posts and pages. Almost every site has a use for custom shortcodes, and you don’t even need a developer to make it happen. 

BackWPUp – backs anything and everything up on the server so if a site gets hacked we can restore it easily.

WP Retina 2x – It makes my site look less blurry on a mac retina, and the updates for the images are really easy.

WordPress SEO by Yoast – Two words: Green Lights. For anyone who just wants a simple analysis of SEO keyword usage in your articles or pages, this tool alerts you with RED, YELLOW and GREEN “lights” or notifications to help you resolve any glaringly obvious mistakes or misses in your search engine optimization.

Jetpack – it has features and results that cover all the bases that we would want to cover in WordPress. Jetpack has customization, traffic, mobile, content, and performance tools. I’ve gotten Good response from those I know who’ve used it.

What is a productivity tool that you couldn’t live without?

Being super productive with my social media tasks is important to keep on track and focus on tasks that are really important. I love Buffer for scheduling and measuring social media content. And with so many great integrations, it makes daily community management so simple.

I couldn’t live without my thin recycled paper notebooks, pencils and pencil sharpeners! I’m also a big fan of using offline material to keep my online work organized. It helps me to write down my tasks for the day on paper. I use a binder to keep all of my questions and ideas that float around my head in order. Each client has a tab and if I’m working on one project but can’t stop my mind from thinking of another task, instead of jumping to the other project for fear I’ll forget, I put a note in my binder under the correct client tab and then my mind can rest knowing it’s recorded and I won’t forget it.

We’ve been working with Teamwork recently and it has proven to be effective in keeping track of all facets of projects in a clear, concise and orderly fashion. It has a clean format and maintains good communication if utilized properly.

Two things that work together – 1. Getting Things Gnome and 2. Project Hamster. The first is a simple but powerful task list that allows me to braindump what I need to do, tag it for organization, and set loose due times. When I’m ready to actually do work, GTG passes info to Hamster, which tracks my time and allows me to search and filter the records.

What is your best piece of business advice?

Being available, responsible, and transparent, is hugely important. Clients like to know that they can get a hold of you or that you will respond in a timely manner–take care of them and nurture the relationship.  

You are a finite resource so don’t burn yourself out. Work smarter not harder, and leverage your creativity.

Develop a balanced work/personal routine and boundaries that fits your goals and the lifestyle you want to achieve. While there are benefits to “freedom”, without a routine, things will begin to fall through the cracks and end up causing unnecessary stress and overwhelm.

Wake up an hour early EVERY morning and find stillness. I started doing this 6 months ago and my life started immediately vibrating at a different frequency. Amazing connections and synchronicities and ideas started popping into my day like spruce tips. Doesn’t matter what I do with that hour… I can sit and read Joseph Campbell, Eckhart, or Lao Tzu; I can write a chapter in my book; I can meditate; I can sip tea; I can walk Jazzy Bear; I can nestle up underneath a fir tree in the park; I can post something inspiring to me on our social media; I can shoot a meditation video; I can listen to Beethoven; I can just be. And that has made all the difference.