Building a copywriting career isn’t easy—sometimes we need a little help. For me, a lot of that help comes from apps, sites, or software that allow me to keep track of my work, stay focused, and gets me down to business. Here’s what I recommend.
Today’s question is from Austin R., who asks, “Do you use any kind of online programs to track your work? Is there anything you recommend?”
Take it from me: When you’re a copywriter and you’re juggling multiple clients and projects, you’re in big trouble if you’re not using some kind of app or program. So, with that in mind, here’s a rundown of the highlights of my personal digital toolkit.
This is my new go-to for lists. After Wunderlist closed down (*sniff), I wanted something else to take its place: a program that would let you create lists (To Do lists, shopping lists, etc.), sync them across all of your devices, and set up reminders and get alerts. It sounds simple, but that’s the beauty of it. Even better, Todoist is free. If you’re also a former Wunderlist user looking for your soulmate list software and want to explore all of your options, here’s a list the Chamber of Commerce put together.
Whenever you have more than one client, you’re asking for trouble if you’re trying to juggle multiple due dates and deliverables in your head. Trello lets you create workflows (what they call “boards”) to help you track all of your projects from one dashboard. Trello’s base level is also free.
. Whether you’re working in your company’s office or your home office, you’re susceptible to distractions on your computer. (Constantly refreshing Facebook, anyone?) Freedom lets you decide what your main distractions are and cuts you off from them for a designated period of time. It’s amazing how much you can get done in 25 focused minutes. This isn’t free, but there’s a plan (billed annually) that comes to under three bucks a month.
. Noise can be distractin—but so can silence. Noisli lets you create a custom mix of background noise to listen to while you work. (My personal favorite is a mix of rain sounds, wind sounds, and coffee shop sounds.) You can use it for free online or pay $1.99 to get it as an app.
. When your whole livelihood depends on your computer and having access to all of the files on it, you’d better be sure you’re backing it up. I know lots of people use Dropbox or the auto backup on their Macs, but I’ve been happy with MozyHome (the personal version of Mozy). It’s easy to use, and it’s easy to retrieve old files. The pricing starts at $5.99 per month.
. When I’m writing all day, I’ll need to give my brain periodic breaks. Generally, I try to take a walk or read a book. But sometimes it can be challenging to come back to my desk and settle back into work. When that happens, I like to hop over to Lumosity and use some of their brain-training games to get be back into the thinking groove. They have a free membership, but I paid for a membership ($59.99 for the full year) because I find that their word games are especially good at stimulating me to get back to copywriting. Try “Word Bubbles;” you’ll love it.
Your turn! Those are my most-used digital resources, but what are yours? Let us know in the comments below!