13 apps for a more productive 2013 Day 10: Unroll me

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting 13 apps that help me with my productivity. This is App 10 and today I’m going to introduce you to Unroll.me.

If you have ready my blog before you probably know I am a big believer in inbox zero having a huge effect on my productivity level.

Now I am not one of those who say you have to be an inbox zero person or you will never be productive. However, I do firmly believe that the overwhellming majority of people would be surprised by how much easier their workflow is to handle if they controlled their email and were not controlled by their email.

It does not matter if you are in inbox zero or an inbox 71,000. Less emails coming in front of you daily will help free up time to be more important things such as spend time with your family or work on projects.

A HUGE tool for me in this fight against email is Unroll.me.

Unroll.me looks at your inbox and looks for subscriptions and other regulary occuring emails. It will create a master list and you can unsubscribe from them and never see them in your inbox again.

I never thought I was on that many subscription lists. In the last six months or so I have unsubscribed from over 400 different lists I was on. I don’t need to tell you how much time that has saved me. How many manhours I have generated by Unroll.me.

Take alook at Unroll.me for a more productive 2013.

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for a more productive 2013 Day 9: LastPass

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting 13 apps that help me with my productivity. This is App 9 and today I’m going to introduce you to LastPass.

We all know the importance of secure passwords in today’s Internet environment. We also know we should not have the same password for each login we have. The problem is, how do you remember all of those logins when it is time to access a site?

Enter LastPass. LastPass is a password manager and creator that works across many browsers and platforms. For the very reasonable investment of $12/year you can have LastPass sync from your computer to your Android phone or your iPhone. They even support Blackberry or Windows phones for you few out there using those platforms.

LastPass is a browser add on for all major web browsers. When you enter a new site that requires a username and password, LastPass will ask if you want to store it. LastPass will even create sercure passwords. You know the type, like aPl#2Nsq! The ones you will never remember, but are the hardest to break.

LastPass can also remember multiple accounts. So if you have two Twitter accounts or multiple Google accounts, LastPass can remember them all and will ask which you want to use.

LastPass has some great other productivity functions to such as creating profiles. You can create a profile that has your name, email, dob, phone number and address. Then when you get to a form that requires filling out you can used the saved profile to fill otu much of the form needed.

There are other password management tools out there, most of which I have not tried. I have been very happy with LastPass, but any password manager is a vital part of secure productivity in 2013.

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for a more productive 2013 Day 8: Sign Easy

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 8 and today I’m going to introduce you to SignEasy.

If you have been reading Productivity Agent for a while you have probably heard me talk about SignEasy before. I wrote about it in depth about a month ago so I am not going to rehash everything I wrote then.

Take a look at this post on SignEasy if you want more information but here is is the quick lowdown on who should be using SignEasy for a more productive 2013.

If you use Evernote, a tablet computer, and you need to either fill out information on PDF’s or get signatures often, then SignEasy is for you.

I love how easy SignEasy integrates with Evernote. But if you are not an Evernote user, and are a Dropbox or Box.net user, SignEasy works for you too!

How SignEasy really changed my workflow was with the ability to easily grab a PDF out of Evernote, edit and sign it, and put it right back into the appropriate Evernote notebook.

 

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for a more productive 2013 Day 7: Google Drive

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 7 and today I’m going to introduce you to Google Drive.

So in my last entry in the series I mentioned the app CloudOn and how I don’t use it much because I use Google Drive. So here is my quick intro to Google Drive and how/why you should use it for a more productive 2013.

I am usually an early adapter, but with Google Drive, I was kind of a late bloomer, well for me at least.

Google Drive was out for about 6 months before I really started using it. But now I find myself using it more and more. If you are new to cloud based computing, like my Dad who still uses a thumb drive (FacePalm) then Google Drive would probably be the one I recommend you use for document storage.

Google Drive is the next step in the continuting eveluition of Google Docs, Google’s webbased office suite to compete with Microsoft Office. But Google Drive added a lot of new features to Docs.

One of the new features Drive added was a folder you can place on your computer to sync with your Google Drive cloud based account. If you are familiar with Dropbox this acts in a similar manner as your Dropbox folder on your computer.

A big advantage that Drive has over Dropbox is the ability to edit documents, including Microsoft Office documents, right in Drive. Drive also starts you out with a free 5gb of storage space.

Drive is fantastic for collaboration as you can start a document, share it with a team member and you both can have access to the files and the ability to edit and see what the other person is editing.

While Dropbox may be the gold standard in online cloud storage, I believe within a year or two tops Google Drive will pass Dropbox.


Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for a more productive 2013 Day 6: CloudOn

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 6 and today I’m going to introduce you to CloudOn.

CloudOn is a free app that brings the power of Microsoft Office to your iPad or Android powered tablet. Yes, it also works on phones.

I have not been a Microsoft Office user in many years now using GoogleDocs/Drive, but I know I am in the minority. Teaching many iPad and Evernote classes to agents I have learned most real estate agents are still using Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

From within CloudOn you can edit an existing document or create a new one then email it stairght to someone else for review.

Cloud on will also sync with Dropbox, Box.net, Google Drive and iCloud.

So if that is you, and you want a simple, easy to use and free app to manage your Office documents then CloudOn is going to help you have a much more productive 2013.

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for 2013 Day 5: Google Voice

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 5 and today I’m going to introduce you to Google Voice.

Of all the apps I am going to mention in this series, this is probably the one I use the most. I use Google Voice several times a day for sending and receiving calls and text messages.

Google Voice is a free (for now, they will be charging at some point I am sure) phone number which you can send to any phone or multiple phones.

You can set up so Google Voice is the account your cell phone dials out on, or you can set it so it asks you each time do you want to use Google Voice to place the call or your regular cell phone number.

Google Voice is great for forwarding office/business phones to a friend or partner while you are on vacation. With the ability to send to more than one phone it makes handling calls a sinch.

If you miss a call and the call goes to your Google Voice voicemail, Google will do an automatic transcript for every voicemail. OK, so this is not perfect, just ask Nick Bastian about funny typos within Voice, but it does a good enough job to usually figure out what the message is about.

You also get unlimited text messages with Google Voice. When you get a text message you can also respond to the text message from within your email account as a copy is sent to your email inbox.

And Google Voice does so much more than that. What else can you do with Google Voice?

  • Save all voicemails and text messages forever
  • Search inside voicemails with the text recognition
  • Create individualized voicemail recordings for different people or groups
  • Initiate calls and text messages from your computer with the plugin
  • Forward your voicemails and text messages to your email or another promgram such as Evernote
  • Set up widgets on your website so people can call you by clicking
  • Set up a special widget so people can click and get more information on something such as a specific listing
  • Record phone calls
  • And much more

I really do love Google Voice. I have used Google Voice as my primary cell phone number and business line for a few years now and could not imagine ever using something else to handle calls and text messages.

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for 2013 Day 4: PDF Expdert

Heading out of 2012 and into 2013 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 4 and today I’m going to introduce you to PDF Expert.

If you are an iPad user, I highly recommend you check out PDF Expert.

I am always looking for the latest and greatest apps when it comes to things that help me be more productive. I have been looking for the latest great PDF program since I got my first iPad.

There are many PDF programs for the iPad, I have at least a dozen of them installed on my iPad. I have tried just about every PDF program that has been recommended to me and I am still looking for one that has as much power and is as easy to use as PDF Expert.

Does this mean PDF Expert is the only PDF program worth using and you should go buy it today even if you are happy with your program?

No, not at all.

But if your PDF program has a few bugs and/or you just think it should do more or be easier to use, then by all means I recommend you check out PDF Expert.

PDF Expert became even better this month with the latest update. PDF Expert now has Google Drive sync, allows you to convert files to PDF and is now faster than it used to be.

For editing pdfs, splitting, merging and for a quick signature, PDF Expert is a productivity app I use almost daily.

 

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 apps for 2013 Day 3: TextExpander

2013 is 11 days away. Over the final 13 days of 2012 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 3 and today I’m going to introduce you to TextExpander.

First let me start by saying that TextExpander is a MacOS program. There is a Windows equivillant called Texter.

So what is TextExpander?

TextExpander is a program that allows you to write out long sentances or repetative text with a few short keystrokes.

As a real estate agent I spend a lot of time replying to emails and often those emails are similar to other emails that I send out. TextExpander saves me a lot of time by creating short cuts so I do not have to type the same thing over and over.

With TextExpander I can create a short cut such as ‘!newlist’. When I type that in here is the text that shows up replacing ‘!newlist’

Check out the newest properties to hit the market that match your saved search. Please feel free to email me if you would like any additional information. Or, call my cell at 480–270–4990. Let me know if any of these properties catch your eye!

Now when I set up a new home search I can just type a few letters and the full text will show up. This is a HUGE time saver.

Here is a list of some of the things I have recated short cuts for:

  • Real Estate license number
  • Home Address
  • Brokerage Address
  • Brokerage NAID
  • My lenders
  • Scheduling a home inspection email
  • Title Company address
  • Many more

There are many things we need to type often. Anything you will ever need to type more than once or twice I recommend you set up a short cut and save yourself a whole lot of time.

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 productivity apps for 2013, Day 2: Crashplan

2013 is 12 days away. Over the final 13 days of 2012 I am highlighting one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 2 and today I’m going to introduce you to CrashPlan.

Nothing can kill productivity for the next week like a computer crash. Many of you probably have a copy of most of your files in the cloud, but still you can never be to safe when it comes to all your data.

There are many offsite backup services available, my favorite is CrashPlan. Set up CrashPlan once and never think about it again.

When you do your initial backup it will take some time. As a matter of fact it could take a few days. That is okay though, every time your computer connects back to the Internet, your backup will continue running in the background.

Once you are backed up CrashPlan will continue backing up all new and changed files so you never need to think about it.

CrashPlan has many different packages which you can see here.

Are you a user of their competator Carbonite? While there is nothing wrong with Carbonite, as a former user I am much happier with the interface and controls of CrashPlan. Here is a page CrashPlan has with special offers for Carbonite users. If you are a Carbonite user you will notice you can get your first year of CrashPlan for free.

Does it matter which online backup service you use? Not really. Just make sure you have something. You may never need it, but if you do, you will be very happy you have it.

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013

13 productivity apps for 2013, Day 1: Everbot

EDITOR’S NOTE: Everbot is now Powerbot!

2013 is 13 days away. So for the next 13 days I am going to release one app/program a day that helps me with my productivity. This is Day 1 and today I’m going to introduce you to my newest app, Everbot.

If you have ever taken one of my Evernote classes, or seen my video on how I manage my task management in Evernote, you know I forward numerous emails a day from Gmail to Evernote.

Over time I have become very efficient at doing so. I have mastered the short cuts of adding @NotbeookName and #Tag to send the note directly where I want.

But now there is a new tool that will do that for me, and more.

Introducing Everbot!

Everbot is a browser extentension that works with both Google Chrome and Firefox. I hear it works with Safari too, but I have not confirmed it. And if you are an IE user… time to move on.

Everbot works directly with my Gmail account. I have the Google Apps version of Gmail and have heard some people have had problems installing it. It took me about 3-4 times of opening and closing Google Chrome, but eventually it installed.

And while it was a pain to get working the first time, it is a pain I would gladly go through again to get the final results.

What does Everbot do?

Send threads or individual emails

As you can see in the image above, Everbot will add two new buttons to your Gmail account. With those buttons you can either send (1) a full email thread or (2) just a single message from an email thread straight to Evernote.

Everbot will bring up all of your Notebooks and allow you to pick which you want to send the message to. You can also add tags and notes as seen below.

My one complaint about Everbot, I am not sure what they are using to order your Notebooks when they give you the list. I think the newest Notebooks are at bottom, but I am not 100% certain that is always the case.

The one thing they should change with the next release is at least putting the Notebooks in alphabetical order.

But wait, there is more…

Another great feature with Everbot is the ability to add a Note from your Evernote account into an email you send from within Gmail.

Insert Notes from within Gmail

As you an see, when you hit Compose you now have the option to Insert Evernote Notebook/Note.

Many times I will email a note to a client or cross agent or my broker from within Evernote. One of the drawbacks from this is Evernote does not have my email signature inside the program.

Now I can just go to my regular email account, select insert and select the note I want to send to someone.

This feature is fantastic for sharing!

Linking Everbot to your Gmail and Evernote account

If you are like me, you may have multiple Google Apps Gmail accounts. One of my favorite things about Everbot is it will link to all of your accounts.

When I was linking Everbot to my Evernote account I had to open Evernote.com in one tab of Google Chrome and log into my account. This was the only way I could get it to accept my account. Also I had to shut down and restart Chrome completely once during the setup, your results may vary.

Conclusion

So getting Everbot to work the first time was not the easiest thing in the world. But after a few little stuggles I have to say it was well worth the effort. I have only had Everbot for two days as I am writing this post, but already it is becoming one of my favorite apps.

Also Everbot is new, and with new comes some performance issues. If you run into any give a shout out and maybe the guys from Everbot can help.

Are you using Everbot? If so let me know if you are doing anything out of the ordinary.

 

Full list of 13 apps for a more productive 2013