7 Tools Every Creative Should Be Leveraging to Simplify Content and Cut Out Overthinking

Between working a full-time job, raising two kids, showing up as a bomb wife, and looking after my own health and welfare– the time I have to create for my own business and brand is hard to come by. But where there’s a will, there’s a way.

I have more than 10 years of experience in graphic design, writing, public relations, and marketing, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t take shortcuts in content creation from time to time. With my life’s current pace, those shortcuts are the rule and not the exception. But there’s no shame in leveraging tools to help create content without sacrificing the quality.

There's no shame in leveraging tools to help create content without sacrificing the quality. These 7 are GAME CHANGING. Click To Tweet

These seven tools have made my life a whole lot easier as I continue to grow, scale, and evolve as a content creator and a brand. Perhaps one day I’ll have the liberty to work full-time for myself enough to delve into the details, but for now, working smarter and not harder is the mantra.

1. Anchor

When I first launched my podcast in 2016, I did all the heavy lifting myself. It was pretty involved and a lot more complicated than I anticipated. That’s partly what lead me to take such a long hiatus from recording again. The harder it is to accomplish the task, the more likely we are to put it off.

Anchor is SEAMLESS and the best thing is, you can record straight off of your iPhone/cellphone. Although, I wouldn’t recommend it if you want high quality pod episodes. But … you could! My first episode of my podcast was record from under a blanket in my closet, while speaking into my headphones connected to my iPhone’s voice memo app. When you want to create content, you’ll make a way out of no way!

Sign up for Anchor with the link below and launch your next podcast while letting Anchor do the heavy lifting. They provide the dashboard to record, distribute, and analyze analytics for your pod. There’s zero guesswork involved.

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: Free

2. Canva

People ask me all the time how I create my graphics on Instagram. Whether it be my in-feed content or my Stories content, I get asked frequently about the tools I leverage on social media. I’m no hoarder of secrets. Sharing is caring and Canva is a tool that has been saving my behind when in a creative pinch for years. Sometimes you just don’t have the time to create a design from scratch.

I leverage Canva as a means to communicate and announce my latest creative project or piece of content. Spending too much time creating the communication behind the project isn’t worth the lag time, especially for more timely pieces. Not to mention, it’s all in the way you leverage Canva. You don’t have to use their templates, design element by design element. You can highlight your own aesthetic and style signatures in ways that recreates the foundational templates Canva conveniently provides. Seriously, even for someone who’s been awarded for their graphic design skills, and even after creating original pieces over the span of 10 years, Canva is a Godsend for my brand and content.

Have you used Canva yet? Thinking of creating an account? Use my referral link and share the wealth with someone else who could use it!

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: Free

Premium Upgrade: $12.99/mo. minimum

3. Wavve

Your blog is live. The podcast is live. Now you need to share it all to social media. Audio grams are making waves *no pun* on social media outlets. We already know that video is the number one medium on all platforms, audio is up and coming. The best way to communicate, isn’t by telling someone you have a podcast, but by showing them.

Wavve makes it easy. You take a snippet from your latest pod episode and upload it to your custom Canva graphic, or use one of Wavve’s templates. Add the audio wave effect to your image and Wavve will animate the sound waves corresponding with your pod. Be sure to purchase the premium level package to get rid of that pesky popup bar.

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: Free

Premium Upgrade: $10/mo. minimum

4. Lightroom

A goal of mine in 2020 is to BATCH, BATCH, BATCH. Batch creating all of my content is ideal, especially because I still work a 9-to-5. It gets hectic balancing it all. Lightroom is helping me get a handle on things. I can simply batch edit and adjust my images so that they are complimentary, aesthetically. I’ve been leveraging presets with Light and Airy Photography to help me get the job done and my images have never looked better! Definitely check Lightroom and all of the Adobe Creative Suite out. It can be quite the investment, but it’s worth it. Ever since I started using Lightroom and presets for my images, my following has increased 40% on Instagram. Numbers don’t lie.

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: $9.99/mo minimum

5. Bluehost

As an influencer or creative, you’ve probably heard that it’s important to have your own website or blog. But do you know why? Remember MySpace? Of course you do! Have you visited Myspace recently? Probably not. What if the trendiness of Instagram ended tomorrow? Would your content be in good hands?

Web hosting and domain ownership is vital, literally, for your content and brand to thrive and exist beyond the trends. My personal favorite? Bluehost. I’ve used it for every website I’ve created (some visible here). It’s simple and their customer service is top tier. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to dial in to get a representative to walk me through how to troubleshoot one of my sites because a plugin broke it or I was receiving a 404 error where there shouldn’t be one. If you’re launching your blog/website/brand, be sure to go with Bluehost and use my referral link to sign up! If you’re already with a hosting site, such as GoDaddy, port that baby on over. Bluehost makes it easy for you. I promise you it’s worth it.

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: $3.95/mo minimum

6. Planoly

I’m a visual person. I like to plan out my content in advance so that I can take it easy on IG’s archive feature. Planoly’s been a go-to of mine for years. Not only can you get a glimpse of what your in-grid images will look like in advance, you can automate your process and schedule posts to publish in advance, for free. If you want to add the first comment in advance or view your advanced analytics, you’ll need to upgrade to premium. But you get pretty solid insight into how your posts are performing and how you can expect your grid to fall into place for upcoming content. If you’re not already using a content management system for Instagram, now’s the time to get on board and Planoly’s a safe bet!

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: Free

Premium Upgrade: $9/mo. minimum

7. G Suite

Now you’ve got all the content game on lock, but what’s your file management game look like? Google Suite included Google Drive and you can get a custom email address, featuring your domain, ie. hi@danicaexplainsitall.

My Google Drive is home to all of my content and more. I planned my entire wedding using Google Sheets, Docs, and Drive for my husband, wedding party, and family’s convenience. I even wrote a blog about it where I shared my planning sheets.

If you have multiple people working on your brand, you’ll ESPECIALLY need to leverage Google Suite to easily and seamlessly collaborate with your team. It’s free to gain access, and an additional charge if you want the branded email address. Definitely worth the investment when pitching brands you want to work with as you scale. Get started with G Suite below.

Click here.

Required Cost to Use Service: Free

Premium Upgrade: $5/mo. minimum

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What are your favorite latest and greatest tools for content creation at the moment? Have you tried any of these out? Were any of these a surprise to you? Leave a comment below and share with a friend!

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