I get so excited every time I have a new inquiry or lead, or somebody asks for an audit. There's something about the thrill of the client discovery process that I love about digital marketing. Being that I dip my toes into all aspects of digital marketing, I'm able to assess all factors, channels, outlets, and come up with some really cool audits and proposals for my clients.
But it definitely takes a while to get a good rhythm going for software, subscriptions, resources, and programs when it comes to project management - especially when handling multiple clients at once! Here's a quick breakdown of my organization, and a few of my favorite resources for project management.
The first thing I do is create a client bucket in Google Drive, where I'll store all information - keyword research, blog topic planning, blogs, website copy, client notes, and all official documents such as our audit, strategy/proposal, and signed copies of contracts.
The greatest feature about Google Drive is its sharing abilities. You can add your clients to specific buckets/folders - whether its their entire client folder, or you can pick and choose where they have access to. You can store and share digital assets in folders.
You can even color-code your folders! I use a color-coding system for past clients, current active clients, and potential clients who have received a proposal, or are in the process of signing contracts.
Google Docs is an interactive resource where you can write blogs, share copywriting, create sheets of content between you and your client. You can choose from three modes of access when sharing the link - Editing, Viewing, and Commenting. If you're seeking insight on work, I would suggest granting them 'Commenting' access, so the original isn't destroyed. Luckily, Sheets keeps an edit history to reference as well.
Google Sheets is like Excel Lite. While it doesn't have all of the features of Excel, it has enough to make it extremely useful - and free, along with all of the Google Drive features. Sheets is great for line-by-line URL audits, keyword research and more. Sheets supports cell functions and are completely customizable.
Okay. I'm in love with time blocking. Have you ever heard of time blocking? I don't take it to the Elon Musk levels of 5-minute time-blocks, but usually from 8am - 6pm is blocked for me in 2-3-4 hour increments of projects for clients.
You can color-code your clients, you can add notes, URLs, any additional information. You get a desktop notification 10 minutes before your event. You can set up recurring tasks daily, weekly, or monthly. For time management and planning your days/weeks, Google Calendar is the bees knees.
I feel like I haven't even fully scratched the surface of Basecamp yet, but it has so many features that are incredibly helpful. The most helpful for me is the massive to-do list, and organization of projects.
Client > Task Category (Social, SEO, etc.) > Task Name > Due Date
You can copy and paste tasks, edit and adjust due dates as needed, and when you need a boost of confidence, go and look at your 'Completed Assignments' page for a quick rush of accomplishment.
You can grant your clients access so they see the full project schedule. They can add notes, access any uploaded documents and files, and make suggestions which are sent to your inbox. Speaking of inbox - Basecamp will remind you of daily notifications each morning so you always have a reminder of your workload for that day.
I know Harvest is GREAT, but when I first started time tracking I found Clockify, and I sort of have that lingering love for it. Clockify is a 'freemium' software, which offers a free version and a paid version. The free version sticks you to one rate across every client and doesn't allow for historical rate edits so if you're handling multiple clients, multiple prices for service offerings, or need to adjust most things, you have to upgrade. I went Standard for $6.99 a month, and it's definitely worth it for me.
WaveApps is excellent for invoicing and introductory bookkeeping. You can sync your bank account straight to it and it categorizes your spending (I opened a business account specifically to keep things easier), which helps you organize your expenses vs. profits, and keep things organized for tax time.
You send invoices to your clients directly through the interface, and retain a copy for yourself. It allows you to send reminders to clients if needed.
While it is free software, they do take a small fee when clients pay through WaveApps.
I really have to show some love here to Canva. When I was 11 I was first trained in Photoshop. We all know that Photoshop, Illustrator, and Corel are the best of the best when it comes to graphic design software.
But Canva has made graphic design software accessible to everybody, and for free. You can choose from thousands of templates, from pre-set sizes (Instagram feed, Stories, Facebook posts, legal documents, everything), with a complete library of fonts, graphics, stock photos and more.
You can create Brand Kits, custom folders for each client, you can save templates for future use and more.
Simply put, Canva is amazing. The beauty of Canva Pro is the access to its stock photography. Hundreds of thousands of photos for $16.99 a month. Yes, please!
There are two Chrome extensions I can't live without. If a client doesn't have an existing brand kit, it can be difficult to find out their brand font and color. Luckily we have:
An easy Chrome extension that you click, and hover over any font on the page and it will immediately tell you the font and its spacing/any edits done to the font. It's incredible.
Eye Dropper is excellent. It allows you to 'pick' any color from the current webpage, and it stores your last 28 picked colors. It shows you the hex values, RGB and more.
These two resources are essential when a client doesn't have an existing brand kit!
Let Me Manage Your Project
Want to become part of my hyper-obsessive organization of clients, tasks, resources, and programs? Perfect. I'd love that. I'm always happy to do an initial audit and consult to recommend the next steps for your digital marketing journey in your business.
Contact me today for your FREE audit!
Digital marketing strategist in Victoria, BC. Lover of words, data, results, anything geeky and interesting. Ocean enthusiast, artist, and sunset-chaser in my spare time.