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Do.com Adds New Productivity Features

Do.com Adds New Productivity Features

    When Do.com launched last year, it quickly gained a reputation as an easy to use task management solution for individuals and teams. It’s lightweight and not intimidating, making it a fit for task management for individuals, freelancers, non-profits, and even project teams inside large companies. Now Salesforce is rolling out some important updates that are going to mature the platform and help users better manage tasks and projects. These updates will also help Do.com challenge Asana.

    Do.com is stepping further into the “productivity platform” territory, which is a natural step for the users who depend on it to help manage project tasks. It will be adding new features to help you manage your project contacts and sales cycle.

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    Contacts

    While Do.com has always been a simple and flexible task management solution (especially for small project teams), what happens as that team grows? Alternatively, what if there is a one-off project that requires input and task assignments to people outside the team?

    I’ve been a proponent of Do.com (and tools like it) from the start for keeping remote writers and other project workers in sync with remote clients and partners. In my mind, using it just as much for task management as they would for communications so contact management wouldn’t be such a big thing as the product existed previously. However, that was only going to scale so much. Do.com is now adding a Contacts feature which enables you to pull in contacts from Gmail, Facebook, and *.csv files into Do.com groups.

    While I welcome the Contacts feature joining the Do.com platform, I would like to see LinkedIn integration as part of it as well. While Gmail, Twitter, and Facebook do play a part in how many organizations (especially volunteer) communicate and collaborate, there are plenty of us out there who separate our business and personal lives online — or work with people who don’t use social media tools.

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      Deals

      Do.com is also making the daring leap into some light Customer Relationship Management (CRM) features with this latest release. The new Do.com Deals feature promises a view into the entire sales pipeline, offering you a view into how deals are progressing towards a close and a complete overview of how your business is progressing. Even solo freelancers could benefit from a better view into their sales cycle. And while there are a great number of fine cloud-based CRM apps, the Do.com Deals feature could be a great entry level solution for this task.

      When smaller shops are struggling to put some processes into place around their sales cycle, there can be a delicate balance of budget, support, and sometimes an implied (or passive) reluctance to put such business controls in place. The new Deals feature coming to Do.com can be a user-friendly solution to put in place without resorting to a CRM app that might be too complex to support.

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        Do.com Goes Freemium

        Since the beginning, Salesforce has made Do.com a free service — even from the initial preview. I couldn’t help seeing the makings of Do.com as a gateway drug into fee-based Do.com services and upgrade paths to other Salesforce offerings. Well, that is starting in earnest with this release as both Contacts and Deals are offered under “freemium” pricing. Freemium pricing will kick in depending on the amount an organization uses the new features.

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        (Note: At the time of this writing, Salesforce hasn’t released much information on the usage threshold and the pricing tiers.)

        From Task Management to Productivity Platform

        The latest updates to Do.com makes the platform an even better entry level or lightweight solution for freelancers and project teams seeking better tools to manage project tasks and processes without the burden of heavy learning curves or application overhead.

        How are you using Do.com? Share your experience in the comments.

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          Last Updated on October 16, 2019

          11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

          11 Meeting Scheduler Apps to Boost Your Productivity

          Automations are key to improving efficiency. Set the system up right from the beginning and you’ll reduce the amount of no-shows and cancellations.

          Whatever your business is, with automations, meeting scheduler apps do more than just streamline appointment setting. They prime your workflow for maximum results.

          Meeting scheduler apps are awesome if you use them right. Use them wrong and you can look like an arrogant elitist.

          In this article, I will share with you 11 great meeting scheduler apps you can start using today to boost your productivity.

          1. ScheduleOnce

            ScheduleOnce is an industry leader and robust solution. Whether you work alone or have a large team, ScheduleOnce can support you.

            ScheduleOnce allows you to create multiple users and multiple calendars. I use one calendar for booking podcast guests with automations set up to prep my guests for our interview. I use another calendar for strategy sessions and coaching calls.

            ScheduleOnce also has embeddable widgets so you can keep the scheduler inside your own website.

            Starting at $7 a month and a 14 day free trial, ScheduleOnce can fit a variety of needs in business.

            Available on Web

            2. Calendly

              Calendly stands out for its clean, easy to use interface. If you like clean design, Calendly might be your choice. It too has robust automations and integrations for individuals and teams alike.

              You can try Calendly free for 14 days. Their basic plan is free while their most robust plan is only $12 a month.

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              Available on Web | Google Chrome Extension

              3. Assistant.to

                For those who use gmail, Assistant.to is a super simple solution.

                From inside an email, you click on the Assistant.to icon and pick times your free. Assistant.to embeds the times directly into the email so the recipient can quickly pick a time that works for them.

                While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of apps like Calendly or ScheduleOnce, Assistant.to is completely free.

                Available on Web

                4. Acuityscheduling

                  Acuity is a robust meeting scheduler very similar to ScheduleOnce. It integrates with CRMs, Email Marketing platforms, Analytics tools and accounting software.

                  It comes with a 14 day free trial. They have a free solo account but if you want the benefit of the integrations, you’ll start as low as $15 a month and can cost up to $50 a month.

                  Available on Web | iOS | Android

                  5. Pick

                    Built for simplicity, Pick is direct and easy to use. You can create your own url extension like pick.co/yournamehere and it integrates with Google calendar and Office 365.

                    At $3 a month, this is a great tool for quick scheduling.

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                    Available on Web

                    6. X.ai

                      For those who are early adopters of AI, this may be the solution for you. X.ai created two AI assistants they call Amy and Andrew Ingram. After setting up your account you simply CC them on your emails with the person you’re wanting to schedule and the AI assistants will email your guests from there until your appointment is set.

                      This type of scheduler feels more personal because of the dialogue. There are stories on their site of people thinking Amy and Andrew are real people. X.ai integrates with Google, Office 365 and Outlook.

                      Starting at $29 a month for an Individual account and $39 a month per user for a Team account, Amy and Andrew are ready to schedule meetings for you. Want to try it out first? They do have a free trial.

                      Available on Web

                      7. YouCanBook.me

                        is another competitive solution for scheduling meetings online. You can manage the calendars of your entire team, configure booking forms, and integrate with your calendar.

                        They have a free account branded with their company name or you can have some control over your branding and appearance at $10 a month for all their features. Either way, this company is worth a look.

                        Available on Web

                        8. Doodle

                          Doodle is unique in the space of meeting schedulers because it helps groups of people find a time to meet that works for everyone.

                          It integrates with your calendar and allows you to send a poll to all invited. Once people vote on the poll you can see which time works best for everyone.

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                          You can also run polls for food preferences if you’re scheduling a lunch meeting or a section of town if people are coming from all over.

                          While there is a free account, you’ll unlock it’s potential starting at $39 per year.

                          Available on Web | iOS | Android

                          9. WhenAvailable

                            WhenAvailable is another scheduler that works for groups of people. You can use it to schedule a pickup game of basketball, decide on your next book club or book your family reunion.

                            Their free account allows up to 20 guests, unlimited events and one contact group. For $15 a year you unlock all the goodies including reminders and chat messages.

                            Available on Web

                            10. Rally

                              Like Doodle and WhenAvailable, Rallly is helpful for scheduling meetings and events with multiple people involved. You create a poll and everyone votes. It’s quick and easy.

                              Unlike Doodle, it doesn’t have as many features, but it’s entirely free.

                              Available on Web

                              11. NeedtoMeet

                                Finishing strong, NeedtoMeet is our last app that allows you to schedule meetings or events for multiple people. It has mobile apps, custom urls, easy polling, notifications and commenting.

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                                NeedtoMeet also allows 1:1 Meetings for things like performance reviews for your whole team. You send out the your calendar slots to your team and they can only pick 1 slot, minimizing the amount of emails and scheduling you have to coordinate.

                                While they have a free account, you can unlock all features for only $19 a year.

                                Available on Web

                                Bonus: Don’t Make These Common Mistakes When Using Meeting Schedulers

                                In the excitement of streamlining your scheduling process, it can be easy to forget the feelings of those you’re inviting to meet. I know. I’ve done this.

                                To say “Hey, schedule time on my calendar” feels colder than “Hey, here’s my calendar. To avoid all the back and forth, pick a time that works best for you.”

                                Always make sure to frame your invite with your scheduler app with the benefit to them and why we’re doing it this way rather than the old fashioned, personal way.

                                A little finesse goes a long way. Without it, you risk seeming transactional and cold.

                                Some meeting scheduler widgets you can embed in your site can take a couple seconds to load. If you go this route, make sure there’s text just above the widget that lets your guest know the calendar will appear below and to wait for it to load.

                                If you use an online meeting tool like Zoom, it’s also important to explicitly let them know the meeting will take place on Zoom and include the Zoom link in the email reminder. Many make the mistake of not clarifying where the meeting will actually take place which can create last minute chaos at the time of the meeting.

                                Should you require special settings, like ethernet, external mics or lighting, let your guests know that on your thank you page and reminder emails so they are prepared for the meeting and you end up with the best meeting possible.

                                With clear communication in your automation, your meeting scheduler tools can almost perform like a virtual assistant for a fraction of the cost, or free, depending on the app you choose.

                                The Bottom Line

                                Meeting scheduler apps are diverse in features and unique in design. Before committing to one and realizing it’s not a fit, I recommend exploring which 3 might best fit you and then doing a trial with each of them at the same time so that you can see how they feel as you use them side by side.

                                Scheduling meetings the old fashioned way can be tedious. Conversely, finding a scheduling app that works seamlessly in the background is heavenly.

                                Like cell phones, meeting scheduler apps are moving from a nice-to-have luxury to must-have necessity in the lives of productive people. As you explore your options, stay true to your brand and the tools that have worked well for you to this point and simply find a meeting scheduler app that plays well with what you have created.

                                Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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