There are so many new apps or pieces of software designed to make your business life easier – and more new technologies come out every year. It’s easy to get distracted and invest in a shiny widget or exciting new software when what you really need is an answer to a problem.
With that thought, I looked for recommendations from business owners in YEC. Specifically, I asked:
What is one technology you are investing in right now that will change the way you do business?
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Last year, Facebook's VP of Design thought the TNW Conference main stage was the best she'd ever been on.
Their best answers – from brand-new tech to proven standbys – are below:
1. Marketing Automation
Retaining and selling to existing clients is almost always less expensive than acquiring new clients. We’re implementing marketing automation with targeted emails to properly onboard clients as well as keep in touch with them throughout the typical client lifecycle. This accomplishes two things: it helps our clients be better informed about our product, and it keeps us fresh in their minds when they need our services the next time. – Matt Knee, MyNewCompany.com, Inc.
We’re rolling out HubSpot in 2015 to be the backend for all of our CMS, sales and content marketing. Their technology is very impressive and can help you track just about anything you’d ever want to know about your potential and current customers. It’s also been very beneficial to centralize all of our sales and marketing efforts in one place. – Brittany Hodak, ZinePak
When it comes to new technologies, the team at Poshly is particularly excited about hardware that will enable increased processor speeds. Poshly’s Lead Data Engineer is particularly looking forward to GPU (graphics processing unit) hardware technologies that will enable data companies like ours to solve issues in parallel processing and concurrency, especially for memory-distributed computing. – Doreen Bloch, Poshly Inc.
4. Time Tracking
We are investing pretty heavily in time tracking because we need to do a better job of accounting for costs. Although we have used time-tracking tools in the past (for example, Basecamp has a time tool built in), we have not found tools robust enough to meet our needs. Now, we’ll be better able to determine margins across all of our offerings and use this information to see how we can become more efficient and profitable. – Justin Beegel, Infographic World, Inc.
5. Standing Desks
Our employees love standing desks. It started with a few people, and now over 75 percent of our office stands much of the time at work. People report feeling fitter, more focused and more motivated. We’ll be working on those last 25 percent soon! – AJ Shankar, Everlaw, Inc.
6. You Need a Budget
The prospect of selling a piece of your company for billions of dollars is exciting to most entrepreneurs. However, this optimism can sometimes distort personal financial discipline. All of my co-founders have had their personal financial lives radically changed by spending $60 on You Need a Budget and adhering to their budgeting methodology. In 2015, all employees of Remedify will receive a complimentary license to You Need a Budget. – Avery Fisher, Remedify
7. SurveyMonkey’s Audience Product
Audience is the new “paneling” product from SurveyMonkey. While we consistently ask our fans and customers how we can do better, the Audience product allows us to ask representative audiences what they think about our product or product roadmap. For example, if we were to consider creating custom watches for kids, Audience would allow me to panel tens of thousands of parents (who would be the buyer of the product) for their impressions. It’s the fastest and most affordable way to validate – or nix – an idea. – Aaron Schwartz, Modify Watches
This year we anticipate submitting lots of client proposals. Bidsketch makes it quick and easy to create proposals in 1/3 of the time it used to take. We can also request digital signatures so we avoid the hassle of printing, signing, scanning and emailing back and forth. – Nicole Munoz, Start Ranking Now
9. Continuing Education
We’re offering all of our employees 100 percent tuition reimbursement this year. We’re trying to allow courses and any other form of improving our employee’s skill sets. This helps improve them and make them more valuable to our company. It also shows that we as a company are investing heavily in the best talent and making our employees more valuable in the long term. – Peter Daisyme, Host
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