Many people ask me about what tools I use. Here are some of my favourite resources. Some are free, some are paid, some are affiliate links (the deb.bi links)– but all of them I love and use everyday.
I keep this list updated – and I’d love to hear feedback or your experiences with them. If you try them out and love them, do let me know too!
Namemesh – generate domain name combinations but register them with Namecheap.
Knowem – check for availability of the same username across all the main social networks
Namecheap – I register 100% of my domains with Namecheap because they are reliable, and by far the most trust worthy domain registrar. DO NOT EVER USE GODADDY More on how to get a free domain as a university student here. A basic .com domain costs about US$10/year. A .sg domain costs about S$45/year.
101domains – find short domain names like deb.bi. Cost varies depending on which country the third level domain belongs to. I pay about US$160/year for the .bi burundi domain.
Siteground – I used Bluehost for many years, and hated the support so I switched to Siteground in 2018 and have never regretted it! Support is fast, friendly and amazing! Unlike Bluehost where you could be waiting 30 min for an operator, there is never any wait time for support! The basic plan starts at $3.95/month (~$48/year)
Strikingly – if you want a beautiful, mobile optimised, one-pager website or online resume in 2 hours. The Limited plan is ok but the Pro plan gives you HTML embeds, which means you can put any third party plugin in the site. Best value is the Pro Two-year plan, $336/2y, which comes with a free domain worth $24.95 / year.
WordPress.org – if you plan to have more than 5 pages and need every page optimized for SEO and social sharing.
Weebly – if you plan to have 5-8 pages and want it built fast. My Pencils of Promise fundraising website was built on weebly (free!). It’s also great for kids! Check out Zac’s Lab (age 10) and Ryan’s Reality (age 7).
Carrd – if you want just a landing page / calling card website. I’m a huge AJ fan – having learn how to code from his Pixelarity and htmlUP5 templates. He’s also super responsive on Twitter, and Carrd is so easy to use. By far the most reasonably priced option to get a website up and running. Check out my Debbiediscovers, Designer, Empathy Carrd sites (free).
Digital Research & Competitive Intelligence
Buzzsumo – Expensive but oh so worth it. Find most shared content and key influencers.
SEMRush – Absolutely MUST HAVE tool that gets better and better all the time. Fantastic for competitive intelligence, keyword research, social media monitoring, content creation and more.
QuuuPromote – Promote your content with Quuu Promote. I do with mine! Get those social shares / proof up!
Brand24 – Excellent tool to monitor your brand mentions. An essential daily habit for me.
Hemingway App – Hemingway makes your writing bold and clear. It’s like a spellchecker, but for style.
Grammarly – Check for spelling and grammar mistakes
Agorapulse – Great for scheduling evergreen posts and social inbox management. First time I’ve ever achieved social inbox zero was with Agorapulse.
Later – For scheduling and auto-posting
Iconosquare – Best Instagram Analytics
Audiense – By far my favourite Twitter tool for audience management / list building. Absolutely essential. Can’t live without it.
DrumUp – Great content discovery and content curation tool
Nuzzel – Personalized news discovery based on Twitter lists and friends. Follow some of my Nuzzel Feeds:
Bit.ly for Link Shortening, especially with my custom domain
Canva – Easiest graphic design tool in the market. Lots of useful tutorials and templates. There’s a free plan, but I highly recommend upgrading to the paid Canva for Work plan. The magic resize feature is a must-have for social media graphics.
Brand and Logo Design
Emblem – Love this tool for a fast and easy way to make a logo / brand book / style guide and social media assets!
Lumen5 – Turn your blogposts into explainer / slideshow videos with AI
Magisto – Make music videos with AI
Creative Market – Enjoy 6 free downloads every Monday (fonts, graphics, templates). Great for Instagram and presentation / brochure templates
Free Stock Photography
Chatfuel – Easiest way to deploy a Facebook bot
Dialogflow – for NLP
Integromat – Easiest way to integrate with any third party API
Janis – Best way to integrate with Dialogflow, manage your chatbot from Slack with sentiment analysis and human takeover
Dashbot.io – Best Chatbot analytics
School of Bots – If you want to learn how to build and market a bot, School of Bots is leading program in the world on how to build, monetize, and sell Facebook Messenger Chatbots. It’s not cheap at $1,997 but good things in life never are!
[email protected] – This is my favourite productivity hack! 4X your productivity with music!
Email and Cloud
G-Suite – Enjoy 20% of GSuite Basic Plan with promo code 3A4JMVMNQN7RF3R and GSuite Business Plan with promo code 64GQYTH3XPTAHK4
Toggl – useful for tracking personal or virtual assistant’s time worked
Wave Accounting – for invoices and expenses tracking
Integromat – Powerful automation tool that can connect any third party app with an API. Not for the faint hearted though.
Zapier – Powerful automation tool! Sign-up with this link and we both get free zaps! More expensive than Integromat, but easier to use.
Blockspring – Another powerful tool that lets you tap on third party APIs (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Google Analytics, FullContact) and pull data into Google Sheets. Read more about how I use Blockspring here and here.
Try Audible for FREE! – I listen to all my books on Audible, when I do my daily walks at the Botanic Gardens! PRO TIP: Listen at 2X speed to get through twice as much content in one day!
Audible Free Trial benefits: • Get two free audiobooks to start — after 30 days, get 1 book each month for $14.95/month • Get 30% off the price of additional audiobook purchases • You’ll need to enter your credit card details but you can cancel anytime, before the trial ends and you won’t be charged. Your books are yours to keep, even if you cancel.
Kindle Unlimited – Unlimited Reading. Unlimited Listening. Any Device. Enjoy the freedom to explore over 1 million titles and thousands of audiobooks on any device for just $9.99 a month.