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10 free & powerful tools for entrepreneurs

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I admit it, there are thousands of powerful tools for entrepreneurs and thousands of articles talking about them so my article may seem of little use at first. However, as an entrepreneur who has used the tools before, I aim to hopefully provide some useful information on them as well as sharing my personal favourites with you!

CANVAS Business model

A Classico. I remember when I started thinking about my business idea, so many issues and concerns made me worry: How will l earn money? What will it cost? What knowledge do I need to have? Do I need investors? In fact I was subconsciously trying to build my future business model. However there were so many questions and so many good answers possible that I began to confuse myself. That’s where the CANVAS business model came in and helped me a lot. This powerful yet simple to use tool allows you to think about your entire idea and everything included in one space. If you use the tool correctly and fill in all aspects seriously, you are sure not to forget any side of your business!

HTML5 templates or WordPress.

“I need a web developer to start my business”. A poor excuse! Only in certain circumstances can this be used as an excuse to postpone your business development such as if you are thinking about developing an algorithm which will make people fall in love with a computer. If this applies to you, pass this section.

But if you want to start an e-commerce, an online magazine or make a simple presentation of your company, let’s look at the easy ways to create your own a beautiful website.

If you have learned the basis of HTML5 and CSS3, you can obtain really cool & innovative templates for free: http://html5up.net/

If you know nothing about web design then the best place to start is with WordPress: www.wordpress.com. At first I was sceptical but after a bit of work I realised how useful this tool is. You can easily build a beautiful and functional website without coding and It works for all e-commerce, online magazine, blogs and presentations.

Design

The design is a key part of your business: website, commercial offer, social posts, newsletters and yes, despite the rumours, it is possible to make a cool design without Photoshop!Nevertheless, try to at least be comfortable with PowerPoint. Here is a link to get free and cool infographic templates from PowerPoint.

Icon finder: You will find very beautiful and as flat as possible icons, useful for all your design needs.

Flickr: You probably don’t have a camera or the time to take photos, but you will need them for your business (website, articles, infographics etc).  Here you will find all photos you need with the possibility to use them commercially.

Online communication

At the beginning, online communication is as important as offline communication as you are able to promote your product without investing a dollar (Social networks, newsletters, blogs etc).

Hootsuit:  Provides a dashboard allowing you to monitor your activity on the social-network, this tool is very useful to schedule your social posts.

Mailchimp: A free (until 2 000 subscribers or 12 000 sends) and easy tool to make good newsletters. You are not totally free in the design, but it’s a good start.

Flipboard: One of my favourites. Flipboard is an online magazine you can personalize to only catch up on the news which you are interested in (technology and innovation sector for instance). This will allow you to avoid wasting valuable time on news sections which have no relevance!

Organisation

You will produce lots and lots of documents which you will need to store somewhere safe while sharing them with your associate(s). We suggest you ditch the old email technique and use Google Drive, a new and easy way to share and store your documents.

To conclude, I recommend you to register on Meetup.com. It is a very efficient tool which helps you meet future partners, clients, users or even associates! Networking is everything; you should start to work on it even before having your genius idea! Anyway, if you have a tool to propose to new entrepreneurs, feel free to let a comment!

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Hilaire Besse

Hilaire Besse

Co-founder chez Pick & Pow
Co-founder at Pick & Pow - French entrepreneur, crazy about innovation, entrepreneurship, and patatas bravas. Want to talk about your startup? Reach us on: mag@pickandpow.com