If you’re a freelancer who’s creating content for clients, blogging apps can not only help you to meet deadlines, they can help you to increase your income.
Here’s why. Today, when you’re hired for a gig, you may be asked to manage a client’s social media accounts as well as their blog. With several clients, you’ll quickly lose track of what to post, where to post it, and when. Unsurprisingly, you’ll also lose track of your hours.
Blogging apps can help you to manage several content calendars, as well your finances and hours.
Disclosure—this post has zero affiliate links; I’ve linked to apps I like.
Basic blogging apps: use Google Docs, or similar
A popular all-in-one office-style app is a great help—you can avoid using emails to send drafts.
Google Docs not only helps you to create and collaborate on the go, it also helps you to manage nuisances like scope creep. This is when a client asks you to do more, and more: “it won’t take you a minute to do this…”
Keep your client contracts in Google Docs, and itemize a contract’s deliverables in your Terms of Service, as well as in invoices.
With your contracts in Google Docs, you can scan a client’s contract when you’re on the phone with him. The right response to “it won’t take you a minute to do this…” is always, “sure, I’ll add it to the invoice…”
Alternatives to Google Docs include Quip, Craft, Notion, Trello…
My favorite blogging apps to create and publish content anywhere
A huge tip: always be aware of the format an app uses, and where your content is located. If an app uses a proprietary format, be sure to save your posts somewhere as plain text. It’s a good practice because if a developer closes up shop, you can be stuck with blog posts you can no longer access. (Yes, I know this from personal experience…)
Current favorite blogging apps include:
- Ulysses, to create anywhere.
- Workflowy, for managing a big To Do list. It’s fast and simple, and conquers any To Do list, no matter how huge.
- Drafts, for jotting ideas quickly.
Save your sanity: manage your content calendar(s)
I primarily use Google Sheets (part of Google Docs) to manage clients’ content calendars. Not only do many clients use already use Sheets, you can collaborate with them on calendars easily.
Other content calendars, including my own, I manage in ClickUp, which is an excellent calendar and client management tool.
Blogging apps to manage your finances and track your hours
The web abounds with invoicing and time tracking apps for freelancers, including Reckon, and Harvest. Most have a trial period, so try several.
Think about the functions you need—many freelance time trackers include invoicing and online payments. I like Toggl Track for time tracking; this app is free for basic use.
Alternatively, perhaps proposal generation is important to you—here are my favorite proposal generators. Recently, I’ve looked at Bonsai; this app includes invoicing and client management tools.
Blogging apps: do you really NEED an app?
If you’re just starting out as a blogger or content creator, it can be challenging to justify the cost of an app. However, a good app not only saves you time, it makes money for you.
The good news: many apps are free, or free within certain limits. By the time you’ve reached the app’s limits, you’ll be able to justify the cost.
Copywriter and marketing pro Angela Booth maintains a busy copywriting and ghostwriting practice. Fascinated by online marketing, she wrote one of the first business books for internet marketing, published by Allen & Unwin. She’s been an enthusiastic blogger since the late 1990s.