150+ Best Tools, Apps & Gear

Over the past decade, I've spent an insane number of hours and days researching the best tools and gear for my business!I can't tell you how many hours and days I've spent researching the kit. It's a good job it's something I love doing!

I thought it was time to share all of these with you! Here is a list of the tools,

Here is a list of the tools, apps and gear which I use on a daily basis to help with running Seriously Social!


Physical Gear

Although this is a list of my digital toolbox, I do have to start with some physical items. We do live in the real world after all! Here is a list of my computers, smartphones, gadgets, coffee and other stuff.

My Computer

MacBook Pro 15" (late 2016 edition)
Macbook ProSpecs: 2.9GHz Quad Core i7 processor, 16Gb RAM memory, Radeon Pro 460 Graphics with 4GB VRAM, 1Tb Flash storage

I've been a happy PC and Windows users for over 20 years, and never been a big Mac fan. But I decided to buy a Mac for the first time for a number of reasons. Most people in my industry have Macs. Also, I needed to provide training and support to Mac users. Despite its high price, I am really happy with it. The hardware is very well made and I am enjoying being able to use apps that I've not been able to use until now. I still think Windows is a great operating system, but now I can use both on one computer!

Secondary Computer

Dell Studio 1749 Laptop (17") with Windows 10. Getting a bit old now (nearly 7 years) but it has served me well. I don't use this computer very often anymore, but if I need to access a Windows PC, this is the one I use.

Smartphones

iPhone 7 Plus (128Gb) with TOZO Case

Google Nexus 6P smartphone (128Gb) with Speck Candyshell grip case

I love having access to my Android phone as well as an iPhones. Both of their pros and cons. With my iPhone I tend to have access to my top apps first and it has a better battery life and camera. However, I love the power and flexibility of Android.

Cameras

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX100 Camera

A lovely camera for high quality still images and video. The big downside for me is the lack of an HDMI output to use as a camera for live video.

Logictech C920 Webcam - An excellent, highly rated and good value for money webcam

Other Gear

Blue Yeti USB Microphone (a really nice quality mic for the money)

Razer BlackWidow Chroma Clicky Mechanical Keyboard (a wonderful keyboard to type on despite technically being a gaming keyboard)

Sennheiser HD 380 Pro Headphones, Panasonic earphones & splitter (I use the earphones when I'm on video, otherwise I use my headphones)

EasyAcc 20,000mAh USB battery pack (My phone has a decent battery, but I can charge multiple devices on the go with this)

Samsung M3 Portable External Hard Drive (1Tb) (because backing up is vital!)

Doxie Go portable scanner

ScotteVest RFID Travel Vest - Pockets for all your gadgets, very comfortable, RFID pocket for your passport and cards. Great for going through Airport security.

Field Notes (Expedition Edition) - Great little notebooks that are very durable (waterproof, flame-resistant and tear proof). Great for jotting down ideas on the move.

AeroPress - For a smooth coffee experience

Desktop Apps

Adobe Creative Cloud (Windows and Mac)
Mainly for Photoshop. I do sometimes use Dreamweaver, Acrobat & Audition.

Ecamm Live (for Facebook Live - Mac only)

OBS Studio (Windows and Mac)
For streaming to Facebook Live, Periscope or YouTube Live.

Wirecast (Windows and Mac)
For streaming to Facebook Live, Periscope or YouTube Live.

mimoLive (Mac only)
For streaming to Facebook Live, Periscope or YouTube Live.

Screenflow (Mac only)
Create professional screencasts

Camtasia (Windows - I prefer using Screenflow for Mac)
(Great to record professional screencasts)

Evernote

Sublime Text (Windows and Mac)

NotePad++ (Windows Only)

Ninite (keeps most of your apps up to date)

f.lux (give your eyes a rest and sleep better with this night time filter)

Spinrite Disk Maintenance

Microsoft Office

Hemingway Editor - An amazing writing tool with a spelling/grammar checker and help to make your content easier to read.

Productivity

Brain.fm (I'm not usually into listening to music while I work as I find it too distracting, but brain.fm really works for me. You can choose different soundtracks for relaxed and focussed work)

SimplyNoise - If I am working in a noisy coffee shop, then white or brown noise is great at blocking out all the noise and not as distracting as music.

RescueTime - tracks your productivity on your computer, browser and smartphone. Gives you a weekly report.

SaneBox - Helps make you really productive in GMail by moving less important email to a SaneLater folder, leaving only important email in your inbox. You will get a daily digest of your SaneLater email sent to your inbox. These can also be sent to your VA for management. There are other automatic folders such as ones for mailing lists and reminders.

Smartphone Apps

I'm now mainly an iPhone user, but I still love Android. As well as my iPhone 7 Plus, I still use my Google Nexus 6P.

Most of these apps are available for iOS and Android.

Standard Social Networking Apps: Twitter, Facebook (inc Groups, Messenger, Page Manager, Adverts), Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat

Social Management: BufferAgorapulse

Questions & Answers: Quora & Jelly

Twitter apps: Vine, Periscope

Apps for Instagram: Boomerang, Repost, Later, Layout

Listening: Pocket CastsAudible

Watching: YouTubeNetflix, Unified RemoteGoogle Play MoviesChromecast

Reading: FeedlyAmazon KindleEvernoteBible

Note Taking: Cogi, Google Keep, Evernote

Security: LastPassGoogle Authenticator, Private Internet Access VPN

Project Management: BasecampTrelloHarvest time tracking software

Phone & Voicemail: MightyText & HulloMail

Chat: Skype, Appear.in, Slack

Synching & Back up: Dropbox, Google Drive

Web Management: Google Analytics, Pingdom, WHMApp

Productivity: TellMeTheTime, ClearFocus, SimplyNoise

Cool Stuff: IFTTT, Tasker, Trigger

Life: Sleep as Android, Google Fit, HabitBull, RunKeeperTwilight

Video: Microsoft Hyperlapse

Social Media Management Tools

Social Media Management Tools try and help you with all aspects of managing social media accounts - not just publishing/scheduling, but help with engagement, reporting and analytics. I've included TweetDeck in this list mainly because it allows me to manage multiple Twitter accounts. I do use TweetChat occasionally to help with Twitter Chats.

My Main tool

Agorapulse for engagement, reporting and community management

Alternatives: SproutSocial & Jollor

Twitter Management Tools

Publishing & scheduling

Although social media management tools should have a very robust publishing platform, I prefer to use separate apps in my system for publishing and scheduling.

Follower & Community Management

Growing your audience and followers takes time and effort. I don't believe in buying followers! I use the following tools to help me segment my followers or find new targeted people who are likely to engage with me.

Reporting & Analytics

How do you optimise your content or give some feedback or reports on how successful you've been with your social media and content marketing? I use these tools to help me with that!

Alerts & Monitoring

Sometimes you want to be alerted when someone links to you or mentions you or there is a potential issue you need to deal with. Perhaps it is a new opportunity. I use the following tools to help with this.

Marketing Software

Attracting new leads, helping with managing my list and sending newsletters out, creating surveys, free videos and lead generation tools are all important in my marketing process. I use the following tools as part of this:

Automation

These are magic tools that automate a lot of potentially repetitive tasks. I don't believe in automating engagement, but these tools can do some amazing things to turbo boost your productivity

Project Tools

To help manage projects for our clients or with the booking process or with a mastermind group I am in I use the following tools.

Content Research & Amplification

The world of social media, marketing and technology is very fast moving and it's very difficult to keep up. Using tools to help to find and contain the latest articles is so useful. I also use tools to help with my blogging process, taking notes, doing research and to help with amplification of my blog posts.

SEO & Analytics

How often do you check your website's analytics? Google Analytics is an amazingly powerful tool. However, there are other tools that can help you get the most out of understanding your analytics as well as with SEO. These are the tools I use.

Visual Marketing

Images and design have always been important, but with visual networks such as Pinterest and Instagram becoming ever more popular, good design is vital.

There's a great list of free stock image sites here by Bryan Innes.

Security & Passwords

Using strong passwords as well as managing them effectively and storing them securely is vital. I also use a Virtual Private Network service if I ever find myself having to use a public WiFi hotspot- so that my connection and data is secure.

Browser Extensions

Where would we be without browser extensions. The following are for Google Chrome, but most are also available for Firefox.

  • Awesome Screenshot - The best screenshot extension I've found. You can take a screenshot of the visible browser screen or the entire page. You can also take a shot of a selectable area and take a delayed screenshot. Once taken, you can add text, arrows and other callouts.
  • Grammarly - state of the art spelling and grammar checker.
  • Video Speed Controller (although you can speed up YouTube videos, you can't normally speed up videos on Wistia, Vimeo and other videos. This extension allows you to speed up any HTML5 video so that you can get through more content)
  • Page Ruler - measure the dimension of certain elements on web pages.
  • ColorPick Eyedropper - get the hex code of colours on the screen.
  • What Font - like a font on a web page? This extension shows you which font was used on elements on a web page.
  • uBlock Origin - I'm a great believer in supporting content providers. Unfortunately, ads can get out of hand, and I've seen some malicious ads try and infect my machine. uBlock Origin is an Ad Block on steroids and can speed up your browsing significantly.
  • The Great Suspender - I love the Chrome browser, but it can get very slow, especially if you have a lot of tabs open. This extension suspends tabs after a period of time. You can reload tabs easily and even add certain websites to a whitelist so they never get suspended.
  • Klout - Adds Klout scores to Twitter usernames.
  • Web App Extensions: Buzzsumo, MightyTextBufferEdgarLastPass
  • TubeBuddy (for YouTube)

Live Video

OBS Studio (Windows and Mac)

For streaming to Facebook Live, Periscope or YouTube Live.

Wirecast (Windows and Mac)
For streaming to Facebook Live, Periscope or YouTube Live.

mimoLive (Mac only)
For streaming to Facebook Live, Periscope or YouTube Live.

Zoom / Skype (to bring in guests for my live shows)

Lightstream (web app for Facebook Live)

Ecamm Live (for Facebook Live - Mac only)

Joicaster / Switchboard Live (for multicasting to different live video platforms)

Podcasting & Video

I love video and I love podcasts. Whenever I am creating video, in a group chat or being a guest on a podcast, I use some of the following websites.

Web Hosting

I run a small web agency, Select Performers, where we manage and host customers websites.

Website Speed & Security Optimization

WordPress Website Development & Management

WordPress plugins

WordPress Themes

I have used and would recommend the following themes:

Backup & Cloud Storage

How often do you back up your data?

Hacks & Scripts

Currently Investigating...

I'm always on the look out for new tools and gear. Here are ones I'm currently testing. I don't necessarily recommend them, but they look cool!

Mac Apps

As I mentioned above, I've just got the latest MacBook Pro and am investigating a range of Mac apps. I'll update this article in due course, but here are the apps I am currently enjoying. The ones in bold I am definitely going to continue to use.

  • Screenflow
  • Tripmode
  • Keyboard Maestro
  • QuickRes
  • Amphetamine
  • Magnet
  • Fantastical
  • TextExpander
  • Funter
  • Hazel
  • Alfred
  • Parallels (With Windows 10, Windows 7 and Ubuntu as virtual machines)
  • Ecamm Call Recorder for Skype
  • RightZoom
  • DaisyDisk
  • Flux
  • Handbrake
  • VLC
  • WhiteNoise Free
  • Giphy Capture
  • Grammarly for Mac
  • Hemingway Editor
  • Tweetbot for Mac
  • Bartender
  • Memory Clean 2
  • Ethernet Status
  • Be Focused
  • Dropzone
  • RadiantPlayer
  • Franz
  • ExpanDrive
  • CopyClip
  • Gemini 2
  • The Unarchiver

What's in your Toolbox?

What tools and gear could you not do without? I'd love to know! Share away in the comments below.

* A note about some of the links above.
You'll notice that some of the links above have asterisks after them - these are affiliate links and generate a little income for the site. If you end up signing up for the service and paying it may result in a small proportion going towards the upkeep of this site. You shouldn’t notice any difference in the sign-up process.
The editorial line is NEVER impacted by these links. I will only ever recommend a product or service if I think it is worth recommending! If a product or service does not have an affiliate scheme, then I will still include it in the same way.