If you are like most new people that discovered network marketing recently and have a limited budget and limited resources this is something you do not want to miss especially if you are considering getting involved in this business. I have compiled a list of 5 resources that are actually free, provided by Google, and can help you be more efficient in your business. They entail business functions that are common to most businesses and work extremely well in a network marketing environment. If you are not taking advantage of these currently then you need to read on and find out how they can help you get started in your online business with just a small time investment to learn how to use them. You do not need to learn them all at once, but it is a good idea to at least learn what is available and how it can be used in your particular application so when you need it you will know where to go to get it. This is not intended to serve as an all inclusive class on each individual tool only to introduce you to the tools and their application. These are not overly difficult tools to learn and being they are provided by Google there are plenty of Google videos on YouTube that show you specifically how to use and apply each of the tools if you choose to use them in your network marketing arsenal of resources.
1. Using Google Drive As Your Office Alternative In Network Marketing
Let me start by telling what Google Drive is, what you can expect from this tool, and how you can apply it to your network marketing business. Here is what you will have available to you inside; to put it simply you will find Google versions of all your standard Microsoft Office products and some additional applications that can also come in handy in your business. You will have “Documents” which is very similar to “Microsoft Word”, “Presentations” which is similar to “Microsoft PowerPoint”, and “Spreadsheet” similar to “Microsoft Excel” which are your basic must have office products in any business. In addition it includes “Forms” which is great for Q & A, surveys, or even to get basic information such as name, email, phone numbers from prospects (similar to an opt in if you are familiar with that). It also has a drawing option and a map option which I have not used at this point but they are there if you need them.
I use Google Drive in my business often the main reason being the share function and the ability to access my files from multiple devices. Share is great when you have other people working on the same document as in an outsourcing of content situation where you want to collaborate with your writers. You have the ability for everyone to make changes to the document and everyone to view the document at once. This can be counter productive if everyone is making changes at once so it will require some discipline and communication of protocols upfront. It will also require that everyone involved has their own Google Drive account. This should not be an issue as it is a free tool. You will still need to set up an account but don’t worry it is a simple process to get set up especially if you already have a Gmail account. If you don’t have an account in Gmail don’t worry as that is another of the tools we will talk about today. Just go to http://drive.google.com and create your account by following a few simple instructions.
There are many benefits of setting up your own Google Drive account for example if you used to own Microsoft office and just bought a new computer but don’t want to have to purchase Office again, or if you can’t afford to buy the actual products this is an excellent alternative. It is a one stop shop for these valuable resources albeit a more basic version of the Microsoft Office products that do not include all the bells and whistles which in most cases you do not really need for our purposes in network marketing. I am an avid user of Microsoft Office products as that is what I have become most familiar with when it comes to my education for writing essays or research papers and my career for putting together PowerPoint presentations or using Excel spreadsheets to keep tract of important data. It is my product of choice even though I have used other programs to do similar things I always tend to migrate back to what is most familiar in my case. What I have found the most valuable with this particular tool is the ability to access my work from almost any device and the ability to share my documents and collaborate on those documents in real time. I am sure once you try it you will also find it invaluable in your online business.
2. Why Google Voice Is Invaluable In The Network Marketing Arena
While is not imperative to use your phone in network marketing, providing your prospects the option of contacting you on the phone can certainly increase your effectiveness especially if you are just getting started. Google Voice is the best option I have come across to do this without putting your personal phone number on the internet for the world to see. One of the great things about Google Voice is that you have the option of picking your own area code and number if the number happens to be available in your area code. Some of the other features that come with this free tool are the ability to actually call from your computer, set it up so it rings your cell phone, your home phone, your work phone, or even all three or any combination in between. You can even set it up to where it rings a specific phone based on who is calling you. You will have the added options to screen your calls, block specific callers, and get your voice messages transcribed into text. The best part is that you have the ability to send free text, and make calls within the United States and some parts of Canada for free not to mention you can make international calls at extremely low competitive rates.
Can you imagine the possibilities it opens up if you are in a network marketing business or considering joining a network marketing opportunity? You can provide your Google Voice number to your prospects as another means of contacting you. I personally use it on my blog as well as within my auto responder as another form of contact my prospects can use to get hold of me. You can also use it to screen incoming calls and decide if you want to speak to them right then, anytime while they are leaving a message, or call them back, your option you are in control. As a network marketer you may be subject to some craziness from time to time and receive one of those crazy phone calls so it is very useful to have the ability to block that specific caller from your phone and from your life, no one needs any extra craziness. It is also handy that Google Voice records and transcribes every single message you receive which can be a life saver or even a business saver in some cases. They save these messages for you and you can come back anytime and search for a specific message using a keyword, name, or number. You even have the ability to download the saved file and forward it to someone or embed it into your site for example a testimonial you may have received as a message on your phone. Again Google has all the how to videos to help you get set up and it is totally free except for international calling but even those rates are probably cheaper than most calling cards. Just go to Google and search for Google Voice international calling rates if you are considering it to make international phone calls.
3. Creative Use Of Gmail in Network Marketing
Gmail is an awesome email platform to use as your personal email or in any network marketing venture you may be pursuing. I have various Gmail accounts in my business and I love how easy it is to set up an account in Gmail and especially love their spam filters which I find are a bit better than some of the other email platforms I have used. I used Hotmail before which I believe is now MSN and was not at all happy with their limits on data and ended up having to pay to increase my data allotment which I eventually cancelled when I discovered Gmail. Gmail comes with a free 15 gigabytes which is more than enough for my purposes but I can buy more if I ever need it. I also have a Godaddy email account with one of my domains that I use mainly for family and close friends with no issues.
I now only use Gmail for my business especially on my blog and for my auto responder. There is also another option with Gmail which is a paid option ($5.00/month per user), but well worth the investment for a network marketing business where you may have your own website on your own domain. This option allows you to create an email for your domain using your domain name as an extension and Gmail as your email platform. This makes your email more professional in either case for example your email could be : “firstname.lastname@example.org”. To be clear you can also do this using the email option with your domain provider but Gmail pretty much guarantees an “uptime percentage in the very high 90’s close to or at 99%. What this means is that with this paid service you get an email service that is working 99% of the time or close to that and 7/24 support. You can just search Google for Google Business apps and find email for business; this is where I found it: https://www.google.com/work/apps/business/. This is what my business email looks like “email@example.com” which is a bit more professional than my other email I was using which was “firstname.lastname@example.org” . I know it does not seem like much of a difference but it stands out more when folks see your email with your domain extension as opposed to an email extension such as “gmail.com” or “yahoo.com” etc…
4. Take Your Network Marketing Business To The Next Level With YouTube
If you are not aware YouTube was acquired by Google and is revolutionizing the way people do business online especially in network marketing. If you are not an aficionado of YouTube you will be soon. I know some of you may already be using YouTube videos for marketing purposes and that is certainly a popular way to use this valuable tool in your business. However, what I am going to focus on is using this resource as a tool for communicating with your team via google hangouts. Although Google Hangouts resides in the Google + menu and you will have to download the Google Hangout app to use it what is important to note is that the actual video is hosted on YouTube. This is a bit more advanced but there are plenty of Google YouTube videos available to help you get started. I am relatively new to this process myself but wanted to share what I knew as it may be enough to help you decide if it is something you want to add to your own tool box. Here it is in a nutshell; a Google Hangout is as the name implies a place where people can hang out to share general information or specific training. If you have attended any webinars online you have probably been exposed to this platform already.
I know I attended dozens of webinars and learned about network marketing but not how they actually managed to do the webinar. If was amazing to me how they could have various people popping up and participating in the event and they could switch between the different speakers at will. It all seemed like magic to me at the time especially when they posted the replay almost right away. When I finally learned what it was I was so happy and even happier when I learned it was actually free. I learned you can have up to 10 actual participants including yourself and to my knowledge an unlimited number of individuals can see the feed. In addition to the hangouts you can also use this resource as a way of conducting “How To” type training since you have the option to show your screen using screen share from the menu. The coolest thing is that when you hit broadcast you immediately start the recording function which not only records your broadcast but also compresses it and uploads it to YouTube automatically. A recording of your broadcast is live almost immediately after you complete your session and stop broadcasting. Can you imagine doing this the old way by recording the video, then compressing it to upload it to YouTube? With this you can skip this part and save you a significant amount of time.
I do have to caution you about hosting videos on free platforms such a YouTube especially if the video is critical to your business. The main reason being with free platforms you have limited control over the videos you post and if someone flags your video for whatever reason you may get inconvenienced temporarily or maybe even permanently if you do not get the situation resolved. Just to give you an example of how this may happen check this out; you publish a video designed to help you sell Coke products and a bunch of individuals that prefer Pepsi products take objection to your video and flag it, YouTube may take your video down until they determine it is not in violation of their policies. You may resolve your issue quickly and get your video back up but you will be inconvenienced none the less. So if your video is something you consider vital to your business you may want to pay to get it hosted somewhere else and there are various sites that will do it for you. You can search Google for “video hosting sites or companies”..
5. Google Search Makes Life Easy In Network Marketing
I will not go into much detail on this one as even though you may be new to network marketing you are probably not unaware of the Google search function. Google along with YouTube are among the two most powerful search engines in the world. In network marketing you will continuously come across concepts you may not be familiar with and Google search is the quickest way I know to find out information about them. If it is a “how to” type question then you probably need to search YouTube for the answer. I sometimes use it to find a certain article I wrote on my blog just because it is quicker than logging into my blog and using the search feature within my blog. I just enter “mywebsite.com + the article name or part of the article name” with the auto complete feature in google search I do not need to enter the whole name of the article and still find it quickly. It can also be used as a quick calculator just try it by entering a problem for example; “27 x 3 =” and you will see the answer immediately and it even brings up a calculator in case you need to do more calculations. Use it to learn how to spell a word you are unsure of or hear its pronunciation. You do not even need to be close as it will provide you options and you will find the word you are looking for fairly quick. How about when someone post a comment on your blog in a foreign language? It is as simple as copying the content and enter it into the Google search box like this: “copied content + translate” and you are done. It has been a most versatile tools for me and I know I use it quite often in my business and personal life.
I hope you find this information helpful in your network marketing business and implement as much of it as you can right away. Do not worry about trying to learn it all at once just focus on one thing at a time as you get to the level where it can actually benefit you. For example you do not need to worry about learning Google Hangouts until you actually have a team to hang out with. The good news is that all these resources are available to everyone and they are absolutely free. From a one stop shop for your office products to a webinar platform for your team hangouts and trainings Google has a free tool you can use.
My goal is your success