Including them in your workflow could save precious time and help you earn some extra side income.
As a creator, you live a wildly unpredictable life.
On some days, you’ll be on a productive high, ticking off all items on your to-do list and making progress in leaps and bounds.
And on others, you’ll barely get any work done, while the voices of self-doubt in your head clamor for more attention.
It’s been half a year since I quit my job to become a full-time writer. Since then, life has become a constant sequence of jumping from one high to the next. I’ve tasted amazing success and survived unspeakable lows.
Through my journey, I’ve used some incredible tools that boosted my productivity and made it easier for me to concentrate on what’s truly important. In this post, I’ve listed three tools I’ve used the most among everything else that has made my life easier.
If you’re a creator, solopreneur, or writer, read on for some amazing recommendations I’m will make your life easier.
1. 10x Your Writing Speed (and More)
Descript is an audio and video editing and transcribing tool I’ve been using to edit my YouTube videos since 2021. It creates studio-quality audio for me and has amazing in-built tools for video editing, including an amazing AI-based filler-word removal feature.
Descript has also recently launched a social sharing feature that allows creators to create promotional clips from any existing audio or video content. These clips can then be instantly shared on social media platforms. This makes social promotion the easy next step after editing, without the need to download any separate software.
These are powerful tools to have in your arsenal as a video-maker, but Descript has immense potential for writers as well. In fact, the flawless and almost-100% accurate transcribing feature of Descript has made my life incredibly easy. Here’s how I use it:
- Think of an idea and outline it on paper.
- Record an audio clip of 10–15 minutes speaking the ideas out loud.
- Upload the audio file to Descript and transcribe it.
- Within seconds, the first draft of the article is ready.
- Then, I edit it for 30 minutes or so, and Voila! my article is all set to go live.
Earlier, writing an article used to take me 3–4 hours, but with Descript, I can start from scratch and complete it in less than an hour. This has boosted my productivity immensely, and I can easily create 3–4 first drafts in a day.
2. 10X Your Research and Outreach Speed
A lot of time as a creator is spent researching-
- For an article,
- Looking up more information on potential clients,
- Trending topics in your niche.
For this, you need to put in a lot of time to go through several websites to collect and collate sufficient data.
With it, you can select the type of data you want (Details of prospective clients, list of articles published on a particular topic on some website, list of start-ups catering to a niche, etc.) and Octoparse will find and list it for you and sort it through a Spreadsheet.
This saves hours of your time and gives you a repository of highly-specific and relevant data that you can use and benefit from in several ways.
I do a lot of SEO work for clients, and I’d be lost without Octoparse. It helps me analyze high-performing articles and videos so I can reverse engineer them and apply the tricks in my own writing.
Octoparse has only just released their newest version that has even cooler features like 3x faster local scraping speed, troubleshooting self-built scrapers, and secure data storage.
The free plan lets you get 10,000 records per export with unlimited pages per crawl, which is enough for you at the start. For companies that need to extract data intensively, the premium version starts at $75/month billed annually. Check the pricing structure here.
3. Get Paid for Your Specific Skills
I’ve spent close to two years in the public eye, writing articles frequently and sharing freely all the lessons I learned from experience. On every platform I’ve built a presence on, I’ve had people message me and ask for solutions to very specific problems.
For example, when I wrote about the lessons I learned after publishing my first book, I got several requests for a consultation call from writers.
During moments like this, you know answering their query would take at least half an hour of your time, and you don’t feel like working for free. On the other hand, not answering their query would make you feel bad for not helping when you could have.
The alternative is to set up a paywalled portal where people who need any service from you can pay you for it, and you can give them your time without feeling stressed. It’s an amazing opportunity to monetize your community — an effort made possible by Topmate.IO.
Charging money for your time might feel a little awkward, but you’ll be surprised at how many people are more than happy to pay in order to spend a few minutes with you. Here are some cool features of Topmate:
- You can set up beautifully-designed landing pages showcasing your services and rates.
- In addition to paid 1:1 meetings, your community can also share a paid query and you can respond right from your dashboard.
- TopMate charges no fee, and any money paid by your clients gets transferred directly to your bank account.
- They keep running special offers during festivals, etc. where creators get monetary incentives for every call that’s booked in their name.
- Topmate’s PayPal integration lets you receive payments from clients all over the world.
- No web development skills are required. All you have to do is create your profile, add services, set your availability, start sharing your link for others to start receiving bookings. It’s that simple.
If you’ve spent time and effort building a community and are looking for ways to monetize it, check out Topmate.IO for more details.
Life as a creator can get overwhelming, but using the right tools can make your job easier. In this post, I listed my top three most-used tools that have delivered amazing value to my life, that too for free.
- Descript: For transcribing audio files to articles, adding subtitles to videos, and adding the “studio touch” to my YouTube videos to make them more professional.
- Octoparse: A cloud-based web scraping tool to help you collect relevant information from multiple websites, making your research and outreach faster and easier.
- Topmate.io: With unlimited 1:1 calls and paid messaging services, TopMate is a cool way to monetize your community by sharing your knowledge.
Have you used any of these tools? I’d love to hear your experience of using them.
What other must-have-for-a-creator tool would you add to this list? Let me know in the comments.
Author’s note: Some of the links mentioned in this article are sponsored. But I love these tools so much, I would never have shared them with you if I didn’t think they can add amazing value to your life and journey as a freelancer.