The Cloud Tool Belt For Bloggers

in Cloud Computing, Mobile Cloud, Productivity, Social Media

Guest post by Rob Toledo

The cloud computing market continues to grow and mature. And for bloggers on the go, cloud based tools are the new must-have. Accessible from almost any device, tools that reside in the cloud foster creativity in addition to making life easier. Plan projects, manage email, organize ideas and keep tabs on your blog using the tools below.

Google Bookmark

Is the bookmarks bar on your browser so cluttered that you can’t find anything you need? Google Bookmarks is a great way to store and organize the bookmarks you need to access. Add sites manually, through the iGoogle gadget or using a bookmarklet tool. You can also add labels and notes for easy managing and searching. The cloud service is free and can be accessed from any computer, tablet, or mobile device.

Pingdom

Pingdom is a service that monitors your site, DNS, or email servers and will notify you if an outage occurs. You can get a variety of reports, set up email or text alerts and even perform root cause analysis. Pingdom will also identify slow or broken site interactions, share data with customers and is available on Android and iPhone. Website downtime may happen for a variety of reasons and can affect your profitability and reader loyalty, which is why a site monitoring service like this is important.

MetaCDN

Do your site reports show slow loading times? Use a CDN service to increase loading times, and consequently, your visitor satisfaction. MetaCDN is a cloud based service that places files in specific geographic locations to allow faster content download or streaming. Easy to integrate, MetaCDN allows you to choose heavy content pieces for a usage based rate starting at $1 per month for 14GB of data.

Workflowy

Need help getting organized? Workflowy is a great organization tool for bloggers. Use the simple interface to create complex, multi-layered to do lists that you can share with friends and access on your mobile device. You can even use hashtags to find specific items that are spread across your lists or the ‘@’ to designate a task to someone. All of your items are archived so that you can go back to find anything you blogged or researched about. Workflowy also has short videos in their help section to get you up and running quickly.

Rapportive

Social interaction with readers and other bloggers is a great benefit to blogging. Unfortunately, it can be hard to remember how you know someone. Make it easy and use Rapportive, a tool that displays information in Gmail about your contacts. See recent tweets, location and pictures on the right side bar. There are also options to view their social networking profiles as well as writing notes about them.

Boomerang

A great tool for anyone, Boomerang helps you manage your Gmail inbox. Set reminders for emails that you need to follow up on and Boomerang will take it out of your inbox until you want to deal with it. If you need to hear back after sending a message, use the tool to remind you in case you don’t receive a reply. You even can schedule emails to be sent at a later time, track responses, or use it on your phone when you are out and about. Bloggers can receive a lot of email, and this tool definitely assists in managing replies and preventing emails from slipping through the cracks. Outlook and calendar versions are also available.

SugarSync

A back up platform and a cloud-syncing service, SugarSync provides flexible options to store data in the cloud. You can sync any file or folder on any device, with the ability to search and find every piece of content that you’ve synced or shared. There are social and secure ways to share files in addition to unlimited mobile device access. SugarSync also offers automated backups and stores five previous file versions, which is great for busy bloggers who can’t afford to lose their research and creative ideas. Free accounts start at 5 GB with the option for paid storage up to 250 GB.

Basecamp

It can be difficult for bloggers or small businesses to work collaboratively on projects over email. Enter Basecamp,, the appropriately named cloud project planning solution. Basecamp stores discussions, to-do lists, file repositories, calendars and documents all in one place, and allows you to control the access of each member to the project. You can manage multiple projects and each project is displayed on one page so that nothing gets lost. There are more features like daily recap emails, progress views, date and time stamping and user activity pages. Pricing starts at $20 per month.

Blogging can become a full time profession, and for that you need the necessary tools to make your life easier. Start with this list and continue to try new tools and resources as your blog grows.

Rob Toledo is a Marketing Consultant in Seattle who loves all things tech, coffee and rain. He can be reached on Twitter @stentontoledo or at Chess Club. THis post was first published on my Web2 and More blog.

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