How I use Gmail for business

My marketing consultancy and digital agency both run Google Apps and Gmail. I love it’s flexibility and ease of use but I wanted more out of it and began looking for services and tools that helped me use Gmail for daily business use.

To be clear, I am not talking about email marketing to a list of subscribers. I am talking about managing the inbox in your business account.

Three tools that help me use Gmail for Business

1. Rapportive: Business intelligence is worth gold. Rapportive gives Gmail users the ability to gather the 411 on people in your inbox. By hovering the mouse over someone’s email address you can see their social networks and location. Don’t get all “big brother” on me. This software doesn’t pull any private information, only what is on the social graph.

I use it to help me learn more about my contacts. The more I know the better the chance I have to establish common ground. Rapportive even integrates with my crm, twitter, facebook, and Linkedin so I can add them to my list, follow, friend, or connect with one click.

2. Yesware: Here is a sweet tool that helps you create specific templates for each stage of the sales process so you don’t have to keep writing them from scratch. In addition, Yesware provides metrics for open rates and syncs with your crm too.

It is awesome to be able to test different emails in order to find the most effective type of messaging to send to prospects and customers. I also use Yesware to track if someone opens my email. Another great feature is you can share templates and tracking reports with your team if you have one set up.

3. Boomerang: This simple tool allows you to schedule emails to be sent later and set up reminders for follow ups. The “send later” button enables you to schedule emails for when you want them to be delivered. This way I can make sure my emails are delivered at the recipient’s local time.

Boomerang also has a feature which allows you to return a message to your inbox if someone hasn’t responded. This is especially helpful for creating a follow up reminder without crowding your inbox.

Your Turn

How do you use email for business? Have you found any tools or services that help you manage your inbox?

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