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Four Tools I Use Everyday in My Side Hustle

Sep 28, 2019

Panel discussion during the Hey J. Nicole No Need to Quit Your Day Job to Pursue Your Daydream event.
Picture of the panel discussion during the No Need to Quit Your Day Job to Pursue Your Daydream Event

Last week, I hosted an event together with the owners of Blushbaby Lash & Makeup Studio in ATL. It was AMAZING.

The program was called “No Need To Quit Your Day Job to Pursue Your Daydream,” and it was a panel discussion with five badass boss babes in the city who have started their own companies. Each woman’s experience ranged from quitting their 9-5 cold turkey, transitioning out of Corporate America over time to maintaining their passion purely as a side hustle, but each had an overflowing fountain of knowledge to share on getting started and successfully pursuing a profitable side hustle.

ATL boss babes (from left to right): Sarah Duff of S. Duff Media, Colleen Murphy of Forte Dance Twirl and Robin Beck of Neighborly Paper
My absolute favorite ATL boss babes (from left to right): Sarah Duff of S. Duff Media, Colleen Murphy of Forte Dance Twirl and Robin Beck of Neighborly Paper

One of the topics discussed was resources that help make our businesses work. I’ve been in the side hustle game for six months now (I can’t even believe I’m writing these words right now). In the v short life of my business, there have been a handful of apps, programs and services that transformed the way my business has and can run, and I’m so excited to share each!

Logo from Later.com to help for side hustles

Later is a social media scheduling app, and it has been one of the largest time saver for me as an online business. When I first started sharing on Instagram, I would spend HOURS pouring over the exact message I wanted to share in each caption, rereading 1000x before hitting publish on the post.

Later allows you to plan and schedule your Instagram posts and automatically publish them to the platform. This saves me a LOT of time because I can create the post, save it and let it head out into the world on its own (no rereading and second guessing the language).

The best version of Janelle sits down every other Saturday and plans her content for the upcoming two weeks. The worst version posts a lot of scattered thoughts on the fly. Later definitely helps the best version show up more often than not.

Logo from Canva.com to help side hustles

Technology really stresses me out. I get crazy nervous, freeze up, and throw money at whatever technology problem is in my way. Graphic design was high on the “tech issues” list, until I found Canva.

Canva lets you create any graphic you need. Seriously. If you’ve ever moseyed over to the Resources tab of my website, you will find an ever growing number of workbooks and guidebooks for free download. My website designer was going to charge me $400 to create TWO of those there workbooks, AND I WAS WILLING TO PAY. That is, until my dear friend and owner of GetFlawlessSkin schooled me on Canva.

You can actually enjoy Canva for free! If you upgrade to the paid version, though, you can upload and default set your particular style elements (such as brand specific fonts and/or brand colors) to save even more time.

Logo from PeopleMap.co to help side hustles

If you read my post about top rated podcasts, you know I’m a stan for Julie Solomon. Her very first guest on her very first podcast episode was Puno (Jennifer Puno, but she goes by just Puno cuz #LA), the owner and creator of PeopleMap.

PeopleMap is technically not an app. Rather its a program on the computer that runs analysis on Instagram accounts.

How is that helpful, you ask?

Well, if you are a shoe designer, your ideal audience will be folks who like shoes. One way to find these shoe lovers is to use shoe-relevant hashtags and pray and hope your shoe lover folks will find you. A smarter way is to go to another account that sells shoes your audience will like, go through their follower list and real time engage with as many of those folks as possible.

Sure, you can do this manually, but for $20 a month, PeopleMap will run super useful charts that can be further organized, categorized and filtered to find the exact target audience you’re looking to get your info in front of.

In the early days of my business, I used PeopleMap for HOURS everyday, but I can wholeheartedly credit it as the largest factor in the crazy fast growth of my IG account.

Google Photos helps side hustles

No matter what kind of online business you’re starting, you are going to have a LOT of photos and keeping them organized is the key to saving you time and sanity.

In the beginning, I had everything on my phone, and it was a hot mess. There are a lot of paid subscriptions out there to organize your photos, but Google Photos is COMPLETELY FREE people, I can access the photos on both my computer and cell phone and it auto-syncs every time my phone is on wi-fi.

You can organize your pics into albums to help keep everything neat and tidy or just be happy that it’s all safe and secure in some cloud somewhere. Either way, it’s free, and it’s saved me so, so, so, so much time.

There you have it! I literally use each of these apps and programs in my side hustle on a daily basis and they make all the difference for me. If you found this helpful, make sure you head over to the “For Entrepreneurs” section of the blog for all of my tips and lessons I’m learning along the way.



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