Our ten (plus a few) top choices for best iPad apps for marketers
We love our iPads. Not only because they’re cool, new, slick and gorgeous, but because they give us a whole new perspective on our work. We can communicate, access analytics and contribute to one another even better than before! The mobile, interactive platform gives us a whole new world for design, communication and publishing.
The expectations of audiences shift by how they can interact with apps, share, create, update, edit, take notes, draw, build photo portfolios, track news and stocks, view movies or video from Netflix or YouTube … and more and more and more. We, of course, must have our iPads to stay in tune with all of those audiences, and to stay abreast of these new ways of communicating.
We decided to sift through the hundreds of apps we’ve been testing out (or playing with) … leave out the games and get down to the business of marketing … mostly.
Analytics Pro — With a version for both iPad and iPhone, Analytics Pro accesses your Google Analytics to give you summaries and reports right on your iPad. Well organized and presented.
Blogging and social media
WordPress — If you’re blogging in WordPress, you can start drafts on your iPad and upload when you’re ready. Blogging on the go!
HootSuite or Tweetdeck — Whether online or on your iPad, these apps allow you to post to multiple social media accounts — Twitter, Facebook and blogs — all at one time. You can write posts and tweets and schedule them for later or send them immediately. You can also access feeds from multiple accounts side by side. A timesaver for sure.
Friendly — Since Facebook doesn’t have an iPad app (what are they thinking??) we recommend Friendly … it’s just as good, if not better than Facebook!
Information presented in a new way
Flipboard — A beautifully designed interface, Flipboard gives a polished, professional layout to nearly anything online, from blogs to Facebook to tweets. Just set up your channels and content and information flows into the classic grid. Links pull up easily if you want to get more information.
Zite — Zite is another magazine style app compiling information from multiple sources. You can choose categories and it will feed you samples. If you like a particular sample, it will find more like that for you. Good interface and easy to organize and find information on many different topics.
Documents to Go — This is one of a number of programs that allow you to transfer Microsoft Office documents to your iPad. Works great. And you have to remember that there are limited fonts installed on the iPad. So if you have a format and special fonts you use on your desktop or laptop (like if you’re really committed to branding all of your docs) … they may disappear on the iPad.
Pages/Keynote/Numbers — Yes they’re $9.99 each, but this is where real productivity comes in … having these programs allows you to work on documents, presentations and number crunching no matter where you are, and then seamlessly transfer those to your favorite Mac. Pages will also translate over to a PC, and Keynote will accept PowerPoint presentations, with the caveat noted above … fonts and type formatting may not translate.
Dining and cooking
Okay, not marketing related … but definitely important to the lifestyle we support!
Epicurious — Outstanding (and free) access to recipes. Well organized, great photos, excellent search by ingredient or menu item. Endless delight if you’re trying to figure out what amazing concoction to create with those gorgeous Meyer Lemons from Costco.
Urban Spoon — The iPad version is a huge improvement over the iPhone version … gives you instant mapping of the neighborhood dining options as well as quick ratings on each when you scroll over the pin. Just search by location or by food category, check reviews and you’ll be able to quickly find a new restaurant to try.
Just plain fun
When you want to hold up a sign (on your iPad) in a meeting to express yourself … check out Hollergram or iCardboard
Photoshop Express — Because for free you can remove red-eye, and make yourself beautiful (because we can all use a little help) right on your iPad before posting your pictures for the world to see.
And a few nifty tricks …
When you have collected a ton of apps (okay, Jennifer, you can stop now) … don’t forget you can make folders for categories. Just drag one app on top of the other (hold on the app first until it wiggles and a little x comes up in the corner) and a folder will be created. You can then drag other apps into that folder and rename it whatever you want.
Create a little icon like an app for websites you visit regularly … just open the website in Safari on the iPad, click on the box with the arrow in the menu bar, choose “add to home screen” and voila … an app icon appears! It will give you a direct link to that site.
Beyond apps … to the marketing aficionados
Choosing the iPad app that will support your work as a marketer is just one small part of the “keep up with the latest” focus we all must have. We’ve posted on audiences, targeting, technology and the point of choice … and marketing mistakes.
- Facebook vs. online, inbound marketing
- Technology is not enough
- Stealthily branded content
- Marketing Mistake: I’m telling my story my way
- Marketing Mistake: different generations don’t matter
Of course, we would love to hear from you! What are your favorite apps for marketing? Just post your recommendations, ideas, tips below!