It’s surprising how quickly we’ve been growing as a company for the past ten years; although we’re always open to collaborating with artists and to creating more quirky products, having a business is no easy feat. And while we’d like to thank countless people who have continuously made Punchdrunk Panda successful (like you across the screen, hi!) -- here’s a round-up of our top 10 business tools that have been well-used in our journey as a growing business.
1. Shopify. It’s a website host that allows you to conveniently make e-commerce websites and it’s how our online shop was easily created.
2. Mailchimp. This allows you to send e-mail updates and newsletters to subscribers. It can be connected to the e-commerce platform you use (like Shopify) or websites like Wordpress, Facebook, and Twitter.
3. Instagram. Not just for marketing ourselves online, but we also use Instagram (and Pinterest!) for inspiration. It’s also a great way to interact with our followers and see all the love they leave on our posts.
4. Quickbooks. An app that allows you to do your accounting on-the-go. You could also send invoices via the app or through the website since it saves your data online. It’s very important for entrepreneurs to have an accounting system and this one’s definitely a keeper.
5. Microsoft Excel. For tracking your inventory.
6. InDesign. Our secret to making product labels as quick as 1-2-3.
7. Photoshop/Illustrator. For visual brainstorming. It’s helped us design product prototypes to have a clearer vision of how we want it to look like. It also helps to be well-versed in Adobe Suite since it is the primary tool of graphic design. For budding artists out there, make sure you always have a portfolio on hand as companies will most likely ask to see how awesome you are!
8. Buffer. For scheduling social media posts. Take away the hassle of uploading in real time by preparing the post - pic, caption, hashtags - ahead of time.
9. Skype. We used this a lot while Gail was abroad! It also allows us to conduct meetings with collaborators if we can’t meet face-to-face.
10. A classic To-Do List. While we adapt to the most efficient technological options for other business needs, it helps to write down the things we have to do and achieve then cross them off once they’re done.
For budding entrepreneurs, don’t be afraid to try these out! See what works for you and your company. Hope this will help you start or grow your own online business!