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Shiny and Chrome: 10 Essential Apps and Extensions

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 11 Jun 2015

In wake of recent controversy surrounding Hola, an incredibly popular Google Chrome VPN extension, facing allegations of functioning as a botnet client – many are looking to better safer, alternatives for their browser addons.

Security is a topic we deliberate heavily on our Social Media and SEO training courses, how can you be sure that what you're signing up for delivers what it promises?

Be sure, these 10 essential apps and extensions have your best intentions in mind. Oh and they also deliver a range of incredible features.

PushBullet

PushBullet connects each of your devices together seamlessly.

Download the phone app, add the chrome extension and never miss a notification again. Transfer files from your phone to your desktop without Dropbox. Even send text messages via your phone from your computer. Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Hangouts are all supported. You pretty much don’t ever have to leave your chair again.

PushBullet

Features aside, I absolutely love the design aesthetic of PushBullet. Hats off to Laurel Deel.

PushBullet supports Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera,  iOS, Android, Windows and MAC.

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Canva: The Best Tool You've Never Heard Of

Written by Aaron Charlie – Mon 01 Jun 2015

Canva is a free, browser based design tool. Canva's rapid expansion from 500,000 total designs in 2014 to 3.2 million a month gives you some sort of hint at it's serious potential. With the recent addition of ‘infographics’, Canva now does absolutely everything I need it to. There's even an iPad compatible app.

Canva is simple, intuitive and easily the best free design software available today. If the tutorial isn’t enough to get you acquainted then be sure to head over to the Design School.

The Best Tool

I’ve been using Canva for a good few months now, in fact it was recommended to me by our very own Social Media course trainer. Shameless plug aside, let's move onto what makes Canva so good.

Signing up requires an email address and password - nothing revolutionary.

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6 Photoshop Tricks Every Marketer Should Know

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 28 May 2015

If you aren’t having sleepless nights over the absurdities of the Polygonal Lasso tool then you’re missing out on modern marketing’s favourite tool.

Photoshop is like skydiving. At first it’s terrifying. Many spend their wholes lives without having done it. Most are too timid to commit to the climb. But minutes in, as you reach the peak of your ascent you feel like you’re flying…

Wait a minute. You are flying? It feels unnatural, you’re in uncharted territory. One glance over the edge and your world as you know it comes crashing down. Chaos, anarchy…elation? The void of uncertainty is overwhelming, there's so much you never knew...

Touchdown. You’ve just had the most incredible marketing revelation of your life; you’re dying to try it again. Soon you’ll be so obsessed with swatches and layers that you’ll find yourself convincing your first born to stop eating play-doh and start designing his graphics in-house. Why can’t everyone else see that smart objects are the best thing since sliced bread?

Have I ever been skydiving? Perhaps not.

Is Photoshop really the best thing since sliced bread? Undeniably.

Is there a company that can provide a quality two-day Photoshop Training course, preferably in the centre of Brighton?

Keep reading and find the six Photoshop techniques every marketer needs to know.

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Google+ Collections For Business

Written by Aaron Charlie – Tue 05 May 2015

Yesterday marked the launch of Google+ Collections. I’d like to be less cliché than hailing it as Google’s answer to Pinterest at this early stage even though similarities are evident. 'Collections’ undeniably provides us with an easy, efficient way to organise and curate the best content from around the web.

Creating a collection is as simple as navigating to the ‘Collections’ tab underneath your cover photo and allocating your collection a name and its desired visibility. ‘Custom’ audiences are formed from a number of Google+ circles if you’re looking to refine your scope. Collections can also be set to – Only Me. This is my favourite aspect of collections thus far. Share the best posts or ideas from Google+ to your own private collection and create a drawing board for future articles, or simply as a personal bookmarking tool.

After creating your collection you are able to ‘customise’ your collection image and colour scheme. Note – it is not possible to change the visibility settings of a collection after it has gone live. From here on the collection and the content contained within is completely at the discretion of the user.

See Heather Buckley's 'Google Plus Collections and How to Use Them' for a comprehensive guide on creating collections.

Customising Collections

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The Best Responsive WordPress Themes for SEO

Written by Aaron Charlie – Thu 12 Mar 2015

Best Responsive Themes For SEO

What's that?

You've been advised to "keep it simple" on visuals and now you're even thinking about outsourcing your SEO efforts?

There's no need to skimp on form to enhance the function of your website.

I've picked out five of the best responsive SEO friendly themes for your WordPress site that look great, but look even better in search.

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