More threads by Blake Denman

Blake Denman

LocalU Faculty
Nov 6, 2013
Reaction score
I would like to know what you are using for you and your team. What do you like about it the most, etc?

We've been using Asana for task management for client work, HubSpot CRM, and hosting all of your work in shared Google Drive folders. It works, but I feel that this is probably not the most productive way of conducting business.

I've been looking at SalesForce as a CRM solution and Basecamp for project/task management.

Anything you could add would be greatly appreciated.

Hi Blake,

Great question! I can't imagine how to stay organized if you have lots of clients and multiple staff working on them - especially now that everything you need to do to rank has become so diversified.

Here is a thread I started a few months ago in the Consultant's Corner part of the forum.
There were some tools mentioned that sounded good.

<a href="">Local Search Consultants - How Do you Organize Client Project Management?</a>

But happy to have more people weigh in on this new thread too!
We use a site called Trello and it's so effective many of our team members use it outside of work. It looks simple but I think that is it's best feature. It's very visual and assigning tasks to different team members and it keeps everyone aligned when we have clients with multiple services and team members. They also send out monthly emails to help you better manage projects, organization hacks and much more.
If there's one thing I've learned over the years, the battle for the best/better CRM is a constant one! I get lost for hours, sometimes DAYS when going through my research every 6 months or so. Here's my breakdown;

17hats (the new kid on the block) is great for a 1 person shop, but even usability could be improved. It's all inclusive, but I wasn't really a fan. Jack of all trades, master of none :(

WHMCS Project Management - coming from the web hosting world, I loved this software but requires tweaks to make it work outside of hosting. It's great for automated billing (which is our weakest point in our business) - This is what we use currently. You pay for employees, but contractors have access and don't need to pay. Time logging, invoicing - it's great but still lacking in areas. I want contract building integrated, I'd like emails integrated. - Used this and loved it. Integrates with gmail, but it didn't have time tracking. The sales pipeline/stages was funky. You couldn't have sub-tasks. We have Kim who runs sales, then needs an audit for a site, but if you use a sales pipeline, since I'm not in it, you'd have to kill the pipe, assign it to me, then when I'm done, assign it back. It just wasn't 100% effective for us with 5 staff and contractors. - I used a demo, but I just wasn't happy.

WorkEtc - liked it, didn't like the price point

What I've found with most CRMs is that they're just a piece of the process. Most CRMs suck for a sales pipeline & customer relations & project management & invoicing.

What we're now using is ProWorkFlow (listed above) and just 2 weeks ago we installed "Steak for gMail" to help with our sales prospecting and following up with leads. I'd still like ProWorkFlow to be integrated with gMail (it's the HUGE benefit that Insightly has). Maybe I'll swap back again ;)
Can't modify my post, and didn't do a good enough job spell checking.

The gMail plugin is "Streak for gMail" -
Thanks. I've been using Waveapps for invoicing and payments. Easy to set up recurring invoices and it uses Stripe for processing.

For PM we've been using Asana. It works pretty well for creating and maintaining project work.

When we complete a task, we send the client an email letting them know. That time can add up after a while, so I'm looking for a way to automate. Basecamp seems to be the best bet so far. All of our work is in Google Drive, so having Drive integration is crucial.

I've been using Sidekick and Hubspot's CRM for maintaining notes and following up on leads. I like Sidekick a lot because you can tell when someone has opened the email, clicked a link, and add all of that into the Hubspot CRM.

I'm just trying to find something that ties all of that together.
Hey Blake,

I use and like Asana.

You might also look into Teamwork.
We use Teamwork Projects to manage all of our customer onboarding. Our average customer project has 150+ tasks assigned to a team of 6-10 different people. It has all the best features of classic Basecamp (before they ruined it IMHO) with lots of additional features/integrations to make it relevant in 2016. It's definitely worth a look.
Hey Phil,

I like Asana, the mobile app is a nice plus.

Before Asana I was using Teamwork. It was ok, but Asana is free, so heck ya!

I also found out the second you cancel Teamwork your account is deleted. Even if you have 29 days left until your next bill they shut it down.

Just seeing if there is a solution that could tie in some CRM features instead of having separate accounts. Looks like there isn't a solution yet.
We used to use Batchbook. It’s a great CRM tool, but because of a growing team, we had to keep increasing what we paid for that tool. We decided to look for alternative, and we found TRELLO. The nice thing about Trello is that it’s FREE. Here's a guide on how to use Trello (with Scrum) that I’ve passed to a couple people before. You can find it here if you’re interested: Double Your Team's Productivity Using Scrum & Trello
Hi Blake, I have used Asana over the last year as well and really liked it. We sync up Harvest Time Tracker and Google Drive. I tried Highrise / Basecamp and found it limiting at the time.

I'm curious, What are you seeing in Asana that is making you want to look around?
I use SolveCRM for my homecare company. It syncs well with Google Apps, which we use in that business.

I just heard recently about Streak for Gmail, and I looked at it. Since we already use SolveCRM I didn't spend a lot of time on it, but I liked the fact that it was directly "integrated" in GApps.
I'm curious, What are you seeing in Asana that is making you want to look around?

Mainly a CRM feature. I was hoping to find something that encompasses everything. I have a good system now, but I have to use 2 different third parties.

I'll have to play around with Asana more and look at third party integrations.
We use podio after trying just about all the others and absolutely love it. It is sophisticated yet can be basic as you can build out your own "apps" however you want. And when you connect it with globiflow a lot can be automated such as automatically notifying clients so it doesn't have to be done manually. The clients response can also then trigger an update in the app and continue on the workflow.

Quick example - our content app. When we "order" a new piece we put all the info in that our writer would need. They are then notified. When they upload the new doc it is auto sent for approval to our client. When he responds that it's ok it auto alerts one of our SEO leads to do some SEO work to the post. If responds with edits it goes back to our writer. When they are done it goes back to editor to make sure all still sounds well. Then to publisher to add it to the website. Once it is published is usually the first time I even hear about it as that's when I get my notification. So the whole process can run without manual approval.

My favorite app setup is the one we use to notify clients when we need something from them. We basically have a drip feed process where we click a action button in a podio app and the client is then emailed a template with what we need. It auto emails them every week until we hear back. Once we do hear back the next message is generated for what's next. Save so much time.

I am working with a podio rep to make the
Process even better then we can just publish all our apps in podio market for whomever to use but that's probably a couple months away yet.
Hi Blake and all,

Since this thread is the most recent on the topic, wanted to alert you to a new related post.

<a href="">Huge List of Mission Critical CRM & Business Tools for Local Search Consultants</a>

Login / Register

Already a member?   LOG IN
Not a member yet?   REGISTER

LocalU Event

Live Webinar - Local SEO Audits

  Promoted Posts

New advertising option: A review of your product or service posted by a Sterling Sky employee. This will also be shared on the Sterling Sky & LSF Twitter accounts, our Facebook group, LinkedIn, and both newsletters. More...
Top Bottom