3 Free Tools I’m Loving Right Now

Today I want to take a minute to open up my toolkit and share three tools I’ve been using this year in my side hustle adventures.

I love these tools because they’re simple, powerful, and best of all — FREE.

rapportive example1. Rapportive

Rapportive is a free browser plugin (Chrome and Firefox) that turns your Gmail ad sidebar into a contact dashboard for whoever you’re emailing.

Yes, it’s free and it replaces some of Gmail’s ads! Money in the bank.

For an example, check out how my friend Drew’s profile looks.

Rapportive will pull in the name, picture, location, job position, and social network links for anyone in their database. They don’t have data on everyone, and it seems more likely to find info on people who work in the online space, but it’s still really handy to have.

It will also show your recent correspondences and you can create private notes about a person, ie. “met at World Domination Summit.”

Now Rapportive has been out for a few years, so this might be old news for you. If that’s the case, did you know you can use Rapportive to guess email addresses for people you’d like to contact?

I don’t do this often, but it’s actually really easy. Simply open a new Compose window and start guessing common emails:

  • firstnamelastname@gmail.com
  • firstinitiallastname@gmail.com
  • firstname@companyname.com
  • etc etc

With each guess, Rapportive will refresh, trying to find a match. When you land at a combination that gets found, you’re in business.

To learn more about finding people’s emails, check out this post by Scott Britton of Life-LongLearner.com.

copy2. Copy

Have you heard of Copy yet? It’s like Dropbox, except on steroids.

With Dropbox you get 2 GB free cloud storage — which is great until you want to, I don’t know, back up a bunch of photos or podcast episodes.

With Copy, you get 15 GB free, plus an extra 5 GB when you sign up through this link. (Full disclosure: I’ll earn an extra 5 GB too!)

For those of you scoring at home, that’s ten times the free storage of Dropbox! Love it, especially for backing up big audio files.

scheduleonce3. ScheduleOnce

If you’ve ever found yourself 6 emails deep into trying to set up a meeting, ScheduleOnce is for you. It syncs with your Google Calendar (or Outlook, iCal, or others), and creates a custom “Meet Me” URL you can share.

From there, people can select a few times they know you are available, and you get an email notification. Then, you simply pick the one that works best for you and it’s automatically added to your calendar and the other person gets an email notice that their meeting request has been accepted.

I was super-impressed when Meron Bareket used this to schedule our podcast recording session, and immediately created my own account and have been using it religiously ever since.

So far, the free version has been more than sufficient. I think the paid version adds some extra features and will send automated reminder emails on your behalf.

If you want to see what it looks like in action, or set up a Skype chat to talk shop, feel free to check out my link here:


The next few weeks are pretty busy, but seriously, I’d love to hear more about your side hustle and see how we might be able to help each other out.

For reals. Open invitation for a 15-minute side hustle strategy session.

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10 thoughts on “3 Free Tools I’m Loving Right Now

  1. I’m a big fan of Rapportive and I was surprised it was free too. It pulls in a lot of data, quickly, and it’s a no brainer. I can’t think of a reason not to use it.

    I’ll have to check out Copy and ScheduleOne, though I thought it was a useful tool when we scheduled our chat the other day.

  2. Rapportive is pretty awesome … yeah not sure what the drawback would be other than Google showing fewer impressions on their ads. But can’t imagine many people clicked those sidebar ads anyway.

    Not sure how they’re making money. Must have some premium enterprise paid version or something!

  3. All three tools are great finds. I just installed Rapportive for Chrome and like it already. I am curious what you use for a RSS feed reader? I have started using Feedly and so far it has worked out well.

    • Yes I’m using Feedly too. It works OK but sometimes I feel like it’s not fully synced between the app and the browser version. Could just be me going crazy though.

      Also testing out this month Toggl.com for time tracking and Contactually for contact management and recommended follow-ups.

  4. Hey Nick, great list of tools you have there. I use rapportive as well and I’ve heard of Schedule Once but haven’t tried it yet – I think that’s going to have to change.

    Also thanks for the bringing copy to my attention. At the moment I don’t have a use for storage that big, but you never know!

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