I just recently bought a Chromebook, and it came with 100 GB of free storage on Google Drive. That, coupled with how much I use Google (gmail, Google calendar, etc.) has put me on a quest to maximize all that Chrome and Google has to offer me as a small business owner, particularly as it relates to the content marketing I do for my business.
I’m sure that I’ll come up with more ways to use Google Drive in the future, but here are some ways that I’ve already started using it for content for my business. You can use these ideas whether or not you have a Chromebook, but you will need a free Google account.
1. Share files.
Okay, so it’s no big surprise that you can share files that you’ve uploaded to Google Drive, but now that I have as much storage as I do, I’m uploading ALL of the files that I need to share with others. For instance, I uploaded the latest podcast episode .mp3 and share the link with my transcriber. I have nothing against Dropbox, and in fact have used it quite a bit and still will when people share files with me. But since I’m generally logged in to Gmail pretty much all day, it’s great to be able to upload and share files without logging into to another account.
2. A place for everything and everything in its place.
I’ve had a particular problem not just with content marketing, but with. . . life. If you’re like me, you have documents, images, to-do lists, links to helpful information, journal entries, and who knows what else stored online everywhere from Evernote to Pinterest to Wunderlist. I’ve ended up with material of various types so many different places that I don’t even know where all of it is. That’s a bit disconcerting when you consider that I generally store things so that I can find them when I need them.
Google Drive has solved that problem for me. Or perhaps I should say, “is solving” that problem for me since I still have a lot of content all over the place.
Google Drive uses the familiar folder system, probably much like what you use on your PC or Mac already;I’ve found it best to use a similar (if not identical) system for organizing my documents on Google Drive.
If you keep everything that you need related to content marketing on Google Drive, instead of having things stored all over the Internet, you’ll be more likely to be able to find it when you need it.
3. Create presentations from within Google Drive.
I’m not currently doing any speaking, but that doesn’t mean that PowerPoint presentations don’t have a place in my content marketing mix. The difference is that I now use PowerPoint to create slideshows that I upload to places like SlideShare, so that I can then embed them on my blog posts and pages on my site.
The great news is that there is a free PowerPoint knock off in Google Drive. It has a very limited number of templates, but the good news is that I can upload PowerPoint templates and then create the slideshows within Google. In order to do this, just be sure to have “conversion” turned on when you upload the template. What that does is convert it to the Google Drive version, so you can edit it.
What I’m liking about using this on Google is what I like about using Google Drive in general — I can work on and access the presentation from any computer with an Internet connection.
4. Gather feedback from your customers.
There are a lot of great ways to get feedback from your customers or potential customers, some paid, some free.
A great free option that comes built in to Google Drive is Google forms. You can set up any questions you want, complete with various ways that people can respond (e.g. dropdown menus, multiple choice, short answer, long answer, etc. You can make some fields required, and some optional.
When people fill out the form, their responses will go right into Google Drive, so no need to log in someplace else to retrieve them.
You can link directly to the form or embed the form on your website. The only downside that I’ve discovered so far is that at least in my experience, I haven’t received any type of notification when someone fills out the form, so I have to check periodically to make sure I don’t miss anything.
Do you use Google Drive? If so, how? How would you use it if you had 100 GB memory available to you?