With the multitude of digital tools we are all using for very specific purposes, we’ve created a monster of inefficiencies and silos; the very thing cloud services aimed to tackle! To address this, many new tools are being created for automation either of services consumption or content distribution across those digital tools.
Here I share a highly simple but efficient tool ifttt (If This Then That) to define event-driven tasks.
Mix Cloud Services and put the Internet to work for you!
ifttt launched in December 2010 and only really started to take off in December 2011, following a wave of new tools in 2011 focusing on social media assets only such as HootSuite, etc.
ifttt is more of a framework for event-driven tasks than a solution driven tool with x features. It simply allows you to connect digital tools – called “Channels” in ifttt to perform various tasks.
The list of Channels available is still growing but the combination possible from the existing one is quite impressive already.
Here are a few example of “tasks” you can create in a few clicks and never have to worry about:
- synchronise your social media profiles/bio and pictures (including Facebook pages, Linkedin Company pages)
- update your Twitter location from your Foursquare real-time checkins
- send reminders to your Google Calendar
- automation of some posting on social media (frowned upon by your audience though…)
- weather alerts to your sms
- sniper shopping alerts to your email when a new album or book is released or a free book becomes available
- keep valuable content from Google Reader to Evernote or other bookmarking tools
- branded tweet archives to shared public Google Calendar
- Share your favourite last.fm music to Facebook
- stock market alerts to your messaging tools
- wake up phone call with the sun based on your location
As you can see, the list is as long as your creativity and imagination, all available in 2 simple steps!
Collaboration driven by cloud services
While some of those tasks are automation for your own benefit and productivity, some are great to work with distributed teams and delegating work to Virtual Assistants (VA) for example to manage some Contacts information on your behalf, identify and track potential leads from the social media noise.
You’ll be creating your own “recipe” mixing various events from your digital tools or Channels. The ifttt tool also leverages its user base for collaboration and share everyone’s recipes! So you can reduce the time to create your recipes, re-use recipe templates that will fit just what you want to do or even simply trigger your imagination about the possibilities and benefits of those cloud services!
ifttt is a great example of the power and benefit of cloud services integration, accessible to all without any software or web development skills!
Now, how will you benefit from this automation? Share your ideas below!
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