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    An Honest Review of My Software Stack

    The software I use to run my business

    By Kieran Drew

    One of the most exciting parts about the internet is the crazy output one person can achieve using robots.

    So today, I’m going to give you my software stack.

    An honest review of my software stack

    *Please note, this post is plastered with affiliate links. But all purchases go to a good cause—the Kieran Drew’s Yorkshire Tea Foundation. You fund my caffeine addiction. Caffeine helps me write better content. So really, you’re investing in yourself.

    ConvertKit

    Price (Creator): $25/month

    Like most clueless creators, I began emailing with Mailchimp. Since swapping to Convertkit, I’ve never looked back.

    The customer support is the best I’ve seen (unlike some software, which I’ll mention in a moment). But it’s the capabilities that excite me most.

    For example:

    I have 32,000 people on my email list and write one email per week, but I send an average of 300,000 per month using tagging and automation.

    This means I send an extra 120,000 emails based on subscriber behaviour without lifting a finger other than writing them.

    Every email is useful and entertaining (I hope), and most pitch my products, too.

    I see Convertkit as my fan-and-business-building machine.

    The only ‘downside’ is the cost. I currently pay $3,600 per year, but their creator network has sent me an extra 6,000 subscribers in 10 months. Many of these are now buyers, so it’s paid for itself several times over.

    ConvertKit link

    Hypefury

    Price (for Creator/pro): $65/month

    I use Hypefury to post on social media—LinkedIn, Instagram, and X.

    There are loads of features. But I mostly use the queue function, auto plug split testing (great for growing your newsletter), and the occasional auto-DM giveaway. I usually have 200+ posts scheduled, so I can often take weeks off social media content. This is useful for holidays, but also when I need a break/to focus on a business project.

    Occasionally video and picture content fails to publish. But otherwise, the customer support is great.

    Hypefury link

    Which might not be so true for Thrivecart.

    Thrivecart

    Price (Pro): one-time $690

    Thrivecart is where I host my digital products.

    They have a dedicated course platform and are great for taking payments. You can build salespages, upsells, cross sells, downsells. You can integrate with Convertkit so buyers get automated emails.

    The only thing that I’ve been let down by is customer support.

    I’ve emailed several times about errors that never got resolved.

    For example, in my course lessons, you can’t click ‘complete’ on certain iPhone models. Their suggestion was to use a different template. I suggested they fix their shit instead. Plus, with affiliates, certain sales weren’t attributed. They said I should make sure people use the correct links (duh).

    I think this is a case of you getting what you pay for.

    Thrivecart (pro) is a one-time payment of $690.

    For that price, it’s bloody brilliant. It’s helped me make $600k in sales in a year without much drama. Much better than paying 10% Gumroad fees.

    ThriveCart link

    Fathom Analytics

    Price: Starts at $15/month

    Google Analytics is way too complicated for a simpleton like me. A friend sent me Fathom and it’s amazing.

    Within 5 minutes, I could track traffic sources for every page I own. Lead magnets. Sales pages. Websites.

    It is one of the best, simplest software I’ve used. I would highly recommend it (you must understand your data to make informed decisions).

    Fathom Analytics link

    Carrd

    Price: Starts at $9/year (Pro Lite)

    I use Carrd to whip up one-page websites. Sometimes it can be a touch fiddly, but the pages look great—and easy to build for a techno-idiot like myself.

    I pay $50/year for 25 websites, which is insane. You’d think such a low cost would mean bad customer service, but AJ and his team have been fantastic.

    Carrd link

    Bonjoro

    Price (Pro): $29/month

    I use Bonjoro for sending personalised videos to my buyers.

    I still can’t believe people don’t do this.

    Sure, it takes time. I’ve sent over 2,000 videos now—which at a rate of 3 videos per minute, is over 10 hours of saying almost the same thing. But it would take much longer if I did this manually. In fact, I probably wouldn’t do it (friction is the enemy of action).

    The price might seem expensive (I’d agree), but we’re in the business of relationships.

    You can carve out a nice slice in your space simply by getting your fans to like you more than your competition. There’s my terribly kept secret.

    You can also use it for testimonials, too. But when High Impact Writing exceeded 200 testimonials—Bonjoro couldn’t keep up. My site was running slow and slow mean no sales.

    Leading me to this next, fantastic piece of software.

    Bonjoro link

    Senja

    Price (Pro): $39/month

    Social proof is the most important part of your business. If you don’t make it easy to collect and redistribute, you leave a crazy amount of reputation and revenue on the line.

    Senja is my rising software star. The testimonials look great. Everything runs fast, and they’re constantly iterating.

    I would 100% recommend it. It pays for itself many times over.

    Senja link

    Loom

    Price (Business): $12.50/Creator/Month

    I’ve recorded thousands of videos in the past three years (not including Onlyfans), some of which have been seen 20,000 times.

    Loom does what it says on the tin: fast, lightweight recording.

    For the price, it's amazing.

    But for courses? Less so.

    Loom link

    Tella.tv

    Price (Pro): $15/month

    Tella is like Loom on steroids. You can do so much more with your videos. Now, people say that you don’t need fancy videos, you just need good material.

    I think this is a load of bollocks.

    Quality is more than just the content. It’s the experience. When someone invests in you, prove you’re invested in them. That’s how you get repeat buyers, more fans, and can charge better prices.

    Tella link

    Deadline funnel

    Price (Create): $79/month

    Deadline Funnel helps you build deadlines in your funnels (bet you didn’t see that coming).

    It could be for one-off launches, but the real magic happens when you combine with automations.

    For example, when someone joins my email list, they get pitched a special bundle offer on High Impact Writing. This is not a discount, but extra bonuses. (Please don’t start your email relationships with discounts—be a value adder, not a subtracter).

    This grosses $5-20k/month on autopilot, which I can reinvest into the business.

    Deadline Funnel link

    Ghost

    Price (Creator): $25/month

    My website is hosted on Ghost. It’s simple, looks great, and costs next to nothing. I considered investing heavily into a new webflow website recently.

    But honestly?

    As time goes on, I’m not convinced about the ROI. You need a good website to host your writing (leverage is key). But save the fancy shit for later.

    Ghost link

    Canva

    Price (Pro): $125/month

    I’m an awful designer. This is a testament to Canva because I quite often surprise myself and make stuff that looks O.K. We were originally using Figma—which I think is great for designers but terrible for people like me.

    Canva link

    Calendly

    Price (Standard): $10/month

    Calendly is like having a robot receptionist.

    You can control when, who, and how people book in to see you. It’s integrated with Zoom so auto-generates meetings. You can even take payments directly through it, although I use Thrivecart exclusively.

    Calendly link

    Zoom

    Price (Pro): $16/month

    I haven’t explored the live video software side much. But Zoom has been great. I’m starting to hit the 100-person room limit, though, and the cost of upgrading is insane. I’m not sure if I need to shop around.

    Otherwise, it's super reliable and easy to use. They store recordings in their cloud, which makes it easy to send them to customers.

    Zoom link

    Notion

    Price (Plus): $8/month

    There was a point in my business when I was using Microsoft Word, Google Drive, Apple Notes, Hypefury, Convertkit, task-list apps, etc.

    Now my entire business is run through Notion. I don’t write anywhere else. We handle all projects here. I collect all my notes here. This lack of friction is fantastic (Durex have reached out to sponsor me).

    Most people say that Notion is complicated. I disagree. It’s complicated if you let it be. But you just need to understand a few things to unlock a tonne of capabilities.

    Notion link

    Grammarly

    Price (Premium): $12/month

    Grammarly is good for picking up on errors. I write fast and constantly miss words and make spelling mistakes. It works with your browser so you don’t accidentally publish something silly (although I still do almost every week).

    But a word of caution: I ignore 90% of their suggestions. It will remove all of your style if you let it.

    Grammarly link

    Gsuite

    Price (Business Standard): $10.80/user/month

    I’m not even sure why I pay for this. I think because we use it to register my custom domain kieran@kierandrew.com. We use Google Drive to store bigger files.

    Gsuite link

    Teleprompter pro

    Price (Pro): $59.99/year

    The software that came with my new teleprompter is garbage. Teleprompter Pro follows your voice. Just be careful uploading too much content. I uploaded most of High Impact Writing once, and it crashed, and I lost it all.

    T’was a painful 2 hours.

    Teleprompter Pro+ link

    Twitter X Pro premium

    Price (Premium): Starts at $8/month or $84/year on web

    I’m not sure how many extra words Elon can add to make me pay more money. Honestly, I bought this more out of fear than benefit. I don’t want to be penalised for not having the best thing, considering my business runs off it. I’ve seen no difference in impressions.

    X link

    Make

    Price (Pro): $16/month

    Make is an automation software. I use it to autoimport tweet data into Notion—saving only the top 10% of my content. It’s a cool filter.

    My ‘Hall of Fame’ now has thousands of ideas saved. Super useful for when I’m busy as balls.

    Make link

    ChatGPT

    Price (Plus): $20/month

    I don’t use ChatGPT to write. I use it to think. I try not to use Google anymore as I get more in-depth answers here. I love how curious you can be with it (it’s like having the world’s most patient teacher). And it’s a cool ‘thinking partner’.

    For example, once I read a book, I ask it to summarise the book as applied to my situation. Then I can dive into it more.

    ChatGPT link

    Other honourable (free) software mentions

    Some free stuff I use regularly:

    - Tweetpik to generate images of my post so I can redistribute them on social media

    - Tweethunter X (formerly Twemex) for seeing people’s top posts (and super easy to search for your own posts)

    - Labnol for creating calendar links

    Anyway, I think that’s about it.

    I’ll update this list on my website in the future. But otherwise, send me a direct message if you want to discuss any software. I'm happy to give further thoughts.

    Hope this helps,

    Kieran


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    Kieran Drew

    About Kieran

    Ex dentist, current writer, future Onlyfans star · Sharing what I learn about writing well, thinking clearly, and building an online business