Recently, I shut down one of my businesses. With COVID and a number of other factors, many personal, I decided that I needed to focus my energy on my core business, which is my independent marketing consultancy.
Over the last decade working with thousands of clients, I've accumulated a huge number of files. I figured this shutdown process was the perfect opportunity to do some cleaning.
Some of these files are quite large, too. Many are recordings of website teardowns, copywriting critiques, interviews I've conducted, interviews I've given, training courses, online classes, and of course, old archived websites.
The total was several terabytes.
The issue was that they were scattered across various platforms. It was painful to find certain files as I couldn't remember where they were located.
So I decided to bring it all under one roof.
I'm using Google quite extensively already for office applications and business operations. By using Google's platform, I can split between Google Drive for stuff I often access and Google Cloud for archival storage.
The conundrum was moving everything into one place from multiple sources, including Amazon S3, Dropbox, other Google Drives, OneDrive, iCloud, and a few others. And to do it fast, too, since migrations can take forever.
I thought about doing it manually using a multipane software (like Commander One for Mac, which I use a lot). But I opted for an online service. There's CloudHQ, which I've used in the past. But I ended up using MultCloud.com.
It worked superbly well.
Within a few hours, it was done.
But now I had a new issue. Having used many of these cloud services for backups, I ended up with many duplicates.
Duplicate File Finder & Cleaner For Drive worked well. I'm sure there are better tools out there. I have Google File Stream, so I could have found dupes using my computer. But this tool was good enough for me.
As a professional, you may have amassed many files over the years as I have. You may also work in an industry where file management and security are critical, particularly if they involve your clients' information.
By merging and using one service only, it streamlines file management. It also reduces your expenses — you pay for just one service. Plus, it's scalable, flexible, and secure.
For me, there are two key benefits.
The most important one is control. I want to control all my digital assets. I also want to control my entire business operation in one single place.
I use Basecamp to manage my projects. It connects with your chosen cloud service by uploading and managing files directly on them — which is ideal for collaboration and centralizing communications.
I prefer Google Drive over all the other cloud services because of its amazing search functionality. After all, Google is a search engine. Finding files, types, dates, even content is easy and quite fast.
Regardless of the platform you choose, cloud computing provides countless benefits beyond what I've listed here — from easy access to vital client data to the speed of deploying marketing campaigns.
If you're not doing it already, consider bringing everything under one umbrella, too. Several of my clients have done so, with measurable results. But don't wait until one of your businesses shuts down. Like I did.