Ask the Readers $200 Giveaway: What’s Your Top Tip to Stay in Touch with Colleagues Without Spending a Fortune?

By Ashley Jacobs on 8 April 2014 (Updated 15 April 2014) 142 comments

Congratulations to our $100 Skype gift card winner, Linda, and our two $50 Visa gift card winners, Erica and Susan!

We all know the importance of keeping in touch and communicating with your colleagues when it comes to professional success. However, sometimes keeping in contact with your colleagues can be expensive. Luckily, there are ways to offset the cost of maintaining communication with your professional contacts!

How do you stay in touch with colleagues without spending a fortune? Do you use any particular apps or tools? What money-saving strategies have you found to be useful useful when communicating with your colleagues?

Tell us how you stay in touch with colleagues without spending and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $100 Skype Gift Card or one of two $50 Visa Gift Cards!

Win a $100 Skype gift card or one of two $50 Visa Gift Cards

We're doing three giveaways via Rafflecopter — here's how you can win!

Mandatory Entry:

  • Post your answer in the comment section below, then enter the name and email address you used to post your comment into the Rafflecopter widget to confirm your entry. (Your email is kept private, other entrants will not be able to see it! We just use this information to confirm your entry.)

For an extra entry:

  • You can tweet about our giveaway for an extra entry. After you tweet, use our Rafflecopter widget to confirm your entry:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.

Giveaway Rules:

  • Contest starts Tuesday April 8th, 2014 and ends Monday, April 14th, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific. Winners will be announced after April 14th, 2014 on the original post. Winners will also be contacted via email.
  • You can enter all the drawings — once by leaving a comment and once by tweeting then confirming your entry through Rafflecopter.
  • NO PURCHASE NECESSARY VOID WHERE PROHIBITED.
  • Open only to permanent legal U.S. residents 18 years or older physically residing in the fifty (50) United States of America and the District of Columbia, excluding the state of Rhode Island.
  • Prizes are delivered by Wise Bread. Wise Bread is the host and administrator of this contest.
  • Additional terms and conditions apply. Click here for more details.

Here is a message from our sponsor:

Sponsored by Skype - Use Skype Credit to call mobiles and landlines home and abroad at low rates.

Good Luck!

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Guest's picture

I use skype to keep in touch when I need a face to face call. For group messages we actually use google hangouts for work.

Both are good depending on the application.

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Mandy

Facetime! I know the answer should be skype based on the sponsor, but I love facetime when communicating with people that own apple products. Skype is the best if facetime isn't abvailable.

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Mary Happymommy

We email, text, and use Skype.

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Christie

Being a homemaker with a tiny business at this time of my life, I mainly use the phone and email to keep in touch with business contacts. As life goes forward, I'm sure that I will be using more things like LinkedIn, social media, Twitter, and other connective media to get in touch with my colleagues and customers. I'm actually looking forward to it!

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Brenda Faulkner

I use LinkedIn - great free way to keep in touch and learn what is going on in the industry.

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Liz

I find it easiest to catch up with colleagues through email. We all use it every day, and it's easy to drop a note with an article they might find interesting, or ask them what they thought of the premier of a tv show you know they watch. If I'm even closer to them, I might text every once in awhile in the same vein.

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Joanne

About once a month I will call a coworker/former coworker on the way home from work and we will chat as we both sit in traffic!

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Amanda K

I honestly find that most people I try to keep in touch with prefer to be emailed. You can quickly type what you want to say, and there is no need to immediately respond. Instead, you can pick a time at your own leisure to respond, which tends to get a less hurried and more thoughtful response. You can also refer back to the email as necessary. I also sometimes use Skype or other social media sites, especially including Facebook, where you can send private messages, chat messages, or public messages. I also use Wifi instead of my cellphone plan whenever possible.

I am able to use the aforementioned sites and methods to such a degree that I'm able to get a way with having a $12/month plan through Page Plus. If I desperately need more minutes for a lengthy conversation, I just use my husband's $35 unlimited text, talk, and data plan through MetroPCS.

Guest's picture
Evan

For men, a great way to keep a real bond is to play video games together. I have a pretty extensive network of people I enjoy gaming with that I know I could genuinely count on in a pinch. Where women have no problem talking on the phone for a few hours to maintain a connection, men don't really do that. Playing video games and talking during play works wonders. Even Frank Underwood from House of Cards plays so it must be a great method for rising to the top!

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Tamara

Dropbox and GoogleDocs! Dropbox makes it easy to share files and GoogleDocs allows for collaboration and editing wherever we are - whether it's across the room or across the country. They're straight-forward, easy-to-use and best of all, they can be used for free!

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CR Williams

Skype really help alot

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Elena

We stay in touch via email

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Elina

It varies depending on the friend. Some of my friends love to talk on the phone, and if we both have Skype, then we use Skype. Some only like to text, and that's what we'll do. But some like to send postcards and letters, and I'll gladly send them one back--I love the old-fashioned way of communicating sometimes!

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Claire

LinkedIn is good because (if your contacts left their announcements on), the site reminds you that they had a work anniversary or their change of job position or company. It makes it easy to click a button and send them a quick email of congrats.

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SerenityNow

GoogleDocs and Google Calendar are great tools for coordinating things. Otherwise, good old-fashioned email is my favorite!

Guest's picture

Wow, marvelous blog layout! How long have you been blogging for?

you make blogging look easy. The overall loolk of your
web site is excellent, as well as the content!

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Karen L @love2lovemykids

I use Skype, Linkedin and various other social networking circles such as a group facebook page, google hangouts, etc

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an gooch

use skype!

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Cliff wrangler

I use Skype, easy and free!

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Liisa

I typically use the phone for colleagues and Skype for friends/family.

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Angie L.

I use Skype to video chat friends, and I set aside one day a week to catch up with friends.

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MELISSA HANSSON

Starting to use LinkedIn is one of my financial resolutions for the year!

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Guest

Linked In! Best way to reach out and network across long distances, then email and/or phone for more follow-up.

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Rebecca B. A. R.

I use email for any contact with colleagues.

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Jennifer Marie

We like to email each other with updates.

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Kelly D

Skype is a good way to stay in touch inexpensively.

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Monique

I like using technology - Facebook, Skype, email. Whatever works, often a combination of those.

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Emily

If you really need someone to do something...go into their office and ask them in person. I worked in an office once that had a "no intra-office emails on Fridays" rule and it was brilliant.

Obviously, if you or your colleague are remotely based this won't work but do it when you can.

Guest's picture
Happy Love

Email

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Therese

We use Facebook and LinkedIn messages.

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Bethany

We keep in touch with facebook.

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maria3

I like to keep an email list and send out random updates or check in with colleagues every once in a while!

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Guest

I have never owned or used a cell phone or an iPhone or any other gadget like that.
If I need to get in touch, I use a regular telephone or send a quick, short email.
My phone has a flat rate so I can call anywhere for the same price. That saves a bundle, and frees me up to read more good books, with nobody able to get in touch with me.

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BRB

I get up and talk to them when I have a question instead of emailing or IMing. It's faster to just talk to them.

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Ernest S.

Skype and FaceTime are my go-to tools for keeping in touch. Email is still the easiest option, but when you really need to have a face-to-face conversation, using a video conferencing tool is critical!

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Jen P

Meet for coffee once a month for an informal get together.

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Judy S

I do a lot of texting with an unlimited texting plan.

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Kay

Email, Facetime, and Phone Calls mostly!

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Jerry C.

A good way to stay connected with professional contacts is LinkedIn, because when colleagues in your network trigger an event (e.g., post a blog, get a promotion, etc.), it notifies you and gives you a reason to reach out and connect.

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Raina

Employer-provided email, employer-provided phone, Facebook...

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livivua chandler

We use postcards and facebook

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Margaret Smith

I mostly keep in contact via email.

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The Scoutmaster

I use email and phone calls. We also get together every other month for lunch for face-to-face catch up and share.

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Adrienne gordon

I use facebook.

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Caroline

I use watsapp and Skype

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Beth

We use email (probably way too much!), Lync and Basecamp. Some of my colleagues are in offices throughout the US, and a few are overseas. There are lots of ways to avoid expensive telephone calls.

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Holly Kennedy

I skype when neede, but mostly through email.

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C Stephens

Professional organizations and use of Linkedin.com are most efficient way to maintain professional connects, network and keep your skills up-to-date. Linkedin.com handles professional contacts very efficiently. One can post news of recent projects, new skills, professional milestones AND comment on those of colleagues. Professional Organization membership is the second best investment. Stay abreast on latest developments in your field, serve on the board, present on your own experience/services, network and build your Linkedin.com contacts. Join a Linkedin.com group for your professional field, share good articles and comment on questions from other members. The Linkedin.com email gives you access to a wide range of secondary contacts also.

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Soha Molina

I like skype. Also webex is good too.

Guest's picture

Skype and Facebook for me.

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Lisa Brown

I text a lot; it;s the fastest and easiest way for me.

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Cynthia C

Email is the way I stay in touch mostly. If I need immediate contact, I use the phone.

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OFG

LinkedIn and email seem to do the trick.

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McKim

I stay in touch by e-mail mainly, and those I'm closer to, by text.

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April Brenay

we use face time and skype I also us txt messages.

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JIM LYNAM

RETIRED.
I intend to use SKYPE in the future so this win is perfect for me.

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Natalie

In order to stay in touch with my college friends, we use Facebook and also set aside a specific date each month to go to dinner. We also email photos to each other through our phone, and I skype my sister in Hawaii. I text my family a lot and email photos. I also send digital cards via email.

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Susan Smith

I use Skype phone calls and email.

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Chrystal D

I use Facebook to keep in touch with people I care about!

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Jet S.

i have been using skype for 10yrs now coz m90% of my family & friends lives outside US its the only way for me to communicate with them without costing us so much. since wifi is readily available for free now when we are out & its also part of what we are paying on our monthly internet service, there is no need to pay extra using skype.

i also like using FREE VoIp service when calling landline since there are lots of apps that provide such service there is no need to pay expensive monthly bill at all

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Holly C.

we use Skype and facetime

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Holly C.

we use Skype and facetime

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Richard Hicks

One very efficient way is simply to use email to stay in touch.

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Tina

The Internet is the best form of communication that has happened. It allows you to get in touch you knew ages ago and had no idea still existed. My school friends have moved out to different parts of the world and I could reconnect only because of the net. One of my best friends is in NZ & I am in India in a completely different hemisphere. Yet we get to connect and bond so well thanks to the net. It's the same with my hubby and our siblings - they are all living across the globe and I get in touch with them via the net. MY current favorite tools are Facebook and Skype. I also use Whatsapp and Gtalk occasionally. Without these applications, I would be totally cut off from everyone!

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Laura J

We use email to keep in touch and facebook too!

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Kyle Neusch

use Linkdin

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Jenn Smith Jackson

To keep in touch with anyone and keep it affordable. I use Skype.My daughter lives in England Uk and it's the way I get to know my 3 year old grandson Finley.I also use it at work to keep in touch with other sister companies to preform my job. Makes it easier to have meetings when you just cant get there!

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Linda G.

We keep in touch through e-mail.

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Lorri

It is easier to stay on top of a group. We use Linkedin and other online communities to stay together

Guest's picture
Lorri

It is easier to stay on top of a group. We use Linkedin and other online communities to stay together

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Stephen Saunders

There is nothing better than Skype. I love it. I just wish more people used it!

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Lynda

i use linkedin, facebook, or email when sharing articles of interest. if i need to talk to them, then i use the phone.

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Lisa V.

I use Skype and also my phone has unlimited calling.

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Lauren E.

I use skype (computer to computer), facebook video chat, and email. We also text a lot.

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Jenny

LinkedIn for professional colleages and even Facebook all the way for close friends.

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Alissa A

Email is the way to go!

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Christine P

I use Skype a lot since I work with people in Italy. It's really handy since I can talk for free if they have Skype. It's still cheap if I need to call a mobile number and don't want to ask a potential client if they have Skype. Other than that it's mostly email.

Guest's picture

FaceTime!

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Robin

We keep in touch using email and instant messenger

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Kimberly Beasley

Honestly- I only use Email and txts. Its simple but easy for even the least technical employee to understand.

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Katie K

We use Skype and Whatsapp, plus anyone with an iphone we use the imessaging system for free texting!

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Rob Brown

Personally, email and texts I use mostly.

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Erica C.

Email is the best. Have it routed to your phone for instant notification.

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Aimee Fontenot

All of my coworkers communicate on Facebook.

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Brittney House

A cheap way is emailing and texting.

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joe gersch

i stay in touch by facebook

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s riches

I use Skype almost everyday to stay in touch with very little expense.

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Guest

Go for a walk and chat instead of spending money on lunch!

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Yana Ryjova

We use this app called Viber, it is free, and allows us to communicate quickly and efficiently.

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amy

I use Google Voice

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nathan mcdonald

I use google voice and skype on a phone (with no service with a wireless hot spot I carry around.

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Daniel M

just email most of the time

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Angela Ash

I use my WiFi to stay in touch with colleagues. I downloaded Google Voice and GrooVeIP Lite to make free calls. I also use email and social media. It's nice that everyone is online in some way or another making it easy to stay connected.

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Sky Evans

I always use skype to keep in touch cheaply.

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Shannon

We used to use Skype, but we use Facetime now. It worked better for us.

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Karrie Millheim

I use Skype, Facebook and texting. My kids are out in the world, one is in Canada and thank goodness we have the social media sites to keep in touch. I get to talk to her everyday

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Tamar

I take advantage of all social media has to offer.

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Giant Sis

Email, texting, and Skype - all free and easy enough for even the tech-challenged coworkers!

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Sherry Eckman

We text a lot and use e-mail and our cell phones..I have never tried skype yet.

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MARIA simon

FACETIME :) I HAVE FAMILY ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES AND THANK GOD WE CAN KEEP IN TOUCH..I WOULD LOVE TO SKYPE :)