What’s In My Pocket with Patrick Mackaaij

Our What’s In My Pocket series offers an inside look at the interesting people who use Pocket to elevate their work and life. Know someone who fits the mold? Let us know at stories@getpocket.com. This week, we talk to blogger and productivity expert Patrick Mackaaij.

Name: Patrick Mackaaij
Bio: Productivity expert, information manager, blogger, online marketing specialist
Location: Hilversum, The Netherlands
Twitter Handle: @mackaaij
Little-Known Fact: I’m trying to find family ties with the Scottish clan Mackay. According to research done by my family, Joannes Mackay was baptized in Inverness, Scotland in 1673, and moved to Antwerp, Belgium in 1706, but I’ve been unable to complete the chain of what happened since then.
Started Using Pocket: April 2012, just after the rebrand from Read It Later
Tell us a bit about yourself and your work, Patrick!

I work four days a week at TOPdesk, which makes customer service management software that’s used by IT, HR, and Facility Management departments. I also work a lot with those who do marketing and knowledge sharing.

On Fridays, and also on evenings and weekends, I work on my productivity blog.


I started blogging because people used to ask me all the time, “How do you get so much done? Do you have a solution for this or that problem?” Like, with Pocket, they’d talk about keeping browser tabs open to read later, but then their browser would crash, so they’d email links to themselves, and so on.


The blog has an audience in both English and Dutch, and serves as a resource for helpful productivity tools like IFTTT, Buffer, Reeder, Twitterrific, Pinterest, Evernote, and of course, Pocket. My goal is to help people become smarter and more efficient with online tools.

How does Pocket fit into your life?

Pocket is great because it helps me keep everything I read in one place.

I read quite a few blogs and sites. RSS feeds help me a lot, because I don’t have to subscribe to email newsletters or visit each site independently. Using Reeder to quickly scan the headlines in my feeds, I swipe items’ titles to send them to Pocket whenever I find something that I want to come back to later.

With Twitter it’s a bit different. I follow fewer than 200 Twitter accounts, but I basically read everything they post. Together, those accounts bring me a lot of serendipity on a variety of subjects! I use Twitterrific to send interesting links to Pocket.

I save new things to Pocket a few times a day, whenever I have spare time. It can be just a few minutes, even while waiting for an elevator.

It sounds like you’re saving quite a lot!

Yes! Also, I was a Top 1% user of Pocket in 2013, having read 11,440 articles in all — so I definitely don’t just forget about the things I’ve saved.

Any favorite apps that you use Pocket with?

I share items from Pocket Evernote to store what I want to refer back to later. I like Evernote a lot. In fact, I wrote an e-book on using Evernote with two other lifehackers.

For an item that’s written or explained well, or that takes an interesting approach to a problem, I share the link from Pocket to Twitter using Buffer. Buffer spreads my tweets out over time, so people don’t get a bunch of tweets at the odd times I read!

What’s your favorite Pocket feature?

I like that it is available everywhere and offline.

What kinds of things have you been saving and viewing recently?

Social Media: I read the official blogs for Twitter and Facebook, as well as Herman Couwenbergh’s blog, as he’s really good at keeping up with Twitter news.

Marketing: I enjoy Seth Godin’s blog, Dutch Cowboys, and Marketing Facts.

Productivity/Lifehacking: I am a big fan of the U.S. site Lifehacker as well as its Dutch equivalent, Lifehacking.nl (for which I also write occasional articles). The “Getting Things Done” site Meer Effect and Amit Agarwal’s Digital Inspiration are some of my other favorites.

Outside of these, I like reading stuff by Michael Lopp at Rands in Repose, and news from NRC, the Rotterdam newspaper. And of course I also follow the blogs of all the products I write about.

My reading combines my professional and personal interests. I get to keep up with industries I’m interested in and also learn new things.

How do you use Pocket to get organized? We’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line at stories@getpocket.com, and you could be featured in the next installment of What’s In My Pocket.