There are thousands of marketing tools out there, many professing to be essential and transformative to your business, so it can be difficult to see through the hype to what’s actually going to provide you with the most useful features and a return on your investment, whether time, money or both.
In light of this, we’ve put together a list of the tools that we think are essential for any business with an online presence to help with your marketing strategy, whether that’s ideation and planning, implementation or reporting.
Marketing research, ideation and planning tools
It’s essential to be able to benchmark how your website is currently performing in order to measure progress with your marketing strategy and Google Analytics (GA) will show you vital data such as where your website traffic is coming from, the pages they are viewing and how they are converting
into customers. You can use GA at every stage of a marketing campaign, from initial research (spotting issues where people are dropping off your site, pages that are underperforming etc) to reporting on improvements. Google Analytics is free in ins standard form, although there are paid options available for those who want premium features.
Google Search Console
If you want your website to rank in Google’s search results pages for people looking for services or products like yours, then Google Search Console (GSC) is a must-have tool. It shows you if there are any major issues stopping your website from being indexed or ranked by the search engine and flags
other things that might be limiting your visibility, such as mobile device unfriendliness. It also shows you which keywords/search terms your site is currently visible for (can be viewed by individual pages), which is vital information for your search engine optimisation (SEO) efforts. GSC is free to
When you’re looking for marketing content or campaign idea inspiration, BuzzSumo can be a greatplace to start, as it finds content by topic/keyword and shows you how well that content has performed, which can help spark your own ideas about how to cover a topic or idea in a better or more interesting way to your target audience. Buzzsumo has a limited free version and a paid subscription model.
Primarily an audience research tool, Sparktoro can help you put together a really effective marketing strategy that not only tells you what your target audience are talking about online, but also who influences them and how they can be best reached with the marketing assets you produce. Sparktoro has a limited free version and also paid subscription options.
Google Trends is a great tool for spotting what people are searching for online and when. This can help you plan marketing campaigns for the time when they are likely to have the best results. Google Trends is free to use.
Answer the Public
Answering people’s questions is one of the things that the Internet does best. You can find out what questions people are asking about a particular topic with Answer the Public, a tool that provides you with a list of common questions that you can create content or campaigns around. You can use this
tool for free with a limited version, or pay a subscription to access more features. Ideal for keyword research and sparking ideas for future marketing activity.
Marketing implementation tools
If you have plenty of access to a great design resource then you might not need this tool, foreveryone else, you can put together some professional-looking social images, blog graphics or other visual content really easily even if you have no experience. You can also create animations and
videos with this tool, along with access to a large stock library of photos, videos and graphics. There is a free version of Canva, but for access to most of the library and most useful features, you’ll need a paid subscription.
The ability to easily create and send marketing emails is such a useful tool to have as part of your wider marketing strategy. With the ability to easily integrate with most websites to collect opt-in email addresses from subscribers, campaign scheduling and loads of templates that make designing
slick emails a breeze, Mailchimp is one such tool. There is a limited free version, but subscriptions are required when sending emails to larger lists and for additional functionality.
Being able to manage and schedule social media content easily is a must for marketers. There are plenty of alternatives to this tool, but for simplicity and ease of use, Buffer is a great option for businesses with a presence on any of:
Facebook (profile, page or group)
LinkedIn (profile or page)
The tool has a free version (which can connect up to three accounts/platforms) and a paid subscription if you need more than this and for additional useful features.
Marketing reporting tools
Google Data Studio
Being able to report on marketing performance in a way that is easy to understand and provides insights that can inform future strategy is essential. Google Data Studio is a tool that can pull in data from many different sources to create reports that have all of the important information in one
place. You can include only the metrics that matter to your business or organisation to help ensure that stakeholders have the most useful information possible to best understand the performance and return on investment that marketing brings. If you would like any assistance with your marketing or support with specific campaign activity, we can help. Get in touch with the team for a chat to find out more.