Trying to manage all the different aspects of your small business marketing efforts can be challenging. From planning to posting to measuring results, it can easily become a full-time job; not ideal if you’re a small business owner on your own or with a limited staff. Luckily, there are numerous marketing tools, both free and paid, that can help you manage your efforts.
If you use no other tool, use this one! Google Analytics is a free tool provided by Google to help you get powerful insights on many aspects of your website. Essentially a web analytics service, this tool can provide statistics and basic analytical tools for search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing purposes. When setting up a free Google Analytics account, you’ll be provided with a tracking code to add to your website. This will allow the tool to provide a robust array of stats, from traffic to conversions to demographics and more, that can help guide your website marketing efforts as well as other marketing efforts such as paid media and social media.
There are several social media marketing tools that can help you plan, schedule, and execute your social media marketing across several platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and more. We’re big fans of Hootsuite for several reasons, which we’ll dive into in a moment. Hootsuite has a very basic free version but most likely you’ll end up with a paid version that will allow you to add all your social platforms, schedule posts, and invite team members as needed to manage your social media postings. Hootsuite provides a central management platform for all your social media channels and allows you to schedule posts in advance so you can get all your social media content for the coming days, weeks, or months ready in one session. You also get reporting tools to see which of your social media campaigns are working most effectively and use this data to calculate your social media ROI. Check out their different plan levels to see what would work best for you.
If you’re interested in using email marketing to help stay in touch with current customers, gain new prospects, or otherwise stay in front of paying customers, Constant Contact is a great tool to use. With a variety of plans based on functionality and how large your email list is, you can start using this intuitive, drag and drop tool with little or no previous email marketing platform experience. They’ll even create a basic branded email template for you based on your website’s branding colors and logo. Their tools help you build a professional brand online, attract customers and do more business online. All Constant Contact plan levels provide the ability to create unlimited templates, use automated emails for non-openers, A/B testing for effectiveness, and robust reporting. Higher plans also include additional automation options, the ability to create surveys, polls and coupons, dynamic content, and popup forms. Though easy to set up, a small business marketing professional can customize your email marketing account so you can start email marketing efforts seamlessly.
Content marketing continues to be one of the more effective marketing tactics you can do as a small business owner. Being more labor-intensive than other marketing tactics, it’s important to plan, create, and measure your efforts seamlessly. BuzzSumo provides content insights to generate ideas, create high-performing content, monitor your performance, and identify influencers. Their free plan, though limited, is a great way to get familiar with the tool, allowing for 10 searches a month, a dedicated content project, and robust reporting. Paid plans allow for multiple projects, custom feeds, and multiple users. Try it for free here.
Graphic design is a must-have for almost all marketing efforts you undertake. However, most small business owners don’t have the capacity to employ a full-time graphic designer. Now you don’t have to! Canva is an awesome, easy-to-use program providing hundreds of readymade templates for any kind of design you could possibly need, from social media to business cards to flyers and more. Highly customizable, you can choose from preexisting templates or customize your own, using their robust library of graphics, images, videos, and more. The platform is free to use and offers paid subscriptions like Canva Pro and Canva for Enterprise for additional functionality.
Trying to manage all your marketing projects including what you need, who is doing the work, and relevant due dates? Depending on how extensive your marketing efforts are, you may need a project management system, especially if you’re resources are both internal as well as external vendors. Asana is a web and mobile application designed to help teams organize, track, and manage their work. Within this free tool, you can create projects, teams, and calendars to track and manage every marketing effort every step along the way. You can also create goals, build portfolios, and much more. This tool is invaluable for keeping track of all your marketing efforts in one place.
Of course, there are hundreds of different marketing tools you can use depending on what you’re trying to accomplish. The ones mentioned above are great ones for laying the foundation of an organized, effective, and measurable marketing effort. Not sure where to start or how to implement all your small business marketing? Reach out to a small business marketing consultant like Strategic Marketing Services to help!