We’re always on the hunt for innovative tools that make the most of our budget and our clients’ budgets too. But with so many tools and apps out there, it can be challenging to know which tools are the best and which will work seamlessly together for all of our content marketing needs.
If you’re still in the process of putting together your marketing stack, it can be helpful to see how others organize theirs. That’s why we’re sharing a rundown of the tools we use on a regular basis to boost our productivity and get more done.
Google Alerts - To monitor mentions and the news
We use Google Alerts to receive notifications whenever a web page, news article or blog post matches the search terms we’ve defined. Google Alerts can be set up to find out what’s being said about your company or your clients, monitor industry news, and even keep up-to-date on competitors. We have Google Alerts set up to monitor all of our clients and our clients’ industries. This way we always know what is happening and when it happens so we can keep our content marketing efforts fresh and current.
Goodbits - To curate content
According to Goodbits, newsletters should take minutes, not hours. This free tool helps us quickly build our weekly startup newsletter (#LATAMSTARTUPWEEKLY) with little to no effort at all. Beautiful templates and fonts are already built-in. With the Goodbits Google Chrome extension, we can also quickly pull and place news articles into each newsletter and Goodbits takes care of all of the formatting — images included. Goodbits also provides us with a free landing page where all of the newsletters we’ve sent out are stored chronologically.
Trello - To get organized
Running multiple content marketing campaigns requires serious organization. We use Trello boards in various ways to map out both daily and weekly tasks. Our Trello Lists may contain “post ideas” for each of our clients, or we use the tool to set up content calendars to keep our team updated on the status of each project. There is no right or wrong way to use Trello — the tool is extremely versatile and can be customized to your team’s workflow.
HARO - To find opportunities
For free media opportunities, nothing beats HARO. If you’re writing a piece that requires an expert’s quote or opinion, or want to get your own voice out there, this free service will connect you with writers and reporters across all industries. We monitor HARO on a daily basis to secure timely press coverage for our clients and discover unique writing opportunities.
GAIN - To approve content
We use GAIN to automate our content marketing workflow. Instead of sending around countless emails and spreadsheets to get feedback and to approve content, we set up our workflows in Gain and the app takes care of the rest. Gain notifies each team member or client when content is ready to be approved, and each person can easily leave notes or feedback on every post. Besides content reviews, we also use Gain to organize our content calendars as well as schedule and publish content right through the platform.
Canva - To create beautiful images
We have an incredible graphic designer on our team, but for the times that we need to whip up high-quality, shareable images on a whim, we love using Canva. For teams with a limited budget, Canva is an excellent alternative to expensive software like Adobe Photoshop. Canva includes hundreds of pre-designed templates for all of our content marketing needs — blog graphics, social media banners, infographics, and more.
DesignFeed.io - To create images with text
When we need to quickly create graphics with text for blog posts or social media, Designfeed.io can do it all in minutes. Many free design tools require you to start from scratch or customize one template at a time. With Designfeed.io, you can type your text and the tool will automatically design the images for you and display dozens of options — all with beautiful fonts and backgrounds. Select your favorite version, the dimensions you need, and instantly download your free visuals.
Grammarly - To proof-read content
We use Grammarly to quickly and easily proofread all of the content we create. The web app checks for advanced errors such as punctuation mistakes, vocabulary, grammar, and readability issues. Grammarly provides a free basic version, but we highly recommend a yearly subscription if you’re pushing out content on a daily or weekly basis.
Buzzsumo - To count social shares
Not only do we use Buzzsumo to discover trending content but we also use it to monitor and report the number of shares our content receives across all social networks — including Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google Plus. Simply paste the URL of your blog post or article into the Buzzsumo search bar and Buzzsumo will display the total shares your content has received to date.
Google Analytics Add-on for Sheets - To analyze each post
The Google Analytics add-on for Google Sheets is a tool we use to create custom reports on all of our content marketing efforts. With this tool, we can filter and segment out our content marketing efforts from the overload of data that Google Analytics provides, and turn that data into customized, easy-to-understand reports. For example, we use the tool to automatically generate reports on total monthly pageviews on our content, and to create visual graphics that break down our most popular content. You can learn more about how to use this powerful tool here.
Are there any other budget-friendly content marketing tools you’d add to this list? Share with us in the comments.
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