12 Tools to Make You a Content Marketing Pro
If you’re looking for a way to elevate your brand, attract new leads and cultivate new business, content marketing is the way to do it. By building a robust marketing strategy that delivers valuable, relevant and consistent content, you’ll build trust with your audience … and when they trust you, they’ll trust what you’re selling!
But with a million different ways to approach content marketing, and a million different tools to help you do it, how do you actually start?
Never fear, Sendlane is here! We’ve rounded up the best tools to help you build your content marketing strategy and become a content marketing pro – from the earliest planning stages to the tracking of your success. Start with stage one and work your way down to build your marketing plan from start to finish … or jump around to make sure you’ve got everything covered. However you do it, these tools will help make sure your content marketing is the best in the biz!
Tools to Plan
The first stage in building anything is the planning stage. Plan, schedule and manage your content marketing with these tools that are accessible anywhere (and on any device), collaborative across your whole team, and customizable to fit your unique needs.
If you’re working with a team, Trello is your new best friend. Its user-friendly interface organizes all your marketing projects into boards and cards so you can set due dates, attach documents, write summaries and notes, and share everything with your team for easy collaboration. Trello works just like sticky notes, except instead of cluttering up your desk, they’re all arranged in one web application. And the best part? Pretty much everything you’ll need is completely free!
2. Google Drive & Calendar
If you aren’t already using the always-free Google Drive, there’s never been a better time to start than right now! Not only is Google completely collaborative and can be shared across all platforms, it has more than a few amazing tools to use for your content marketing:
- Google Calendar – Create unlimited calendars and share them with anyone you want. Whether it’s for that big work project or just to track all the obscure holidays like National Margarita Day … it’s February 22 in case you were wondering.
- Google Docs – The beauty of Google Docs is that it works almost exactly like Microsoft Word, but since it lives online, you can access it from anywhere and share with anyone for editing, commenting or even just viewing.
- Google Sheets – Again, works just like Microsoft Excel, but makes everything easier!
The to-do list of your dreams, Todoist manages all your tasks in one list that can be categorized, segmented and accessed from any device including your phone. The distraction-free design keeps your to-do’s front and center so the important things you need to get done – in your personal or professional life – never fall through the cracks.
Tools to Create
For small businesses, the creation process can be the most difficult when it comes to your content marketing. But with these tools, you can create beautiful collateral even if you don’t have a full-time graphic designer or copywriter.
Looking for stock photography that doesn’t actually look like stock photography. With its collection of stunning images, searchable database and high-quality photos, Pexels is your new best friend. And did we mention that it’s completely free? (We love free)
Canva helps you create professional, polished and beautiful designs – no graphic design experience needed! This web-based designer is like Photoshop for beginners, but with a TON of built in icons, illustrations and even full layouts, Canva has done most of the hard work for you.
From quick social media posts to email headers to full presentations, if you can imagine it, you can almost always create it with Canva!
We’ve all been there: you’ve got one million things on your plate and so does everyone else on your team. Your overworked and overtired and just want some HELP. Enter UpWork. This global freelancing platform can connect you with web developers, copywriters, customer service providers, graphic designers and even virtual assistants … all on a contract basis and all from the comfort of your desktop. No combing through resumes, no awkward interviews, no HR rundowns. Just quality freelancers to help you get more done.
Better yet, you can filter through potential freelancers based on their location, job success, hourly fee, area of expertise and more. Pretty awesome right? Yeah, we think so too.
Tools to Distribute
Your amazing content has been created, now it’s time to share it with the world – it’s easy right? IF ONLY. In a world saturated with advertising on everything from billboards to our computer screens, how do you cut through all the noise and make people take notice? These three tools can help you start.
Social media is one of the most valuable marketing distributions avenues, but it’s also one of the most convoluted, confusing and downright difficult to manage. Sendible brings order to the chaos by helping you see and manage all of your social accounts in one place. Whether you want to schedule posts for later, post to all your social networks at once, or track how everything is performing, Sendible makes it easy to do in one place. Sendible plays nice with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.
Any savvy content marketer will tell you that blogging is a huge part of digital marketing success. Why? Because blogging pulls double duty – it helps you build your credibility with valuable, relevant and consistent content and it helps you increase the likelihood of people finding you online with SEO-rich content. If you don’t already have a blogging platform (or maybe even if you do), Medium is perfect. Its minimalist design allows you to share your message without distraction, its comment-enabled platform allows your audience to interact with you in real time, and its global collection of valuable content allows you to curate inspiration from all over the world even while you’re writing of your own.
Not to toot our own horn (toot, toot!) but when it comes to sharing your valuable content through email, Sendlane is pretty awesome. From email marketing to conversion-friendly landing pages to strategic email marketing to automated communication workflows, Sendlane makes it easy to not only distribute your content but to do it in a way that actually leads to sales. Our comprehensive email marketing suite helps you capture leads through dynamic landing pages, set them up in an autoresponder nurturing series, and move them through the sales funnel without missing a beat! Try us out FREE for 14 days!
Tools to Analyze & Optimize
With the tools above, your content marketing process may be chugging along nicely, but that doesn’t mean your work is done. In fact, this might be the most important element: figuring out what’s working well … and what’s not. Check out the tools below to help you analyze and optimize your content marketing strategy.
If your website is built in WordPress, you need Yoast and you need it now. This robust, but user-friendly tool helps you optimize your website for increased online traffic and search engine visibility – no expertise needed! And while Yoast can help anyone with website optimization, its WordPress plugin is really the most dreamy. It takes five minutes to set up, is completely free, and from the moment you install it, it will begin checking your SEO progress and sending you in the right direction through helpful prompts and guidelines.
Understanding the concepts of paid online advertising and search engine optimization are daunting (what the heck do PPC and SEO even stand for?!), but SEMrush provides knowledge and service to help businesses big and small master the digital advertising world. With plans starting at $100 per month, SEMrush definitely isn’t your cheapest option, but if you’re looking to really take your online advertising to the next level, it’s definitely worth the price tag.
12. Google Analytics & Adwords
Leave it to Google to win the game when it comes to analyzing and optimizing your digital content marketing. Google Analytics helps you monitor your site and suggests solutions to help improve, while Google Adwords helps identify the SEO keywords you should be using, plan your paid advertising strategy and put it to work on the world’s biggest search engine.
Are you ready to become a content marketing pro? Make use of these great tools and start for 14-day Sendlane trial and you’ll be on your way to acing the game!