Software and tools are critical to marketing in today’s internet. The amount of process, organization and level of activities required for successful digital marketing is astounding and the complexities increase daily. This is actually an incredible opportunity to out-execute your competition though. It’s my belief that the company that can consistently execute the fastest with excellence is going to win. Here are some of the tools I’ve used in the past and some that I use currently that can improve your ability to execute.
Analytics and Reporting
First of all, having good key performance indicator reporting is the foundation of a successful company. Below I’ve listed some tools you should check out.
- Google Analytics: Google Analytics is free and extremely robust. If setup properly there is not a business in the world that should not be able to measure their exact cost per lead and cost per sale. This data is the foundation to success in ecommerce or lead generation business.
- CYFE Dashboards: Google Analytics is web and digital focused. CYFE allows you to pull in other data such as financial data from accounting, CRM data from sales, and email marketing metrics. CYFE is affordable and provide a broader opportunity to view and track key business metrics.
- Glew Ecommerce Analytics: Glew is a fairly new platform, but it’s affordable and it provides actionable ecommerce data, which is critical for online businesses that are growing quickly. Glew has a great team and is building several key platform integrations for ease of setup.
- Quickbooks: Old school right? You would be surprised how few companies I consult with where the CEO doesn’t have customized financial reporting and doesn’t know the numbers well enough. I recommend hiring a great book keeper and accountant that can help you analyze and visualize the performance of your company.
Marketing and Advertising Tools
- SEM RUSH: semrush.com is one of my go to tools for keyword research, search engine ranking tracking, competitive research and Adwords planning. SEM Rush is easy to use, robust in it’s features and will actually teach you how to market using the platform.
- Unbounce Landing Page Builder: Unbounce has changed the ability for companies to run profitable paid search campaigns. With an easy drag and drop design interface a graphic designer can build landing pages with many variations that allows for rapid AB testing at scale without the need of a developer.
- LeadPages: Lead Pages is less of a pure play landing page tool for ecommerce retailers, but it does have some proven funnels and ability to build landing pages for companies that are looking to grow their email list quickly. Lead Pages also has bloggers and marketers that personally make seven figures contributing to the template community, which gives it a unique advantage.
- Adroll Retargeting: The average customer needs to touch your brand seven plus times before they are ready to engage and buy from you. So how do you get in front of them so much? What if you could dynamically have your ads follow your customers around and display to them where they are at online? Well, that is exactly what retargeting does. Adroll is a great tool to deploy retargeting for display ads and Facebook ads.
- Optin Monster: This is my go to email capture popup tool All of the functionality that major email service providers charge thousands for, for a couple hundred bucks a year. Game changing tool for email capture. Key features are AB testing, control of what pages the popup displays on, when it displays including exit intent and integrations to most email marketing platforms to pass contacts. There is also a special place to past conversion tracking pixels from analytics
Email Marketing Tools
Email marketing should be the number two or three return on investment marketing initiative for your company. Depending on your market and current initiatives you may be seeing search engine optimization and paid ads producing a larger ROI. Here are some high value tools to get started
- Litmus: Litmus is an email design, build and testing tool. It’s a must for any serious email marketer. It allows you to see what your email will look like in any inbox prior to sending it. Bugs and design flaws in popular inboxes can kill a brand and lose you money. Litmus and an eye for detail will fix this
- Mailchimp: Mailchimp is my favorite small business to mid market email service provider. It has most of the functionality as enterprise email service providers for up to $250 per month. Many enterprise email service providers can cost up to $35,000 per year. I recommend the breakpoint for Mailchimp is between 75,000 and 100,000 engaged contacts.
- Constant Contact: In transparency I haven’t used Constant Contact in a few years, but the ease of use and marketing positioning make it a good tool from zero to 10,000-20,000 contacts. I’m a big fan of buying the tool you need today, not overbuying based on where you think you’ll be tomorrow. Changing from software to software is just not that tough.
- Hubspot: We’re Hubspot partners and this is our go to tool for any business that has substantial site traffic and a good email foundation. Hubspot brings behavioral targeting, CRM integrations and ecommerce targeting.
Here is a list of other miscellaneous tools that we use each month to help us market at scale.
- Google Drive: May seem simple, but google sheets for marketing editorial calendars and reporting in one centralized place makes marketing easy. Google Documents is also a great way to share strategies and tactics throughout an organization.
- JIRA: Jira is a great tool for easily capturing and sharing screenshots of your website if there are any design or development bugs that need to be fixed.
- WordPress: By far the blogging engine of choice. No better way to market that writing a ton of good content and the features in WordPress are just awesome.
- Screaming Frog: Screaming Frog creates awesome site maps and detects site crawling issues for SEO. It is also a great tool for 301 redirects if you’re re-platforming your website.
- Webmaster Tools: My favorite feature is web queries. We queries tells you where your site is showing up in search resuls not just where your traffic is coming from. This allows you the ability to optimize your meta descriptions to increase your click through rate for organic rankings leading to more quality traffic and more business. Webmaster Tools also will tell you if there is anything technically wrong with your site prohibiting it’s good rankings in search engines.
- GT Metrix: GT Metrix measures site speed for any site. It’s imperative that your site loads in under 4 seconds to have any real results online, the target is sub 3 seconds, but definitely faster than 4.
I hope these tools are useful to the day to day marketing and operations of your business. If you’d like to discuss how we can help you market and grow your business, please fill our the form on the right of this page.