by Gaurav Sharma, digital marketing consultant at CG Trader
It is vital for startups to build their online presence to grow their business. Why? Because almost everyone (and their mother) is on the internet now. In fact, startups find online marketing to be a very cost-effective and easily accessible channel to get the best value for their investment.
The internet plays a major role in the growth of a startup. It provides unlimited resources and tools to help them implement, measure, track, regulate, and evaluate their marketing campaigns.
In this post, we will take a look at some must-have digital marketing tools to grow your startup. These tools are handy and can be used in all major areas of digital marketing including content research, marketing, SEO, email marketing, and more.
1. Content Research and Content Marketing.
Google Keyword Planner.
You get free keyword suggestions and real time data of keywords ranking high in your industry. This is the most reliable tool to assists your content research and content development activities. And, of course, it is completely free.
Being a startup, you may trust Google Keyword Planner as your ultimate content guide. But if you want a wider choice for keyword planning outside of the Google search engine, there are other tools that can help. You can check out Ubersuggest as an additional growth hacking tool.
It primarily gives you expanded keyword choices by digging deep into real-time suggestion data of the popular search engine. All you need to do is just type in a keyword in the search box to start generating more suggestions.
It is recommended that you use both Ubersuggest and Google Keyword Planner to get different sets of keyword data for your content planning.
BuzzSumo is a tool that helps you find trending topics across various niche and categories. It is an excellent tool for content research and social media monitoring. It shows you topics that are most shared on social media platforms and lets you find influencers associated with those topics.
The tool is extremely helpful in doing competitor analysis. You can use it to get regular updates and alerts on based on your brand, links, keywords, industry, and more.
This is a good platform to build brand credibility and get great content ideas. Use it to find the most searched topics and areas of audience interest. Take help from the answers list to create your unique content and try to increase your social interaction by answering questions related to your niche. This Q&A website can be used both for content creation and marketing simultaneously.
2. Content Management.
Apart from finding and creating content, startups should also find a good content management tool to help plan, organize, and distribute their content.
There are many tools that offer content and project management, but some of the most popular and efficient ones are:
Trello is a free online tool for project management. It primarily uses cards and boards to organize your content and marketing calendars.
You can easily store, modify, and distribute content from one card to another card. You can also mark what stage of completion it has reached, whether it’s a work-in-progress, completed, or published.
Slack is another popular and well-structured platform that offers an instant messaging service, file transfers, and work management.
Built on similar lines as Skype, it has more advanced functionalities used mostly for internal communication among staff. The best thing about it is that it can be easily integrated with other tools like Trello.
Google Calendar and Google Docs are other useful tools popular among various small and big companies alike.
Google Calendar has easy-to-use and diverse templates that make workflow planning a simple task. You can create separate calendars dedicated to each business event such as marketing meetings, social media content, etc.
3. Email Marketing.
Email marketing is a highly effective digital marketing strategy that helps you share and distribute your content with your audience and get prospect leads.
Here are some of the best email marketing tools:
MailChimp helps you plan your email marketing efforts. It has a wide variety of templates that can be easily customized to send your messages. Since email marketing promises a very high ROI, do not think twice before considering this powerful tool.
Customer.io is another email marketing tool popular among growth hackers, content marketers, product managers, link builders, etc.
Based on your users’ activity, it allows you to send targeted emails to your website visitors or app users. You get email notifications whenever a user opens your email. It is also equipped with A/B testing abilities.
This is the best tool for any new entrant in the market. It monitors the effectiveness of your website content and your marketing strategies and analyzes traffic generated on your website. And it tracks every action of your visitors, giving you detailed insights into your customer behavior.
It shows you which campaigns are getting you the most traffic. Apart from tracking traffic and keyword rankings, it also does a great job in the area of social media monitoring. You can easily track and measure your conversion rates, CTRs, ad performance, and other digital marketing metrics through this free tool.
Installing Google Analytics is the first step that you should take to measure and optimize the effectiveness of your online marketing campaigns.
Pro Rank Tracker (PRT).
Pro Rank Tracker is a very useful tool to monitor your website’s SEO and page rankings on different search engines.
It provides shared reports that companies can share with their clients. The reports are updated on a daily basis and thus provide precise and current information.
You can even use it to track your mobile users’ data and measure the performance of your YouTube videos.
If you are looking for a comprehensive digital marketing package that includes sales, marketing, and CRM, HubSpot is the best choice. It helps you manage the entire marketing funnel, right from generating leads to customer acquisition.
This tool has a diverse range of features that cover everything that you may need for your marketing campaign: content research, social media analytics, lead management, email marketing, SEO and landing page optimization, marketing automation, website management, and the list goes on.
Marketers are busy in digital marketing activities for around 60% of their time, according to the CMO Council. Digital marketing is indeed critical to a business’ success. Therefore, marketers looking to grow their small businesses need to be wise enough to invest time and money into selecting the right tools for maintaining sustainable growth.
Over to You.
Have you used any of the tools mentioned above, or are there any other tools that proved effective in your startup’s growth?
Please share your experiences and feedback in the comment section below.
Gaurav Sharma is a digital marketing consultant at CG Trader, a 3D Model Marketplace, Founder of Digital Marketing Blog Attrock and a technology lover. He has been featured on Techcrunch, Search Engine Land and any popular Tech and Marketing blogs. You can check him out on Instagram, Twitter and Google+.