With new tools being launched every day, it’s an exciting time to be a content marketer.
From ideation and creation to promotion, productivity and beyond, the market is flooded with research outlets, writing assistants, graphic design wizards, efficiency tools and influencer platforms that would have brought a tear of joy to those who worked in digital marketing just a few years ago.
The real challenge now is determining the best possible tools for your needs without investing too much time, money or energy in the wrong areas.
Based on my experience in the field, I’ve cherry-picked the top content marketing tools that have either withstood the test of time or are new entrants shaking up the space.
1. Trends: BuzzSumo
An oldie but a goody, BuzzSumo is a behemoth of a tool for researching ideas, influencers, and content trends, as well what topics are being most widely shared. And now, new content analysis charts show you how content shock might affect your industry.
2. SEO: Siteliner
Type your URL into Siteliner’s site analyzer to reveal key issues that affect your site’s quality and search engine rankings such as duplicate content, broken links, and page power. An economical alternative to a MOZ paid account, Siteliner provides a standard XML sitemap and a more detailed Siteliner Report for your website.
3. Content: CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer
Creating captivating headlines that appeal to your readers is hard. You never know exactly what will work, which is why CoSchedule’s headline analyzer is great. It gives you an effectiveness score between 1 and 100. According to its blog, the number to shoot for is a score of 70 or above. We tested some of Outbrain’s research with the tool and developed a few best practices around the art of writing headlines.
4. Task Management: Monday.com (formerly daPulse)
With so many content initiatives rolling out at the same time, it can be hard to keep track of what’s ready to go live, what still needs creative and so on. Monday.com is an excellent task management tool for getting super granular to stay organized and keep that content moving.
5. Data Visualization: StatPlanet Cloud
If you’re aren’t quite an Excel whiz, you probably know someone who can turn your valuable stats into data visualizations. Now, StatPlanet Cloud automatically transforms entire spreadsheets and databases into interactive visualizations. Save a friendship, leverage StatPlanet Cloud.
6. Curation: Sniply
Sometimes being a thought leader means knowing when to curate someone else’s content. With Sniply, you can be sure to engage your followers and drive conversions through the content curation process by adding CTAs to every link you share.
7. Design: Adobe Spark
What’s the point of creating a great piece of content if no one knows it’s from you? Content that is well branded is content that will be remembered. Adobe Spark, a service part of Creative Cloud, lets you put your signature on everything you create, including stunning graphics, web pages and video stories.
8.Creative: Shopify Logo Maker
While you probably already have a logo, the Shopify Logo Maker can be used to quickly and easily surface icons for your content creative. Many online icon repositories only offer up a few free assets and the require a subscription for the rest. By simply submitting your email address, Shopify will send your logo free of cost and without the hassle of signup.
9. Competitive Research: Moat Ad Search
Want to know how you stack up against your competitors in display? Moat’s Ad Search makes it easy to see what other brands are up to across the ad space. Get information on which devices are targeted by their ads, dimensions of the creative, and dates of activity to better understand what content you might want to consider for your company.
10. Sentiment: Social Mention
Unsure how to gauge the general sentiment of your brand online without investing in a flashy tool? Delivering more than its name might imply, Social Mention allows you to get a sense of your brand’s strength, reach, sentiment and passion. It also shows top keywords used in association, users, hashtags, sources and more.
11. Transcription: Google Voice Typing
The word “transcribe” can send even the most senior content marketer running for the hills. Not only can transcription services cost an arm and a leg, but they often take more time than one can wait—unless you are willing the shell out the expedite/rush fees. But what many don’t know is that with Google Voice Typing, you can easily transcribe interviews, videos or even podcasts by playing back an audio file after selecting Voice Typing in a Google Doc.
12. Efficiency: Google Explore
It’s easy to be a Google enthusiast when content creation becomes so simple. Use Google Explore to add research topics and even images right from within your Google Doc to avoid losing productivity or getting distracted by other tasks. Click to drag an image into your work or browse your own Google Drive for existing content to expedite the creation process as seamlessly as possible.
13. Organization: Evernote
With new articles, research and thought leadership hitting the internet nonstop, how can a content marketer ensure that they cite the most up-to-date resources when creating new collateral? An excellent tool for organizing research and thoughts, Evernote lets you bring a lot of moving parts into one place for maximum efficiency.
14. Email: Sendgrid
Integrate in minutes with the Sendgrid API and begin building and sending your email newsletters as well as acquisition, retention and promotional emails. With its simple yet powerful segmentation, flexible email design tools and actionable analytics, Sendgrid is quickly becoming the go-to for all many marketers’ email needs.
15. Code: HTML Cleaner
Nothing plagues a content marketer more than unnecessary or excessive HTML code. It can render emails incorrectly, impact the way your in-line content flows and slow down your page speed time. Using HTML Cleaner, rid your content of any unused code and put your best user experience forward.
16. Collaboration: Slack
Slack is a tried-and-true classic. The productivity tool—with the tagline “where work happens”—pulls people out of their inboxes and into a world of collaboration where instant messaging connects teams and departments across disciplines to ensure coordination on big and small projects. Set up specific channels with key individuals to open the lines of communication and you will find your marketing needs met with maximum efficiency.
A good content marketer will round out their tools and methodically test new ones as they optimize their efforts, being sure not to get swept up by shiny object syndrome. Nothing is more frustrating than spending time learning and using tools only to realize they don’t suit your company’s needs.
Hopefully, this article will help you discover a few quick and easy solutions that require minimal effort and resources but produce optimal gains.