My 8 favorite “free” or low-cost Tools for Growing a Business
Supercharge your digital marketing with these 8 tools. After all, who has the time to do all those tasks without help?
Topics: Lead Generation, Opting-in, Content search, User Testing & Feedback, Customer Analytics.
I’ve spent over a dozen years in digital marketing learning to split my attention across multiple businesses, from my own Marketing agency to Mailshake app– and I’ve had to stretch myself pretty thin at times. But, when you’re growing a business, you can’t stay in that state forever.
After facing massive Burnout, I learned pretty quickly that I needed to become a lot more efficient. There’s only so much time in the day, and only so much you can do on your own. That’s why I’ve happened to test a load of tools, apps & platforms over the last decade, trying to maintain a productive handle on things and keep the momentum going. After years of trial & error, here are my eight (8) favorites that I recommend for driving business growth at any stage.
1. Hello Bar [ Lead Generation ]
Is a great tool for lead generation, and it’s a relatively simple Plugin to implement. When you want something a little more subtle than a Pop-up, this is my go-to choice. I’m all for aggressive pop-ups, but only when they’re appropriate. Sometimes, you need something less in your face in the funnel.
2. SumoMe (for Opting In)
This suite of tools is most commonly known for its Opt-in tool set that helps you rapidly expand your list of Email subscribers. The options & templates included for this functionality are terrific, and I love how easy it is to set up & customize each tool’s specific elements.
The additional tools available are just gravy, and include:
- List-building features
- SumoMe Share, for easy and attractive share buttons that count user actions
- The Welcome Mat, a full-screen call to action
- Heat mapping
- Smart bar, for more subtle calls to action and opt-ins (similar to Hello Bar mentioned above)
- Simplified image-sharing tools
I use SumoMe tools on just about every single site I maintain, and you should, too.
3. BuzzSumo. (content search)
I’ve yet to find an application that can do everything BuzzSumo can. Honestly, I look back on my early days of content marketing and can’t believe the number of hours I spent on topic research alone. Being able to plug in search terms and get the most popular content, along with the names of influencers sharing that content, makes this one of the most valuable tools in my library. Whether you’re trying to connect with influencers, create roundups, look for new topics, test audience interest or build skyscraper content for a new posts, you need Buzzsumo in your toolbox.
It’s never a good idea to assume you know what the customer wants, or whether the design you slaved over, is going to work as intended. For these reasons, I always lean on UserTesting to get an unbiased look at how the average person interacts with my site pages & sales funnels. Because UserTesting records both on-screen actions & user comments, you get to be able to see the testers’ reactions and read their thoughts as they go through your site, processes, checkouts & conversion points. I always find something that pops up that our team hadn’t considered, and that insight is truly priceless $$$.
5. Peek. [“free” live User feedback]
Don’t have the budget for UserTesting? Check out the alternative, Peek, which is “free” to use. Once you’ve signed up, the tool gives you a quick 5 minute video of someone using your product – essentially enabling you to “peek” inside the mind of your user. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that the “User conducting” your Video review may not be a member of your Target audience. The service is worth a try. When you’re reviewing your free video, just remember that Peek is a [featured-limited] taste of a much larger service that, when used correctly, could be invaluable to your activities.”
6. InstaPage. [for creating Landing Pages]
A lot of the projects I’m involved with go from idea to development to testing to deployment pretty rapidly. If I had to work with a custom developer, designer & coder on every project, all that communication would slow things down considerably. Instead, I use Instapage because its templates & built-ins make it easy to quickly generate Landing pages that are already optimized for conversions. And with the program’s Widget design, you’ll find an unlimited potential for adding functionality to Landing pages and testing elements for individual products. All in all, you can get pretty creative with your Landing page design, without needing to know a lot of code.
7. QualaRoo. [Australian] Customer Analytics.
I could spend hours each day pouring over Analytics reports from my sites, pages & social channels in an effort to keep tabs on what visitors are doing. And, believe me, sometimes I do, but the problem is that a good chunk of the data I stare at every day isn’t actionable. When you need to make marketing “strategy” decisions, it’s best to know why people are taking the actions they are — not just what they’re doing. That’s why I use Qualaroo – to dig into those customer insights, hear directly from the audience segments I target & gather qualitative data that lets me take better-informed action.
8. Optimizely. [to launch split-Test runs]
I’m directly involved in so many different projects that there’s always something to be tested and improved upon. For this reason, I’ve turned my teams on to Optimizely, thanks to how easy the program makes it to launch split-test runs. With the program’s intuitive visual interfaces, I can set up & run a test within minutes. Simply put, when we’re thinking about doing anything with a site or landing page, I make a habit of running it through Optimizely to measure the impact first.
Comments: Do you know any other good Tools for Growing your Business?
from Startup365.france 13 Mar 17 enhanced by Peter/CEO Wiz4biz
For more Info, click on Growing a Business, Growing a Biz, Productivity