Are you new to the wonderful world of digital marketing world? You’re eager to make progress on your career path and help businesses you work with but you’re overwhelmed with data and don’t know where to start?
This post is exactly for you! 🙂
My sister recently graduated from college. Her job now is a lead generation specialist for an Israeli company located in the Philippines. While she may have a black belt in writing feasibility studies, she needs a lot of help when it comes to digital marketing.
She’s smart and very eager to learn–just like me when I started. All she needs is just a little bit of guidance on which tools to use and how to organize all of her projects.
I wrote this post for her. But I’m sure that there are many beginner marketers out there who could also use some help.
This post also works for startup founders who recently hired a marketer for their team.
What we’ll cover in this post:
- Research and note-taking tools
- Task management tools
- Content creation tools
- Tools for editing content
- Tools to schedule and analyze content
What we’re not going to cover:
We’re not going to cover how to use these tools, as there are plenty of articles already written about that. After reading this article, you can explore the tools on your own and figure out how you want to incorporate it in your daily work routine.
Research and Note-taking Tools
Research is the foundation of any good marketing campaign. It’s especially important for beginner marketers because you need to learn a lot about so many things. You need tools that will help you better organize your research, so you can eventually translate them into action steps.
You can use these tools individually or use it with your remote team.
Here are the tools I personally use:
Every time our company, Octacomm, works with a new startup, one of the first things we do is to create a master sheet on Google Drive that serves as a content inventory.
This sheet serves as your blueprint for future marketing campaigns.
Plus, in the event that you move on to a new position or resign, your team won’t be left high and dry. They can easily pass this sheet to the next marketer. It gives you, your team, and the next person a smooth transition.
The sheet includes these essentials:
Business Information – Includes basic details such as name, website, address, and email
Company Profile – Includes details about what the company does and its main services. It can be used as a foundation for when you’re writing your profile on sites like LinkedIn.
Marketing Goals – A quick breakdown of your marketing goals. It needs to be specific. For example, how many clients are you hoping to get every month? Who’s in charge of making sure that these goals are achieved every month?
Target Audience – Describe your target audience in detail. This is super important because it allows you to understand what kind of content they’re looking for, the influencers they follow online, and where to publish your content.
Social Media Statistics – This sheet lists all the existing social media channels, the number of followers, and the current activities.
SEO Keywords – This sheet includes all the basic keywords related to your business. If you don’t know squat about SEO, you can leave it blank for now. You can always fill it out later when you know more. You will need it to optimize the copy of your website and future blog posts.
What’s great about Google Sheets:
- It’s cloud-based. Access it anytime, anywhere.
- It’s easy to share with a team.
- It’s free!
You can use Evernote to keep track of everything that’s going on.
You can use it to take notes during meetings, webinars, and conference calls.
You can use it to track of your ideas for future articles or marketing campaigns.
I have a Notebook that’s called Idea Dump. Every time an idea comes to me–a headline, a story for a video, a new marketing strategy–I write it all down. When I’m brainstorming for new topics for the blog, I usually scan Idea Dump to find inspiration.
What’s great about Evernote:
- It’s free if you’re only going to use the basic features and you can sync up to two devices.
- It’s also easy to share with a team.
- It’s packed with a ton of features for organizing your notes.
As a marketer, you always need to be on top of your game. You need to learn new strategies and keep up with the latest trends in digital marketing.
Pocket is a super simple way to organize articles, videos, and any link you find online that you want to bookmark. You can install it in any of your device. And just like Google Drive and Evernote, it syncs all the data on all of your devices where Pocket is installed.
When you’re offline, you can access all the articles that were already synced. You can access them when you’re stuck in traffic or waiting for your next flight.
What’s great about Pocket:
- It’s free!
- It’s available both on mobile and desktop.
- Content you saved is accessible even when you’re offline.
Task Management Tools
When you’re a beginner marketer, you’ve got a lot of things on my mind. One way to avoid overwhelm is to have a system in place to manage all your to-do lists.
For me, the perfect system is to plan my to-do lists the night before. That way when I wake up, I just open the computer and get to work. You don’t have to waste time thinking about what you need to do for the day.
What’s Your Style?
Before finding the best task management tool, I highly recommend understanding yourself better. Each individual has different personalities when it comes to task management. Do you like to write your to-do’s by hand? Do you feel more productive if you see your tasks visually? Figuring out how your mind works will allow you to find the best task management tool.
Trello is like a digital whiteboard. You can easily see what you’re going to do, what’s currently in progress, and tasks that are already done. It’s so satisfying to check off each task. It turns green and I can move it to the “Done” pile.
Trello is super easy to use. You just have to figure out a way to organize the Boards and the Cards the way you like it. You can read Trello’s blog for tips and tutorials.
What’s great about Trello:
- It’s free! You get more perks if you invite friends to use it.
- See all your to-do lists at a glance
- Easy to share with a team
- Visually appealing
Content Creation Tools
If you want to immediately publish articles for your startup without an official blog on your website, Medium is the best and easiest way to do it. You can open an account, publish content, and connect it to your website. You don’t have to learn HTML or CSS in order to create a beautifully designed blog. Writing a blog post on Medium is as easy as posting a photo on Instagram.
Most marketers are either great at writing or designing. I have zero talent in design. However, as a marketer, there’s always a need to post photos. If you’re like me, you’ll love Canva. It allows you to easily create beautiful photos that you can use on Facebook, Instagram, and your website. With its pre-made designs, you just need to change the font, color, and add your brand’s logo and you’re good to go. There’s a bit of a learning curve when using Canva for the first time. Once you get the basics, you can easily create images for your marketing campaigns in minutes.
If you want to write faster without any distraction, this is the app for you. When you’re writing your first draft, you need to be focused on putting words onto paper. Stop editing while writing! That’s the main purpose of this app. It allows you to focus on writing. That’s why you won’t see any red lines as you type. There’s no spellcheck and autocorrect.
You can read my review Ommwriter review here.
After you’ve created your content, you can now edit your first draft using Ginger. Ginger is free with limited features. It works in any browser.
After I’m done editing my first draft, I paste my content on Ginger to make sure there are no grammatical errors. My weakness is the correct use of prepositions. Sometimes I confuse using in, on, or at. Ginger helps me catch these errors!
I don’t use Hemingway as often as I use Ginger. But it’s also another great tool that can help you make your writing clearer and more succinct.
Scheduling and Monitoring Content Tools
Your content is polished and published! You’re now ready to distribute it in different channels.
Buffer is a free tool to schedule your content on social media channels. Just connect your social media accounts and you’re good to go! You can easily see how many people clicked on the posts you’ve shared and the number of engagement.
I use it to determine which social media channels I should focus on. For example, I noticed that my blog post gets more engagement on Twitter and Facebook than on LinkedIn and Google Plus.
Like Buffer, it allows you to schedule content. But its free version provides more features such as the ability to follow streams. For example, you can monitor tweets that use a specific hashtag. You can also interact with the tweets on Hootsuite without going to Twitter. It’s a great way to keep tabs on what’s important for your brand.
Despite having all the latest tools, what’s important is that you have a solid game plan which will amplify the message you want to deliver. In addition, if you’re starting out, most of the tools that I recommended have free options (and don’t compromise on quality), which bootstrappers and lean startups will find to be most useful. We hope that you find these tools useful for your online endeavors. What about you, what do you use to come up and deliver your message on Social Media? Let us know!