5 Branding Tools That Will Empower Busy Marketers

5 Branding Tools That Will Empower Busy Marketers

Did you know that 60% of marketers create at least one piece of content every day?

If you’re one of them, you know how much time-consuming this job can be. So, the right branding tools for busy marketers can make a real difference.

Most people are highly productive between 9AM and 12PM. Do people stop working after 12 PM? Well no, but productivity tends to drop massively.

You should also add another interesting fact to this equation. In the last 20 years, working hours have increased by 15%. The opposite goes for leisure time – decreased by 33%.

Time management has reached vital importance.

You can find tips and tricks on how to achieve more in less time everywhere. They’re usually simple: Create to-do lists, take short breaks to clear your mind and so forth.

Now “branding tools for busy marketers” sounds a bit different. They focus on the productivity side. Think along the lines of improving the way you do things. Getting everything done faster and better means you’ll have more free time on your hands.

Long work hours may impair personal health and cause high-stress levels. In the US, most full-time workers devote 60% of their day to personal care. How can you reach the same work-life balance? Easy! You need the right tools.

Branding Tools That Expert Marketers Use

tools for busy marketers

Before we go more in-depth, I think you’ll agree it’s a good idea to let you know what tools I’ll mention in this article.

In no particular order, the tools for busy marketers presented in this article are:

  • Sumo – Your one-stop shop for website apps
  • InstaPage – A landing page builder that requires no coding skills knowledge whatsoever
  • SEO by Squirrly – A powerful SEO – and so much more – plugin for WordPress
  • ContentLook – A content marketing website analyzer
  • Pixlr – A powerful online photo editor

So, if you’re interested in what these tools do and what expert marketers love about them, stick around.

Let’s take them one by one:

01. Sumo – 12 Tools in One

tools for busy marketers

There’s no solid evidence, but it seems every marketer has heard about Sumo. It’s a suite of 12 tools to help you grow your website traffic. It has tons of useful features for marketers.

You get:

  • A list builder
  • A buy button
  • Google Analytics
  • A heat map
  • Image sharer
  • Highlighter
  • Contact form
  • Smart bar
  • Content analytics
  • Welcome Mat
  • Discover
  • Social sharing

Sounds great, right? AirBnb, theChive, and Social Media Examiner are just some of the big names using this tool. But it’s important to look further than the brand names.

Marketers are relying on this tool to improve their work, so it has to be great – not just in terms of features. It has to help them save time too.

Sumo does that by automating many of the processes involved in content marketing.

tools for busy marketers

The List Builder turns readers into email subscribers.

It is fully customizable and has a cool smart feature. That enables it to detect when a user is about to leave your website. A nice looking pop-up asks them to subscribe to your email list.

It works on mobile devices as well. That’s important, as there are almost 2 billion users worldwide.

When you’ve reached the desired subscribers mark, you’re one click away from integrating your list with your email marketing service.

sumome-the-buy-button

The Buy Button is a feature that lets you sell anything on your website.

It is completely customizable and it’s interesting to see that Sumo doesn’t ask for a cut. It also has a nice A/B testing feature – you can find out how to increase the conversion rate.

tools for busy marketers

 Google Analytics does exactly what the name suggests.

It enables you to see your analytics data without going to Google Analytics. Furthermore, the plugin highlights the important data you should be tracking.

Sumo automates many of the processes involved in content marketing. Click To Tweet

tools for busy marketers

Heat Maps gives you useful insights about where your audience is clicking.

This feature is great when you’re building custom landing pages. Being able to place the right widget in the right spot can make a world of difference. It helps you find out where you should place the CTAs. All this leads to increasing your conversion rates.

It helps you find out where you should place the CTAs. All this leads to increasing your conversion rates.

tools for busy marketers

Image Sharer is a cool feature that can get you more traffic.

Users can’t really share those beautiful pictures you use in your posts. But this plugin gives them this ability. They can share the image they like the most with a simple click and link back to your website. A must-have feature for the food and fashion industry!

tools for busy marketers

The Highlighter is a cool way to get pieces of your content shared on social media.

Let’s say a user loves one of the phrases you used in your latest post. They simply need to select it with their mouse and then share it on Twitter, Facebook and so forth. Of course, the share will link back to your post.

tools for busy marketers

The Contact Form makes it easier for your readers – or customers – to get in touch with you.

It is highly customizable so you can get that premium look you’re striving for. You also get an auto-response feature. Whenever you get an email through this feature, the sender gets a response from you.

Sumo helps you find out where you should place your CTAs. Click To Tweet

tools for busy marketers

The Smart Bar sits at the top of your website. It’s a cool tool that enables you to constantly remind visitors to take action.

You can use it to grow your email list or to incite readers to check out your new blog post. You’ll be amazed what a powerful call to action and a reminder can do.

tools for busy marketers

Content Analytics

Content Analytics is one of the most insightful tools Sumo has to offer.

It provides great information regarding how much of your content actually gets read – the attention span in 2015 was 8.25 seconds.

The same data outlines that if your web page had about 600 words, only 28% of it was actually read. So knowing exactly where your readers stop is extremely valuable today.

tools for busy marketers

The Welcome Mat displays a fullscreen call to action.

Many experts use this to boost their conversion rate.

It shows up when the page is visited and it is fully customizable. You can place a call to action to increase your subscriber list. The tool is 100% responsive since it covers mobile readers too.

Sumo lets you know how much of your content is actually read. Click To Tweet

sumome-discover-button

The Discover tool enables you to get more traffic.

What Sumo does is place your content on other websites using it. Once you join, your posts will recommend others’ related content to your readers.

Your content will be recommended by others and so forth.

The more traffic you send, the more credits you get. These can be used to get even more traffic. It’s a win-win situation.

tools for busy marketers

Share is a social sharing tool.

You can link up to 16 social media networks on which readers can share your great content.

The more shares you get, the more viral the posts become.

It also analyzes which share buttons are the most used every day and prioritizes them.

Phew! We finally made it!

12 tools to rule them all.

It’s a great thing they’re grouped under the same hat. This gives you a better overview. But the most important part is the automation. This is the real time-saver. This is what we’re all looking for.

Sumo gives you useful insights about how users navigate your website. It enables you to grow your email list faster than ever and integrate it with just one click. It helps you get your killer content viral. If that doesn’t boost your traffic to high-enough rates the Discover tool has you covered.

There's no solid evidence, but it seems every marketer has heard about Sumo. Click To Tweet

02. Instapage – Probably the Best Landing Page Platform

If you know your inbound marketing, you know that landing pages are a crucial piece of the puzzle.

Did you know that only 48% of marketers build a new landing page for each campaign? That number needs to increase.

tools for busy marketers

This is where Instapage comes into play.

This tool allows you to create beautiful landing pages in no time. You get tons of templates which you can customize according to your needs. Their interface is easy to use and intuitive.

Here are the main features:

  • Easy building – You only need a mouse and a keyboard
  • Beautiful templates with great design options
  • 100% responsive – The pages will look good on mobile devices as well (you can customize the mobile landing page too)
  • No coding skills required
  • Easy integration with CRM, and email marketing platforms
  • Directly publish to WordPress and more
  • A/B testing tool – Track, analyze, and pick the best version of the landing page.

All the above tasks can be completed with ease. You’ll save tons of time and design everything faster. You’ll get high-converting landing pages that are perfect for your campaigns.

03. Squirrly SEO

tools for busy marketers

SEO by Squirrly is one of the most powerful tools of its kind. You don’t really need to listen to us but you can see for yourself how we back up this claim.

SEO by Squirrly has recently reached the 100k users’ milestone. It received many great reviews, including from thought leaders like Neil Patel.

Squirrly review

The most exciting part about Squirrly is its keyword research capabilities.

Most of us use Google’s Keyword Planner tool. But did you know that its solutions are for advertising?

If you want to write content that will rank well, Squirrly will help you. You will receive information about recent discussions, the competition, and trends about the keywords you’ve chosen.

tools for busy marketers

Squirrly SEO is unique thanks to its approach to SEO and content at the same time. Moreover, you get to check the SEO requirements while you write the article – thanks to the Live Assistant.

seo-by-squirrly_2

If you want to write content that ranks well, Squirrly SEO is the tool for you. Click To Tweet

You also get weekly audit reports. They outline what website aspects you need to improve and also highlights what you’ve done so far. It’s great that you get tips on how to fix each aspect if necessary.

SEO by Squirrly also allows you to enrich your sitemap.xml file. You can add video content, for example. These settings need to be done just once. In case you’ve set everything up with another plugin – Yoast, for example, and still want to try Squirrly, you won’t lose anything. Squirrly will automatically import your previous settings.

It’s a great tool for professionals and beginners alike. You don’t need a background in SEO – you’ll earn it while using the plugin.

plugin-de-seo

04. ContentLook – For Quality Content Analysis

tools for busy marketers

If we’re talking about tools for busy marketers, we can’t leave ContentLook aside.

It’s a powerful evaluation tool for your entire website in regards to SEO. You’ll get extremely useful insights on what is working and what needs more work.

Here are its main features:

tools for busy marketers

  • Social Media Evaluation – ContentLook analyzes how well your posts do on social media networks. It calculates how many shares, likes, comments your posts have received across platforms. This helps you find out where you should be focusing your efforts.

tools for busy marketers

  • Traffic analytics – The tool evaluates your overall traffic. Nothing out of the ordinary, you may think. But it analyzes traffic in general and based on individual posts. Combine it with the above and you’ll find out what kind of content performs the best.

tools for busy marketers

  • SEO score – ContentLook lets you know how well optimized your content actually is. It then gives you tips and tricks on how to improve it. The higher the SEO score, the easier readers can find your content on search engines.

But the tool doesn’t stop there.

  • You also get integration with Trello and Google Analytics.
  • You can create and assign tasks for your blog posts and landing pages.
  • You can create and analyze digital marketing campaigns. This is a great way to track all your objectives in a single place.

contentlook feedback event

05. Pixlr – Powerful Online Photo Editor

Every marketer that loves his/her job is determined to create the best content possible. This often involves visual content as well. But time flies and you often find yourself unable to finish the touch-ups on that photo.

Pixlr brings the power of photo editors like Photoshop to your browser.

Creating stunning content for social media is much easier with this tool. You have all the needed functions one click away.

tools for busy marketers

It’s amazing how much more beautiful pictures can get after you’ve processed them through Pixlr.

The tool is absolutely free and easy to use. The team behind it also blogs often, offering tips and tricks on how to use Pixlr to its full potential.

Conclusions

After reading all the details presented above about these five tools for busy marketers, there’s a natural question. How many tools do you use to achieve those tasks? If the answer is more than five, then you should improve that. The more tools you use, the more time you may end up wasting.

Sadly, yes, nowadays it’s all about time. The more you improve time-efficiency, the more spare time you’ll get to enjoy. And this is an important aspect if you want to keep a proper work-life balance. The less stress, the better you’ll feel.

Back to you: Let us know how you feel about these branding tools in the comments section below. Have you used them and switched to something else? Are you using them as we speak? Have any tips you could share with the others?

It would be great to learn from each other!

How to Get The Most Out of Google Analytics

How to Get The Most Out of Google Analytics

Every website owner has to be able to precisely analyze their content’s performance, regardless of its type. In that case, there’s mostly just one solution: Google Analytics (GA).

You’d be amazed how many aspects it can track! And does it for free. You don’t need to pay anything – except attention to the following lines.

Learning the ins and outs of GA is a must for all website owners. Not just because marketers say so, but because it’s a good way to grow your business.

Here are the top tips on using Google Analytics and getting as much as possible from the data (and how to precisely read the data).

Set Up Your Goals

Are you running an eCommerce business?

Are you selling certain services?

Have you developed a SaaS and people are downloading it?

Regardless of what the answer might be, you should always clearly define your goals in Google Analytics so you can track and analyze it better.

Downloads, form completions, add to cart, successful sales – everything can be defined and tracked through GA. You should do this right at the start because your decisions should be based on the goals and conversions you focus on.

google analytics

To define these goals, head to your Google Analytics and click on the Admin wheel. Then, click on Goals from the right column and on the red button NEW GOAL. The tool provides you a user-friendly wizard which guides you through the entire process.

Track Your Events

Part of setting up your goals is Event Tracking.

By using just a bit of extra code, you can start collecting data on countless extra activities that can’t be tracked with the regular GA code. These are actions you can’t track because they don’t lead to a Thank You page or follow up page.

Events include aspects and actions like:

button clicks,
clicking on links,
email addresses,
social media icons,
file downloads.

Setting up events is just like setting up goals, except you’ll have to add a specific code.

If your site is using Universal Analytics, you’ll need to use this code:

ga(‘send’,’event’,’category’,’action’,’opt_label’, opt_value)

There are a few variables that will change with each different event you track:

Category – grouping events into desired tracking groups
Action – the action the user takes
Label – to differentiate this event from the others (optional)
Value – perceived dollar value of event (optional)

If you want your visitors to download something without taking them next to a Thank You page, you’ll want to input the following:

  • Category: Downloads
  • Action: Click
  • Label: Whitepaper/Plugin
  • Value: 0

Thus, the code you should implement on your page looks like this:

ga(‘send’, ’event’, ’download’, ’click’, ’plugin’, 0);

Sync Your Google Analytics with Google Webmaster Tools

For the uninitiated, Webmaster Tools (now officially rebranded as Google Search Console) is another free application which lets you check the indexing status and optimize the visibility of your website.

By connecting your Search Console property (website) with your GA account, you gain full access to Google’s new Search Engine Optimization reports.

These come in three forms:

  • Queries,
  • Landing Pages,
  • and Geographical Summary.

In addition to helping you discover your top performing search queries and landing pages, the data can also be used to identify:

  • Keywords that have a low click through rate, but high average position. Once you know what these are, you can change the meta title and description of your page to improve their CTR.
  • Landing pages that have a good click through rate, but low average position. These pages can then be put through an on-page optimization process to improve their rankings.
  •  The countries your organic visitors are browsing from.

Filter Out Your Traffic

Do you and your colleagues have your website set as their home page, or do you visit to test and update content? Of course, you do.

Accessing your website over and over again can actually alter your analytics data.

To prevent this, and to exclude yourself and your co-workers from your Analytics data, you will need to set up a filter under the Admin panel.

If you have a static IP address, go to All Filters, click on Add New Filter and set a Predefined Filter to exclude traffic from your given IP address.

If you don’t know your IP address, just google ‘what’s my IP.’ Be aware, though, this will ONLY work if you have a static IP (most business broadband packages come with a static IP these days).

Conclusion

Every website owner needs to use Google Analytics, regardless of the stage of their business.

This fantastic free tool can answer so many questions, be them simple or complex. Without it, you can’t possibly know the answer to essential questions, such as:

  • How many people visit my website on a daily basis?
  • Where do these visitors access my website from?
  • Are they using mobile devices to browse my site?
  • Which pages on my site are the most popular?
  • How many visitors are converted into customers?

And the list can go on and on.

If you have additional questions about Google Analytics, please post a comment below.

If you found this article helpful, you can share it with your audience on social media.

What Is Product Hunt And Why Should Authors, Podcasters, SEOs and Marketers Care

What Is Product Hunt And Why Should Authors, Podcasters, SEOs and Marketers Care

Product Hunt is like the new cool kid on the block – everybody wants to hang out with him and tell the world about their new best friend.

Have you heard about this new cool kid?

If you haven’t, then don’t worry. You still have time to become friends with them. This article will tell every one of his secrets and how you can make it your best ally when it comes to implementing a marketing strategy.

What Is Product Hunt?

PH is a community type platform where people can submit a new product they’ve been working on. Here are some of the main categories that they have on the website:

  • Developer Tools
  • Bots
  • iPhone
  • Productivity
  • Books
  • Email Marketing
  • User Experience
  • Lifehacks
  • Marketing
  • Social Media Tools

You can discover all of them here.

If you’re an author, a podcaster, a marketer or a product creator and you’re helping build a product that fits into one of these categories, then you should consider launching it on PH as well.

If you just need to know about the best things that are available for free, Product Hunt is a good place to find that out as well.

It can help you find amazing books to learn from, great SEO tools for your business, awesome podcasts (from people like Neil Patel). You can get discounts to many products and you can try out the latest digital marketing tools.

Product Hunt is a community of people who love hearing about the hottest and coolest apps, tools, websites, or projects. This might sound pretty basic, but there’s actually a lot more to it.

It’s all related to the Product Adoption Curve.

Ovi Negrean, Chief nugget at nugget, did a great job at explaining this concept in his ultimate guide to launching on Product Hunt, so I’ll do my best to do the same.

Here it goes.

When launching a new product, you’re going to use many different strategies and communication channels. You want to make sure that as many people as possible hear about your product and try it out.

As far as your audience goes, you’re most likely not targeting everyone, but an audience with a particular profile.

Then, there’s the fact that each product that has ever been launched and will ever launch will go through some phases. It all starts with tech enthusiasts and ends with skeptics. Skeptics are resistant to change, so you can’t be bothered with them.

Tech enthusiasts, on the other hand, are exactly the audience you want to reach when launching a new product.

Why? It’s simple.

They will test your product even if it’s not pitch perfect and is still a little buggy. They will even help you improve it.

Uber is one of the companies that went to innovators first and then reached early adopters. Its success is partly due to this strategy. Of course, the hundreds of millions of dollars in investments had an impact as well.

Product Hunt is a community of tech enthusiasts, who are exactly the people you need to reach in the first phase of launching a new product.

The chances are that, if your product is really good, you’ll manage to attract a lot of advocates and influencers who will help you get that much needed initial traction.

Now that you know what PH is, it’s time to see how it actually works.

How Product Hunt Works

This is what the PH homepage looks like.

As you can see, you can browse the community and explore an abundance of topics. The homepage feed is sorted chronologically, and here you will only see products that were posted by a particular type of users and that managed to get the highest amount of upvotes.

While you can see all the products that have been posted and read all about them, you can’t upvote them.

To do that, you need to create an account, which is easy to do.

You have the Login button on the upper right side of the screen. You can choose to login with Twitter or Facebook.

product-hunt-2

And just like that, you now have access to the PH community.

Upvoting is super useful for you, as a marketer. Why? – Because it will help you easily form lists of all the latest and greatest tools that you can use to take your WordPress or business to the next level.

In your profile you will have a list of everything you’ve upvoted and you’ll always be able to come back to it. I, for example, still find some pretty awesome marketing tools that I bookmarked a couple of years ago, and even the Pitch Deck used by SEOmoz (now called MOZ) to get over 10 millions of dollars in investments.

Let’s see how you can upvote a product.

You can either start browsing through all the topics, or you can type in the search bar a name of a product you’re already using.

Let’s take Slack for example.

product hunt

Right next to the “GET IT” button, there’s another one with a number on it. Those numbers represent how many people upvoted this product. By clicking it, you’ll be upvoting for it as well.

In the screenshot above, I clicked on those circles with faces on them. This shows you all the people that have upvoted the product. You can click on their name to see their Product Hunt profile and then follow them if you want to receive notifications about the products they post.

Also, if you’re an Author and you want to launch a book (just an example) you can use those lists of people to build a potential buyers list for your own book when you will launch it.

PH is a pretty closed off community because new users that have just created an account cannot post a product right away. They first have to upvote products on a regular basis, engage with the community and show their value.

You don’t even have the ability to comment, even if you have upvoted a product. You can request to do so, but that doesn’t guarantee anything. The PH team will accept your request based on a few different factors.

image1ph

product-hunt-4

Product Hunt manages to bring so much value because:

  • Not everyone can create an account and post right away
  • The comment section is also protected by filtering the people who have commenting rights

Now, you’ll notice that some users have an M or an H next to their profile photo.

product-hunt-5

The M stands for Maker, which means that it’s the profile of a person that created a particular product (there can be several, as you can see above).

The H stands for Hunter, which means a user who has the rights to post products to the platform (aka hunt it.)

A user that decides to hunt a product doesn’t necessarily have to be the maker. In fact, in most cases, some people love a product so much that they decide to post it on behalf of a company. There are probably some products which have been posted, and their makers don’t even know about this.

OK, by now, you should have a pretty good understanding of what PH is and how it works. It’s time to get into more real stuff and discover the reasons why you should consider launching your product on PH.

Why You Should Launch On Product Hunt

There’s an interesting shift happening nowadays. Traditional PR will most likely be dead soon because it will be replaced by influencer marketing.

Marketers, I’d recommend focusing more on finding influencers for your products and not sending mass press releases to media outlets. People are slowly starting to lose interest in those as they’d rather follow online influencers.

Let’s imagine that the launch of your product is coming up. You’ve already planned out a strategy, established KPIs, put together a team, and everything looks pretty much flawless. The odds say that the launch is going to be a success.

But the big question is: are you going to reach the desired audience that will help you get traction?

Here are my top reasons why Product Hunt is THE place to launch your product:

  • You will get plenty of traffic. Not only that but the traffic that will come from PH will translate into conversions, whether it’s sign ups or sales. Because, as we’ve already established, it’s a community of tech enthusiasts, these people will want to be the first ones to test your product.
  • Your visibility will increase in the upcoming days as well. Product Hunt sends a daily and a weekly newsletter to all of its subscribers. If you made it to the homepage and you were in top 5, you’re going to be featured in their emails as well. This basically means that tens of hundreds of people will read about your new product.
  • Increase your visibility on social media. PH has hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter alone. One single tweet about your launch can go a long way. Other people will definitely be retweeting their post so just think about the impact.
  • You’ll get real feedback. I’m not saying that you won’t get real feedback from other places. What I’m saying is that the people on PH will embrace your product with flaws and all and are willing to help you make it better – if it’s not already, of course.
  • Free press. If your product is really that great, then you won’t even have to bother pitching it to dozens of media outlets. They will naturally come to you and feature your product in their publications.

You’ll get all of these benefits. Just by launching in one single place. Isn’t that amazing?

Successful Product Hunt Launches

There are tons of great articles out there that talk about how people decided to launch on PH and how they turned it into a massive success.

Here is just one of these stories.

product hunt

What Have We Learned Today?

Product Hunt, even though it’s kind of an exclusive community, managed to grow massively in two years.

What’s even more interesting is that the traditional way of launching a product is not capable of generating the same interest. Not anymore.

We have to think outside manuals and old-fashioned ways of doing things, especially when it comes to marketing.

My advice is to head over to Product Hunt now, browse their topics, see what people are discussing and start upvoting some of your favorite products. I’m sure you’ll find other cool things as well and you’ll be hooked in no time.

If you have any questions about PH, feel free to post them in the comment section. I’ll be happy to answer them for you.

Happy hunting!

The Best Affiliate Marketing Tools That’ll Get You to the Top

The Best Affiliate Marketing Tools That’ll Get You to the Top

table maker plugin affiliate marketingAs you may have heard, affiliate marketing is a good way of monetizing your work as a blogger. If you’ve just started down this path and got your first bucks, you may be wanting more. And you should!

But it’s not all about the money. By taking a keen interest in this domain, you’ll actively learn a new skill. After all, we’re talking about another component of digital marketing.

The affiliate marketing tools industry is expected to be worth almost 7 billion dollars in the next five years. That means there is room for everybody and you can get a “piece of the pie” as well.

There’s another important aspect of this domain – besides money and getting a new skill. You get to build trust around your personal brand. Doing it the right way will give you the online authority we all seek.

Without further ado, here’s what an affiliate marketer’s toolbox should contain. Use these tools to rack up more and more conversions and trust.

1. Icegram

Increase Your Subscribers List for Free

affiliate marketing tools

Icegram is a WordPress plugin designed specifically for marketers. It has more than one feature and it is free. When you’re a beginner in this domain, having to pay for affiliate marketing tools or services could prove to be tricky.

If you’ve read a few articles about this topic, you know that each traffic source is of high importance. The thing is that your newsletter list is probably the best one since email marketing is one of the most effective forms of content marketing.

Keep in mind the fact that the people who gave you their email address considered they can trust your content.

affiliate marketing tools

This is where Icegram comes into play. It enables you to increase your affiliate marketing newsletter subscribers. It gives you countless ways to get your audience’s attention. Here’s what cool features you get:

  • Advanced targeting rules
  • Multiple placements
  • Multiple design templates to choose from
  • CSS customization capabilities
  • Integration with almost any theme
Having a large number of subscribers is a must for affiliate marketing. Icegram offers you that. Click To Tweet

2. PageWiz

DIY High Converting Landing Pages

affiliate marketing tools

Having a great landing page for the products you’re recommending is a good way to get conversions. The problem is that they’re not easy to build. You need coding skills and resources.

However, PageWiz is a tool that lets you create your landing pages. You don’t need coding skills – just drag and drop skills.

Another great benefit is that they already have quite a few templates designed specifically for affiliates. Ain’t that great? Sure it is!

Your best choice is to get everything done and set up. When you’re finished with all the other details, go to PageWiz and build the landing page. You get a 30-days trial – time in which you should gather some money for a basic plan.

Yes, PageWiz isn’t free, but you have high chances of being able to self-sustain an account through affiliate marketing.

With PageWiz you don't need coding skills, just drag and drop skills. Click To Tweet

3. Piwik

Liberating Analytics And More

affiliate marketing tools

Piwik is a powerful, free, open-source platform for analytics. It does more than that. You can either host it on your server or use it as a cloud-hosted solution. Since its launch, it has been downloaded almost 3 million times. Another cool thing is that they have a mobile app as well.

Piwik is far more than your basic analytics platform. Its greatest perk is the ability to give you real-time data about your audience.

You may be wondering why should you use this tool. The reports it provides give you useful information that’ll help get a more precise overview of all your content and users.

Getting back to the affiliate part, Piwik is smart enough to offer you that extra oomph you’re craving. However, what matters the most to you are the conversions. Without them you have nothing and your work is in vain. But if your content and website do convert, you’ll quickly want to know more.

Especially since conversions follow the 80 – 20 principle. What this mean is 20 percent of your users account for 80 of your revenue – usually. Granted, authority and ranking are key factors in the equation. But that 20 percent of your traffic is what matters the most. These are the users that do what you want them to do.

You're blind without data. Use Piwik as your second pair of eyes. Click To Tweet

However, no matter how deep you go into Piwik’s features make sure you don’t get lost. It’s more complex than Google Analytics. Set up only the aspects that help you get more conversions and move on to generating content.

4. ContentLook

Website Analysis & Content Audit

free marketing tools

Being a player in the affiliate marketing niche means you’re competing with big brands over the attention of the same audience. Your advantage is that 84% of Millennials don’t trust traditional advertising.

As you can guess, the above statement means you’re one step ahead of your competition. All you need to do is stay on the righteous path and deliver consistent quality.

However, to deliver quality you need to understand what works and what doesn’t. The previous tool, Piwik, is giving you in-depth analytics. But Contentlook is a more user-friendly approach and it covers different aspects.

You know how important ranking is. You understand the possibility – and advantages – of one of your articles going viral. ContentLook is a tool that helps you achieve these aspects.

ContentLook helps you grow and constantly improve your work. Click To Tweet

What ContentLook does is giving you a clear overview of how your content is performing and how well it’s optimized. You’ll learn:

affiliate marketing tools

  • Social media networks performance. How many shares, likes, comments, and so on your content got on each network. This is great to learn where most of your audience spends its time.

affiliate marketing tools

  • Traffic analytics. It works differently than Google Analytics or Piwik. Contentlook outlines your overall traffic and per-post traffic. Use it together with the above point to understand what works and what doesn’t.

affiliate marketing tools

  • Content search engine optimization. Another great feature of Contentlook is that it tells you how likely are your posts to be found organically. The better optimized they are, the higher users will find them in search queries.

More than this, the Contentlook audit provides solutions to your problems. The team behind the tool doesn’t only tell you what’s wrong but also teach what you should do to fix it.

5. VWO

Easy-To-Use A/B Testing For Affiliate Marketing

affiliate marketing tools

Some sources go out on a limb and say that A/B testing can help you earn four times more. There is no specific statistic backing up that claim. However, a positive effect can be seen.

Why should affiliate marketers use A/B testing tools like VWO? Easy: To understand what their audience likes to see.

affiliate marketing

VWO is a tool that gives you real-time reports that outline what works and what doesn’t. Using this tool gets you:

  • Testing and experimentation capabilities
  • Visual editor for landing pages
  • Useful analytics
  • Heatmaps & clickmaps – to understand which zone of your website attract the most attention
  • Integration with most popular platforms
  • Custom targeting and personalization

VWO offers tons of useful features you could take advantage of. However, most affiliate marketers won’t find much need for some.

VWO offers friendly site-testing for non-technical users. Use it to your advantage. Click To Tweet

What VWO does for you is allow the testing of different headlines, buttons, and CTAs. You can change key aspects on your pages and test which of them performs better. When you got your answer, you can get back to work on writing content.

6. Table Maker

A  Plugin for Your Website

If you’re new to affiliate marketing, your start should be strongly related to learning from others. Scout other similar websites and try to find out what plugins do they use to score more conversions.

This table plugin is not a must and it’s hard to find one that works well and its developers are still around. But it can make a huge difference. Here’s a screenshot from Table Maker – such a plugin you can get for free from the WordPress Plugins directory:

table maker plugin affiliate marketing

Now that you understand the point of plugins as such, you probably already have ideas on how to use them.

Table Maker was last updated nine months ago and it seems there is no longer support available. However, it still does the job and it even features a responsive layout.

Creation of tables is simple and intuitive. To insert them into your post or page just follow the instructions – there’s a shortcode there. Easy-peasy!

It’s a great feature to have on your affiliate marketing website. You know that looks matter a lot. This means that the plugin might help you get some extra conversions.

Make it easy for your readers to compare features and advantages. Click To Tweet

7. Website Grader

How Powerful Is Your Website

affiliate marketing

Website Grader is a simple tool that analyzes your website and grades its performance. You get information about:

  • Performance
  • Mobile
  • SEO
  • Security

Each of those aspects gets a score and your website receives an overall rating based on the results of the audit. Sadly, you don’t get many details about what you should do.

Clicking on the offer at the bottom of the page will actually take you to HubSpot. The tool in nice and feature-rich and useful for affiliate marketers as well.

It’s an all-in-one marketing software platform. It helps you optimize your website in terms of SEO. This will lead to more prospects finding your content and more of them turning into buyers.

You get a 30 days trial that will bring in more traffic, leads and customers.  You should definitely try it out and see if the results do improve. Try to find out if it helps you reach your goals easier or not.

There is always room for improvement but you need to know where you stand. Click To Tweet

8. Squirrly

SEO by Squirrly – Your New Best Friend

creating powerful content

Some of the affiliate marketing tools presented so far you’ll be using only from time to time. That’s how they were built and designed. Use them, get your info, proceed to other tasks – like writing.

However, SEO by Squirrly will soon become your best friend. On the outside, you’d be tempted to think it’s just another SEO plugin for WordPress. But you’d be wrong. Very wrong.

It’s only a few years old and it already surpassed the 100,000 users milestone. Its great features and utility have been praised and recommended by thought leaders like Neil Patel, co-founder of KissMetrics.

You’ll get multiple benefits for using this tool on a daily basis.

No, let’s rephrase that.

affiliate marketing seo

You’ll get multiple benefits for using the 108 features of SEO by Squirrly. Here are some of the most important and powerful ones:

  • Live Assistant – works hand in hand with you as you write your affiliate articles to ensure maximum optimization.
  • Keyword research – quickly provides you details about the keyword you plan on using. You get information about recent discussions, exact search, competition, and trends.
  • Further research and inspiration – it helps you find quality images you can use in your posts, what people talk about that topic on Twitter, how Wikipedia describes the topic and other blog posts related to your topic.
  • Weekly audit – each week you get a report detailing your post performance, what can be improved and how you should do that.
  • Rich snippets – in the settings section you can set up rich snippets information so that Google displays more about your website in search results.
  • Performance analytics – SEO by Squirrly gives you ranking and social analytics for each post optimized. You can set this only for your country if you wish or just keep the default Google.com.

There are tons of other features you need to try. You’ll get access to the PRO version for 14 days, but the free plan is perfect if you post 5 times per month.

Go and check out SEO by Squirrly.

SEO by Squirrly works hand in hand with you to deliver maximum optimization. Click To Tweet

9. AnswerThePublic

What Does Your Audience Search for When Referring to Your Topic?

If you’re having a hard time coming up with the perfect headlines that answer your audience’s problems, this is the tool for you.

AnswerThePublic is a 100% free tool that gives you great insights into your audience’s mind. It’s extremely simple to use and fast.

affiliate marketing

All you have to do is select your country – if it’s among the supported ones – and enter your topic. Wait a few seconds and boom!

You get detailed results regarding the phrases people use to learn more about the topic on Google and Bing. In the affiliate marketing niche, this is valuable information.

Test AnswerThePublic and let us know in the comments section below how you feel about it.

AnswerThePublic helps you get a look inside your audience's mind. Click To Tweet

10. GIMP

Your Powerful Photo Editor

affiliate marketing

You’ve heard about GIMP for sure. It packs almost enough power as Photoshop, minus the price. It’s an open source 100% free software you can use to edit images.

More interesting is the fact that it’s doing a great job. It delivers exactly what it promises. You simply download it and use it.

There are many customization options and 3rd party plugins you can use to further enhance your productivity. The best way to use GIMP is for custom blog images and social media promotion.

It's FREE, it's powerful, it's fast. Use GIMP for quality visual elements. Click To Tweet

Final Words on Affiliate Marketing Tools

The tools presented above are surely not the only ones you can use to up your game in affiliate marketing. However, they are efficient and get the job done.

Additionally, you may not need them all as long as you know how to tend to your needs regarding writing, research, and optimization. But if you’re a beginner do give them a try. It will help you understand better the whole concept.

For and foremost, don’t forget who your audience is. Getting too much wrapped around tools might defocus you. You’re writing and working hard for people, not search engines or statistics.

Your turn: What other affiliate marketing tools do you find useful? Do you have any tips for beginners that you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments section below so we can learn from each other.

5 Marketing Tools That Will Make Your Website an SEO Paradise

5 Marketing Tools That Will Make Your Website an SEO Paradise

5 Marketing Tools That Will Make Your Website an SEO ParadiseAny discussion about marketing tools should start with three questions.

Do you know how many websites are there? The truth is, it’s pretty hard to tell the exact number because of the constant fluctuation, but there are more than one billion.

Do you know how many websites Google shows on the first page for any search? 9 or 10.

How can your site beat the other one billion websites to the first page?

Simple – with excellent SEO.

The problem is that getting the hang of how a search engine works is not precisely a cakewalk. There are a lot of variables and factors. Understanding all of them takes a lot of time, time that you don’t have. Luckily, there are better options now: you can use specialized marketing tools that can help in the process.

A big mistake many companies make when it comes to SEO is forgetting about the human element.

Search engines want to show people the most relevant results for their queries. That means search engines want you to create good content for the people, not for the bots.

Your primary SEO focus should be on creating quality content.

For this article, we’ve selected 5 tools that can help you achieve SEO Nirvana.

1. SEMrush – One of the Mightiest Marketing Tools

marketing tools

Before you start optimizing your website, you have to choose what to optimize it for. That means a lot of research on keywords and domains.

The goal is to find the most common search queries your target audience makes and learn who your competitors are, and what their strategy is. Once you know the lay of the land, it will be easier for you to start gaining organic traffic.

The problem is that understanding traffic isn’t as easy as it may seem at first. You’ve got to factor in ads, pay-per-click, social media shares and loads of other things.

marketing tools

And you’ll need powerful marketing tools to measure all that. Well, that’s something SEMrush can help you with. They create reports with all the little details you didn’t even know you needed.

Let’s go over these details:

  • Organic reach – Before you do anything, you need to identify some good keywords. If you sell furniture, some relevant keywords could be “custom cupboards” or “folding chairs.” If you operate in New York, add that into the mix as well. New Yorkers who are looking for furniture items are more likely to search for “folding chairs new york” than for “furniture”.
  • Analytics – insights into the advertising strategies of your competitors.
  • Domain comparison – the Domain vs. Domain feature gathers ‘competitive intelligence’ data regarding up to five competing domains performance. You’ll see what keywords fare the best or worst. Then you can select low-competition keywords that you can use.

2. SEO PowerSuite

marketing tools

When optimizing a website, you don’t get to take shortcuts. It takes time and patience to achieve desired results.

By knowing that, you could be quite reluctant when a marketing tool promises to get “all the job done.”

Well, SEO PowerSuite integrates 4 SEO tools as an across-the-board mega pack that gets all the SEO job done.

So what are these four features for SEO excellence?

  • Rank Tracker – as the name says, you get rank tracking for your site, as well as for your competitors’. Plus keyword research with 17 tools.

marketing tools

  • Seo SpyGlass – enables you to check your backlink profile, keep up with Google’s algorithm changes and discover the most effective link building patterns.

6

  • WebSite Auditor – broken links reports, on-site optimization and crawl statistics for better site indexing.

7

  • Link Assistant – manages all backlink data and digs for relevant link opportunities.

marketing tools

Sounds too good to be true?

SEO PowerSuite is indeed a complete solution for a swift SEO performance.

What makes it so appealing to users is its easy-to-use and straightforward interface.

3. Screaming Frog

If you heard about Search Engine Optimization, you’ve sure bumped into terms like ‘bots’ and ‘crawlers.’ These are the small scanners that crawl your website and deliver data reports to a search engine. This is how Google indexes websites and decides how high a page will be ranked.

marketing tools

That being said, it would be great if you owned a tool that made things easier, right? This is where Screaming Frog’s free SEO Spider Tool comes in. It helps to fetch the following:

  • Server/link errors
  • Status of internal and external links
  • Link security status
  • Redirects
  • Blocked URLs
  • Page title issues
  • Meta-data
  • Page response time

And these are just a few. The spider harvests all information necessary to create an XML Sitemap. This is a file that hierarchically outlines all links on your website so as to help bots crawl it more efficiently. That will reflect on your SEO metrics as well.

Once your page is made more accessible to crawlers, they will prioritize it and thus place it higher on the rankings.

4. Open Site Explorer

Open Site Explorer is the tool you need if you want to find out everything about links on your website or link building opportunities, both of which are important for SEO.

marketing tools

Just type in the URL of your website (or any other website for that matter), click on the “search” button, and, in a matter of seconds, you’ll discover plenty of insights about the website.

Here are the tool’s main sections:

  • Inbound links
  • Just-Discovered
  • Top Pages
  • Linking Domains
  • Anchor Text
  • Compare Link Metrics
  • Link Opportunities
  • Advanced Reports

5. MozBar

Kristina Kledzik, the SEO Manager at Rover.com, says that MozBar has been a critical part of her link building strategies and competition analysis for the last 5 years.

marketing tools

You know that you can’t have SEO without link building.

This nifty extension (as they call it) for Chrome and Firefox will show you the page authority and domain authority of every page you’re on. With the PRO version, you’re able to see the DA and PA for every website in Google search results.

Here’s the full list of features:

  • Custom Searches
  • Metrics That Matter
  • Social Metrics
  • Data Export
  • Page Overlay
  • On-Page Highlighter

Do You Fancy a Scenario Where SEO Is Done Seamlessly?

We’re sure you do. But for that to happen, you need to find the right tools. The five we outlined in this article are all free to try, until you figure out which ones are the most rank-boosting for your platform.

And remember! It takes a whole lot of patience to find the winning formula for SEO greatness.

Actually, you can start by trying out our own Squirrly SEO Plugin.

Feel free to leave us your questions in the comment section or share this article if you found it to be useful.

11 Actionable Steps That Will Help You Run A Daring Social Media Giveaway

11 Actionable Steps That Will Help You Run A Daring Social Media Giveaway

Today, it’s a silly thing not to have at least one social media account for your brand. Billions of users use social media every single day.

If you clicked on this article, then I’m going to assume that your business is on social media. Since I’m also a mind-reader, I know that you’re here because you want to find out more about social media giveaways.

Did you know that the top reason why people choose to follow brands on social media is for promotions and discounts?

Fo+Free+Gif

Yes, I know, such a shocker! But don’t get this all wrong. People still want to find out the latest information about your product and services or contact you for customer service on social media.

Bearing that in mind, I want to go back in time a little bit.

I created my Facebook account in 2010. Back then, only a handful of big brands were on Facebook (I’m only talking about their presence on the Romanian market, not worldwide). What they did to acquire thousands of likes is they organized different contests and giveaways.

I participated in a couple of contests and even won some stuff (go me!). I almost never participate in social media contests, because they’re usually the ones where you have to like/share/comment. I’m not a fan of those. Those contests, however, were kind of interesting and creative. Even though they didn’t rely on the like and share method, they were still quite successful.

Now back to our days. 

Social media giveaways are used quite often as a strategy. Almost every big, medium and small company out there has organized one until one.

Let’s take a quick look to see why companies host giveaways on their social media profiles and what are their benefits.

Why Companies Organize Social Media Giveaways

social media giveaway

  • Exposure. Businesses that are just starting out or those that want to increase their following will do a giveaway so that more people will find out about them. It’s really easy to increase your exposure this way because people love free stuff, especially if it’s your products or services. They will act as a very attractive incentive in exchange for them following you on social media.
  • Engagement. One problem with social media today is that people follow so many brands today that it’s hard to keep up with them and react to what they post. I actually find myself guilty of this. I scroll on my Facebook feed; I read certain posts, but then, even if I liked a post or thought it was funny, I only react in my mind. Sounds weird, but many of you are probably doing the same thing. A giveaway can entice people to engage again with a certain brand. After all, the point of being on social media is opening a dialogue and not a monolog.
  • Understanding the audience. By asking a simple question for the giveaway, you can find out so many things about the people that follow your company on social media. It can be anything from their habits when it comes to your products, or what type of services they use most often from the ones you provide. The possibilities are endless here. It’s just a matter of figuring out what kind of information would be useful to you.
  • Free content. I’ve seen many creative giveaways out there, many of which were harnessing the power of user-generated content. Here’s how this works. If you sell cereal, you can ask your followers to submit a picture with their breakfast for a chance to win a yearly supply of your products. The guideline or the theme for the pictures can be to contain cereal. Just like that, you’ll have plenty of images for your upcoming posts that you can use (with the users’ approval, of course).
  • Grow your email list. Your weekly or monthly newsletter may be fascinating, but it doesn’t matter if no one is reading it. Email marketing is still, until this day, the most successful communication channel. To get the most out of it, you need a big email list. By running a giveaway and asking the participants to enter by simply entering their name and email address, you got this problem solved. However, don’t use this opportunity to spam them.
  • Promote a new product/service. This is one of the best ways to promote a new product or service. It is, of course, if it’s also the prize for the giveaway. Considering it is, people will be excited to be the first to try out your new stuff, and it will also create a lot of buzz.

These are the main reasons why companies do social media giveaways and also why you should too.

Next, we’ll discuss every step you need to consider when organizing a giveaway on social media.

Implementing a social media giveaway 101

1588669

1. Why are you doing it? 

Do you want to gain more followers, do you want more engagement, or to obtain email addresses? Whatever the case may be, you need to address this question before you start planning anything.

Why? Because the answer to this question will determine the way, you create the strategy behind the giveaway.

2. Determine the type of giveaway

There are two types you can do:

  • A contest. The winner will be chosen based on criteria that were established beforehand. If you want to organize a contest, then you’ll have to figure out if you want to have a jury or if it’s going to be you the one to select the winner. Either way, the person or the group of individuals that get to make this call have to be experts in the particular industry.
  • A sweepstake. This is where the winners will be randomly selected with a tool like random.org. No one can interfere with the results. It’s just pure luck.

3. Where you’ll run it? 

1810312

Even though you’ll promote the giveaway basically on all your channels, you still have to decide what is the main channel for running it. It can be Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. These are the most popular social media channels for giveaways.

The choice for the platform will be connected to the objectives you set in the first place. For example, if your goal is to increase your Instagram followers, then that is where you will run the giveaway.

4. What’s the prize?

Whatever you do, please don’t give away an iPad or an iPhone, unless you’re Apple. Assuming the social media team from Apple is not reading this post, I will give you some tips when it comes to choosing the prize(s) for the giveaway.

First of all, the prize has to be relatable to the profile of your company and your audience. Let’s say that you’re a skincare company. Depending on what is your objective, you can give away:

  • The new products you’re launching
  • A goodie bag that contains products worth $1,000
  • A facial treatment at a luxury SPA
  • Product supplies for an entire year

And the list can go on and on. If you have a bigger budget, you can, of course, have a more impressive prize, such as a trip to a dreamy destination.

5. Make it simple to enter

That being said, make sure that you explain very clearly for everyone how they can enter and what they need to do. For example, if they have to submit a photo, list every step they need to complete.

If it’s the case, create an entry form that will require for the participants to enter as little information as possible. Don’t ask for unnecessary information, like address or occupation, unless you need it for the giveaway.

Remember: even if the prize is extremely attractive, people may not be as eager to enter if the entering process looks like too much trouble.

6. Decide how long it will last

When you’re going to announce your giveaway, specify very clearly how long it will last.

If it’s a big giveaway, it’s usually recommended to run it for approximately four weeks. If it’s longer than that, then people will forget about it. You can make it shorter as well. However, try to run it for at least two weeks.

7. The concept

1272642

For the giveaway to make sense to your audience and other people as well, it’s critical to link it to a future event. For example, it can be a back to school themed one, a giveaway for Thanksgiving, Halloween, or Christmas.

The idea has to be very clear and concise, and the content you’ll create around it have to make the connection to the event you’ll link it to.

8. Rules

No one likes rules, but we have to respect them.

Every social media platform has its set of rules, so after you’ve decided where to run the giveaway, make sure to read and apply them.

Also, when you announce it, you’ll have to display the rules on social media. Even though not many people will read them, it’s necessary for legal purposes. If you have the possibility, I would recommend asking an attorney to help you with this.

If you want to find out more about this topic, here’s an excellent article that was written by Sara Hawkins from SocialMedia Examiner.

9. Promotion

1582884

This is the most important step for your giveaway. You now what they say: if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it actually make a sound?

That’s how it is with social media giveaways. Don’t keep it a secret. After all, you want as many people as possible to participate in it, right?

The first step is to use all of your communication channels to get the word out. This means email lists, all of your social media channels, website (pop-ups, blog), plus others that would greatly depend on the type of business you’re running.

It can be anything from in-app notifications to messages on mobile phones. Make a list with every channel you use, so that you don’t forget anything. Then, the next step is to create content for all of them. Articles, posts, videos, infographics, images – the wider the variety, the better.

It’s not enough to post the message announcing the giveaway only once. Remind people about it every single day, but don’t be spammy about it. Only one message per day will do the trick and even once every couple of days.

Promoting the giveaway on your communication channels is not enough, however.

You need to use influencers, partners, and sponsors for this. The chances are that if people see your giveaway being shared by someone else, they will be more likely to enter. Brand advocates are also a great fit for your promotion activities.

The last idea for promoting your giveaway is to submit it to giveaway sites. Here are the best ones:

These websites have hundreds of thousands of visitors every single day, so the visibility for your giveaway will be maximum.

10. Track and analyze

1588954

Don’t wait until the giveaway is over to track and analyze what has happened during that period.

Make a habit of tracking the results every five days or so. That way, if you don’t have that many entries or if people don’t seem that interested in your giveaway, you will be able to analyze what’s wrong and adjust it.

At the end of the giveaway, you’ll also need to assess the results to see whether organizing it was worth it or not.

11. Don’t forget about the participants that didn’t win 

If you want to make your giveaway extra special, you can surprise all of your participants with something they wouldn’t expect. After the contest is over and the winner has been announced, you can contact the other participants, thank them for entering and offering them a discount for your products/services.

If you don’t want this to be a surprise, you can announce it for the giveaway. That way, every participant will now that even if they don’t win the big prize, they still get something.

Give It Away, Give It Away, Give It Away Now

(For some reason, Red Hot Chilli Peppers’s song Give It Away has popped into my mind.)

I’m pretty sure that if I scroll for a few minutes on my Facebook feed, I will find at least one post about a giveaway that’s happening right now.

Now multiply this by the number of social media channels that exist nowadays. You’ll see that social media giveaways have become hugely popular because they actually bring results.

You can see results as well if you decide to implement a giveaway. I do hope that the steps I presented above will help you get most of it.

If you have further questions on this topic, feel free to post them in the comment section below. And if you decide indeed to run a giveaway on social media, I look forward to hearing from you about the results you’ve got.