Marketing lives online. We’re long past the days when print reigned supreme (though it’s far from dead). Now, marketing firms are doing their best to make waves through social media, YouTube, blogs, and online publications. Here are the essential online tools we use that help us get the job done.

1. Google Drive

There are a lot of collaborative tools out there, but few can match the convenience and usability of Google Drive. The ability to share files, chat in real time, and make comments/edits is invaluable to a marketing team who needs to get quality content out fast.

Additionally, Drive lets you store up to 15GB of any file type, allowing you to bypass the annoying size limits that email attachments have. Organize your folders with best practices in mind (there’s always room for personal improv) to capitalize on Google Drive’s full potential.

2. Hubspot

“Your success with inbound marketing and sales is much more dependent on the width of your brain than the width of your wallet.” – Brian Halligan, Hubspot CEO and Co-founder

Hubspot is the one-stop-shop for all things digital marketing. It’s actually easier to ask what Hubspot can’t do, since there’s just so much incorporated into its design. Many businesses have to navigate through a patchwork of online platforms to fully enact their strategy, like:

  • WordPress– for domain hosting, blogging, and landing pages
  • MailChimp– for creating and organizing email marketing campaigns
  • Google Analytics– for examining their traffic and marketing performance

Hubspot centralizes all these functions into a single platform. Allowing marketers to:

  • Access & analyze data/metrics
  • Create search engine optimized content
  • Construct targeted email campaigns
  • Write website landing pages
  • Schedule out posts, emails, and messages
  • Spread/share content on social media

And this is a condensed list. It’s true that Hubspot can be a bit pricy, especially if you’re looking to maintain a large list of contacts. But if it’s within your budget, Hubspot can save you time, money, and the headache of remembering fifty different randomized passwords.

3. Buzzsumo

Buzzsumo lets you search keywords and phrases to see what kinds of content readers are looking for, and who’s supplying it. Before you commit to a content calendar, you can do a quick check on Buzzsumo to see if there’s a demand for the kind of material you’re creating.

Unfortunately, Buzzsumo only allows five free searches a day, each of which is limited to the first page of results (hey, can’t really fault them right? We’ve all got to make a living). Do a couple fast searches on Buzzsumo to see if the pro plan is right for your business.

4. Canva

Infographics and other images help reduce dense information (like marketing stats) into digestible pictures for your audience. Canva lets marketers who are primarily focused on writing to easily create graphics like:

  • E-book covers
  • Proposals
  • Logos
  • Brochures
  • Newsletters
  • Reports

If design isn’t your forte, we highly recommend getting a Canva account. Signing up is free, and there are tons of graphics, icons, and templates at your fingertips. However, stock photos and some other features cost a dollar to unlock, so keep that in mind.

5. Hemingway App

Content marketers come from a variety of backgrounds, ranging from business schools to poetry workshops. Content writing gives them a chance to flex their creative muscle and hone their natural talents while working for other businesses.

However, we creative types have a tendency to get a bit flowery with our language. When professionals and customers are scanning blogs, they don’t want to read purple prose. They need concise, informative, and valuable content that they can quickly process.

Here’s where the Hemingway App comes in. Named for the famous author renowned for terseness and concision, this free app will highlight errors such as:

  • Too long/complex sentences
  • Grammar/usage errors
  • Passive voice
  • Overuse of adverbs

This way if you write: “suddenly the versatile content specialist quickly tip-tapped his fast fingers across the keyboard,” the app will give you a nice slap on the wrist with a poor readability score. Then you can go back and “write the best story you can, as straight as you can.”

This list, while it features some of our personal favorites, barely scratches the surface of content marketing tools at your disposal — and we didn’t include about 100 other tools we use for out clients.

If you want to learn about other content tools, get in touch. We’d love to have a conversation about how you want to tell your story online.