Want to know the secret to content marketing success? Besides having a documented strategy, successful marketers swear by using a favorite group of content marketing tools.
There are hundreds of tools to help organize, promote and analyze content. In this post, we’re sharing 18 tried and true content marketing tools – some we use at Rep Cap and others recommended by fellow content marketers. A single post can’t include every possible tool available, but this is a great list to help you get started building your content marketing engine.
Taking time to define your strategy and identify the tools you’ll use gives you more time to spend creating content—and maybe even free you up to catch the latest episode of “Tiny House Hunters” (No? Just me?).
Creating – and sticking to – an editorial calendar is critical for a successful content marketing strategy.
- Google Docs – A free Web-based application for creating and editing private and public documents. Easy sharing and collaboration keep everyone up to date on your latest editorial calendar. At Rep Cap, we LOVE Google Docs. Real-time editing among teams who work asynchronously keeps our content moving forward — and keeps Microsoft Word attachments out of our inboxes.
- WordPress Editorial Calendar – This plugin for the WordPress platform gives an overview of your blog and when each post will be published. You can also drag and drop to move posts, and edit posts right in the calendar to seamlessly manage your blog.
Content Management System (CMS) and Blogging
CMSs are easier than ever to use, allowing just about anyone (including those with no programming skills) to author, publish and manage web sites or blogs.
- WordPress – With hundreds of free, customizable, mobile-ready designs and themes, WordPress is the most popular content management system powering nearly a quarter of the Internet. It’s our CMS of choice. (My two cents: You should use it to build your whole website, not set up a separate blog.)
Content Marketing Platform
Fully integrated solutions to manage the full content lifecycle, content marketing platforms include content analytics, editorial planning, automated workflows, content optimization and social distribution.
- ClearVoice – Adam Toren, co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com, likes ClearVoice as a complete content marketing platform. “Flexible and efficient workflow software is paired with a marketplace that brings together branding, content creation and publisher communities for creative collaboration,” Toren says.
- Curata – After recently introducing a content marketing system, combined with their curation software, Curata provides a total platform to analyze impact, streamline processes and build a consistent content supply.
- Kapost – A comprehensive platform helps marketers manage every step of the content
marketing lifecycle, from planning and creation to distribution and optimization.
Organization and Project Management
Great for keeping teams on task, project management tools make organizing tasks and deadlines easy.
- Asana – Keep conversations and tasks together so you can see project progress at-a-glance, turn conversations into actionable tasks and more. We use Asana with some of our clients, and we like the ability to create subtasks on larger projects.
- Basecamp – The leading web-based project management and collaboration tool. We use it here at Rep Cap to keep us organized and sane!
- Trello – A visual based management system to see everything about your projects in snapshot form.
Content Promotion and Amplification
Use tools like these to share and promote your content.
- CoSchedule – A one-stop shop for marketers to plan and schedule all of their social media
promotion. We love the WordPress tie-in that lets you schedule social promotion before a post even goes live.
- Hootsuite – With over 10 million users, Hootsuite is the most widely used platform for managing social media. Susan Perry, director of product marketing, explains: “There are
many situations where scheduling social posts in advance comes in handy. You may have a bulk number of posts for multiple accounts and networks at one time, you may be out of office at an event or on vacation, or you may want your posts to coincide with a launch or company announcement.”
- Outbrain – A powerful tool for getting your articles, videos, slideshows, infographics and other content to appear as recommendations on other web sites.
Email marketing is a powerful way to share your latest content with mailing list subscribers.
- Campaign Monitor – Rep Cap’s platform of choice for sharing helpful content with our fans by email. As Kim Stiglitz, director of demand generation at Campaign Monitor, puts it: “Email marketing is crucial for getting our content to our target audience.”
- MailChimp – A top email marketing tool for businesses to create and send marketing emails, automated messages and targeted campaigns. Easy to use, and the analytics features keep getting stronger.
- Vertical Response – Another popular choice for creating and distributing customized emails.
Measurement and Analytics
Regularly track and measure the performance of your content marketing. Use the data to also make improvements or refinements to future content marketing campaigns.
- BuzzSumo – An overwhelming favorite by many marketers, BuzzSumo provides insight into what content is working, and the influencers who are amplifying it –so you can understand industry trends and identify what’s resonating with your audience.
- Google Analytics – As Andy Crestodina at Orbit Media Studios says: “I can’t imagine how to do marketing without Google Analytics. It would be like driving without a dashboard. Without Google Analytics, how would I know what’s working? What’s not working? It’s what allows me to iterate and improve.”
- Raven – Easily create marketing reports with the information you want to analyze, like web traffic, most popular blog posts, traffic sources, email campaigns and social media stats. “One of the best ways to save time is to use an automated reporting tool and have reports automatically sent daily, weekly or monthly,” says Jon Henshaw, co-founder and president of Raven Internet Marketing Tools. We love Raven at Rep Cap, and their updated web-based reports are easy to update and share.
For more content marketing success tips, download Rep Cap’s white paper, How to Create a Content Marketing Engine.