With the proliferation of cloud-based apps and software, small businesses can be more savvy in their digital marketing strategy. The latest digital marketing offerings now allow small businesses to save time, cut costs and really boost their marketing mix to become more competitive, creative and enhance the customer experience.
We take a look some cost-effective tools that businesses can leverage to boost customer engagement and marketing efficiency.
Effective Email Marketing
Most marketers know email is still one of the most effective ways to engage customers, share product information, leverage content marketing and share offers and deals.
Tools like MailChimp offer easy-to-use, integrated newsletter templates that can be fully customisable for your business needs. The platform also allows scheduling, analytics and enables you to create multiple mailing lists, so you can manage the way you engage with not only customers, but also PR clients, bloggers and suppliers.
The platform has both free and premium plans depending on your budget and plans to scale in the future.
Cost-savvy Image Content Marketing
Collating great images for content marketing no longer needs to be time-consuming or expensive. Sites like Pixabay and picjumbo offer a plethora of great free stock images that you can use without running the risk of infringing copyright.
This means you can simply download images that complement your marketing campaigns and enjoy sharing them across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, your website or to add flavour to a blog post.
Managing Your Social Media
For most small businesses, scheduling and managing social media marketing can be labour-intensive and time-consuming. Cloud-based platforms like Hootsuite allow you to schedule, monitor and manage your social media marketing all in one place.
The platform offers limited functionality for free and paid plans start from around $10.99 a month.
Attractive Web Design
With both old and new web design players on the market, businesses are spoilt for choice when it comes to customising and promoting their business on their website. More established players like WordPress offer free and paid templates that can be integrated with Yoast search engine optimisation and WooCommerce, and can be fully customisable for your business needs.
While WordPress is more tech-heavy from the CMS side, less tech-savvy e-commerce businesses can benefit from the more simple layouts and setup options of the likes of Shopify, Wix and Squaresapce.
Great Graphic Content
The latest online graphic design platforms offer small businesses incredible creative scope in building great, engaging promotional content.
Sites like Canva offer the ability for businesses to design an incredible array of material including brochures, cards, flyers, postcards, presentations, posters and social media graphics. It also offers photo-editing tools and design grids to make image management faster and easier.
Canva offers a lot of functionality for free or at a very low cost of a few dollars and up, which is perfect for the more budget-conscious business.
Get a 360-degree View of Your Customer
For businesses that want to take their inbound marketing strategy to the next level and discover deeper insights about their customers, platforms like HubSpot can effectively bring together the entire marketing funnel.
The platform integrates marketing automation tools, SEO tools, marketing performance tools as well as blog and social media management to help businesses manage their entire digital marketing arsenal.
While the platform does offer a free trial, signing up can set you back around $270 a month for an entry-level plan.
See which apps integrate with QuickBooks Online.