Here, Inna Kraner of The Expert Institute in NYC shares her team's experience of finding online solutions to help build their company.
When we first launched our company, we were tracking everything in Excel. We made hundreds of calls every day, sent emails by the thousands, and marked notes on every interaction in painful detail. In short, we wasted too much time trying to keep our data organized.
Below is our list of nine amazing inbound marketing tools that saved us from deathly monotonous tasks and helped our marketing team elevate our company from just another wannabe start-up to a lean, mean, profit-earning machine.
Why you should use it: Moz is the leading industry darling for SEO (search engine optimization). It provides tools and applications that analyze the quality and authority of websites and keyword rankings. It also offers free resources extremely helpful for those learning about SEO (plus a fantastic blog!).
Why we love it: This SEO tool is extremely influential in understanding the intricacies of organic traffic, keyword rankings, domain authority, link profiles and competitor SEO tactics. This foundational understanding enabled us to increase our rankings on the major search engines and ultimately grow the organic traffic to our site.
Why you should use it: Google’s cloud-based file storage and synchronization service simplifies the process of creating, saving, editing, sharing and collaborating on projects. Thanks to Google, all of your shared documents are always accessible!
Why we love it: Google Drive is incredibly versatile. It has simplified our day-to-day efforts. We use it to create documents and spreadsheets, edit blog articles and case studies, and store photos and images. We love the ability to access all of our internal documents and data from just our Google account.
Why you should use it: SEM Rush offers amazing specialized tools for SEM (search engine marketing). It provides fantastic data on keyword research and competitor analysis in the PPC (pay-per-click) marketplace.
Why we love it: SEM Rush is constantly adapting to changing algorithms and SEO trends—its processes are always up-to-date. We rely on its metrics to better understand keyword search volume, competitiveness, search trends and market prices.
Why you should use it: Hootsuite is a social media management tool that links all of your social media accounts and allows for easy account management. The tools and customizable reports also provide valuable data to understanding the effectiveness of social media strategies.
Why we love it: Hootsuite has streamlined our social media campaigns. We schedule our blog articles to be automatically posted to our social media accounts and schedule messages and tweets when we’re out of the office.
Why you should use it: This free service powered by Google provides critical information about web traffic and visitor behavior, including where your traffic is coming from (thanks, Dad!), the content being viewed and how visitors engage on your site.
Why we love it: Google Analytics greatly impacts the direction of our digital marketing strategy. We analyze the effectiveness of our marketing campaigns and make statistically confident decisions by setting goals, tracking conversion funnels and gathering demographic information.
Why you should use it: Webflow offers an easy-to-use platform for web design. It is a useful tool for quickly and easily publishing webpages that are automatically optimized to respond gracefully to different screen sizes.
Why we love it: Webflow makes all of our website design dreams come true. We love the WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) graphical interface in place of code and the fact that the layout is similar to that of Adobe Photoshop. Our marketing team is now completely self-sufficient, creating landing pages without consulting our design and development teams.
Why you should use it: Salesforce is the ultimate service for cloud-based CRM (customer relationship management). It essentially streamlines every aspect of the sales funnel, from tracking customer interactions and sales opportunities to simplifying internal communications. Your sales team will stun you with efficiency.
Why we love it: Salesforce keeps our company organized and up-to-date. It assists our sales team in cataloging every customer acquisition and enables our marketing team to analyze which marketing channels are proving to be most effective at producing sales opportunities.
Why you should use it: MailChimp is a cloud-based third-party email service provider. If you do not have a more robust solution, such as HubSpot, this is a must-have for building and managing your email list and avoiding the dreaded Spam filter.
Why we love it: Mailchimp gives us the ability to create beautiful email templates, segment our lists for better targeting and easily track the engagement of our email subscribers.
Why you should use it: Optimizely provides website optimization software that enables you to easily run A/B testing to measure and track how visitors engage with your site.
Why we love it: Optimizely is incredibly easy to use and doesn’t require any knowledge of HTML. Users can easily drag and drop elements directly on their screen—no coding required! We use Optimizely to constantly run tests on our landing pages and conversion funnels to ensure an enjoyable user experience.
What inbound marketing tools have made a difference for your company? Let us know in the comment section below.
Photo Credit: caseytygrett
The Expert Institute is a New York-based company that connects organizations to subject matter experts. The Expert Institute is a young, innovative company focused on utilizing the latest technologies to streamline operations and enhance the customer experience. If you would like to connect with The Expert Institute, please follow us on Facebook and Twitter.