Over the years I’ve made sure to be on top of the best budget marketing tools available. In fact, before spending money on any of them, I make sure to use as much free functionality as possible in order to keep running costs down.
That said, there are some times when it is well worth it to spend a little extra on a tool that helps you make money. But, if you are still small and need some help, these companies have got your back with an awesome free tool.
There is no order to this list, but I can assure you that I have used all of these and they are 100% free for the basic functions.
In order to advertise, you need to be able to create slick media. This is not just for print ads, but social media as well as email or Whatsapp campaigns.
Canva is free and has loads of free templates for all social channels, print designs, and even animated posts. It is easy to use and can make your content look like it has a professional touch. https://www.canva.com/
Pixabay and Pexels are my go-to for free images. Pexels also has some stock videos for you to use. I currently pay a subscription for Adobe stock. After a while, you start to see other advertisers use the same free stock images and I prefer my content to be different. These 2 are great for free images and videos.
While on the topic, I use iMovie on the iPhone to edit and create video content. There is a debate still going between Android and iOS, but for a content creator, iPhone has amazing tools on board that allow you to create 4K video with no subscriptions and no watermarks. Even a slideshow video with music will take seconds and look amazing. Here is a sample from a few photos and videos on my phone. (If you’re on a budget, get an older iPhone with larger storage capacity)
Soapbox is a Chrome add-on that allows you to record yourself and your screen simultaneously to send a personalised video presentation. I use it all the time and it is amazing.
Social Media tools
There are a few scheduling and posting tools available. Facebook’s Creator Studio is an excellent tool to manage Facebook and Instagram pages. You can find it on the Facebook page menu.
For other social channels, I use Buffer. It can post to multiple channels and you can schedule pretty far in advance. For LinkedIn content, it doesn’t keep the same aspect ratio for your images so you need to plan your media carefully. It will also shorten links automatically for you.
The best website tool I suggest for any business is Google Analytics. If you don’t have any tracking installed you are missing out on a wealth of information to improve your business.
If you have analytics you can use UTM codes in your links to track the campaigns. Google has a good one here.
A website chat is an amazing way to encourage people to contact you while on the site. Often people get lost (or lazy) and don’t want to look through the site for what they want. Using a chat function means they can ask the question with ease.
Tawk is a live chat that you can respond by using an app on your phone or with your browser.
Facebook has a chat function that links to Facebook Messenger. I have used Google’s Dialogflow to build an automated chatbot within Facebook Messenger. This is definitely for the advanced user.
Without a doubt, Hubspot is my go-to for CRM. The free functions are so useful with add-ons for Gmail, Outlook and Google Chrome. They also can extract lead data from Facebook and LinkedIn lead ads and add them directly to your CRM.
I use Mailchimp for my bulk emails. Under the free package, you get enough functionality to maintain a good list for emails. I pay a small fee per month for the basic package and have automation campaigns, and a free website and domain. The website function is quite limited though. I stick to WordPress for my customers.
Zapier helps me move my contacts instantly from Hubspot to Mailchimp. This means I can automate campaigns from Facebook to Hubspot, to Mailchimp and initiate a series of emails without touching a thing. (I love technology)
I’ve also recently started using Calendly to schedule meetings. I’m new to this one so if there is a better tool on the market let me know.
Whatsapp Business is almost exactly like private Whatsapp but you can have an automated response and template responses for frequently asked questions. You can also get a link for people to message you instantly. Click here to send me a Whatsapp and try for yourself.
You might not always have time to manage these marketing efforts and that’s where I come in. You can visit my website here, to see the services that can help grow your business.
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