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Now that you’ve decided to establish a startup business, you created a website, it is time to think about which type of marketing tools should you invest on. You need several marketing tools to help your startup gain leverage within your market and among your competitors in general.
As a startup entrepreneur, you might be thinking how expensive costs could get for creating an online presence, marketing and promotional. That may be true, but with more digital choice nowadays (including website builder tools, apps and Social Media), there are ways to cut down rising costs in this aspect. When it comes to marketing, what you really need to invest more on is actual creativity – but that should also be paired with affordable (and free) tools too, such as:
Email Marketing remains one of the best ways to acquire lead conversions and encourage engagement among customers. The process, however, is not that easy – first, you have to build an email list, generate content for your emails, schedule a send out or send them manually to a list. MailChimp, however, makes the Email Marketing process easier because it is simply an automation tool which allows users to create email content using pre-arranged templates, manage your email list, automate and schedule email sendouts, and most of all, track your email campaign’s progress and data.
MailChimp has a free version for startup entrepreneurs, but it also has a paid version that starts at $10 every month to accommodate a medium-sized or growing business. It also has a premium version which costs $199 each month for pro marketers.
Alternatively, ConstantContact is another email marketing tool that its name comes up constantly among other hosts. You might consider exploring it.
You need unique graphics and signages that could be put up on your websites and Social Media pages, and Canva is the perfect tool for that. Canva is an easy-to-use image design and editing tool that also offers free templates, stock images, and fonts to help you create unique posters, banners and advertising copies. You don’t even need to hire an expensive, professional designer to come up with decent imagery – anyone who knows how to use a laptop can use Canva.
Like MailChimp, Canva has a free-for-use version which is perfect for personal use. It also has a paid version which costs $12.95 per month if you want it to be a team account.
Automation is not just done in Email Marketing, you can automate your posts in Social Media too with Buffer. This tool helps you manage all your Social Media profiles (mainly Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) in one place – allowing you to save time and be consistent with your posts and messaging all throughout your channels.
Like the first two tools, Buffer has a free version which allows users to connect to just one account for each Social Media platform. For each Social Media account, users can schedule up to 10 posts only.
It also has a paid version that’s priced at $10 per month – allowing users to connect to 10 accounts for each Social Media platform and schedule 100 posts for each. Its Business package which starts at $99 allows the owner to connect to 25 accounts for each Social Media platform and schedule 2,000 posts for each. It also accommodates at least 5 members for effective team collaboration.
If you want to get a glimpse of how website visitors respond and interact with your web page, Hotjar can do that for you. It records where your visitors click, how far down they scroll, what they do, and many more. It helps you understand which parts of your website are its strongest points and which ones are uninteresting for your visitors.
Hotjar has a free version too which can collect data from 2,000 page views and store it for 3 months. Its ‘Plus’ Package which is intended for startups, is priced at $29 per month with a 30-day money back guarantee if things don’t work out.
Of course, nothing can track your website’s traffic more effectively than the leading search engine itself – Google. Google Analytics is a free tool which allows you to track where your website gets its traffic. It also records average reading time that is spent by every visitor, and it also shows how many people are currently looking at your page right now.
SalesForce is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) cloud-based tool which allows you to record every customer information and their journey with your business. It also helps startup entrepreneurs with customer support and data reports that can be used to enhance marketing strategy and customer relationships.
Unlike all of the previous tools mentioned in this list, SalesForce does not have a free version, only a free trial for those who want to try the service out. Its package starts at $25 per month (billed annually), and that can accommodate a business team of just 5 members. SalesForce also offers three other packages priced at $75, $150 and $300 consecutively.
To gather leads and customers, you need some kind of form for them to fill-up on. That is when you need the services of LeadPages. This tool allows you to create pop-up landing pages, sign-up forms, automated mobile codes/confirmation, sign-up links and more. It also provides templated and pre-arranged landing pages to make it easier for users to create their own.
Like SalesForce, LeadPages does not come with a free version. Its basic package starts at $25 per month – this one is perfect for individual and home based business use. The package that is perfect for startups is priced at $48 each month, while a premium package which is perfect for marketing teams and agencies is priced at $199.
Referral Rock is a cloud-based referral marketing solution that believes every business has the potential to increase their word of mouth. The software helps unlock that potential by making it easy for customers to refer and businesses to operate.
Online and offline businesses can design incentive-based programs, enroll existing customers and partners, capture the new leads and sales, then issue rewards automatically.
Here's how Referral Rock helps startups and small business in marketing,
Referral Rock Software automates every step of the referral process and allows for ample integration options.
The software works with any business type and size and can be integrated via a user-friendly embeddable widget, dedicated referral website, single sign-on and registration, and online/offline conversion tracking.This way a business can scale and consistently measure the success of their referral marketing programs and get more customers by using the power of their own network.
Both online and offline businesses can design incentive-based programs, enroll existing customers and partners, capture the new leads and sales, then issue rewards automatically.Megan Mosley – Marketing and Operation Specialist from Referral Rock
SalesAutopilot is a tool that allows savvy marketers to automate their entire client acquisition process, all the way from capturing a lead, through making the first initial sale, to turning them into an affiliate partner who actively advocates their brand.
The software itself works like Legos.
You are given six building blocks: lists, forms, communications, delivery schedules, actions, and landing pages. We use the term communications because it is capable of multi-channel communication through email, SMS, and direct mail. Just like Legos, you can take these 6 basic building blocks and build whatever marketing process works best with your overarching business strategy.
With help of SalesAutopilot, you are able to increase engagement with your prospects,
Maybe your prospects need a personal touch. You can take advantage of SalesAutopilot's built-in CRM functionalities, which work hand-in-hand with your marketing efforts.
Perhaps your prospects want to connect with you to ask some questions. SalesAutopilot has got you covered! The Support Suite allows you to track and solve customer tickets easily and without ever having to leave the software's interface.
SalesAutopilot can also manage orders, integrate with invoicing software and online payment providers, as well as your eCommerce store.
Less administrative work, more custom-tailored communication, everything you need to know about your prospects and clients all in one place. That’s SalesAutopilot.Alexander Csepregi – Marketing Manager from SalesAutopilot
Aside from these tools, startup entrepreneurs also have to think about other things that require some investment. This includes hiring the right employees, finding the most comfortable workspace, and investing on the right furniture and office gadgets.
Most of all, you need to determine what kind of tools should your business need most, and invest on them first. There is no need to get all tools when you don’t plan on employing a certain strategy yet. For example, you are not yet decided to launch an email marketing campaign, then there is no need to use MailChimp as of the moment.
About the Author: Gemma Reeves
Gemma Reeves is a seasoned writer who enjoys creating helpful articles and interesting stories. She has worked with several clients across different industries such as advertising, online marketing, technology, healthcare, family matters, and more. She is also an aspiring entrepreneur who is engaged in assisting other aspiring entrepreneurs in finding the best office space for their business. Check out her company here: FindMyWorkspace