Welcome to the show. In this episode I’m going to discuss my top five marketing tools of 2019.
I’ve not really talked about my marketing stack before – but that’s long overdue because I quite simply couldn’t run the content marketing and SEO campaigns that I do for clients and my own projects if I didn’t use marketing automation.
So in no particular order, here are my best tools of the year – that I absolutely cannot do without on a daily basis…
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1. Active Campaign
For email marketing and automations based on tagging people’s interests, I absolutely love Active Campaign. I’m slightly obsessed with creating automation workflows in this software, and I’ve got so used to its interface and layout that I couldn’t even entertain using anything else.
It does have its drawbacks – for instance I find editing emails within automations to be clunky – but when used in combination with lead capture software such as ConvertBox, then this is the only email marketing stack you’ll ever need.
I’m on a $50 bucks a month plan at the moment, and that’s sufficient for my needs in terms of automations and campaigns, so give it a go yourself if you need an email marketing provider or are thinking of changing from another solution.
This brings us neatly onto my next choice – ConvertBox. Describing itself as the new, more intelligent way to convert your visitors – it really is the new, more intelligent way to convert your visitors. ConvertBox helps you create email signup slide-ins, popups and exit intent forms that use advanced segmenting and targeting to convert more of your site traffic into email subscribers.
That sounds fancy but what I really like about this software is its easy-to-use and intuitive interface, the personalised nature of the messaging – and also the fact that the design of the various conversion boxes and elements is refined and doesn’t scream, ‘I’m doing some marketing’ at your prospects.
I went for their lifetime access pricing which is a few hundred bucks at the time of writing, so I’d get in on this fast as I think this offer is running out very soon.
Next up is my SEO tool of choice, Ahrefs. I use this literally everyday and find it to be the Swiss army knife of SEO software. From website audits to keyword research and link analysis – and everything else in between – I choose to stay with this tool because I trust the quality of their data and the size of their backlink database.
Over the last few years I’ve alternated between their lite and standard plans – and although it can get a bit pricey as you go up the service levels – don’t forget you are paying for the integrity of their data, which is really everything in SEO terms.
One feature of Ahrefs that has really impressed me this year is the site audit. I used to use SEO Optimer (which is fine) and a mish-mash of other tools – but I’m finding the data this produces to be really insightful.
The best thing I can say about Ahrefs is that it’s a bit of an SEO oracle – in that if I find a great keyword or some link data in another tool (such as KW Finder which is also great), then I always double check it in Ahrefs just to be sure.
I started using Gmail in anger at the start of this year – not I would add in anger at Gmail itself, but at the host of other useless email platforms I’d failed with previously (Mac Mail you’re guilty as charged).
I think I pay about $5 bucks a month for the G Suite version of Gmail, which means I can use my own Content Champion domain as part of my email address – and I can honestly say since I did this I’ve never looked back.