If you want to improve engagement with your audience then you need to use the best content marketing tools.
The question though is with limited time and budget how do you get the best results?
No matter whether you are a content marketer, a blogger or an enterprise looking to improve their content these tools will provide you with some unique ways to improve your content marketing.
Clearly, both BtoC and BtoB businesses want to gain exposure to new customers and generate revenue: BtoB – lead generation, BtoC – customer acquisition.
The content marketing institute report demonstrates that many businesses are struggling with content marketing. Despite this, the number and breadth of content marketing tools has massively increased.
Why Focus On Content Marketing?
First of all, let’s remember the objective of producing content.
Your website is your conversion point; where you turn anonymous visitors into followers on social media, email subscribers and customers who buy from you.
Ultimately, your content is part of how you demonstrate relevance, knowledge, and value to your customers.
The Best Content Marketing Tools.
Content marketing is an experiment.
You have to try different approaches and tactics, be creative with your content marketing and measure your results and use what worked and ditch what doesn’t.
In this article, I’ll cover the whole content marketing lifecycle: research, writing, publishing, AB Testing and much more.
These content marketing tools will help take away some of the guesswork and provide you with data-driven opportunities to improve the quality content of your content.
The Ultimate List Of The Best Content Marketing Tools.
I’ve curated a list of startup resources and drawn on many of these to create this list of the best content marketing tools. Often some tools overlap into other categories, but to keep it simple I’ve focused on what I think is each tool’s main strength.
Content marketing starts with research. Identify how and what content will fit with your audience:
- Competitor analysis – identify your competitor’s content that ranks highest and receives the most shares.
- Identify what your audience search for/questions they ask.
- Research customer pains and gains using a customer journey map.
Recognize that different content often fits with different stages of a customer’s purchase cycle.
Types of Content
Remember to mix up your content. The mix of content needs to be aligned with your content marketing strategy and tactics.
Best Keyword Research Tools.
- Answer The Public. Identify questions your target audience types into Google, just pop the keyword into Answer The Public and you’ll get a hefty list. https://answerthepublic.com/
- ClearScope. Type in your target keyword and ClearScope will give you a list of terms that you should include in your content. https://www.clearscope.io/
- Exploding topics. Exploding Topics bubbles up topics and keywords that are growing super fast. https://explodingtopics.com
- Google Trends. Find out whether or not my keyword is getting more (or less) popular. https://www.google.com/trends/
- Keyword Revealer. A standard keyword research tool with a “Keyword Tree” feature. https://www.keywordrevealer.com/
- kwfinder.com. An easy to use alternative to the Google Keyword Planner. https://kwfinder.com/
- Long Tail Pro. A very easy-to-use keyword research tool. Enter a keyword and get suggestions. https://www.longtailpro.com/
- SEMrush. SEMRush shows you your competitor’s top keywords. https://www.semrush.com/
- SERPStat. It generates lots of keyword ideas and includes search volume, competition and more. https://serpstat.com/
- StoryBase. StoryBase is a long tail keyword research tool that generates hundreds of questions and phrases that people use to describe that topic online. https://www.storybase.com/
- UberSuggest.Find keywords from Google’s Autocomplete data. https://neilpatel.com/ubersuggest/
- WebCEO. WebCEO is an SEO platform that gives you lots of ways to search and filter on keywords. https://www.webceo.com/
- BuzzSumo. BuzzSumo makes finding content ideas easy. https://buzzsumo.com/
- Can I Rank. CanIRank.com provides a nice breakdown of how your competition. https://www.canirank.com/
- Ahrefs. Ahrefs has a massive index (over a trillion links) that are updated at least once a day. https://ahrefs.com/
- Moz Pro. Moz Pro is a software suite that contains quality tools keyword research and much more. https://moz.com/products/pro
Website Analytics Tools.
Analytic tools will help you to profile your audience, optimize existing content on your site, improve the customer experience and much more. These are some of the best content marketing tools to help you use data to improve your content.
- Tapclicks. It helps you to identify issues and capitalizing on opportunities for optimization. https://www.tapclicks.com/
- Mixpanel. Mixpanel focuses on product and behavior analytics across all your websites or apps. https://mixpanel.com/
- Hotjar. Hotjar is a user-friendly analytics suite that allows you to collect user data via heatmaps and session recordings. https://www.hotjar.com/
- Crazy Egg. Crazy Egg is a specialized tool that helps you gather information about how your users interact with your website. https://www.crazyegg.com/
- Matomo. Matomo is open source web analytics tool. It provides easy to understand report to know how visitors are accessing your website. https://matomo.org/
- Statcounter. StatCounter is a simple but powerful real-time web analytics service that helps you track and analyse visitors. https://statcounter.com/
- Clicky. Clicky is a real-time analytics tool that focuses on monitoring and analyzing website traffic. https://clicky.com/
- Gauges. Gauges help you to know how many visitors come to your site and where they go. https://get.gaug.es/website-analytics/
- Woopra. Woopra helps you to analyze and visualize how the customer visits your website. https://www.woopra.com/
- Webtrends. Offers tools for measuring and optimizing digital campaigns. https://www.webtrends.com/
- Heap. It offers a simple interface to help you measure and improve website conversion rates. https://heap.io/
- FullStory. FullStory’s digital intelligence platform helps you troubleshoot things like “poor product engagement, underperforming web pages, or broken checkout flows.” https://www.fullstory.com/
- Kissmetrics. A data collection suite focusing on website analytics that helps you to understand eCommerce. https://www.kissmetricshq.com
- Trialfire. A visual editor for analytics. Helps marketers circumvent coding their website in order to put tracking on different pages. https://trialfire.com/
- Amplitude. Amplitude helps you use customer data to build great product experiences that convert and retain users. https://amplitude.com/
- Oribi. Oribi helps you get answers to your data questions as quickly and as easily as possible. https://oribi.io/
Best Social Media Analytic Tools.
These content marketing tools give you deep insights into your audience across social media.
- Rival IQ. This tool lets you track different companies and compare their performance across not only social media platforms. https://www.rivaliq.com/free-social-media-analytics/
- Snaplytics. Provides detailed performance data for Instagram and Snapchat, including insights on Stories and overall follower growth. https://www.snaplytics.io/
- SocialReport. Social Report provides an overview of your activity on multiple social networks. https://www.socialreport.com/
- Awario. Analyzes online mentions of your business in order to provide you with statistics on mention growth, reach, a list of mentions’ languages and locations. https://awario.com/
- Curalate. Discover which images in Pinterest and Instagram are most engaging for your audience. https://www.curalate.com/
- Socialbakers. View metrics and statistics for Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, YouTube, and LinkedIn. https://www.socialbakers.com/
- Trendspottr. Uses real-time data to identify trending topics across social media platforms before they become popular. http://trendspottr.com/welcome
- TrackMaven. Gathers information on your competitors from all social media channels into one platform. https://trackmaven.com/
- SproutSocial. Analyze social media posts across nine different platforms. Create comprehensive reports, such as a competitor comparison analysis. https://sproutsocial.com/
- Squarelovin. An analytics tool made specifically for Instagram – the tool tracks likes and followers, reviews post-performance and measures overall profile engagement. https://squarelovin.com/
- Union Metrics. Union Metrics monitors Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, and analyzes a whole range of metrics. https://unionmetrics.com/
- Keyhole. Keyhole is a social media monitoring tool that also provides deep analytics for Twitter and Instagram. https://keyhole.co/
- Tailwind. A management and analytics tool for Pinterest and Instagram – Tailwind enables you to track followers, boards, repins, likes and comments. https://www.tailwindapp.com/
- Sotrender. A powerful social media analytics tool that highlights where conversations about your brand take place. https://www.sotrender.com/
- Wiselytics. A social media analytics platform that offers loads of information for free. https://www.wiselytics.com
Best Content Management Systems.
- WordPress. The world’s most popular CMS and blogging platform let users create custom themes, add plugins, publish content, moderate comments, and more. https://wordpress.org/
- Joomla. Joomla is a mobile-ready and user-friendly way to build your website. Choose from thousands of features and designs. https://www.joomla.org/
- Drupal. This open-source CMS powers millions of websites and applications. Add-on modules and designs let companies or individuals tailor a site to their needs. https://www.drupal.org/
- Wix. Wix is an easy to use website building platform that has lots of design templates – ideal for small businesses. https://www.wix.com/
- Magento. It is a platform for eCommerce and specifically to manage larger portfolios of products. https://magento.com/
- Shopify. Similar to Wix except this platform is all about eCommerce. Easily set up your open shop online. https://www.shopify.co.uk/
- Squarespace. Squarespace has masses of pre-built templates to choose from. https://www.squarespace.com/
Before you start writing, you might just want to brainstorm some creative ways to make a topic more interesting to your audience or simply collaborate with others in your team. Visual cues help us process and retain information better than text. These are the best content marketing tools to brainstorm ideas.
- Ideaflip. This tool gives you a visual, interactive environment that enables you to write down, manage, and develop your ideas. https://ideaflip.com/
- Brainstormer. Brainstormer advertises itself as “the best defense against writer’s block”. It provides writers with unlimited five minute writing exercises to help spark your imagination. https://www.tapnik.com/brainstormer/
- MindMeister. With over 7 million users, Mindmeister is the best mind mapping tools that lets you capture, develop and share ideas visually. https://www.mindmeister.com/
- Coggle. Coggle is one of the simplest tools for creating and sharing mindmaps and flow charts. https://coggle.it/
- Scapple. Scapple is a perfect tool if you’re brainstorming on the marketing copy or content ideas. My favourite tool! https://www.literatureandlatte.com/scapple/overview
- Mindmanager. MindManager is like a virtual whiteboard. You can easily add ideas, place them wherever you like, and draw connections between them. https://www.mindjet.com/mindmanager/
- Creately. It has more than 50 types of diagrams and thousands of examples and libraries, Creately lets you quickly flesh out your ideas using their templates. https://creately.com/
- HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator. HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator is perfect if you are looking for ideas to fill your editorial calendar. https://www.hubspot.com/blog-topic-generator
Best Content Marketing Tools for Writing.
Writing tools can help you focus on your writing rather than adding distracting formatting and layout features. These are the best content marketing tools for writing. If you find any others that are particularly useful then let me know.
- Evernote. A workspace app that syncs across all your devices. Manage notes, ideas, and sketches to create better, more organized writing. https://evernote.com/
- Grammarly. Probably the number one app for writing. It checks your grammar, spelling and offers suggestions for tone of writing. https://app.grammarly.com/
- Hemingway. Hemingway Editor is insanely popular for a good reason—it’s easy to use and understand. http://www.hemingwayapp.com/
- Bear. Another distraction-free simple markup writing tool – one of my favorites because it syncs across all devices. https://bear.app/
- Ulysses. This text editing app lets users focus on writing. It provides the regular features of a word processor without cluttering up the screen. https://ulysses.app/
- Scrivener. It’s got a little bit of everything, so it’s perfect for writing anything from papers to blog posts. https://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener/
- Livescribe. This is a pen that turns your writing into text. https://www.livescribe.com/site/
- Draft. Draft helps make collaboration possible. With this tool, you can easily see changes made by others and compare it with your original draft. https://draftin.com/
- Byword. This text editor works across desktops, iPads and iPhones. Allows users to compose text with keyboard shortcuts, word counters, and more. https://bywordapp.com/
- Ilys. Unlike most word processors where you have immediate access to everything you’ve typed, Ilys only shows you one letter at a time, leaving the rest of the screen blank. https://www.ilys.com/
- StackEdit. StackEdit is an open-source Markdown editor. https://stackedit.io/
- iA Writer. iA Writer is another simple writing app that prides itself on minimizing distractions. https://ia.net/writer
Headline Optimization Tools.
Headlines are important. Up to 80% of people may not even read your post if you don’t have a powerful headline that grabs people’s attention. In fact, your headline alone can be responsible for up to a 500% difference in your traffic – that’s viral.
- CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer. CoSchedule will provide you with a visual representation of where your headline hits and misses and why. https://coschedule.com/headline-analyzer
- Sharethrough. The Sharethrough headline tool analyzes your headline and gives it a score based on a multivariate linguistic algorithm. https://headlines.sharethrough.com/
- Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer. The Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer by the Advanced Marketing Institute will analyze your headline and give it a score based on the total number of EMV (Emotional Marketing Value) words. https://www.aminstitute.com/headline/
- Portent’s Content Idea Generator. In spite of generating rather simplistic ideas at times, they can inspire you to change the way you intended to deliver your ideas at first. https://www.portent.com/tools/title-maker
- SEOPressor’s Blog Title Generator. This tool gives you endless catchy titles for your blog posts based on the keyword you want to write about. https://seopressor.com/blog-title-generator/
Content Marketing Tools for Graphics.
- Canva. https://www.canva.com/
- Biteable. https://biteable.com/infographic/
- Venngage. https://venngage.com/
- Easelly. https://www.easel.ly/
- Snappa. Snappa is a graphic design tool for marketers who create online graphics for social media, content marketing, ad campaigns, and email newsletters. https://snappa.com/
- Piktochart. A DIY infographic maker that allows marketers to create visually appealing infographics, presentations, posters, and reports. https://piktochart.com/
- Adobe Spark. Adobe Spark is a fast content creation software that lets you easily combine text, images, and video content for better storytelling online. https://spark.adobe.com/
Stock Photo Sites
- Pixabay. A website where image owners waive their rights to their work. As a result, site users get to download, alter, and distribute images even for commercial use. https://pixabay.com/
- Unsplash. all images on Unsplash are licensed under CC0 (Creative Commons Zero) and can, therefore, be used, modified, and freely distributed without providing attribution to Unsplash or the photographer. https://unsplash.com/
- Gratisography. Images are photographed and distributed by Ryan McGuire, owner and designer at Bell Designs. All images are free. https://gratisography.com/
- Getty Images. A massive image resource that serves organizations in more than 100 countries worldwide. https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/
- Adobe Stock. Adobe Stock is available for Adobe’s Creative Cloud subscribers and complements Creative Suite by being compatible with its design tools. https://stock.adobe.com/
- Burst (by Shopify). A free stock photos website that has an image library of thousands of high-resolution, royalty-free images. https://burst.shopify.com/
- Flickr. The largest online photo management and sharing platform in the world. https://www.flickr.com/
- Shutterstock. A huge resource for royalty-free stock images for both personal and commercial use. https://www.shutterstock.com/home
- Picography. A collection of vivid, high-resolution stock images and stock photos without the hassle of attribution. https://picography.co/
- Bigstock. Another stock image website with more than 70 million pieces of digital content. https://www.bigstockphoto.com/
Photo Editing Apps
- Picmonkey. PicMonkey lets you edit your photos for effects, touch them up, and even stitch them together if you want. https://www.picmonkey.com/
- PhotoScape. A free image editor that allows you to enhance the photos you capture. It’s equipped with basic editing features to resize, adjust, and even batch-edit your photos.
- Fotor. Photo editing, photo effects, and image retouching. https://www.fotor.com/
- Pablo. Pablo, by Buffer, is a good choice. It makes it easy to combine beautiful images with text, and includes filters. https://pablo.buffer.com/
- Pixlr. Another useful free content marketing tool for photo editing. https://pixlr.com/
- Stencil. This app is definitely one of the easiest apps to use and is ideal for streamlining content creation for social media. https://getstencil.com/
Video Marketing Tools
Photos are liked twice as much as text posts and videos are shared 12X more than text-only status updates. From animations to quick-fire video production – these content marketing tools are a gold mine for creativity.
- PowToon. a video marketing tool created for marketers, educators, and presenters. https://www.powtoon.com/home/
- Animaker. create multiple video types including explainer videos, whiteboard videos, and even infographic videos. https://www.animaker.com/
- Lumen5. one of the more interesting content marketing tools because it uses artificial intelligence to let you create a video from text. https://lumen5.com/
- Renderforest. A cloud-based animation and video maker helps you quickly make intro videos, explainer videos, presentations, infographics, and much more. https://www.renderforest.com/
- Shakr. generating videos for your brand and products in minutes. Advertise to the world with just a few clicks. https://www.shakr.com/
- VideoScribe. Make your own whiteboard video fast. VideoScribe is easy, quick and inexpensive. https://www.videoscribe.co/en/
- Animoto. Create impressive videos in minutes with this simple drag-and-drop video maker. https://animoto.com/
- Wave. Wave.video which enables you to quickly create great-looking videos. https://wave.video/
- Explee. An application that allows you to create a powerful and efficient animated video. https://explee.com/
- Vyond. Vyond’s online animation software allows your business to easily create professional animated videos. https://www.vyond.com/
EBook Creation Tools
Ebooks are particularly powerful for B2B customers. Use these content marketing tools to easily produce ebooks.
- Kitaboo. A cloud-based digital publishing platform to create, publish and securely deliver multimedia-enhanced interactive ebooks. https://kitaboo.com/
- Flipbuilder. An ebook creator that converts PDF into Media Rich eBooks with a flipbook style. https://www.flipbuilder.com/
- Blurb. An ebook publishing software capable of assisting throughout the publishing and distribution process. https://www.blurb.com/
- Notionpress. Lets self-publishers streamline their publishing process. https://notionpress.com/
Webinar Marketing Tools
These are some of the best content marketing tools to engage with an audience and generate leads.
- WebinarJam. A powerful suite of content marketing tools that have options for Live Casting, Event Streaming, and Webinars. https://home.webinarjam.com/index
- EverWebinar. One of the best conversion optimization tools you can use in your business. https://home.everwebinar.com/index
- Demio. It makes it easy to create, market, and host webinars. https://demio.com/
- Livestorm. Livestorm helps hundreds of organizations all over the globe scale their content marketing. https://livestorm.co/
Interactive Content Marketing Tools
These are in doubt the most exciting content marketing tools to try at the moment.
- Infogram. Interactive visual content creation tool that gives you access to different types of interactive infographics plus maps. https://infogram.com/
- Zmags. Helps e-commerce users create and share online catalogues, lookbooks, magazines. https://zmags.com/products/
- Guides. Create, discover, and share guides on topics that matter with your team, partners, customers. https://guides.co/
- Ceros. You need zero knowledge of coding to use this experiential content platform. https://www.ceros.com/
- Apester. an exciting platform for creating and sharing interactive content. It allows you to create Snapchat-style stories, polls, and other types of interactive content. https://apester.com/
- Biteable. Make better videos than your competitors. On your lunch break. https://biteable.com/
- Riddle. The tool is labeled as a quiz creator, but it also allows you to create surveys, polls, personality tests, and lists. https://www.riddle.com/
- Quizitri. Build lead-generating quizzes in minutes. https://www.quizitri.com/
- Survey Anyplace. Survey Anyplace is one of the lesser-known but more advanced tools out there, and is focused on giving the best user experience possible. https://surveyanyplace.com/
- Brandquiz. A good option for quickly and easily creating fun branded quizzes with a range of templates available. https://www.brandquiz.io/
Digital Asset Management Tools
As startups start to scale, more structure and processes need to be in place to make it easy to onboard new people, improve efficiencies and that also includes maintaining brand standards and knowing where things are. These digital asset management (DAM) tools are a must for marketing teams.
- Webdam. A standalone SaaS-based DAM solution. https://www.bynder.com/en/webdam/
- Sitecore. https://www.sitecore.com/products/content-hub
- Brandfolder. a popular, all-around digital asset management software that boasts brands such as Under Armour, Slack, and Snap. https://brandfolder.com/
- Asset Bank. Asset Bank is one of the few DAM software that offers web-based as well as on-premise, end to end experience. https://www.assetbank.co.uk/
- MediaValet. A relatively low initial pricing pay-as-you-go service. https://www.mediavalet.com/
- Cloudinary. a cloud-based, end-to-end DAM software that counts renowned brands such as Vogue, Buzzfeed, and Virgin as its clients. https://cloudinary.com/
Content Collaboration Tools
According to a McKinsey report, employees spend 1.8 hours every day—9.3 hours per week, on average—searching and gathering information! Shocking, right? These are some content marketing tools that will help with collaboration.
- Coschedule. An all-in-one collaborative editorial calendar for marketing. https://coschedule.com/
- Woven. A powerful scheduling and calendar system designed for teams. https://woven.com/
- Trello. An easy and visual way to manage your projects and organize anything. https://trello.com/
- Miro. A visually engaging tool for teams to create, collaborate and centralize communication. https://miro.com/
- Cacoo. Cacoo provides a lot of collaboration tools to improve your team’s workflow. https://cacoo.com/home
- Bit. Bit is a new age cloud-based document collaboration and content collaboration platform. https://bit.ai/
- Confluence. Atlassian Confluence is a content collaboration platform that allows your team to create, store and share documents from one dashboard. https://www.atlassian.com/software/confluence
- M-Files. M-Files solves that problem by virtually creating a single access point for all your content online. https://www.m-files.com/en
- Slack. A well-crafted platform offering instant messaging, file transfers and many other features plus dozens of integrations with other tools like Trello.
- Divvy. Helps global content teams plan, schedule and produce any type of content across an organization. https://divvyhq.com/
Content Distribution Tools
When you’re creating useful, actionable, epic content, everyone deserves to see it. So how do you get your hard work and effort seen by the largest audience possible? Many of these content marketing tools are freemium.
- Buffer. Add content to Buffer and it will automatically post to your social media channels at the optimum time. https://buffer.com/
- Edgar. tool for reposting content from your archives, Edgar helps with evergreen promotion by linking to your social channels. https://meetedgar.com/
- Help a Reporter. HARO lets you connect with journalists looking for a source. https://www.helpareporter.com/
- PR Newswire. Got something newsworthy to share? Consider going the press route. https://www.prnewswire.com/
- Listly. Build a list about anything—resources for your niche, articles you love, helpful tools. https://list.ly/
- Wisestamp. A great tool to start using for signing off as it gives you the opportunity to share not just your content information in your email signature. https://www.wisestamp.com/
- Goodbits. It makes it faster and easier to market your brand through email newsletters. https://goodbits.io/
- Sumome. A WordPress plugin that contains several tools useful for distributing both on owned and earned media. https://sumo.com/
- Quora. Quora represents a perfect opportunity for you to share your expertise by providing relevant answers and then linking these answers back to your website. https://www.quora.com/
- Taboola. One of the leading content discovery platforms, as it makes more than 200 billion content recommendations. https://www.taboola.com/
- Facebook sponsored posts. Facebook ads, you can pay to have your page’s posts seen by more users on the network.
- Promoted Tweets. Promote using Twitter Ads.
- Google Ads. Promote using Google PPC.
- Promote on Linkedin. Promote using Linkedin Ads.
Influencer Marketing Tools
Promoting content through influencers has become standard practice. These content marketing tools help you contact and build a relationship with influencers in your niche.
- Curalate. Curalate lets you use social content and audiences to sell more effectively online. https://www.curalate.com/solution/influencer-marketing/
- GroupHigh. Find bloggers easily for your outreach campaigns through their real-time blog search and filtering interface. https://www.grouphigh.com/
- JustReachOut. JustReachOut is a service that connects you with journalists in your niche. https://justreachout.io/
- Julius. A purpose-built influencer discovery engine to a full-fledged self-service influencer marketing suite. https://www.juliusworks.com/
- Pitchbox. Pitchbox is an outreach tool designed to help you target influencers. https://pitchbox.com/
- Extole. Extole is a content promotion channel that helps individuals, brands, and businesses find and share the best content online. https://www.extole.com/
- Shoutcart. A marketplace that lets you buy and sell shoutouts on Instagram. https://shoutcart.com/
- Upfluence. A database of over 3 million influencers with a collective reach of 82 billion followers. https://www.upfluence.com/
Summary of Best Content Marketing Tools
Optimizing content marketing is only one half of the battle when producing content. Ultimately your content has to get in front of your audience. That is where the other cogs of your marketing strategy come into play. How you distribute your content through the relevant channels and promote it.
These content marketing tools represent different options to try.