When you’re just getting started with content marketing, you might not necessarily be aware of the tools that are out there and available to you. Once you establish yourself and start to try out and get used to different technologies, you’ll find that many of the tools you’ll want to use are paid. That is not, however, to say that there aren’t some very good free tools out there too (and everyone likes when “free” and “powerful” come together, right?)
So here we go: through the basic outline of your content strategy, here are 37 must-haves for your content marketing toolbox. Keep in mind that all of these have free versions (though you might eventually decide the paid version better suits your needs). Additionally, remember that some of these might be categorized one way, but could work in other categories, as well.
01. Evernote – great for taking notes and drafting blog posts. Keep everything you need in one place and access it from anywhere.
02. Google Docs – allows you to create and collaborate on documents that you can access anywhere.
03. Visual.ly – allows you to search for relevant infographics, as well as to create your own with its new set of tools.
04. Screenr – instantly record screencasts for how-to content.
05. Google Adwords Keyword Tool – to help you find keywords to focus your content.
06. Google Trends – Find out what’s moving up and down in the trends to help you create timely content.
07. Dropbox – Share files and access them anywhere.
08. Creative Commons Search – searches a variety of sites for images free to use under Creative Commons.
09. Stock.xchng – a great place to find free and paid stock photos.
10. MorgueFile – don’t let the name get you. This site has some great free and paid stock photos.
Content Management Systems and Blogging Tools:
11. Tumblr – a very basic blogging tool; allows you to post quickly and easily.
12. Blogger – Google’s blogging tool.
13. WordPress – considered by many to be the ultimate CMS, it’s highly customizable and there are tons of plug-ins available. Hosting your own blog is the way to go, but a more limited version is also available for free.
Share, Promote, Discuss, Build Upon Content (The Social Hub):
14. Facebook – a good place to share your best content, but not a place for broadcasting.
15. Twitter – share, discuss, and interact at a faster pace.
16. LinkedIn – share your content with your professional network.
17. Google+ – don’t ignore Google+. This is going to be a big one for authority.
18. Triberr – a blogging community to help build audience and increase your reach.
19. Slideshare – share your slide presentations
20. YouTube – video is a great addition to your content strategy; YouTube is a great place to share it.
21. Vimeo – an alternative to YouTube for video sharing.
22. StumbleUpon – a good way to help others find your content.
23. Pinterest – one of the hottest sites in 2012, Pinterest is great for sharing visual content as well as for helping to drive traffic back to your site.
24. BufferApp – queue up content to share on sites like Facebook and Twitter (just make sure you check in to reply to any comments!)
25. TweetDeck – helps you to manage your social media accounts (especially Twitter). Unlimited accounts for free, currently.
26. HootSuite – an alternative to TweetDeck, includes a limited number of accounts for free, with paid options beyond.
27. Scribd – share and discuss your written content.
Establishing Authority Through Q&A:
30. Quora – a great site to establish your authority through questions and answers. This (along with the other sites in this category) is also a great way to find blog topics.
31. LinkedIn Answers – also a wonderful site to establish authority (along with Quora, it is at the top of the Q&A sites).
32. Yahoo! Answers – another site for building authority.
33. Google Analytics – offers a wealth of information about your web traffic – all for free! Reports are customizable.
34. Google Webmaster Tools – useful information largely about your site and the search engine.
35. StatCounter – an alternative to Google Analytics. Not quite as powerful, but the free version can still give you a decent amount of information.
36. Google Alerts – set up alerts to monitor your business, your topics, or anything you wish!
37. Alexa – find useful information on your website (and anyone else’s).
What would you add to this list of content marketing tools?
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