A Dozen Digital Marketing Tools You’ve Never Heard of — How They Save You Time and Amplify Your Efforts
Here at Digital Current, we’re constantly uncovering new tools and resources to aid in digital marketing, lead generation, prospect targeting and more. The following tools offer new ways to approach digital marketing, streamline processes you’re already using and give you even deeper insights into how consumers are interacting with your brand online. We’ll run through the top 12 — and also share a couple of fun bonus resources!
Science of Marketing’s B2B Market Sizing Tool
Promising to “take three minutes or less,” the free B2B Market Sizing Tool helps you understand the size of your potential market. Are you going after an adequately sized market, or is your focus too niche? Too large? Will your message get lost in the chatter, only apply to a handful of business — or, will it hit that sweet spot, a refined group of businesses with specific focus yet broad applications and ample opportunity?
You’ll first check off all the sectors your company targets (from agriculture to real estate, education to construction, and everything in between), then you’ll be asked specifically which types of companies within each industry you’d like to target. Next, the Market Sizing Tool will ask how large these targeted companies are, allowing you to give a range up to 5,000+ — are you targeting small businesses or enterprises? Both, perhaps. The tool then spits out a number of opportunities and breaks it down by the industries you’ve selected in a handy pie chart as well as a table detailing opportunities per industry sector.
You can download the report as a PDF, modify your selected industries and parameters to adjust your data or easily share via email.
The Content Strategy Discovery Tool
Free, easy to use and intuitively based on Google Sheets, the Content Strategy Discovery Tool by Builtvisible aids in content marketing by helping you find trending topics across the web — from places like Facebook, Twitter, Google, Reddit, YouTube and more than a dozen others. You can use it as many times as you want to stoke the fire of creativity as you create content. It also gives you insights into what your customers are reading and asking about, as well as what’s been written about too much already. Know where to sink your teeth in and create something of value or when to back off a topic and refocus on what’s next.
The spreadsheet offers trending topics, current content focused on your chosen topic and influencers who are already talking about the topic (and who you could tap for brand coverage or simply the latest news). You’ll have to snag a copy of the Google Sheet and install a script, but the simple steps are laid out in plain English on the website. Run multiple queries and save them to reference, compare and more as you look to develop content and editorial calendars. If you’re savvy with custom scripts, the possibilities are even greater — but, even a novice can get value from this tool, so don’t be shy.
Tone Analyzer by IBM’s Watson
The future is here — IBM’s Watson supercomputer is leading the way in so many ways, and one just happens to be relevant to digital marketing and content. Tone Analyzer does just what it says on the box: analyzes the tone of text pasted in from web copy, blogs, Twitter posts — anything, really. Analyzing from a broad document level and a more granular sentence level, this tool identifies the top three tones out of seven possibilities: anger, fear, joy, sadness, analytical, confident and tentative.
So, of course, you could paste in blog text or an email message to make sure you’re not coming off tentative when you want to be confident. You can also analyze text written by others — think online reviews, for instance — to get a sense of consumers’ reactions to products and services beyond taking the words at face value.
Tone Analyzer then breaks down the strongest tones and highlights sentences that contribute to them, identifying to what extent it meets that criteria. You can really fine-tune your writing with this tool, or get to the bottom of negative or positive reviews to see where to direct your efforts or how to re-calibrate your marketing. The possibilities are truly endless.
Local Adwords and Keywords in Radius
Location is becoming increasingly important in search, and search marketing has taken note. If you want to target local customers for PPC campaigns, events, sales or anything that would appeal to those living or working in a certain location, this tool will Generate Local Adwords & Keyword Lists. Drop in a ZIP code and a radius up to 100 miles, add some keywords, and this tool spits out all the local keywords you’ll want to target. You can also get more granular to customize your results. This digital marketing tool saves you time and ensures you don’t miss a keyword opportunity within your prescribed radius.
Archivarix takes advantage of the Wayback Machine but does all the work for you in terms of pulling old website data. This is an extremely useful tool if you happen to lose something on your website — it happens to the best of us, don’t worry — and need to recover content, images, scripts and beyond. While up to 200 files is free, it’s only $5 for up to 1,200 files, and then only $0.50 per 1,000 files after that, making this a cost-effective solution, too.
Simply enter the domain you need to archive and download, give a date range to pull from (tip: use the Wayback Machine to check out past iterations and decide on a date range) and enter your email — Archivarix does the rest. Other possible uses include repopulating a site after buying an expired domain, analyzing the content of a competitor website or migrating to a new domain.
Fake Name Generator
With Fake Name Generator, you can generate random identities with fully fleshed-out profiles: from basics like phone number, email address and birthday, to mother’s maiden name, employment, height, weight and more. This may sound a bit nefarious (why would you need to create fake names?), but these fake identities can come in handy when you want to sign up for a service or resource without giving away your own identity or when creating user testing accounts.
Fake Name Generator will spit out something — sorry, someone — totally random, or you can refine the results by choosing gender, name set (common names by country) and country of residence, from Australia to Uruguay. Need a lot of names? Try the service’s free bulk option, which allows you to set parameters and then receive up to 100,000 fake personal profiles.
Defining your audience and establishing a brand persona are key elements of digital marketing strategies, or strategies in any type of marketing, really. SpotRight offers AudienceBuilder and PersonaBuilder tools at affordable fixed rates. Using social and third-party data, the PersonaBuilder does just what its name suggests in a web-based application. Insights gained from PersonaBuilder include:
- Social Behavior
- Retail Purchases
- Financial Data
- News Sources
- Automotive Data
- Social Conversations
- Brand Affinities
- Charitable Causes
- CPG Purchases
- Lifestyle Interests
- Media Markets
- Political Persuasions
- TV Shows
This easy-to-use resource gives you in-depth insights as well as analysis so you can understand the ideal persona and explore it through the intuitive platform. Personas are essential to marketing, helping you understand what your customer wants, where they live, how much they have to spend and more.
AudienceBuilder continues the automation by taking the PersonaBuilder results and populating a custom audience into — you guessed it — an easy-to-understand platform. It can then be linked to social, digital and marketing programs you’re already using for a seamless integration, amplifying your marketing efforts and enabling more fruitful media and ad buys.
Here’s a fun one that will make you feel like a social media guru in no time. TargetCompetitor, like many tools on this lists, lives its name’s promise by zeroing in on your competitor’s Twitter followers so you can make direct outreach. Now, it’s not cheap, at $2,499 for 5,000 tweets, but that gets you two million tweet impressions, competitor research, activity-based targeting, bot detection, content/design assistance and customer support.
Simply fill in the details of your campaign — such as your competitor’s Twitter handle, your email address and the custom message you’d like tweeted at followers — then allow up to two days for TargetCompetitor to evaluate your campaign and email you with a timeline estimate. From there, the service runs the campaign and sends you a comprehensive report. If you want a relatively easy and quick (and extremely targeted) way to reach your competitors’ customers and grow your business, this will be money well spent. Yes, technically you could do this all yourself, but that would take hours of your valuable time better spent on higher-level tasks, and you won’t get the deep insight TargetCompetitor offers at the end. If you want to snag business from the competition, strongly consider this digital marketing tool.
Frank is your AI friend, a friend whose brain “is connected to Facebook, Google and two million other websites. Once you set up your ad campaigns, Frank takes over optimization and reporting for your ad campaign.” Frank manages campaigns across platforms, collects the data and optimizes the campaigns according to your goals — and only charges a percentage of your ad spend (20% for less than $5,000; 10% for $5,000-25,000; and a mere 5% for ad spend greater than $25,000). Frank is a huge time-saver and unbiased campaign manager. It takes mere minutes to set up your campaign and the rest — buying, optimizing and reporting — is done by Frank’s technology platform.
Do you want to know how far down the page your audience is reading? Check out Scroll Depth, a free plug-in for Google Analytics. The tool will tell you how far users scroll in increments: 25% down the page, 50%, 75% and 100%. It also provides Pixel Depth and User Timing (measuring the amount of time between page load and scroll completion) for further detail. The website provides easy-to-follow instructions on linking the tool to your Google Analytics and getting the most out of its numerous features. If you’re losing readers at 25 or 50%, you’ll want to reconsider your content. If you’re at 100%, think of more opportunities you could bring to your audience on the page. Scroll Depth can help you find that sweet spot between too much and too little content and can provide insight into your content’s quality.
Affordable, with costs starting at $70/month and a free trial available, Quokka will take your targeted marketing efforts to the next level. Simply link up your email marketing list (it works with the common email marketing platforms including HubSpot and MailChimp), run a campaign and Quokka will analyze the data to see who hasn’t opened the email. It then builds out a list of non-openers and automatically re-targets them on Facebook, Twitter, AdWords and LinkedIn. Then, once someone from the re-targeted list clicks on one of these new ads, they’re taken off the list automatically. Those that don’t click continue to receive outreach. If you’ve had trouble getting people to open your emails, or simply know there are high-value targets out there who just won’t engage, this is the tool you’ve been looking for.
This final tool is a bit of a novelty, but can have enormous impact and provide lasting fodder for your digital marketing efforts. Broad Board allows you to be featured on the famous Thomson Reuters Times Square billboard for a mere $699. That also includes a press release distributed to over 1,000 websites as well as a photo of your billboard in action — in the heart of NYC — and a report of your feature. Broad Board works with you to write and refine the press release, and once it’s confirmed, your ad will be placed on the high-traffic billboard during morning or evening rush hour to an audience of hundreds of thousands. The photo is great to grab attention on your website and the report details the reach of your press release. Then you’re also able to say, “As featured in Times Square!”
Bonus Tools! Amp Up Your Digital Marketing With Beautiful Free Images
Free, High-Quality Photos for Commercial Use
If you’re looking for stock photos, and nothing on the common sites catches your eye or seems relevant, here are some places you can check out for high-quality, free stock photos.
- @DeathtoStock on Instagram: “Imagination is born when stock dies,” reads the bio. While you’ll need to first install an “Instagram downloader” on mobile or desktop to snag the images, this page offers a bevy of artistic shots. You can also click the link in the bio to see current Exhibitions, review packs of photos and subscribe to the email list for periodic fresh batches. A great way to always have intriguing imagery on hand for whatever digital marketing throws your way.
- Gratisography: Billing itself as “the world’s quirkiest collection of free high-resolution pictures,” completely unchained by copyright restrictions. An easy-to-use search function guides the process.
- Negative Space: Browse, search or sign up for the email list to receive the latest photos. These Creative Commons-licensed images are free to use for both personal and commercial purposes.
- SplitShire: Free photos and videos galore, all with a creative edge. Scroll through for inspiration, click on some of the trending tags or enter your own custom search to find artwork-quality images for your blog, emails, website and more.
- Life of Pix: With featured photographers every week and an addictive scrollable gallery, be prepared to get lost among these stunning photos. Also offering free videos, Life of Pix lets you simply go in and search for images, or join the community to follow your favorite photographers, personalize your own photos and create a portfolio. A great resource for both digital marketers and amateur photographers looking to get their images out into the world.
- Startup Stock Photos: As the name suggests, this free photo resource leans towards the startup economy, but also appeals to “bloggers, publishers, websites, designers, developers, creators and everyone else.” That’s you! This collection veers towards business-related imagery, so it’s a great place to start if that’s your arena. If you really value the site, consider donating to support the creators and keep the creative juices flowing.
- StockSnap.io: With new images added weekly, this resource gives you the option to search, browse popular/trending queries or categories and check out the latest uploads. And, as with all stock photo resources on this list, it’s totally free.
Now, this tool is pretty cool, but it usually takes quite some time before you have an image to work with. The Phraseology Project allows you to enter a word or phrase (up to 30 characters) and then submit it to the Project’s network of graphic artists, who turn the phrase into a beautiful text image. Again, the site gives no clear indication of when you’ll receive your beautified text, so this is more of a playful tool, sort of like setting up a surprise for yourself in the future when it does come through. For that reason, think of a phrase or word you will use in the future or that will be commonly useful no matter when it comes in — don’t use this for a project with a deadline.
Ready to Up Your Game?
Are you looking for ways to get more out of your marketing tools? Connect them? Make them share data? Get more customer insights? Let us know what your challenges are. Chances are we have a solution. Contact us here.