Not Just for Christmas - Twelve Tools For Business in 2019

Lee Kenny, Snowflake Media
Lee Kenny, Snowflake Media

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, it’s a great time of year for many of us. Family, friends and of course the giving and receiving of presents.

As a business owner who isn’t in retail, there is a traditional shutdown between Christmas and New Year and after a few days off you may be looking ahead to next year and thinking how you can grow the business and sales. In more austere times, people are asked to do more with the same resources (or less!).

So this week I have listed some great tools to help make marketing your business or service much easier for 2019.

Saving Time

These tools will help you get more productive so you can spend more time doing the things you love and less on the things you don’t

#1 Hootsuite

Hootsuite allows you to schedule most of your tweets in 1 go, meaning you create more time to engage and are less likely to skip tweeting the “evergreen “messages within your business.

#2 Buffer App

Much like Hootsuite, the team at Buffer allow you to create a schedule of what times you’d like to send tweets and Facebook posts (Although I don’t recommend it for Facebook – see #3 to find out why). It operates on a “send if anything is in the bucket” model. So if you load it with 20 stories, it will drip-feed them out until they run out.

#3 Facebook Scheduler

Most businesses are a little sporadic in their social media activity often having busts of ten minutes here and there to post things. The challenge is though that your audience isn’t always ready to receive when you want to post. Thankfully Facebook allows you to schedule your business page posts rather than send 3 out within 3 minutes. Facebook appears to actively penalise posts scheduled from elsewhere, so that’s why I recommend using the Facebook functionality.

Email Tools

#4 Zerobounce

Got an old list of customer email addresses but aren’t sure which ones are still usable. Mailing a high % of “bad” emails will hurt your deliverability. In steps Zerobounce, a great tool to clean up the data in under 1 hour. Just be sure you comply with all the other GDPR regs!

#5 Mailchimp & Aweber

Two for one here. Creating a central hub for your marketing and updates to your customers couldn’t be easier. With both free and paid plans, these companies make it very easy to create professional templates to wow your customers

Google Tools

#6 Google Correlate

Think of correlate as a thesaurus. Type in a search term that you think your customers are looking for and it will suggest additional terms too that you may not have thought of.

#7 Google Image Search

Found an image but want to make sure you have the rights to use it? Copy the image in to Google Image search and it will usually show you the original source so you can make sure you comply with any and all legal requirements!

#8 Google trends

A great way to keep on top of the latest trends and also review whether there is historic seasonality on products or search terms. This helps with workload and inventory planning! It is also great for finding new things to talk about with your customers.

Online Marketing

#9 Canva

Canva allows you to create wonderful looking graphics for promoting your business and offers all year round. Most people can cope with the free version, although there is a small charge for certain premium functions.

#10 Survey monkey

Why not let your existing customers help you shape the new product range or product offering. You can use the free or premium versions to survey their thoughts. It’s always worth considering offering a small incentive for people who enter and participate. Whether it’s a gift card, discount or some other VIP service, it will increase participation rates.

#11 Marketing School Podcast

Struggling for time and possibly inspiration? In steps Neil Patel and Eric Siu with their 5 minute daily podcast on all things marketing. Everyone can make 5 minutes right? Whether it is in the car, on the bus or even walking to work. They are light hearted and full of great information from a team that is doing extremely well online!

#12 Ahrefs

The costliest of all the recommendations, but this allows businesses to find data on how to generate more customers online and get more visitors. Rather than recreating the wheel, you can review competitors or search terms and find out how easy (or not) it is to have your website perform far better that it does today!

Have you tried any of these? Got different recommendations? If so, comment below I’d love to read them

Finally, I’d like to wish you a very Happy New year! See you in 2019

Lee Kenny @SocialSnowflake