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Marketing your marketing: It’s an initiative every company should do, and most want to do, but few actually put the time and resources necessary into doing, especially small businesses. For the most part, these businesses typically don’t bring on an internal marketing resource. If you do find a business that does, it’s often just one person left to do all the internal marketing.
In these situations, you’re left with one person to ideate, create, post, and promote all of your content. That’s no easy feat! This work requires a variety of skills and a commitment to organization—trust me, I’ve been there! Without the time and funds to master certain skills, it’s important for marketers to find tools to help them get the job done and make them look like experts in the process.
Here are the top seven apps that every creative and social media marketer should use to stay sharp and on top.
If you ask anyone what the most engaging and digestible type of content is, they’ll tell you, “Video content.” Just ask Facebook’s VP for EMEA, Nicola Mendelsohn, who believes the tech giant will be populated exclusively by video content by the year 2020. That doesn’t leave a lot of time for marketers to master the video-making and video-editing skills necessary to produce solid, regular content.
Have no fear, though, because now you don’t have to (although it’s a valuable skill to learn) thanks to the handy app, Quik. Using Quik, you have the ability to make silky smooth video transitions, synchronize music, and add any necessary filters easily. It’s perfect for short recap or highlight videos. It removes the tedious work needed to stitch each clip together. I just started using Quik, and I find that it adds a whole new dimension to the type of content I can create.
If there’s one program all marketing beginners should master, it’s Photoshop. It’s a wonderful tool for designing content and editing photos. Unfortunately, the program costs a good chunk of money and has a bit of a steep learning curve, so it’s not always the most facile tool for marketers to acquire. That shouldn’t deter you though, because there are plenty of apps that can provide you photo editing tools at a more basic level.
One free app that I’ve been using for years is Over. It allows you to add text and artwork layovers to your photos. Want to add some messaging and texture to your images? Now you can with this easy-to-use app. It’s great for calling out locations or people, and there are hundreds of additional in-app purchases that can provide additional artwork for your every desire.
We all want our photos to look professionally edited, but the marketer working alone rarely has the time and equipment for that. Even if I were to make the investment into a DSLR camera, I would still need a lot of practice before I started churning out high-quality photos. Even then, I’d still need to master the editing side of things.
I can’t help you with the camera, but I can share an app that gives you a one-stop photo-editing shop. There are some basic photo editing tools available on your smartphone, but with Snapseed, you get all of those photo basics coupled with more advanced features like Lens Blur, HDR Scape, and Glamour Glow which can add a whole new layer of detail to your photos. It’ll take some practice, but your photo collections will shine in a whole new light—literally and figuratively.
Most social media platforms maintain the same basic functions of liking, commenting, and sharing content. It’s an easy and uniform way to engage with other web users. Unfortunately, Instagram seems to buck the trend, as until September of 2015, users could not share the content of others. Now, users can share privately with their friends, but not publicly to their own feeds.
Instagram cites the “personal” aspect of their platform and “prevention of spam” as the reasons for their limited reposting functionalities. Consumers still crave the mass sharing option, and with the app Repost, you’re able to share your friend’s content, or that of anyone else you see fit, to your own feed. I’d recommend against using Repost on a frequent basis because you want to maintain the integrity of your own Instagram page, but sprinkle it into your mix every once in a while if you find something worthwhile.
5. CoSchedule | platform
Once you’ve finally created your beautiful content, you can put your finished product online. The finish line seems to be right in front of you, but with as many as eight social media channels to update, it’s merely a mirage. If you’re updating everything on the fly, the process can feel like an eternity. If you schedule everything ahead of time, you save a lot of stress and headache, but you still face the daunting and time-consuming task of updating eight accounts for every post.
For the longest time, I toiled away with mediocre scheduling tools until I found CoSchedule. Now, I can update as many as six social media channels simultaneously with my chosen content. Not only that, but I can integrate WordPress blogs, bit.ly links, and schedule at optimal times, all within the same platform. It’s been a lifesaver!
When you’re promoting your own company, there isn’t always a steady stream of noteworthy content to share with your loyal followers. If that’s the case, it shouldn’t prevent you from churning out regular content. That’s where Feedly comes in—a content feed that you curate specific to your interests. You can follow up to 100 outlets at a time for free. If that’s not enough for you, upgrade your account for as little as $5 a month.
With this app, you’ll never be at a loss for content again, and you can share these articles to your social platforms with the click of a button. Whether or not you use this to fill your own content holes, it’s a great way to stay updated on current events and trends within your industry. Stay organized and ahead of the curve with this simple app.
7. Cloudup | platform
The process from video and photo production to getting it up on your social channels can be a time suck—especially with large files. You can’t email files over 25MB, so you have to upload to Dropbox or another cloud storage solution, send to yourself or others, then download to your desktop before uploading it onto whatever channel you desire. It’s a mouthful to explain and even more of a pain to go through the process. That’s where Cloudup comes in handy.
This platform, available on both desktop and mobile, allows you to upload up to 1,000 individual files (up to 200MB each) and instantly share that file to Facebook, Twitter, or through email with a custom link. That’s upwards of 200GB of storage, free! While Dropbox is great in its own right, only Cloudup offers the ability to instantly share to social media. No longer must you sit through minutes of uploads and downloads. Your files are instantly available and shareable wherever you are.
Ultimately, what these apps all have in common is that they help you create content. Content is what runs marketing today, so unless you’re putting out content regularly, you’re not building out your SEO, and you’re not getting the recognition you’re capable of achieving.
It’s not easy to maintain a rhythm of regular content, especially within a small team or by yourself, so use these tools to your advantage. Not only will your company benefit from it, but so will you, as you become a more seasoned and well-rounded marketer with organizational value that can’t be denied.
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