As a product marketer, I use a lot of different tools to help with the automation and execution of tasks. Any tool that stops me from roping in a developer or designer to “quickly help with something” is highly valuable to me and my team.
To kick off the new year, I wanted to highlight a few of the tools I rely on to get shit done. Here is my list of 10 tools I use on a regular basis for everything marketing related. Note, I have not been paid to promote any of these tools or platforms.
Ever wondered what technology a website was built on? Wappalyzer is a simple Chrome extension that allows you to quickly identify a website’s technology stack. Because the tool lives in your browser, in one click you can determine what CMS, eCommerce tools or analytics platform a website is using. I use this tool on a daily basis to determine if a website is built on SilverStripe or when I see a cool site and want to know what tech they are using.
Personally, I find digital advertising to be a bit painful although necessary in today's marketing world. AdHawk acts as a personal advertising assistant that makes recommendations to your account that you can either accept or deny. Their mobile app makes it very simple to track campaign performance and ad spend across Google, Facebook and Instagram. When using an advertising agency is too costly or you’re too time poor to do digital advertising yourself, AdHawk is just the tool for a lean marketing team or freelance marketer.
One of the most popular browser extensions in 2017, Loom lets anyone create simple videos that can be easily shared. Perfect for marketing activities, product demos or customer support videos, Loom has countless use cases. I find Loom great for creating team updates or when I need to make a short video for a newsletter that can be time stamped for the relevant topics. Loom is really simple to use and best of all it’s free. I’ve used Loom for on-the-fly product demos as a way of guiding prospect users through the product in a way that feels personal.
Chrome Dev Tools
Although built for developers more than marketers, Chrome Dev Tools is packed with features that can be leveraged by marketing teams. If you’re using Chrome as your browser, right click on any page and click Inspect to see the browser's dev tools view. For marketers, one of the most valuable and time saving tools is the ability to take screenshots for mobile or tablet views. I use this feature a lot when creating showcases that require a mobile screenshot image. Below is how you can take a screenshot for any device size in a few clicks.
Dev tools is also great for testing copy on an existing web page, finding high resolution images used on a website and identifying HTML colour codes. By selecting the Elements view, you can play around with all of these on-page elements, editing text and temporarily changing colours of any website to see how it reads and renders.
A simple GIF generator, GIPHY Capture is perfect for creating social media content, blog GIFs and tutorial snippets. The desktop app allows you to create a .gif file of anything on your screen. I use the tool to make small .gif videos (as seen above) and find it really helpful when writing documentation or training material. GIPHY capture lets you add a caption to the .gif, slow it down, speed it up as well as manipulate its size and quality. A nifty little tool that can be used for work or just entertaining your colleagues with hilarious custom gifs.
A simple eCommerce tool you can place into any website or mobile app, Chec is suited for marketing teams who want to validate ideas, sell event tickets or sell digital files and resources. Choose to accept payments from a number of payment gateways such as PayPal, Stripe and Square to start accepting live orders instantly. Chec’s API also allows developers and designers to create completely custom eCommerce experiences if you’re looking for a little more customisation on the frontend. The SilverStripe marketing team used Chec to sell tickets for StripeCon New Zealand 2017.
Sketch is a beautiful design suite that is intuitive to use and extremely powerful for design teams and marketers. SilverStripe’s designers live and breathe Sketch for their work but the tool can also be used by anyone with a creative flare. I’ve used Sketch predominantly for wire framing, comparison charts, social media and blog images. You’ll be one step closer to being a full stack marketer if you can also design and generate beautiful graphics on-the-fly. Sketch has loads of resources you can download for free as well as a healthy online community of people who can help you learn the ropes.
An audience interaction software for conferences and events, Slido is a must have tool for any marketing or events team. Slido facilitates the interaction between audience members and speakers through their well designed question and voting app. The tool addresses the problem of awkwardly asking questions in front of everyone in a conference environment, allowing any audience member to send the speaker a question using their phone. SilverStripe used Slido at last years StripeCon NZ event to collect speaker questions from the audience. We’d highly recommend using it for conferences, large meetings and meetups.
An alternative to Google’s documents ecosystem, Paper is a cloud based document tool ideal for collaborative content creation. Paper has an ultra clean UI and is perfect for teams who want a little more control over the flow, look and feel of their documents. With smarter sharing options than Google Docs, Paper gives users the ability to easily share with individuals, groups and external stakeholders. I personally feel more inspired to write and get ideas out in Paper over Google Docs and would recommend it to anyone who wants to move away from Google’s all seeing eye.
As marketers we’re always keen on getting feedback and learning more about our audiences. Typeform is a human-centered survey and form builder that can be deeply customised to match your desired tone. With a ton of out of the box themes and cool logic jump features, Typeform is a fresh and fun way to engage with your audience. You can also integrate payment gateways into the forms so they can act as order and booking forms, making it a very powerful tool for marketing teams.
It’s fair to say that the marketing technology landscape is crowded, with there being at least a dozen options for each task marketers do. It's always tempting to try new technologies and solutions, but in the end you need to find tools and solutions that work for you and your team.
Hopefully there has been at least one tool here that you can give a go and bring into your workflow. The more you can broaden your skills as a marketer, the more valuable you will be for your team, making you a highly sought after, dangerous marketer.
Disclosure, I am one of the co-founders of Chec and continue to work on the platform in my spare time.
Another awesome tool we use at Silverstripe is Google Analytics, for some great tips take a look at our cheat sheet below!