Starting a business is no small task. And marketing a startup presents its own challenges. Most startups, no matter the industry, have one thing in common: Limited funding. Running on bootstrapped budgets, most don’t have the much-needed resources to carry out robust marketing campaigns.
You’re probably wondering how to let the world know about your phenomenal product. If so, you’re in the right place. We’ll walk you through the best marketing tools for startups–and don’t worry, most of them are free or low cost. As for the paid ones, they’re priced to help fledgling startups without deep pockets.
So let’s get right to it.
Bootstrapped or not, marketing is essential. Without it, no one will know your product exists, no matter how good it is. For this reason, startups should leverage everything at their disposal and get the word out about what they have to offer. Here are our top 7 digital marketing tools to help you with your DIY marketing.
Data is crucial in your marketing strategy. While many data analytics tools come with a hefty price tag, Google Analytics comes free, making it our first pick. Powerful enough to give you insights into where traffic on your website comes from, what they do there, and much more, Google Analytics is one tool every startup should have in their toolbox.
So why is data important in marketing? Data helps you understand your target audience better, which gives insight into what types of marketing campaigns will perform best. These days, people consume content on a variety of devices, so you’ll need to know which devices are most used by your target audience. Then, you can put more emphasis on those platforms.
Seasoned marketers will tell you that data has the power to greatly increase the return on investment (ROI) on your marketing. A good example of this: Mumzworld saw a 300 percent ROI on their ad spend thanks to insights from Google Analytics. Need we say more?
A leaking sales funnel can be frustrating. After all, it takes time, effort, and money to build one so it has to convert, right?
Plug those leaks with Hotjar. Like Google analytics, it’s a web analytics tool. But Hotjar goes further–it gives you data on activities visitors take on your website, like clicks and scrolls. You get insights into how users are interacting and, most importantly, where they drop off.
While Hotjar is a paid tool, it’s affordable–pricing starts at $89/month for websites with up to 20,000 visitors a day. Not ready to commit? You can sign up for a 15-day trial. But if you’ve got a bit of money to spare, Hotjar is one of the best marketing channels to invest in.
Email boasts of ROIs of up to 4400%. Effective as this marketing platform is, it’s also affordable, particularly if you opt for a platform like Emma.
Emma is a powerful email marketing tool that allows you to easily build an email list, connect to your audience on a personal level, and execute effective campaigns. With its ease of use and powerful features (like advanced segmentation and analytics tools), you can be up and running in no time. Emma’s high deliverability rates also ensure that the chances of your emails landing in the right inbox are close to 100%. Other features include:
Emma HQ: Emma HQ allows for approval and monitoring of email campaigns across multiple locations.
An analytics dashboard: Get insight into how people interact with your emails.
A/B testing: Send the best email by split testing different elements of your emails and amalgamating the ones that perform best.
Landing page builder: Build landing pages as easily as you would compose an email with Emma’s drag-and-drop landing page builder.
If there’s one thing you need to help you push your startup off the ground, it’s a targeted audience that you can pitch your product to. Email is the best platform to help you do that as it gives you direct access to your ideal customers. That’s why Emma ranks high on this list of the best marketing tools for startups.
Content marketing is another necessary (and cost-effective) marketing strategy. Content marketing simply means producing content to help people find you and your product online. To achieve your desired results, you need to conduct keyword research. This helps you learn what your ideal customers type into search bars when looking for the solution you provide.
This is where KWFinder comes in.
KWFinder not only gives you keywords you should aim to rank for, but it also gives you insights into where your competitors rank with those terms.
Armed with that knowledge, you can create an effective content calendar and write high-ranking content that drives traffic to your website and boosts your bottom line.
Building high-converting landing pages is essential to growing your business. If designed and built well, a landing page can be the best lead generation tool. Leadpages is an easy-to-use landing page builder with hundreds of well-designed and optimized templates to choose from.
As a bootstrapped startup founder, you may not have the resources to hire a designer to create your landing page for you. This is where Leadpages comes in. Even without design knowledge, creating something beautiful from scratch is easy. With a great support system (which includes weekly group coaching), you’ll be generating new leads in no time.
And Leadpages does more than landing pages. It comes with loads of other tools–like pop up boxes, tracking and analytics, and more–to help you optimize your online presence. Pricing starts at $25/month, but a free trial is also available.
Social media marketing is a great way to build buzz around your brand and drive sales. But posting regularly on social platforms your customers frequent can be time-consuming–especially since you have to switch between platforms.
Hootsuite is a great tool that allows you to schedule your posts without having to switch between social media accounts. From one dashboard you can:
Monitor all your feeds
Like, comment, and share
Hootsuite also integrates with several other marketing tools and gives basic analytics. It stands out as one of the best marketing tools for startups. And the best part is the price: It’s free (although you have to upgrade to access advanced features).
Creating brand awareness is one of the biggest challenges faced by startups. Getting eyeballs on your product can be a bear. Fortunately, tools like Bannersnack are available to help you create eye-catching online banners. Bannersnack is an intuitive drag-and-drop builder where you can create banners from scratch or use a template in the extensive template library.
With banners that display well on all devices (and platforms) and powerful call-to-action buttons, Bannersnack is a stellar tool to help showcase your product and drive traffic to your website. For those on a shoestring budget, pricing starts at $7/month–but you can definitely get some traction on the forever free plan.
Marketing, overlooked as it can be in the initial stages of a business, plays an important role in growth and success. Having the right marketing tools can help you:
Automate and scale your marketing
Working with a team to run your marketing campaigns? Then check out our favorite digital marketing tools for teams.