August 26, 2021 By SmartBiz Team

It can be nearly impossible to reach your marketing goals without the right tools. But in this digital age, there’s no reason to use outdated or clunky systems. With the right apps, you’ll not only be more efficient, you’ll be able to complete your marketing tasks faster and easier. Here are 10 apps you can use to streamline your marketing operations.

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1. Buffer

Buffer is a software application you can use from your computer or mobile device. Buffer was designed to manage social media accounts. Tools give you the ability to schedule posts to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, as well as analyze their results and engage with their community.

It's touted as being best for publishers, mid-stage startup teams, non-profits, higher education, sports teams, e-commerce, solopreneurs, businesses, and enterprises. In short, if you are running a small business, Buffer should be on your list to check out.

Pricing: $15.00 per month to start. A free trial is available as well.


2. Hootsuite

Hootsuite has a 4.5 out of 5 rating from over 2,000 user reviews on Capterra. It’s the most widely used social media management platform, with over 16 million users around the world including more than 800 of the Fortune 1000.

Hootsuite is designed to implement social media strategies across multiple platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and YouTube. Teams can collaborate across all devices and departments to manage social media profiles, engage with customers, and generate revenue.

One reviewer writes, “Hootsuite is a great tool for beginners and small social media teams! It's easy to use and has just about all of the basics you could need to start scheduling and managing social.”

Pricing: Ranges from $29 per month to $599. A free trial is available


3. Mention

Mention is a social media marketing suite that lets users drive the conversation. In other words, Mention helps you listen to what is being said online about your brand or a product through industry analytics. One reviewer writes, “It helped monitor competitor mentions, my brand's mentions and most importantly it helped gauge how people felt about my brand, whether positive, negative or neutral.”

Pricing: Ranges from $0 to $83 per month with larger package prices available upon request.


4. Sprout Social

If you’re a one-man show, this may not be the tool for you. Sprout Social is touted as the best social media management tool for team-based social media management. The app has a full suite of scheduling tools and also gives the ability to post to multiple platforms at once. You can choose when to post or you can let Sprout Queue automatically schedule posts at the best time for you.

A great feature for business owners who closely track marketing efforts is the ability to tag updates. You can easily recall them later for analytics analysis. You have the ability to tag and track any content.

Pricing: Ranges from $99 per user per month for the standard package and $249 for advanced. A 30 day free trial is available.


5. Iconosquare

There are over 25 million businesses using Instagram to promote their services or products. If you’re one of them, Iconosquare might be for you. Iconosquare doesn’t have a lot of competition when it comes to Instagram management and is also targeted to business Facebook pages. The app uses a dashboard with simple navigation that includes a pop-out menu, clean white backgrounds, and attractive typography.

Iconosquare can schedule content for both Instagram and Facebook including a single image and video posts for Facebook, plus Instagram carousels and Instagram Story updates.

Read how a SmartBiz Loans customer is exclusively using Instagram to drive awareness and sales here: Success Story: The Infinity Strap.

Pricing: A 14 day free trial is available. $29 a month for pro and $59 a month for advanced. There’s also an option for agencies. Contact for details.


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6. Facebook Ads Manager

If Facebook is a channel to attract your target customer, look into Facebook Ads Manager. It’s simply a tool where you can create and manage your Facebook ads. You can view, make changes and see results for all of your Facebook campaigns.

With Ads Manager you can:

  • Create ad campaigns: Design ads in a step-by-step process . You have the ability to identify your marketing objective, the people you want to reach, the places to show your ad, and the ad format.
  • Manage multiple ads at once and duplicate them.
  • See how your ads perform with up-to-date data.

Pricing: Varies depending on campaign


7. GetResponse

The GetResponse mobile app works with the GetResponse email marketing platform. You can implement email marketing campaigns, collect leads, and keep up to date on metrics. Create and send emails, manage your contact list, follow up on the results of your most recent email promotion, and analyze click-through ratios. The app lets you view individual emails in an autoresponder series, as well as past emails.

One reviewer notes that there are a lot of options for the low price and he’s able to manage his mailing list easily from the Android App.

Pricing: The Basic package starts at $15 per month, Plus is $49 per month, professional is $99 monthly.


8. MailChimp

This all-in-one marketing platform provides AI-powered, simple-to-use tools. Send marketing emails and automated messages, create targeted ad campaigns, build and sell online.

If you’re ready to start planning your email campaigns, check out Email Marketing Tips for Small Business Owners. You’ll learn how to launch a campaign and what to look out for as you plan your strategy.

Pricing: The standard package starts at 14.99 per month and you can get started with a free trial.


9. Hubspot

The HubSpot CRM is ideal for small and medium-sized businesses (10-200 employees). HubSpot keeps all contacts in one centralized, customizable database and manages your pipeline. You can see everything about a lead in one place. HubSpot is easy to set up and intuitive to use.

There are 2,000+ rave reviews on Capterra for Hubspot including this one:

“Easy to get up and running, i.e. implementation is not a painful process - Less expensive than competitors - SO SO MANY amazing native integrations - Clean layout - Good mobile functionality - Easiest to learn from a user and admin perspective.”

Pricing: A starter pack is $50 per month and a professional pack is $800 monthly.


10. Asana

Nearly 6,000 customers on Capterra give Asana 4.5 out 5 stars. In fact, the SmartBiz Loans sales and marketing teams use this web and mobile app to manage and track projects. Asana keeps projects organized, stakeholders up to date, and helps users meet deadlines and goals.

You won’t waste time shuffling between meetings, email, chat, and spreadsheets to coordinate and manage all of your team’s work. Asana organizes everything from company objectives to routine tasks in one place.

Pricing: Prices range from free for basic up to $24.99 for the business package.


11. Trello

Like Asana, Trello is a project management app your team can use to plan the steps in a marketing campaign and execute them in a timely fashion. Trello includes project specific boards, cards, activity logs, and calendar tools ideal for equally distributing work and ensuring all deadlines are met. Higher tiers include different project views that can make managing your marketing campaigns even easier.

Pricing: A free tier exists, as does a Business Class package that’s $10 per user per month. Custom enterprise plans start at $17.50 per user per month.


12. Slack

Slack is a team communication and project management tool that facilitates real-time messaging among your employees. One-on-one chats and group messages are available, as are channels devoted to certain processes or topics. For example, you could start a #marketing channel to communicate with your entire marketing team or a #client channel to get updates from employees working for that client. Plus, with the Slack mobile app, your team can stay in touch with you on the go.

Pricing: Slack has a free tier, a Pro tier that costs $6.67 per user per month, and a Business tier that costs $12.50 per user per month. Custom enterprise plans are also available.


13. Canva

Canva has seemingly limitless applications in marketing. You can use it to create eye-catching Instagram posts or devise your new logo. Its pre-built templates keep the platform usable even for small businesses owners or marketers with minimal graphic design experience. It also comes with integrated social media sharing tools so you can go right to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter with your stunning new visuals.

Pricing: Canva offers a free introductory tier. Its Pro tier costs $9.99 per month for the first user and an additional $4.99 for every additional team member. It also has an Enterprise tier that costs $30 per user per month.


14. Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is the industry standard for advanced graphics editing. It can play a vital part in helping your company create ads and other marketing materials with compelling photos. It also has numerous applications in logo development and other visual marketing needs. Perhaps most importantly, Adobe Photoshop is also an excellent video editing tool, so no content marketing strategy is complete without it.

Pricing: Adobe Photoshop costs $20.99 per month.


15. YouTube Studio

YouTube Studio is a great tool for engaging your audience and finding new followers. Its analytics tools will show you how effective your videos are at reaching people and provide actionable insights. You’ll also get customization tools with which you can alter your YouTube channel to include your branding and other key materials.

Pricing: YouTube Studio is entirely free.


How can marketing help small businesses?

Marketing is essential for small businesses because it:

  • Grows your audience . Marketing is the process of raising awareness of your products and services while attracting customers to your business. If you neglect to make marketing efforts, you might artificially limit your customer base and face revenue challenges.
  • Develops your customer relationships . Marketing targets both potential and current customers. When it focuses more on those already buying from you, it can result in increased customer loyalty. This loyalty results in more sales, each of which costs far less to obtain than purchases from new customers.
  • Establishes your brand . The more you get your business out there, the more people engage with your company. This increased level of interaction spreads brand awareness and can help you determine what is and isn’t working about your logo, brand voice, and other branding concerns.
  • Establishes a content cycle . Creating your own unique content and sharing that of others is important to spreading the word about your offerings. Marketing inevitably involves this content creation along with the sharing of content from other channels. This content cycle results in a continuous stream of material that keeps new and longtime customers engaged with your company.
  • Manages your social media . Your business’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok are inevitably part of the above content cycle. As such, marketing is great for managing your social media posts. In fact, many marketing apps are social media management tools that allow you to schedule posts promoting your content. As you share this content and market your company, your social media presence will appeal more strongly to customers.
  • Enhances project management . Internally, implementing marketing strategies results in the development of project management workflows that you can use for all types of projects. Once you’ve set up a series of steps and a chain of command for marketing projects, you can adapt that workflow to your product development, inventory management, and other processes.
  • Streamlines communication among team members . You can’t successfully market your company without several people working together and discussing the steps they’ve taken. Marketing thus develops internal communication channels. These channels can become important for everything from project management to just casually chatting with coworkers. Having a channel for the latter can result in positive company culture.
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