Are you feeling overloaded by all the different marketing tools your company is using?
Do you feel like it’s turned into too much of a good thing?
Most companies are feeling the same way. It’s called multisystem chaos, and it’s a real problem.
When you keep seeing articles such as 41 Must Have Digital Marketing Tools to Help You Grow and 58 Best Marketing Tools to Build Your Strategy in 2018, you start to wonder how you’ll cut through all the noise. The time it takes to weed through and choose the marketing tools you will use in your business alone is a major time-killer.
You can learn more about multisystem chaos and the pros and cons of marketing technology in Part 1 of this article. In Part 2, we are going to provide some tips for reducing that chaos.
Examples of Marketing Tools You Might Want (or Not Want) in Your Marketing Tool Kit
The number of marketing tools we use as marketers is astounding. Here’s a quick dive into the different types of software, apps, and tech most businesses are using on a daily basis…
Automation tools remove the manual aspect of certain marketing tasks. Marketo and Eloqua are high-end marketing automation systems that come fully loaded with features and integrations that can handle many aspects of your marketing. Hubspot is a less expensive option that is still stacked with numerous automations.
There are also plenty of automation tools that were developed for specific purposes. For example, Aweber, Customer.io, and Userfox provide email marketing automations that will automatically trigger emails.
One of the best ways to cut multisystem chaos is to integrate as many of your marketing tools together as possible. For example, IFTTT (If This Then That) integrates hundreds of marketing apps and devices together, such as Gmail, Google Drive, social media, Fitbit, voice assist, photos, calendars, music, security systems, and so much more. Basically, you create your own “if this happens, then that” recipes to automate your marketing tasks.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems are essential for any effective sales team. They help companies track their leads, manage their relationships with their customers and prospects, and allow them to deliver leads to their sales team. Hubspot has a CRM that is actually free. Other options include Keep (formerly known as Infusionsoft), Zoho, Salesforce, and Close.
Collaboration & Project Management Tools
Especially with so many people now working remotely, collaboration tools can be a blessing. These tools allow companies to store and access shared files and work together with others to complete projects. Some examples are Google Drive, Trello, Box, JIRA, and Asana.
Content Creation Tools
You are likely using several different content creation tools in your business. Think about it—you use one tool to create social images, another to create e-book covers, another to create blogs, and another to create videos. Some of the best content creation tools include Canva, Piktochart, Recordit, and Kap. Adobe Spark is a free and easy-to-use yet powerful tool that allows marketers to create web pages, blog posts, graphics, and videos.
Landing Page & Conversion Tools
These tools help attract and convert leads into customers. For example, Unbounce allows marketers to easily build responsive landing pages that have targeting rules to help reach the right people. It also integrates with several CMS platforms. Other great options include HubSpot Landing Pages, Hotjar, Optimizely, and Leadpages.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Tools
If you want to gain organic traffic, a robust SEO tool is important to have in your marketing arsenal. These tools help you perform keyword research, check your page rankings, and plan and optimize your content. Good choices include Google Analytics, SEMRush, Ahrefs, and Moz.
Social Media Management Tools
Social media is a beast that will suck your time away unless you find a way to manage it. Social media management tools such as Edgar, Hootsuite, Buffer, and TweetDeck help cut down the time you spend posting and interacting on social media.
Tips for Choosing Marketing Tools to Avoid Multisystem Chaos
We’ve only skimmed the surface of the marketing tools available. There’s still paid online advertising tools, email marketing tools, customer service tools, affiliate marketing tools, chat apps, funnel software, note apps, influencer tools, conference and meeting tools, event tools, and PR management tools, to name a few.
If you want to really make yourself crazy, you can check out this list of 1400 Digital Marketing Tools: The Ultimate Reference. Or, you can check out a much shorter list of 9 highly profitable marketing tools we recommend.
It’s probably safe to say that businesses will always suffer from some level of multisystem chaos. After all, new marketing tools flood the market every year, and Forrester says that “marketing automation technology is expected to grow at a 14% compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) over the next five years.”
Fortunately, there are a number of steps you can take to reduce the chaos so you can enjoy more of the benefits of marketing technology without being dragged down by too many of the disadvantages.
Perform a Marketing Technology Audit
Performing an audit of your marketing technology will help you put in perspective what marketing tools you currently have so you can cut down the chaos, improve productivity, and cut costs.
To carry out the audit, simply go through your current marketing tasks one by one and write down the tools you are using for each. Then, do a little research and write down the features and benefits of each tool (including the features you are not currently, which are easy to forget). Then, you can compare them to see where there are overlaps or where your tools are falling short.
Technology audits can be a lot of work, and so can researching different tools to find the best ones for your company. Sometimes, it’s best to hire a technology professional to help you. It will likely end up costing less in the long run since you’ll save countless hours and will probably end up with better tools than you would have found yourself.
A professional can help you weed through what you have, choose and implement new technologies, and understand how certain technologies can benefit your business more than others.
Think Long Term
Whenever you are in the market for new technology for your company, make sure you have company growth in mind. If you think about what you might need 5 years from now when your company has grown, you can better determine what software you can start using now that will grow with you. That way, you won’t need to start over with new marketing tools when you outgrow a less robust system.
Look to What You Already Have
When you are purchasing a new technology, first look at what you currently have and make sure it doesn’t have the capability to do that task. You’d be surprised how easy it is to overlook certain features on software that you are already using.
Look for Integrations
Many software products have the capability to integrate with others, which can be an easy way to avoid multisystem chaos. For example, many bookkeeping systems integrate with delivery systems. Shopping carts often integrate with different email marketing software, and CRMs often integrate with a number of marketing tools.
Consider All-in-One Solutions
If you have too many technologies and you’re starting to feel the pangs of multisystem chaos, it might be time to look for an all-in-one solution—something that will allow you to get rid of most of your software because it can do everything from marketing automation to data management to purchasing solutions, and more.
Multisystem chaos isn’t going away any time soon, but it is certainly something that can be reduced. By taking some of the steps outlined above, you can boost your productivity, reduce tech costs, and operate more efficiently.