“Money coming in says I’ve made the right marketing decisions.”- Adam Osborne
Marketing is the backbone of many businesses today, and without tools that support your business, your competitors may very well outclass you. While you can spend a hefty budget on finding the best resources for your business, hire manpower to work for you and get along with your business, there are several marketing tools that you can use on your own and get the best bang for your buck.
Marketing tools make things easy and simplify the process of professionally representing your brand. From small bloggers to top brands that rule the global market, everyone is looking to grow and marketing tools help them to increase their effectiveness.
Here are the 10 must-have marketing tools in 2016.Advertising
In order to implement different strategies and measure the impact of any business, one needs to know the frequency of the customers or visitors that they get online. Google Analytics, a simple tool developed by the tech-giant, Google, the tool makes it easy to find details about visitors, measures the impact of social media presence, and calculates conversion rates.
Google Analytics today is so developed that one can find customized reports including demographics, age, sex and user activities on their site. This helps companies to implement different strategies according to their needs and requirements.
Apart from just creating a website and a blog, many online businesses lack the capability to create conversions and generate leads. Landing pages are what makes things easy and boosts sales these days. This is where Unbounce comes in. This easy-to-use marketing tool helps marketers to create landing pages without needing to know the technical knowledge behind coding.
In order to develop conversion rates substantially, Unbounce helps to create, customize and publish beautiful landing pages to improve marketing campaigns without the help of an expert.Advertising
While images are said to speak a thousand words, content is what really boosts rankings on search engines today. RightlyWritten provides premium copywriting services including blog posts, website content, product descriptions, and more to businesses of all sizes. The monthly blog packages available at RightlyWritten allow businesses to put their website blogs on autopilot. These packages are fully customizable and businesses can choose packages per their needs and get content idea generation, pitching, creation and publishing, all taken care of.
With a fully intuitive client dashboard made available, the service also provides businesses with the ability to track their content orders in real time, place new orders and communicate in no time. Last but not the least, the quality of content delivered is second to none and does not cost an arm and a leg.
The internet has so much that people are always talking about new online businesses. Be it on social media or blogs, businesses are being discussed everywhere. This is where Mention comes in handy. This tool helps to keep track of your business as well as your competitors and helps you to get to know what people are saying.
By tracking brand names and key phrases in real time, Mention helps businesses to reach out to their potential customers and never miss out on any conversation about them.Advertising
A crowd-driven, verified review site currently in its beta stage, Crowd Reviews is a marketing tool that helps both businesses and consumers to find legitimate online reviews about technology services and software. A consumer-friendly site with transparent details completely driven by the crowd, this tool provides free access to meaningful reviews and rankings while also taking into account the strength and validity of these reviews and rankings.
IFTTT stands for “if this then that.” Considered to be an amazing tool by many, IFTTT helps marketers to automate their business. From social sharing to different networks, receiving notifications about a sale in real time and more, this fantastic tool helps businesses to set protocols based on specific actions as desired.
Also said to be a useful tool for time management, IFTTT is a perfect automation tool for marketers today.
Infographics and other visually appealing images create a better buzz today. You might not be a graphic design expert and this is where Canva comes into play. Helping to create simple images to engaging presentations, appealing social-media images and great looking infographics, this tool provides templates that are easy to use. On top of that, they also store everything online, meaning that you don’t lose your material.Advertising
While there are several email marketing tools available to use, MailChimp is often considered to be the best in the industry. With its incredibly simple platform, MailChimp offers free as well as paid plans which makes it easy for marketers to create robust email campaigns and find their customers.
Another innovative marketing tool for analyzing site analytics, KissMetrics helps marketers to analyze data more than the vanity metrics. Apart from just analyzing page views, bounce rates and time spent by a visitor, the tool actually digs deep into finding how current or potential customers interact with the website.
KissMetrics analyzes data that has a direct impact on revenue which includes conversion rates, average revenue per user, and churn rates, among other factors.
BuzzSumo is another great marketing tool that helps marketers to analyze online trends and the performance of their content. The service also helps with uncovering details relating to factors such as social media shares and the broader impact of this for your business.
Featured photo credit: Startup via pixabay.com
Last Updated on May 23, 2019
Ditch Work Life Balance and Embrace Work Life Harmony
How do you usually go about your day?
Do you wake up in the morning, get ready for work, and then spend the whole day looking forward to being at home and unwinding?
We often hear about work life balance – having a good balance between work and personal time. Whilst this may sound like a smart idea, it can also imply that we should dedicate at least half of our time to work–and sacrifice time for our “personal life”.
To me, that seems…off balance. Because, the truth is, it’s nearly impossible to split your time equally between the two. And, you may end up stressing out if you’re not able to meet that expectation of balance.
Instead, why not think of having work life harmony instead?
With this mindset, you can actually integrate work into your life in a way that feels more complete. This way, you don’t need to view work and having personal time as separate.
So, how do you achieve work life harmony?
Work Life Harmony Explained
The difference between work life balance and work life harmony is pretty simple. With the former, there is an implication that you have to sacrifice your “life” for work. But, this is the worst way to go about things! How can you truly be at peace in life if you dread 8 hours of your day?
Work life harmony on the other hand, allows your work to be a part of your life. This means that you can choose to be happy both at home, and at work! Work no longer needs to be seen as the ‘bad’ or un-fun activity.
Having work life harmony also ensures you’re truly present in whatever place you find yourself.
Just take a look at Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon for example.
He uses a non traditional approach to work by making time for breakfast every morning with his family, doesn’t set his alarm before going to bed, schedules surprisingly few meetings, and still puts aside a few minutes every day to wash his own dishes.
He believes that all his staff should stop trying to achieve a ‘balance’ in their work and personal lives as that implies a trade off. Instead, he envisions a more holistic relationship between the two.
As the world’s richest man, he must be doing something right!
Rethink Time Management
Now, when we think of striking a balance, we usually associate it with time, don’t we? How much time are we spending at work versus how much time are we spending in our personal lives?Are we taking enough time to be with our loved ones, to do meaningful activities with others or even for ourselves, or are we just dedicating all our time to work?
This is the so-called-balance that many struggle with.
With work life harmony, we learn to rethink time management. By re-assessing how you manage your time, you’ll have a lot more of it. It’s incredible how much time can get wasted over the period of a day–especially when you’re not accurately tracking it.
Unfortunately, unless you’re consciously making an effort, your brain is not always the best at making accurate judgement calls when it comes to prioritizing. It tends to have a bias towards short term benefits and short term costs.
As there are often many more options our brains link to short term benefit; when you’re trying to focus on a task that gives you a long term benefit, that task usually becomes low priority. This is otherwise known as Priority Chaos.
In order to overcome this and be in better control of your time, identify the tasks that need the most focus to get accomplished. If it’s a big task, then it’s good to break it down into smaller bite-sized actions that will provide you with a clearer short term benefit.
When setting up tasks, give yourself a time limit. The brain has a bias towards short term benefits, and your attention span is limited, so if your tasks are going to take ages to complete, you’ll end up losing focus… and wasting time.
Once you have all your tasks written down, it’s time to prioritize them. Since you have a time limit, your focus should be on the top priority tasks. By doing this, you will already be able to get more done in less time at work!
Have Passion for What You Do
Managing your time is important in achieving that work life harmony. But, perhaps of greater importance, is loving what you do in life. One of the most effective ways to achieve a work life harmony is to really enjoy, or find a purpose, in what you do for a living. Even though everyone isn’t always lucky enough to find a position that pays them for pursuing their passion, you can strive to find meaning in what you are already doing, or pursue something new entirely!
For example, say you work at an office that sells paper. While many people wouldn’t consider this a world changing pursuit, I beg to differ. Think of all the individuals in the world that rely on paper. From creative types to quantum physics experts, your role at your workplace brings incredible value to many many people all over the world. You will have, without a doubt, helped bring a new idea into existence. Several new ideas to be precise.
So have a think about what you’re doing now. Is it something that allows you to embrace your passion?
Or perhaps you might not even know what it is that you love or enjoy doing. Why not explore and reflect on what gives you joy and contentment? Is there an area or industry that you could see yourself exploring to experience that fulfillment?
Can you find a deeper purpose in what you’re already doing?
When you’re able to find meaning in your work, you’re that much closer to achieving work life harmony.
Don’t Be Intimidated By Obstacles and Limitations
Creating work life harmony is also about understanding yourself–which includes your limitations and past obstacles–as this allows you to become more resilient.
If you never had to experience struggles, challenges or setbacks, then you would never be forced to adapt and mature. So in theory, having to face obstacles in life is actually quite necessary.
Most of us think of setbacks and obstacles as negative. Though, if you’re able to maintain an optimistic attitude, you’ll almost always have a higher chance of success of overcoming those obstacles to reach your eventual goal.
Your attitude towards setbacks will define the outcome of whether you rise from the challenge or remain stuck in it. So, in order to achieve work life harmony, it’s important to have a resilient attitude as challenges will always come your way–especially when you strive to integrate work into your life, and not a separate or dominant part of life.
Delegate When You Need To
Of course, when you want to increase productivity and minimize the time or effort spent, a great way to do so is to delegate!
If you spend a lot of time doing tasks on your own that could be delegated to others (whether at work or at home) you’re losing a lot of precious free time that could otherwise be spent elsewhere.
At the end of the day, we all have a limited amount of time. So we should all be striving to create a harmonious work and living situation where we can find meaning in all that we do.
While an overall goal may be meaningful, not all of the milestones or tasks needed to get there may be meaningful. That’s because we have our strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes. Not every task is going to be enjoyable or easy to complete. That’s where delegation comes in.
Delegation simply allows you to leverage time from an external source, thus giving you opportunities to increase your own quality of time. Keep in mind that delegation should be done with deliberate attention, otherwise you may end up over relying on others.
If you find that you’re running into the problem of over delegating, then it may be time to re-evaluate your motivation for doing whatever it is that you’re doing.
Embrace the Circle and Become Happier and More Productive
Living in harmony is about feeling good about the ways in which you spend your time, despite how busy you may be.Your switch from work mode to a more personal mode should be effortless. It’s about integrating your personal life and the things you love into your busy work life!
It all begins with the shift in perspective. Understanding what your passions are, and learning to be resilient, before taking a different approach to the way you manage your time and everyday tasks.
These are steps that you can start taking to move away from balance to harmony.
Featured photo credit: Photo by Marten Bjork on Unsplash via unsplash.com