The Right Tools for Content Marketing Success

The Practical Tools to Create Online Content.  Including Audio, Graphics and Video

Having the Right Tools is a key to Maximising Content Marketing Success

“Content creation is the contribution of information to any media and most especially to digital media for an end-user/audience in specific contexts.” Typical forms of content creation include maintaining and updating web sites, blogging, photography, videography, online commentary, the maintenance of social media accounts, and editing and distribution of digital media. – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Content_creation

 

While every marketer must have content, the biggest challenge is producing sufficient good content, given their limited resources (budget and staff – not to mention research and writing skills), that attracts, holds and converts prospects.

To be good at Content Marketing you need to be able to produce and send good content on a regular, consistent basis. Having the right tools is vital to managing/maximising productivity. The best writers have to be able to find relevant topics and content. This means they have to have either a large reservoir of articles and/or find input (references) from other sources.

“With each piece of content, you need to:

  • Rally the right resources, sometimes pulling from in-house, outsourcing, or doing a combination of both.
  • Ensure each content asset achieves its aim and incorporates targeted keywords.
  • Manage the review process, which may vary, depending on the type of project.
  • Distribute and promote the content via multiple channels, often staggered over time.
  • Monitor and respond to comments about the content.
  • Measure the results and adjust the strategy while relaying the changes moving forward.”

http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2012/08/content-production-tools-content-marketing/

 

What to use depends on your focus and approach to engaging your target audiences. A key step to creating great content is understanding the audience you are writing for. If you are and expert you will already know your industry and know many of the sources of information, news, articles, and current ideas. You will likely know many of the ways of finding other content creators both to find ideas you can either link to or to modify (appropriately of course!– and usually with referencing). You can often use these links and contacts to build relationships and use them to amplify your own distribution. Thus making the content you create work harder for you.

 

However, even though you may be knowledgeable and an expert in your chosen field, keeping up to date and finding more sources is going to be in your interest. The following is a sample list of some of the tools that will help make your research and content creation workflow easier and faster. They are the tools that will help you find and get connected to the right content for your needs (the needs of your audience), and connect with other information creators in area of interest – Your Content Vertical.

NB – The lists of tools that follow are as at August 2015. Apps come and go.

Search and Discovery Tools

Google Trends

Google Trends tracks the popularity of keywords in Google Search over time. This is a simple but powerful way to see what people like your audience are interested in. https://www.google.com/trends/

Feedly

RSS feeds are a good way to keep up with what is happening to monitor your industry for news and content. Feedly is a great way to subscribe to RSS feeds. http://feedly.com/i/welcome

 

Prismatic

Prismatic is a good way for many to find new content. Subscribe to just about any category or specific blogs to find useful information. http://getprismatic.com

Digg

Digg is a highly-curated feed of “the most interesting and talked about stories on the Internet right now.” The daily email newsletter is for many a must-read. http://digg.com/

 

Fre.sh

Fre.sh is constantly updated feed of the 50 most popular stories on the web. Most of the links send readers to BuzzFeed stories but there are links to great across the web. http://fre.sh/

 

LinkedIn

A good place to find ideas links etc. on specific content. LinkedIn is not perfect, and there is often a lot of dross, but it does have some very good specialist groups with a lot of material. https://www.linkedin.com

Google Public Data

There is a huge amount of data here and Google has made it all very easy to navigate and share. http://www.google.com/publicdata/directory

 

Others: Data mining and visualisation

 

Content Reading and Managing Tools

Instapaper and Pocket

Instapaper lets you save, read, and manage the things you find on the Internet. It’s a great way to save articles for offline reading. It cleans up articles to minimise distractions. Set it up on all of your devices to collect content for later. It will sync the articles and videos all your devices – iPhone, iPad, Android, or Kindle. You can read anything you save, anywhere and anytime you want, even offline!

Pocket is similar to Instapaper and an equally useful great product.

https://www.instapaper.com/

https://getpocket.com/

 

SproutSocial

Sprout’s social media management tools help monitor, respond, measure and collaborate to ensure smarter and faster communication. It provides CRM and reporting tools, as well as the ability to track Foursquare check-ins. This allows users to gauge popular menu items, customer service and the types of crowds particular promotions/events are bringing in, etc.” – http://sproutsocial.com

 

Others

  • Journalists’ Toolkit: http://www.jtoolkit.com/wp/
  • Ben Franklin Project: by Journal Register Company – https://jrcbenfranklinproject.wordpress.com/tools/

 

Content Curation and Management Tools

 

Content curation is the process of collecting, organising and displaying information relevant to a particular topic or area of interest. – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Content_curation

 

“Content Curation is the act of discovering, gathering, and presenting digital content that surrounds specific subject matter. …. content curation is now becoming a marketing staple for many companies with a successful online presence.” http://www.econtentmag.com/Articles/Resources/Defining-EContent/What-is-Content-Curation-79167.htm

 

And if those definitions don’t help enough, there are a lot more out there. Try http://heidicohen.com/content-curation-19-definitions/

Many (most?) marketers curate other people’s content to supplement the original information they create. The following are some tools to help content creators “curate” their content. All sites have examples

Storify

Storify makes curating tweets, Instagram posts and YouTube videos simple and allows users to embed their work on their own sites in a quick and easy way to cover breaking news and cover an event. https://storify.com/

 

Timeline JS

Timeline JS uses Google Spreadsheets to allow you to build timelines that include videos, photos and tweets. It is a tool used to create embeddable, responsive timelines. http://timeline.knightlab.com/

 

Piktochart

Infographics are often very useful tools for displaying data-driven content but also hard to create from scratch. Piktochart uses template and drag-and-drop tools to make the process much easier. http://piktochart.com/

 

Infogr.am

Another tool for creating infographics but this one works best with spreadsheets of data. https://infogr.am/

 

ThingLink

ThingLink is a tool to make images interactive. Upload an image, tag it, and then embed it on your site. http://www.thinglink.com

 

Others

 

Content Production Tools

Content creators managers need to take a “multi-channel” approach to content production, which means managing several publishing workflows to ensure content is properly written, edited, formatted, and configured for optimal consumption for a variety of digital devices.

 

Content production — is a set of a complex set of activities that take content (tech docs, marketing materials, proposals, your HR on-boarding guide) from some “raw” form into a medium for consumption.

 

“If you are a content marketer, you know you need to think like a publisher. Whether you are publishing a blog post or white paper, shooting a video or creating an infographic, the process can be complex and tedious, especially when you are churning out lots of content and working with numerous writers and designers.

With each piece of content, you need to:

  • Rally the right resources, sometimes pulling from in-house, outsourcing, or doing a combination of both.
  • Ensure each content asset achieves its aim and incorporates targeted keywords.
  • Manage the review process, which may vary, depending on the type of project.
  • Distribute and promote the content via multiple channels, often staggered over time.
  • Monitor and respond to comments about the content.
  • Measure the results and adjust the strategy while relaying the changes moving forward.

http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2012/08/content-production-tools-content-marketing/

 

Images and Video Content

Many audiences really like their content as images and video. For images:

Pinterest

Pinterest is a very popular web and mobile application company, which operates a photo sharing website. – https://www.pinterest.com/

 

Instagram

Instagram is an online mobile photo-sharing, video-sharing and social networking service that enables its users to take pictures and videos, and share them on a variety of social networking platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Flickr.- https://instagram.com/?hl=en

 

Snapchat

Using the Snapchat application, users can take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them to a controlled list of recipients. These sent photographs and videos are known as “Snaps”.- https://www.snapchat.com/

 

For Video:

 

YouTube

YouTube is a video-sharing website YouTube now operates as one of Google’s subsidiaries.

www.youtube.com

 

Meerkat

Meerkat is a mobile app that enables users to do live video streaming over the web service Twitter, sending video to their Twitter followers. – https://meerkatapp.co/

 

Periscope

Periscope a live video streaming app for iOS and Android (for live broadcasting) – https://www.periscope.tv/

 

Facebook Live Streaming

Facebook has joined the live-stream-video scene. The service allows users to broadcast an event and viewers to comment as they’re watching, similar to other live video apps like Periscope. – https://apps.facebook.com/livestream/

 

Others: For Images, audio and video editing

 

Here are a few tools to help content creators manage their productivity.

Mou

Mou is a Markdown editor* for developers. The suggestion is that you stop writing web articles in Word. Markdown is a basic text-to-HTML conversion tool that makes writing for the web easier.. (* Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool for web writers. Markdown allows you to write using an easy-to-read, easy-to-write plain text format, and then convert it to structurally valid XHTML (or HTML).) http://25.io/mou/

 

Pixelmator

Every content creator should have basic image-editing skills but Photoshop is probably overkill. Pixelmator is Photoshop’s little brother and it’s cheap, it’s an amazing image editor. http://www.pixelmator.com/

 

Clipboard Cleaner

Removes formatting from your clipboard so you easily move text without styling. http://download.cnet.com/ClipBoard-Cleaner/3000-2384_4-10417573.htm

 

techwhirl

techwhirl is a research portal (focused on business communication enterprise publishing rather than mass market production and publishing) aims to help you understand the processes, tools, and best practices that deliver content from its repository to your intended audiences.- http://techwhirl.com/publishing-content-production/

 

Want some other Content production ideas? Have a look at “8 Content Production Tools to Help Marketers Transform into Publishing Machines”: http://www.slideshare.net/CMI/8-content-production-tools-to-help-marketers-transform-into-publishing-mach-ines

 

More Content Marketing Tool Lists

This isn’t the only great list out there. Here are few others that you should bookmark.

 

Other Useful Tools for Content Creation

  • CutePDF: creates PDF from any file that you can print
  • Widgetbox: self-service web widget platform
  • TagCrowd: creates your own tag cloud from any text
  • Wordle: generates word cloud like an art
  • Monitter: Twitter conversation monitor
  • Zamzar: free online file conversion tool. Can convert audio and video files as well.
  • Qualtrics: online survey software

 

Did you find this article interesting? What would you add or change?

If you have an interest in Social Media and Content, check out our next article (coming shortly) and check out the following up-coming seminars from Ark

 

Strategic Content Communication Day – $695 plus if you join early

Creating engaging and high impact communications through an integrated brand content strategy

Tuesday, 22 September 2015, Rydges Sydney Central

http://www.arkgroupaustralia.com.au/

http://www.arkgroupaustralia.com.au/Events-F048ContentDAYSSYDNEY.htm

 

Content Creation Day – $695 plus if you join early

A practical guide to create online audio, photo and video content

Wednesday, 23 September 2015, Rydges Sydney Central

http://www.arkgroupaustralia.com.au/

http://www.arkgroupaustralia.com.au/Events-F048ContentDAYSSYDNEY.htm

 

The Australian Social Media Best Practice Toolkit

Social media beyond posts for proactive community engagement and an improved service delivery

Thursday, 24 September 2015, Rydges Sydney Central

http://www.arkgroupaustralia.com.au/

http://www.arkgroupaustralia.com.au/Events-F048ContentDAYSSYDNEY.htm

 

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