Content marketing is a powerful way for small businesses to market their products or services.
But, content marketing can be hard to track and organize for small businesses.
Which is unfortunate because having strong internal ways to stay organized is critical to success. Without these processes, you end up missing out on beneficial relationships, you write poor content, you lose guest blogs and generally waste time which is particularly worrisome if you have limited resources.
So how can you stay organized if you don’t have bazillions of dollars to build something custom? What are the best tools to organize the process and ensure that you don’t waste effort and get results?
Fortunately, there are quite a few tools you can use and we won’t keep you waiting.
If you accept guest blogs as part of your content marketing strategy, it can quickly become an unmanageable process.
Fortunately, using Submittable you can create custom embedded forms and then review the submissions that come through making the process much easier than messaging your content creators 10,000 times over email.
Thousands of organizations use Submittable to manage the process so it’s likely to work well for your business.
If you’re doing outreach to build backlinks either by guest blogging, broken link building or just reaching out to be included in lists, one of the best ways to organize the process is with a simple excel spreadsheet.
An easy way to set this up is to have tabs for guest blogging, broken link building, list outreach and more.
Then, just track the name of the organization in a column along with the date of outreach and any updates you have.
Using an excel system like this will help you better manage the process and ensure you don’t forget to reach out or follow up on your content marketing efforts.
You’ll also have a nice document where you can see the progress you’ve made all in one place!
Hubspot is the go-to tool for managing your inbound marketing efforts.
Using Hubspot, you can publish posts, track how you rank for keywords, track backlinks, set up automated emails, improve your SEO and much more.
Managing everything in one place and having plenty of analytics to track your progress allows you to focus on what matters and stay organized internally so that your external marketing efforts are more successful.
The only downside is that Hubspot can be a bit pricey, especially for small businesses with plans starting at a few hundred dollars per month.
Fortunately, there are other alternatives that offer similar functionality for a bit less.
Many content marketers simply pick a topic they think will be popular and write a blog post about it.
But, there are no hard numbers to support their decision which means that their efforts in writing and promoting the piece are being wasted to a degree.
BuzzSumo helps prevent that.
Using BuzzSumo you can track which keywords are trending and get the most search traffic which allows you to get the most out of the time you dedicate to inbound marketing.
You can also view which influencers are best to promote your content.
Overall, BuzzSumo can help take a lot of the guess work out of creating and promoting your content.
A big part of staying organized is seeing how your inbound marketing efforts develop over time and monitoring your site ranking.
Arguably the best tool for that is Ahrefs.
Ahrefs allows you to track your search traffic, check in on competitors and partners, and monitor your sites SEO and rankings over time.
At $100 a month for the base plan it’s well worth the cost to track your progress internally.
There are a wealth of tools that exist to track your content marketing efforts internally.
In addition to these five, you can find tons more just by Googling “Content Marketing Tools” or “Inbound Marketing Automation Tools.”
If you have a need, there is probably a tool out there that will do it for you. Also, make sure to consider budget along with convenience when making these decisions. For example, while $100 a month may seem expensive, how much time is it saving your salaried social media manager?
At the end of the day when you have good internal systems in place to manage and organize your content marketing efforts, you will be amazed by the results.