Any good businessperson (or even a mediocre one) will be able to tell you that effective marketing is a critical part of your business strategy.

It is fundamental to operations including bringing in new customers, maintaining long-term client relationships, and increasing sales. This is as true in the world of design as in any other sector.

So while you're probably aware of your choices when it comes to animation apps and design software, you might not know where to start with marketing planning.

When you set up a business venture, whether you’re flying solo or part of a larger team, you’ll soon realize that keeping track of all of your marketing efforts can be a mammoth task.

Luckily for you, we live in an age where pretty much all marketing activities can be automated and optimized through online marketing tools. Unluckily for you, there’s such a wealth of options out there in terms of marketing software that knowing where to look can feel like a battle all in itself.

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But fear not: we’ve picked out the marketing tools with the most powerful features to help you decide what will work best for your business needs.

We know you’ve heard about the heavy hitters already, so we won’t waste your time recommending popular productivity management platforms like Notion and Asana, or email marketing software like Mailchimp.

Those tried-and-true platforms are undeniably fantastic marketing tools, but there’s so much more out there for you to discover. Read on to hear about the new kids on the block in the world of marketing automation software.

What is marketing software?

Basically, we’re talking about any sort of marketing automation platform which makes your life easier when it comes to performing marketing tasks.

Because “marketing” encompasses so many things in business, these tools can help you with loads of processes, including customer relationship management, collecting and analyzing user data, internal communications, social media marketing, and scoring new client leads.

And that’s just for starters. Any activity that falls under your marketing plan will have some sort of software to help you complete it.

How will marketing automation software help my business?

Hopefully you’re beginning to see how broad the scope of marketing is, and just how powerful its impacts can be.

To put it simply: this is not an aspect of your business you can afford to drop the ball on. It’s also not something you can realistically manage alone. The vast majority of SMEs use some sort of marketing automation software to increase their efficiency, improve output, and bump up revenues. If you’re not tapping into the possibilities of online marketing tools, you’re leaving money on the table.

There’s too much to choose from! Which software should I pick?

We hear you, it’s no easy task to wrap your head around all of the offerings out there.

Take a minute to map out the key areas for improvement in your marketing plan. Where could your processes be more efficient? Where is there room for growth? Where can you afford to spend a little extra money for the ease of automation?

Once you’ve decided which marketing areas you want to focus on, you’ll have a clearer idea of what software will be most helpful for you.

We’ve broken down our list into three key categories where online software can be most impactful: communication, design tools, and email automation. This by no means covers everything, but improving on any of these critical areas will have the biggest impact on your business growth. In each category, we’ll highlight three software options that you should be aware of. Let’s get started!

Communication

Communication software is anything that aids clear and consistent communication, both within a team and with clients and customers. Think Slack, Zoom, Google Hangout. In a remote-first, globalized world, these tools are indispensable.

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Slite

Slite is an all-in-one platform which covers all of your communication bases. Use it to manage and track projects, collaborate as a team on brainstorms and documents, share files, create content calendars, and chat with coworkers. Its super intuitive design allows you to stay in constant contact with your team, and gives you a traceable overview of internal processes.

Image:Slite

Nifty

This workflow manager lets you collaborate on tasks and track work processes with ease. It can serve as a comprehensive site to organize multiple projects and team members in one place. We especially like that you can personalize the display settings to suit your needs and work style, and track working time to achieve transparency and improve productivity.

Image:Nifty

Troop Messenger

Troop Messenger is a communication platform with all sorts of functionalities like video calling, instant messaging, group chats, file sharing, and screen sharing. No more endless switching between Zoom, Teams, WhatsApp, and Slack — it’s a smart idea to centralize your communication avenues to save valuable time and make your processes more efficient.

Image:Troop Messenger

Template Design

When it comes to creating UX-friendly marketing designs for your website or social media content, your design skills will only get you so far. Using a design software can help you create beautiful digital content which is guaranteed to engage your audience and ultimately improve conversion rates.

Photo byFirmbee.com/Unsplash

Adobe Creative Cloud

This one’s not exactly an up-and-comer, but getting to grips with the Adobe platform will be a huge benefit to your skills as a design marketer. In addition to Photoshop, Premiere Pro, and InDesign, Adobe Campaign is an especially useful tool for savvy marketers. It allows you to harness customer profiles to plan and deliver effective marketing campaigns, and track the entire customer journey. Try it out for email campaigns and mobile marketing.

Easelly

Easelly is a great tool to help you create compelling designs. They offer thousands of templates to kick start the creative process, be it for infographics, logos, presentations, or other digital content. Using a tool like this will help get your message across, convince potential customers about your product, and create maximum engagement with the design asset.

Image:Easelly

Marq

For businesses with multiple people working on design marketing, Marq is a useful platform to keep your output cohesive and in line with branding guidelines. You can create templates with locked parameters to ensure that all pieces of content have a standardized look, and implement custom integrations with external applications. They also offer analytics software to track user engagement and provide actionable insights into how you can improve your digital content.

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Email

Reaching customers through email and newsletters is a vital tool for modern marketers, as we’ve discussed on the blog before. These applications will help you to improve your email design with customizable templates, drag & drop design features, and helpful customer behavior analytics.

BEE Pro
Image:BEE Pro

CleverReach

CleverReach is a fantastic marketing tool for businesses wanting to send out impactful emails and newsletters. They offer custom-coded and pre-built email templates, as well as management software to organize email recipients, implement newsletter tagging, and analyze conversion rates. They also help you integrate your emails with external e-commerce systems, Customer Relationship Management software (CRM), and Content Management Software (CMS).

Image:CleverReach

Constant Contact

With a focus on establishing meaningful audience interaction, Constant Contact helps you create outstanding email campaigns which drive customer engagement. Their tiered plans include access to email templates, integration with list-growth tools using Google marketing platforms, dynamic content personalization, and other customer personalization at scale.

Image:Constant Contact

Your marketing team just got a whole lot smarter

So there you have an overview of some of the most powerful marketing software tools at your disposal.

Using an assortment of these platforms will help streamline your communication, ensure cohesive email design and social media posts, and increase customer engagement with sales emails and newsletters.

Start integrating these platforms into your marketing strategy and watch how your business starts to flourish. And don't forget that good marketing always starts with a high-quality product, so brush up on your design skills with Linearity's courses and illustration tools!

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