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Have you ever felt like the most overworked person in your team? We all did. The main reason for your suffering was avoiding to use digital tools for agencies or using the wrong tools. Before going into detail, let me first tell you a short story.
When I was little, I use to draw mythical creatures with dozens of hands attached to their enormous bodies. Later on, I would often remember those characters, especially during the tough times at work.
What I want to say is, the more tasks I would have to do at once, the more I would wish to have multiple hands. Luckily, the digital era has given us the tools we need to stay on time and focused. These tools certainly come in handy if you have a room full of people who have to surpass themselves day in and day out.
In other words, smart software can serve as a dozen hands in the life of an agency employee. Let’s see which of the top 20 digital tools will suit your agency in 2019.
Project and Task Management
Immediately upon getting his job, my friend told me that he’s going to be a project manager. All I was thinking was how I don’t have a clue what project management is. After discovering what it consists of, I was shocked at how complicated a life of the project manager can be without the precious tools at their disposal. Fortunately, there are a few task management tools that can make your life a bit more comfortable.
If we would have to choose only one project management tool out of the bunch, it would definitely be Asana. It’s a simple software that keeps your team on track by organizing the projects while focusing on their objectives.
The newest option, called Portfolios, monitors each project in real time. The feature allows for easier reporting and future planning. What’s more, Asana provides ready-made templates like Company Goals and Event Planning for the whole team so you can run the projects effortlessly.
Another excellent project and task management tool is Teamwork. The 3-option software consists of Teamwork Projects, Teamwork Desk and Teamwork Chat.
The first one offers milestones and task tracking along with the summary report in the software management program. Teamwork Desk, on the other hand, is a customer interaction software, where you deal with the customer queries. Lastly, the Teamwork Chat is an alternative to the regular means of communication and provides instant messaging for your team. Plus, it integrates with the Projects.
In case your team needs a better workflow and data visualization, Podio will take care of it. This client-team integration software with a simple interface serves as a project collaboration tool for agencies.
Some of the biggest advantages of using Podio are automated workflows, personal dashboards, full workflow customization and unlimited storage to keep all of your projects safe in one place.
Social Media Tools
How famous is my brand? Where can I schedule posts for each of my 10 profiles? What social media campaign should I make next? Everything about managing social media and more in the paragraphs down below.
When your team needs to create and organize the posts for social media, there’s an all-in-one solution. Except for an efficient use, Kontentino will manage multiple business profiles in one calendar, offer a live post preview, and plan boosting of your company’s Facebook posts in advance. It’s a management and cooperation tool for every agency.
The greatest feature of the software is the possibility of client approvals for the scheduled posts. If your team is super-creative and comes up with plenty of ideas, Kontentino will save them for later. Furthermore, the smart tool allows for an inventive collaboration with its workflow approval and an overview dashboard. Naturally, you can request an insight into your page’s performance in a form of a report, too.
Another social media tool ideal for agencies is Falcon.io. The software manages social media content with one calendar and tracks the performance across multiple social media profiles.
It helps you create, schedule and publish the posts, as well as build social media campaigns. You can choose to monitor social media and custom searches in real time. The system has permission levels and user roles which you can assign to any team member.
Fast forward to the social media tools and we arrived at Brand24. Brand24 is a web and social media monitoring tool. It collects in real time all publicly available mentions of predefined keywords from social media, news sites, blogs, websites, discussion forums and other sources. It’s a solid and affordable tool to help you monitor and manage online reputation, track and assess marketing campaigns, track your competitors, get customer feedback, do social selling and more.
To help you make sense out of your online presence, Brand24 provides you with plenty of useful data, including sentiment analysis, social media reach, trending hashtags, locations, most influential sources mentioning your keywords.
StoryChief is great content marketing tool that helps you plan, schedule and distribute your content creations through various channels at once. It helps you to create quality content and make sure that this content is being actually seen by your potential customers. Therefore, it distributes the information through all media and websites and helps you to become a tough leader in your sector.
The program has an approval option for agencies and measures the ROI of the content you publish. Additionally, StoryChief provides a blog solution similar to WordPress but with no technical barriers.
Boosterberg is an automation tool that manages your posts through paid promotion. It checks the posts on business pages and creates the ads for your posts automatically.
In case of bad ad performance, Boosterberg will turn the ads off. The registration process takes place via Facebook. Once registered, the whole team can use one account for every business Facebook page and ad account.
Indahash is an influencer marketing platform that connects brand names with social media influencers. After downloading the app, the influencers have to do choose a campaign and publish a photo or a video with a tag.
The app may depend on the number of influencers who chose your company. However, introducing them to the software could bring you the visibility you needed.
Design Tools for Agencies
You can entrust the last group to the designers, as they will have the most benefit from it. Let’s dig into which design tools your agency can use.
Crello is a graphic design software that you can use to create instant visuals for social media, web and marketing. Use hundreds of templates in 40 formats (including video formats like Facebook Video Cover, Instagram Video Story and more) to make posts and ads without any design knowledge and in mere minutes.
With Crello, you won’t have to worry about having a visual to go with your blank link when posting on social or scramble to pick the right font for your next giveaway post on Instagram. Use the handy Resize tool to quickly duplicate your design in several formats.
Is your graphic design tool that helps you to find fresh inspiration instantly and to create attractive images easily. Moreover RelayThat gives you a hand with all painful resizing and editing because it manages to do it all in one. It is a total life saver when your designer is not around!
For those that hated art classes as kids but have to create visual content, Canva is the necessary tool. Its simple interface gives you an almost unlimited amount of graphics, symbols, photographs and fonts you can use in your projects.
Canva is the right free tool for all of your infographics and professional designs. The premium version will uncover more options if you’re in need of particularly-tailored design.
Creating stunning graphics for your agency's social media campaigns, blog posts, and other marketing purposes doesn't have to be stressful. Thanks to easy-to-use web-based software like Colorcinch! Now, with just a few clicks, even your least techie team member can create premium-level designs in only a few minutes.
Unlike many web-based editors, Colorcinch offers dual solutions to agencies. As an image editing tool, it allows agencies to touch-up their promotional/regular photographs by choosing from an extensive list of modern, premium-level filters and artistic effects. And as a graphics design tool, it provides agencies with a shortcut for creating stunning, eye-catching designs—with 50,000+ icons/graphics to pick from and a simplified interface with easy, drag-and-drop functionalities.
Invision, a digital product design platform and a collaboration tool. It offers your team to create interactive mockups which you can share live with the viewers and their feedback in real time.
The software will lead you through the entire design workflow. The designers and other team members can work together on a project with the help of a digital whiteboard.
The last and not the least digital tool for agencies is Unbounce. This useful landing page builder is much more than the name says.
Your team will not only create landing pages but popups which trigger the right customers at the right time, as well as sticky bars, a mobile-friendly design feature that boosts the conversions.
Digital Tools for SEO
Your SEO expert team is certainly already using all of the following tools, however, here’s the short list in case you forgot any of them.
If you’re keen to check out the competitors, SEMrush would be the go-to tool. The program can help you make analytics reports with all kinds of data.
You can use the free version with limited data, while the paid option will show competitor’s keywords, display ads and budget, organic competitors, as well as their product listing ads. Moreover, SEMrush will conduct a thorough link analysis and let you know what keywords you have to use in your SEO and PPC campaigns.
Not yet convinced? Well, better be, because even online retail giants such as eBay use it.
One of the best tools for SEO is definitely Moz. It consists of Moz Pro and Moz Local. Moz Pro is a toolset that will check your website’s links, do the keyword research, make SEO audits and discover page optimization insights.
Moz Local are business listings for your company. In plain English, it’s the software that prevents wrong information about your business appearing online. It connects customers with your business.
The last digital tool for SEO from the list is probably the oldest one. Don’t let its name, Screaming Frog SEO Spider frighten you. The program will crawl URL’s like Google does and later on identify the technical issues on your site.
In case you think there are duplicate content issues or broken link pages (404s) on your site, the SEO Spider will detect them and let you export them in a file. The files can then be sent to developers, UX designers, content creators or anyone else in charge of fixing these problems.
Communication can be the biggest issue that stops the natural flow in the project’s lifespan. Still, you can choose between a variety of programs that will connect team members and let them communicate more clearly.
Slack is a software where work happens, according to the company. It’s a communication tool for agencies comprised of channels which you organise by the team, by project or by topics.
These channels are perfect for the teams that put an emphasis on communication since they provide a couple of options. The members can chat via instant messaging or in special groups. What’s more, the program allows for a fast document search within the app where all your documents are stored.
Faster than Skype and more convenient than standard video conference rooms, Whereby is a video collaboration program where teams can have meetings when they need to. It offers conversations with up to 12 people (in the PRO plan) and the members can join from any device.
Whereby has a considerable video quality and takes the word “private” on a whole new level. You can lock the room and screen guests while they knock. The most helpful option is joining the room via a link, without needing to register ahead.
Other Useful Tools for Agencies
After going through the types of the tools, here are two more that might help in the everyday life of an agency. The first one is for those who need fast and efficient scheduling for meetings. The other one is for those who like their grammar as they like their work – immaculate.
Calendly is a scheduling tool to keep all your future meetings in one place. Calendly can integrate with your calendar to avoid double booking.
It also detects time zones of the invitees. That way everyone can come to a meeting at the right time. Additionally, you can create secret events and combine with the apps like Salesforce.
Grammarly is one of the best tools in this list. Everyone should use it. The platform is essentially your automated writing assistant. It corrects the grammar of the text you enter into the program.
Although it’s recommended to use the premium version with more features, the free version works just as well and only tells you what kind of errors you had in the piece instead of correcting them all. The awesome thing about it is that you can integrate it into your browser or use it with a team in the business plan.
Bonus Tool of the Month
Salesflare is the perfect CRM for any small B2B business that wants to make more sales with less work. The CRM is easy to use, visual and keeps most of your customer data automatically, so you can focus on your customers and on closing those deals. Salesflare is perfectly integrated into G Suite and Office 365. It pulls in emails, meetings, email signatures, social data,… and runs in a nifty sidebar next to your emails, so you never have to leave your email program to manage customers. It’s also the only CRM we’ve heard of that packs all its functionality in the mobile app. You can even send email campaigns on the go.
Poptin is a lead capture platform that can help you create beautiful popups, overlays and forms for your clients’ websites. You will be able to track conversions, and integrate with almost any emailing system or CRM. Poptin offers different type op popups – lightbox, full-screen’ slide-in, top and bottom bar, mobile popups and more. The platform can easily double your conversion rate and also help you reduce cart abandonment (if you have an ecommerce website). Poptin has a forever free plan and affordable pricing for agencies with relevant features as subaccounts and users’ permissions.
Moosend is an Email Marketing and marketing automation platform that combines simplicity with advanced features that will not break your Agency’s bank. It offers an intuitive and easy to use drag-and-drop email editor where the sky’s the limit in terms of your email designs. It includes real-time analytics and advanced list segmentation making sure that your customer’s campaigns are perfectly targeted to the right audience. Moosend offers a free forever plan for up to 1,000 subscribers which also allows you to send unlimited email campaigns. As an Agency you will be able to add sub-accounts to your master account and manage your client’s email list and email campaigns with ease. Finally leveraging their cost-effective pricing plans will allow you to have greater profit margins.
Notifier for Reddit allows you to get notified when keywords you care about are mentioned on Reddit. Use it to track mentions of your product or company and respond quickly to drive the conversation. Many are also using it to find new customers by tracking keywords potential customers might mention.
What about the Customers?
When I finally enlisted all of the additional hands that can simplify your work, it’s up to you to choose which of those your agency requires.
Only then you can think about how to make the most of the digital tools to engage your future customers.
Article by: Lea Kuscer