Top 16 Best Content Marketing Tools
Content marketing rules the Web — that much is indisputable. Today’s companies compete on a battlefield much more comprehensive than just the markets they offer their products on. We fight the battle to reach our customers on many fronts — online content being one of the most important.
People appreciate good, helpful content that doesn’t waste their time. So do search engine algorithms — creating great content helps your company remain discoverable, driving traffic to your site (and, by extension, your sales funnel). You need to ensure your content is up to snuff.
To help you on your content marketing journey, we assembled a list of the best tools currently on the market. No matter what you need to create, we have you covered!
What, exactly, is content marketing?
Before we begin, however, we should go over the basics. In the simplest sense, content marketing is using purpose-created pieces of content to attract visitors to your brand. The word “content” encompasses many different types of media: blog posts, videos, podcasts — the list goes on!
We can also distinguish between four different types of content based on their ultimate goal:
- Attraction content helps attract new customers to your brand.
- Authority content shows off your expertise and builds trust in your company.
- Affinity content aims to appeal to a specific segment of people to your audience — specifically, those who share common values with your brand.
- Action content encourages people to — you guessed it — take action, such as vote in a poll or visit a location.
Content marketing relies on continuously creating different media types, preferably as part of a content marketing strategy. A well-defined strategy results in more eyes on your brand and all the perks that follow from it: more potential customers, more leads, and more sales.
Content marketing also has a distinct advantage compared to other online customer outreach types — it’s not intrusive. Unlike pop-up windows and animated banners of old, blog posts and YouTube videos aren’t blocked by adblockers. What’s more, quality media continues circulating long after it’s posted — after all, good advice never goes out of date. Content is easily shared — you’ll know you’re doing a good job when you see prominent influencers linking to your articles and videos.
The best content marketing tools — the grand list
The best content planning and research tools
Before creating your content, you need to understand what interests your audience. That’s where content planning and research come in. These tools will help you evaluate which topics are worth covering and which are only helpful to a select niche.
- Google Trends will help you evaluate the popularity of a search or keyword. It’s probably the most straightforward tool on the list — but don’t underestimate it. Its simple exterior (and the $0 price tag) belie its capabilities.
- AlsoAsked.com is similar in concept. The app will show related questions and keywords people have entered into search engines for every query. You can narrow down the results by geolocation to ensure your content always resonates with your target audience.
- Moz Keyword Explorer is there for you whenever you need a more varied set of tools. The company offers a variety of free SEO resources — and some stellar paid ones, too.
- SEMRush is one of the most powerful tools on this list. Calling it a “comprehensive” set of SEO and SEM tools would be a massive understatement. SEMRush evidently subscribes to the “there’s no such thing as overkill” philosophy — its platform is filled to the brim with features.
- Our own SentiOne Listen lets you do something completely different. Forget researching keywords — how about looking into what everyday users say about any given topic online? That’s social listening. We strongly believe in it as one of the most valuable tools available to any marketer, researcher, or content creator.
The best written content tools
The Web remains a primarily text-based medium. Written content — blogs, case studies, whitepapers — keeps your website relevant in search results. Filling your blog with high-quality writing isn’t appreciated only by search engines, however! You should always greet visitors to your website with detailed answers to any questions they might have.
- We already mentioned SEMRush, but it bears repeating — how will you fill your website with good content if you don’t know what your customers are looking for? Good keyword research should always be your starting point, and few tools do it better than SEMRush.
- Good grammar is essential. Grammarly offers one of the best ways to keep your writing correct. It does much more than keep an eye out for typos, though — its higher tiers provide advice on restructuring sentences, passive voice checking and much more.
- No man is an island. The same goes for a content specialist! Unless you’re a one-person marketing team, you should coordinate your activities with others — and that’s where CoSchedule comes in. Its calendar software is designed specifically for content and marketing, allowing your team to schedule one-offs, short campaigns and long-term strategies.
The best audio content and podcast tools
The iPod may be long gone, but its legacy lives on. Podcasts are a big part of it — after all, that’s where the “pod” part of that word comes from. In 2022, podcasts are more significant than ever. Unsurprisingly, many brands are starting to produce audio content themselves. These tools will help you get started.
- In the podcasting world, the humble Audacity rules supreme. You wouldn’t think that on first impression — it looks like a program out of time, a relic of a bygone age. Its somewhat nostalgic interface, however, belies a true audio editing powerhouse. Despite the availability of many commercial alternatives, many professionals swear by the sheer power offered by Audacity.
- However, if you don’t have the time to sit down and learn everything Audacity offers, Alitu is here to provide an alternative. It’s a one-stop-shop for recording, editing and publishing podcasts. The most significant selling point is the AI-powered audio editing capabilities. Forget learning about low-pass filters and compressors: Alitu takes care of everything for you.
- Hang on, what’s WordPress doing on a list of podcasting software? Well, podcast apps have to get their episodes from somewhere — an RSS feed. RSS is the venerable Web 2.0 technology that remains relevant thanks to podcasting. It’s a common misconception that platforms like Apple Podcasts or Spotify host podcast episodes. All they do is pull audio files from RSS feeds — and there’s no easier way to host a podcast RSS feed than good old WordPress.
The best visual content and video creation tools
Each minute, YouTube users upload around 500 hours of video. In the same amount of time, Instagram receives 66,000 new photos, according to Statista. Visual content grabs people’s attention. Therefore, it should also be a good chunk of your content marketing strategy. Whether it’s long-form videos or infographics designed for social media, these tools have you covered.
- How would you like to have a fair chunk of Adobe Photoshop right in your browser? That’s what Photopea offers. That in itself should serve as enough of an encouragement, but in case that’s not enough, here’s another piece of good news: it’s almost entirely free!
- Canva is an in-browser design tool intended to help you quickly create beautiful graphics and documents — no degree in graphic design necessary! With its extensive library of templates, Canva is an excellent fit for any content manager in a hurry. Of course, if you are a trained designer, all the better — you can make your own branded templates for your team.
- Biteable is a video app designed for branded material. Whether it’s short-form tutorials, internal videos designed to augment presentations or short ads meant for YouTube and other platforms — Biteable will let you make them quickly and easily.
- Veed is a more complex piece of software designed for longer forms, live streams and everything else that might require an extra bit of oomph. Its big selling point is an extensive library of templates which will help you get going quickly.
- Sometimes, you just need to pull out the big guns. That’s when you reach for the Adobe Creative Cloud suite. From Photoshop and Illustrator, through Audition and Animate, all the way to Premiere and After Effects, Adobe’s set of products is the industry standard — and for good reason! Let the fact that “photoshopped” became a common word serve as a testament to the quality of Adobe’s offerings.
How SentiOne Listen can supercharge your content marketing strategy
Let’s circle back and talk a little bit more about why SentiOne Listen can help you bring your content marketing strategy to the next level.
It’s not enough to want to create content — you also need to know what kind of content your audience is interested in. That is where social listening comes in handy. By measuring the engagement various topics in your industry receive, you’ll always know what excites your customers and what bores them to tears.
Of course, that’s barely the peak of the iceberg. With SentiOne Listen, you can also keep track of your competition and the discussions around their offerings. Is their latest service not up to the market standard? Why not record videos promoting your product, designed to highlight the areas where your competitors fall short?
Or perhaps there’s a new technology that everybody’s talking about. SentiOne Listen can easily alert you to that chatter before it reaches critical mass — allowing you to be the first to talk about it. Becoming an industry thought leader has never been easier!
Of course, that’s barely the start of the benefits a well-oiled social listening machine can bring to you and your company. Contact us and schedule your demo period — and we’ll show you just how deep the rabbit hole goes.