11 marketing technologies & resources you probably haven’t heard of yet
What are some of the hottest martech tools you should know about? Columnist Travis Wright rounds up his top picks to help you boost your marketing performance.
Innovation is martech’s currency — and it requires constant change.
Keeping up with all the latest tools to make your brand compelling so that it resonates with your audience can be difficult, if not impossible. To help you optimize your martech strategies, I’ve compiled a list of 11 of the hottest technologies that might not be on your radar.
Check out these cutting-edge tools designed to increase your marketing’s efficiency and effectiveness.
Cloudinary offers a cloud-based image management platform for managing thousands of different image versions across all of your web properties simply, easily and affordably. This ensures that all of your images appear the way you intend, on every browser and device, without the drawbacks of distortion or excess load times.
Cloudinary can take 100KB files and condense them to 25KB automatically, with zero quality degradation. As Google implements more guidelines around web page load time, you may need to consider this option.
The tool is especially useful if your brand strategy relies on imagery — like most B2C retailers. By implementing Cloudinary, you’ll be able to make your websites truly responsive to optimize user experience. And it beats building a solution from the ground up.
One key to content marketing is identifying what topics drive your engagement — and ultimately your conversions. But predicting successful topics is often ad hoc, or at best, a process of trial and error.
NewsWhip gives you guidance about the stories and content ideas that are currently performing best on each social channel. This way, you know what topics are “pre-viral” in your niche so your content strategy can capitalize on and amplify the wave.
Today’s online advertising can be a confusing quagmire of keyword-bidding, questionable analytics and close-your-eyes-and-shoot ad spend. To combat this, QuanticMind offers a data-driven predictive ad management platform that aggregates your data, gives you transparency into your sales funnel and helps you know where to spend — and where not to spend. As a result, you’ll be delivering the right ads, at the right place, at the right time — and for the right price.
I wrote about QuanticMind in June, as some of my high ad spend clients have had great success with it, experiencing reduced ad costs, ROI efficiencies and killer conversion rates.
User-generated content (UGC) about your brand provides a level of credibility and authenticity that you simply can’t match with your own content. After all, who would you trust more, a company telling you about itself or a friend sharing their experience with that company’s products and services? It’s all about that social proof.
Stackla enables you to put UGC at the heart of your content marketing strategy by aggregating and curating UGC about your brand from across social channels and the web. The result is an opportunity for brand evangelism at its finest: you can showcase your clients and customers spreading the word about their experiences, brand loyalty and engagement.
While you may have heard of Nimble, we thought it merited inclusion here. Nimble provides a hassle-free customer relationship management (CRM) system.
Your CRM database is automatically updated with customer information pulled from dozens of data sources that Nimble constantly monitors. This way, if an important prospect or client changes jobs, you’ll be automatically informed so your relationship can make a seamless transition.
Nimble also keeps your team’s customer relationship efforts integrated, so the customer never receives duplicate or mixed messages. It now includes elements of marketing automation and email marketing, making this one amazing tool for all sizes of businesses.
Data is at the heart of today’s martech. Your brand’s data includes information about your products, your customers and prospects and your competition. However, it’s no secret that your enterprise data is vulnerable to security leaks and hackers. A breach of your security can do tremendous damage to your customers, your trustworthiness and your brand reputation.
Centrify reinforces your electronic fortress by protecting against compromised credentials via privileged identity management. It also safeguards users across your entire IT infrastructure including the cloud, mobile and your data center, helping to protect your digital data from attack.
Beckon’s marketing data set is beautiful in its simplicity and sophistication. Built by marketers for marketers, Beckon provides you with tools and analytics to discover what works and what fails in any of your marketing campaigns.
As an example of its capabilities, Beckon recently analyzed more than $16 billion in omnichannel marketing spend and found that while branded content creation is up 300 percent, only five percent of that content leads to meaningful brand engagement.
Clinical-sounding terms like “demographics” and “target audiences” sometimes make it easy to forget that people are always the focus of our marketing and that our goal is always connecting. As the building block of relationships, emotion is the driver of customer engagement in virtually every market space.
Affinio helps you understand this base, engage with your audiences as fellow human beings and find the emotional resonance to connect with and empower these people you serve.
Building a following on social media can be a frustrating and time-consuming activity, but it’s ultimately necessary for just about any brand that has or wants an online presence. Refollow simplifies the process by giving you the tools to discover, manage and measure the most effective ways to attract the crowds and followings you need on Twitter.
By using it to nurture and amplify your audience’s growth, you can ensure that you’re connecting with the right people to build your social brand. Personally, I have used this paid tool for about five months, and I’m gaining 10,000 new followers a month, on average, by using Refollow.
If it looks and feels like Gmail, then that’s because Kiwi is Gmail — but as an email client, not just delivered through your browser. This straightforward tool lets you enjoy all of the benefits of Gmail on your device, Mac or desktop.
You won’t have to fidget with accessing email through your browser any more after you download this app. It’s not a clone or a watered-down version of Gmail; it’s Gmail, for reals.
Have you ever used an online gift card or tried to send someone a quick gift? It’s sometimes a challenge. I was a big fan of @TweetACoffee on Twitter, the Starbucks coffee gifting campaign, but that went away a couple of years ago.
Now, with Gift Tokens, you can pick from nearly 100 different gifts to send anyone. Say you had a great call with a sales prospect — you can send them a Chipotle burrito. Maybe it’s your sister’s birthday — send her a gift token from Sephora. You could send the gamer in your life a free month of Xbox Live.
You pick the token and the amount, and then you text it or email it to the gift recipient. It’s a great way to grow relationships by sending them a bit of love. I’ve been using these for awhile now, and I love gifting Chipotle to friends and family.
Each of these tools is intended to increase the effectiveness of your company’s marketing operations. Undoubtedly, there are thousands more tools out there, but this list will at least plant seeds in your thinking as you work to realize the possibilities in our unprecedented time of martech innovation.