There’s no getting around it—in 2022, all businesses need to invest time and money in their digital marketing strategies. But this needn’t be a chore; indeed, it can be very rewarding. As any digital marketer will tell you, devising and delivering an effective campaign is one of the most gratifying aspects of the job. Few things bring as much satisfaction as seeing a carefully considered, creative campaign successfully generating new leads.
While developing new strategies and campaigns is fun, it also often requires a lot of admin. Fortunately, many digital marketing tools are available, designed to help streamline the entire digital marketing lifecycle. In this post, we look at 12 digital marketing tools that all digital marketers need to know about in 2023. We haven’t covered those for SEO, which you can check out in detail in this post. But we’ll look at the following:
- Digital marketing tools: social media
- Digital marketing tools: email marketing
- Digital marketing tools: analytics
- Digital marketing tools: lead generation and capture
- Wrap up and further reading
Ready to learn about the top digital marketing tools you can’t do without? Let’s dive in.
1. Digital marketing tools: social media
Price: From $49 per month for one user, to $739 per month for five (with additional features).
Great for: Tracking and managing multiple social media channels.
One of the first-ever social media management systems, Hootsuite lets you create, schedule, and post content across numerous social media channels. These include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, and more. Intuitive, visual, and easy to use, Hootsuite monitors all your social accounts in one window.
Stand-out tools include its inbox feature, which lets you manage both public and private engagement in one place, and its social listening and data analytics tools, which are great for optimizing and measuring the success of your campaigns. Ideally suited to teams, Hootsuite has few downsides and even offers a free version.
Price: From $89 per user, per month.
Great for: Social media listening and customer support.
Sprout Social is an all-in-one social media management platform with tools for publishing, engagement, analytics, and more. Similar to Hootsuite, the main difference is its superior customer service. The addition of phone and email support makes it an ideal choice for those new to social media marketing who need extra help.
Like Hootsuite, it also has excellent social media listening features that let you tap into the global social media conversation. This helps identify gaps in your strategy or brand management. The audience discovery tool is also great for identifying useful influencers you might want to follow or engage with. Check out its 30-day free trial.
Price: Free for up to three channels, and $100 per month for up to 10.
Great for: Small businesses and those with limited spend.
Ideal for smaller businesses, startups, and those on tight budgets, Buffer offers a streamlined version of other popular social media management tools. While it can’t compete with Hootsuite or Sprout in terms of features, it does have a clean, user-friendly interface and—critically—is much more affordable. Plus, if you’re most interested in the content creation side of things, Buffer is likely the best option for small teams.
Its visual collaboration and team working features are top-notch for managing a lot of content in one place. It has fewer bells and whistles in terms of things like analytics, but it’s still a solid contender. Get started with the free version now.
2. Digital marketing tools: email marketing
Price: Free for up to 250 subscribers and up to $59 per month for a premium account.
Great for: Ecommerce marketing
Omnisend is a marketing automation tool used by more than 75,000 ecommerce businesses worldwide. It’s designed to help online merchants increase their sales, and comes with plenty of features to help them do this.
Even on the free plan, you’ll get access to features like advanced segmentation, pre-built automation workflows, and 24/7 email & live chat support. This all-in-one ecommerce digital marketing tool has intuitive email and web form builders that are easy to use and specifically designed for ecommerce purposes. Omnisend’s customer support team is available 24/7 and usually respond in under 3 minutes, even during busy retail periods such as Black Friday and Christmas.
Price: Free (with limits) and up to $299 per month for a premium account.
Great for: All aspects of email marketing.
Perhaps the best-known email marketing software, Mailchimp has long been the market leader. It offers everything you need to get professional email campaigns off the ground quickly. This includes over 100 slickly-designed email campaign templates (eight in the free version), an email editor, and scheduling features such as auto-resend to contacts who failed to open the original email.
Mailchimp also presents some nice add-ons like recommended send times, which takes unnecessary admin off your hands. The only downside is that as they add new features, their core offering has suffered a little. But although the interface has become slightly less intuitive over time, it’s still a solid tool for email marketing.
Price: A sliding scale from as little as $9 per month.
Great for: Affordable email marketing.
Moosend is another email marketing tool that lets you create, monitor, and manage all your email campaigns in one place. Compared to Mailchimp, it offers relatively simple features: the ability to design and customize campaigns, collect user sign-up and opt-in/out data and produce and segment email subscriber lists. However, for most marketing campaigns, its functionality is more than sufficient. It has a user-friendly interface, excellent reporting, and—despite the affordable price—it offers competitive customer support, too.
Price: Free for one user and up to 1,000 subscribers, with custom pricing for larger companies.
Great for: Small businesses seeking a user-friendly email marketing tool.
Easy to use and comparable in price to Moosend, MailerLite is both practical and more than sufficient for getting basic email campaigns off the ground. Key features include text and theme templates, data import and export tools, and high volume sending; notably, even on the free version. While you’ll have to pay once you get beyond 1,000 subscribers (or for additional features) MailerLite is a good option for small businesses.
Beyond the basics of campaign management, it also offers precision reports with tracking for things like open and click-through rates, unsubscribes, and user devices.
3. Digital marketing tools: analytics
Price: Free for smaller businesses, premium charge for advanced features.
Great for: Website analytics.
The go-to tool for identifying and tracking user navigation on your website, Google Analytics has been around since the dawn of digital marketing. Track everything from session duration, pages visited per session, bounce rate, and clicks, to name a few. For casual users, it offers high-level visual dashboards and reporting. But if you want to dig deeper into the data, everything you could need is available.
Overall, Google Analytics is an indispensable tool for creating precision landing pages. Better yet, most of its features are completely free. Costs only start to come in if you choose to integrate Google Analytics with your Google AdWords campaigns, or other digital marketing tools in the G Suite.
Price: Free, with varying charges for additional features.
Great for: Analyzing Tweet data.
While there are larger social networks, Twitter is a key one for digital marketers. For this reason, you’ll want to make sure that every Tweet, photo, video, and interaction is working towards stronger brand awareness and lead generation. Enter Twitter Analytics. Each Tweet comes with an activity dashboard where you can track impressions, retweets, likes, link clicks, and other engagements. You can also generate monthly report cards and, for a cost, generate campaign dashboards and conversion tracking to go alongside your Twitter Ads.
Price: Free, with costs for additional features like Facebook Ads.
Great for: Tracking Facebook posts, page performance, and user activity.
With more than two billion monthly users, no digital marketing campaign would be complete without a Facebook presence. Facebook Insights analyzes both the people connected to your company page as well as other Facebook users. Break down user demographics to an astonishing degree, including things like age and gender, education level, job title, and relationship status.
On top of this, Facebook provides psychographic data on your audience’s values and personal interests, helping further refine your campaigns. With these powerful insights, you can create ever-more compelling content to grow your audience.
4. Digital marketing tools: lead generation and capture
Price: $25 per user, per month.
Great for: Startups and small businesses with up to 10 users.
Every digital marketing team needs a customer relationship management (CRM) system. Having one is vital for capturing and following up on leads, and for tracking general customer information. With many CRMs on the market, perhaps the best-known is Salesforce. While there are CRMs that are easier to use straight off the shelf, Salesforce makes our list as it’s one of the most ubiquitous and is unrivaled in terms of customizability.
For smaller businesses and teams, Salesforce Essentials offers a smaller and less complex implementation of the larger platform. You can adapt the system to fit your digital marketing processes, create new fields, automate reports, connect it to your preferred email campaign software, capture link clicks, conversions, and more. Sign up now for a 14-day free trial.
Price: From $45 per month, up to $3,200 per month for an enterprise licence.
Great for: Customizing lead interactions and managing your digital marketing in one place.
An all-in-one marketing solution, HubSpot lets you collect and manage all your digital marketing activities and leads from your blog, social media, email campaigns, ads, website, and so on. A cloud-based CRM like Salesforce, HubSpot utilizes smart landing pages, calls to action, and forms, allowing you to personalize and capture each customer’s unique brand interactions. Although it’s great for creating tailored experiences, it may not be the best tool if you’re only looking to use some of its features.
It’s designed as an all-in-one solution, so only applying some of its functionality means you won’t get the bang for your buck. It’s quite pricy, too, so you’ll want to be sure you’re happy with it. Fortunately, HubSpot offers a 14-day free trial to test out all its features.
Price: Not immediately available—it depends on which services you use.
Great for: Comprehensive B2B sales/marketing contacts.
Capturing leads is one thing—building and maintaining a clean database of contacts is quite another. Customer and lead contact information is constantly changing, and keeping your lead database up-to-date is a full-time job in its own right. Fortunately, ZoomInfo lets marketers purchase detailed, up-to-date contact details that they can use to generate new leads.
While there are similar services available, ZoomInfo uses machine learning algorithms that pull contacts from millions of sources, identifying which information is accurate enough to warrant publication on the platform. Better yet, since this happens in real-time, you can be sure your contacts are up to date, and you’ll know when a company changes status, an employee gets a new job, a new office opens, and so on. All this is invaluable for creating high-precision campaigns that go to the right people.
5. Wrap up and further reading
Digital marketing can be fun, challenging, and creatively rewarding. But it also often comes with a lot of admin. Using digital marketing tools like these, and many more similar ones, you take the pain out of your digital marketing planning by automating the boring or complex stuff. Once the admin’s taken care of, you’ll be free to focus on doing what you do best: producing innovative, creative campaigns that win new leads and keep you ahead of the competition.
If you’re curious about where a potential career in digital marketing might take you, why not try out this free, 5-day short course? You may also be interested in checking out the following introductory guides: