The holidays are upon us!
Yes, it’s that time of year, the time for gift giving. If you’re doing your own PR, social media or content marketing, you probably need some help. In that spirit, I wanted to share some free and low-cost tools you can use to streamline your efforts.
Here are eight of my favorites:
- To make the most of social media, try a tool like Buffer. Buffer is like the “crock pot” of posting. You can set it up and it will post for you overnight, on the weekends, etc. It’s great because it keeps your feed current at times you may not be online. It’s really helped me grow my Twitter followers because I set it up and let it go. The basic version is free.
- To create graphics, make the most of a free tool like Pablo or Canva. Pablo is part of Buffer, so it integrates nicely. Canva is free to use, but some images do have a very small fee of around $1/image. It’s easy to create your own images for social media or blogging with these tools.
- Use royalty-free images, like those from sites such as Unsplash or Pixabay. If you need images for your social media or blog posts, use care that you’re only selecting royalty-free images. You can face fines for using images without permission.
- Use Mailchimp for email marketing. If you’re sending out a newsletter or other email marketing pieces, Mailchimp is free for up to 2,000 email addresses. It’s easy to use, and you can see who opened your email, who subscribed or unsubscribed and so on.
- Issue a press release using a free service like PRLog or PR.com. You can write a press release that you can then send out using one of these free wire services. (There are also paid wire services like PRWeb or PRNewswire, if you have a budget for this.) This can help boost your SEO. Of course, you can also pitch the press release to reporters, post it to your site and share it via social media.
- If you’re trying to do your own writing, Hemingwayapp and Grammarly are two tools that have free versions. Using a tool like this is a must if you have no one to proof your copy. Just paste your copy in Heminwayapp, and it will give you feedback on how to improve it. You can upload a document or just cut and paste with Grammarly. Both are so easy to use. For more tips on improving your writing, see my piece, 7 tips to make you a better writer.
- CoSchedule provides a free headline analyzer. This tool is addictive! You’ll be hooked once you see the improvements you can make by simply changing a few words or shortening the headline. It scores your headline based on several factors.
- Commun.it is a tool that helps you analyze your Twitter followers. It also allows you to send out tweets to thank your followers. You can do many other things with it, too—follow back, reply to tweets, see who’s unfollowed you and so much more.
Those are some of the best tools I’ve found to help me with my PR, social media and content marketing tasks. I hope these help you as we move into 2017.
And, as always, if you have questions or need advice, please get in touch.
I wish you a wonderful holiday season and a safe and happy new year!
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