As a digital marketer, you are undoubtedly flush with software and apps to help you do your job. Marketers have to pay a lot of attention to digital marketing tools as they relate to SEO, social media, marketing, advertising, and so on. You can probably schedule Tweets and launch Google ads like it’s nobody’s business. But what happens when you take a step back and consider how you are managing your digital marketing operations in general.
How does your marketing writer measure and improve their productivity? How do your remote workers log their time or collaborate with other departments? If something needs to change in your web QA strategy, how do you communicate this quickly and efficiently? Digital marketing operations need digital marketing tools, yes, but they also need digital operations tools.
Whether you need help with productivity, project scheduling, communication, collaboration, there is a project management tool that can be tailored to the specific needs of a digital marketing team. Here are a few of my favourites.
Trusted by the likes of Shopify, Microsoft, Trello, and GitHub, Buffer is a social media aggregator that allows you to publish, engage, and analyze across all your social channels within one intuitive hub. If you struggle with consistency, Buffer will be a reliable companion that can help you advance and automate your campaigns and activities. It will also track which posts do well, and with what audiences, before allowing you to easily share reports with managers, colleagues, and clients. Buffer has a freemium version that can be used with up to 3 social media accounts and 10 scheduled posts at a time. The paid version is $15 per month.
Read more about Buffer and similar tools: Best Productivity Apps
Toggl takes care of all your time tracking needs, including powerful reporting tools that can identify problem areas and time sucks for future improvement. Toggl is available as a browser extension, a smartphone app, and a desktop app so it is perfect for the remote or dynamic employee. The paid version of the tool even gives you project time estimates and alerts if you are near your allotted hourly-budget for a project. There is a freemium version available but the full suite of tools will cost you $9 per user per month.
Read more about Toggl and similar tools: 10 Time Tracking Software Tools
With over 1500 integrations, Slack is the do-anything communication tool of the modern worker. Intuitive and robust, Slack lets you do video calling, voice calls, instant messaging, screen sharing, and more. It even allows for you to sync your status with your Outlook calendar. If you’re looking for a communication tool that goes above and beyond, Slack is for you. Slack has a freemium version with some features limited (limited search functionality, for example), but otherwise, it’s $6.67 per user per month.
Read more about Slack and similar tools: Best Communication Tools
Monday, formerly Dapulse, is a project management tool that excels in readability and fostering collaboration. Pick a template for your project planning needs, customize it, share and collaborate with ease. They prioritize making data digestible with easy to understand UX and big picture views of timelines, files, calendars, Kanban and more. They also play well (integrate) with other apps nicely, including but not limited to Slack, Google Doc, JotForm, Jira, Trello and GitHub, email services, Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive. They offer a free 30-day trial and then it’s $5 per user per month.
Read more about Monday and similar tools: 10 Best Online Collaboration Tools of 2019
Digital marketing requires that you maintain many projects and tasks at a time. Not all tasks are equal, though. Your team needs to navigate between marketing research, branding, software development, testing, and more. Paymo can help keep all of that sorted. Paymo is a project management tool that encompasses every part of day-to-day work life: projects, scheduling, time tracking, invoices, and so on. You can give it a try for a 15-day free trial, after which it starts at $9.56 per user per month.
Read more about Paymo and similar tools: 10 Of The Best Project Management Tools
Used by Harvard University, Starbucks, and IBM, Hive specialized in project scheduling for your digital marketing teams—with a twist. Not only does it help you to streamline your different project workflows but they specialize in powering up your productivity as well. They offer a suite of tools for analytics, resourcing, messaging, file sharing, and data collection in one place. They aim to help you work smarter and faster by guiding you through seamless estimations, data collection, resourcing, and approvals. Try before you buy for 14 days, completely free; if you love the product, it starts at $12 per user per month after that.
Read more about Hive and similar tools: 10 Of The Best Project Scheduling Software
Popular Basecamp alternative Asana is winning the game as far as communication, planning, and task management are concerned. The UX looks and feels great and you can get a lot out of the freemium version, too, so it works great for smaller businesses looking to save some money on tools. Use public message boards or private chats, employ easy file sharing and data transfer, and ping contributors with a series of notification styles in order to get any job done. While Basecamp can be a bit technical-looking, Asana boasts a welcoming app design that will woo even the most technologically-phobic team members. If you’re ready to advance from the free version, it will cost you $10 per user per month.
Read more about Asana and similar tools: Best Basecamp Alternatives
Every digital marketing team knows a thing or two about project portfolio management. You have a lot of projects and/or clients on the go and you need some way to keep it all straight. Gone are the days of disorganized clipboards full of notes and packed business card binders—and Workfront is going to make sure it stays that way. Workfront has its niche…and marketing’ is a part of it. That means that this software speaks specifically to your needs, including resources, cross-team coordination, and insight into processes and timelines. Try it for 30 days for free; then, it’s $30 per user per month.
Read more about Tool and similar tools: Best PPM Software
Digital marketers know a thing or two about digital marketing tools but these resources will hopefully help you go above social media and advertising and hone in on the best operational tools for your work environment. You can garner Facebook post impressions in your sleep; now, you are ready to master the (slightly less glamorous but just as necessary) world of time-sheets and Gantt charts.
Operational tools are meant to elevate the productivity and organization of any team, but digital marketers, in particular, have a lot to gain. Why? Because you have to balance so many spinning plates on a daily basis! Unload some of the weight of administrative tasks into Asana, Slack, or Workfront so that you can focus on the creative, big ideas that machines and AI just can’t do. No matter your digital marketing team’s strengths, weaknesses, goals, or needs, there’s a tool that will help you manage your digital marketing operations like a battle-worn pro.