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There’s a huge wave of SEO and marketing tools emerging to help with content discovery, optimisation and analysis. We have put together a list of the top six we recommend to our clients, and use ourselves to get real and effective content marketing results.
What Content Is Trending?
FEEDLY – News In One Place
We can’t imagine a Feedly-free world. If you are a content marketer and you are not using Feedly stop reading this blog and sign-up now. If you were already reading this post via the Feedly site you could simply save this blog piece and return to it when you’ve got 100 less things on your plate. Feedly aggregates all your favourite feeds, posts and news sources into one easily viewable and customised page.
Save articles on different devices, enjoy the quick loading visual snapshot and blurb for article speed reading and see whats trending with the number of shares displayed. Feedly keeps your inbox free of suggested reads, it auto-marks the article once read, and you can set-up different topics e.g. eCommerce or Social Media.
Marketer’s have an overwhelming amount of industry information and data to cipher through, with niche topics like SEO and Social changing everyday. Stumble around web searches, bookmarking tools and RSS notifiers no more, Feedly sets you free. (Yes it’s also literally free to sign-up too!)
BUZZSUMO – Most Shared Content
What’s the buzz with Buzzsumo? It’s the content discovery tool that you can no longer ignore, and here’s why; Content Marketing is all about writing for your audience, and Buzzsumo tells us what content is best performing in our niche. It even records which types of content (i.e how to articles, videos, info graphics etc) attract the most shares.
You can uncover which of your competitors in your niche are winning on the social engagement front via the social share count across Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin, Twitter & Google. Identify which platforms are producing the best engagement for each content piece and make adjustments to your amplification strategy. You can search more than keywords, incl exact phrase, domain or URL’s, author’s and twitter users. The latter is very useful to see which thought leaders are worth connecting with… Maybe one day they could potentially share your content!
The detailed content analysis reports, domain comparisons, real-time alerts on keyword or brand mentions, as well as notifications on new links or published content for a nominated domain are features of the upgrade version Buzzsumo Pro. Try it for free, and pay around 100 bucks per month after then to unleash the reporting, alerts and comparisons tools. To ensure your content is not missing out on the trending conversations in your space be sure to give this software a go.
Give Your Content The Best Chance!
Coschedule – ‘Headline Analyser’
Not only is Coschedule’s headline analyser a must-have bookmark for the modern day marketer, it’s also really fun to use! The tool rates your headline, then gives you hints to increase your score. The higher the score the better your headline will do in SEO, social shares and traffic.
With the current noise on the web (61.5 million posts on WordPress alone last month) it’s imperative that your content piece gets noticed, clicked and consumed so you have the best possible chance of converting. As Copyblogger suggests, only 20% of people who see your headline will actually read your article so your headline really needs to work its magic. You need a compelling headline that encourages the reader to plunge deeper into the content and this tool does just that.
The score metrics include the use of power and emotional words, character and word counts, headline type, sentiment and keywords. A balanced headline that covers all the bases attracts a higher score. You will soon be having a competition around the office who can post the best result I assure you, try it out!
Canva – ‘Simple Graphic Design’
This Sydney based start-up has solved a real problem for marketers. How many times have you gone to your graphic designer and come back with empty promises? Internal work always gets pushed to the bottom of the Wunderlist. When all you need is a simple but effective image or illustration to complement the new content piece you’ve slaved over I’ve got good news – you can now produce professional images, illustrations and infographics yourself online using Canva.
Jeff Bullas, content marketing extraordinare, has told us that “content with visuals gets 94% more total views”. Canva is so easy to use, with a drag-and-drop board, ability to upload your own images, tablet compatibility, autosave feature, and has an extensive library of stock images, illustration cut outs and fonts. It’s all you need to give your content an edge, its free, and you don’t need any design skills to produce something good in a matter of minutes.
There’s no excuse not to try Canva for yourself – I was able to create the below graphic in 20mins without bothering our in-house graphics team or outsourcing. A lot of the elements are free and if you choose a more premium image they are $1 each. Get designing.
Is Your Content Performing?
Crazy Egg – ‘Visualise Visitors Behaviour’
The scroll heat map feature of Crazy Egg allows you to track your visitors behaviour on the page. It displays how active they are in different sections of your website, and pinpoints when the user looses interest while exploring the content. It allows you to understand which content is engaging and useful, and gives you the opportunity to reposition the content to maximise its clarity and effectiveness.
The ability to make changes to the design, layout, content and CTA components based on real user insights will help you retain customers and increase your sales. Understanding why users might abandon your page and knowing where your content needs improvement gives you a second bite at the apple.
You can begin to learn the behaviour of your audience and track which topics are popular with the readers. (Tip: publish these topics more regularly.) Crazy Egg gives you a 30 day free trial with numerous plans to suit.
Ahrefs – Performing Pages
Ahrefs is better known for its backlink SEO analysis and domain comparisons, but you can easily check which pages on your site are performing best using the ‘Top Content’ tab. It ranks your pages in order of the most links and social shares. Learn what you are doing well with these pages – and do more of it.
Social share data is available for the big 4 social platforms Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest & Google+. Learn which topics get better traction on what platform and benchmark your future posts. You can also use the data to set a benchmark for each to improve, or alternatively feed the data into Moz’s One Metric formula.
Ahrefs also has a new content explorer tool similar to that of BuzzSumo but without the Influencer metric. You can jump on a free (restricted) newbie plan to get you started.
A final note…
Each of these 6 tools make the marketer’s job easier but they also give your content the best chance to perform, whether it be:
- Identifying which trending conversations in your niche to enter (Feedly & BuzzSumo).
- Making sure your content piece cuts through the noise and resonates with your audience (Coschedule & Canva).
- Providing you with the confidence to make informed content changes and setting a yardstick for content goals (Crazy Egg & Ahrefs)