My Fave Tools
‘What platform should I use?’ is a question I’m asked pretty much on a daily basis.
So, here’s a list of my favourite biz/marketing tools that I either personally use or we use for our clients over at Defined Digital and we think they’re great.
We’re testing different platforms all the time, so you can expect this list to change over time.
**Full disclosure, some of these are affiliate links, which means if you click through and purchase I will get a small benefit. It won’t cost you anything extra and of course you can bypass my link altogether and visit good ol’ Google.
Email Service Providers
I personally think Active Campaign is currently one of the best email service providers available in the marketplace.
It’s our go-to recommendation for many of our clients and I also use it in my joint venture – Digital Success Hub.
The only thing to be aware of is Active Campaign doesn’t have a landing page builder. So if you’ve been used to building landing pages in Mailchimp for instance, just be aware that you will need a website or a third party platform for building out pages going forward.
Mailerlite is another solid choice and you can get started with them for free.
This is my go-to recommendation for anyone who no longer wants to use Mailchimp (now that you have to pay for multi-step automations).
Landing Page Builders
LeadPages allows you to create beautiful opt-in pages, thank-you pages, sales pages, pop-ups etc. for your funnel.
It has a great user interface and the learning curve isn’t too steep.
None of these platforms will ever be as flexible as wordpress.org, but you can certainly achieve all you need to for building a marketing funnel in LeadPages.
Ok, truth bomb, I’m not the biggest fan of Clickfunnels – but there’s a solid reason it’s on the list.
If you want to build an end-to-end sales funnel, with upsells, downsells, OTOs etc. and you haven’t got the time, inclination, know-how to set this up on your own website, then Clickfunnels is the best solution for you.
It’s the web designer/developer in me that doens’t love Clickfunnels as I think the funtionality out of the box could be enhanced and I find their templated designs quite unattractive.
That being said, you can create funnels of beauty on the platform with a little time and effort. In fact, check out Funnel Gorgeous if you want to explore what’s possible.
Obviously I’m a huge fan of WordPress and I also always advocate for building on ‘your own land’ wherever possible.
Additional platforms equate to additional expense and so if you don’t need to go down that route – don’t!
It is very possible to build all of your own funnel pages on your own website.
Webinars & Workshops
As with everything else, there are plenty of choices when it comes to webinar platforms.
However, I think Crowdcast is a great choice, particularly if you want to run paid workshops.
It’s simple to setup, you can password protect your content and you can send clients/leads/prospects back to your content time and time again.
Zoom isn’t just great for meetings, it’s also another excellent webinar choice.
Again, it’s simple to setup a webinar, plus you can configure things in advance so that you can easily send notifications and reminders to registrants. You can record to the cloud and share a replay afterwards.
If you’re not a design pro, getting to grips with softwares such as the Adobe Suite, may be an uphill battle.
Canva is a fantastic tool, that I personally use often in place of Adobe.
Even if you’re a complete design novice; with a range of templates for all different sorts of things (social media, corporate presentations, invitations etc.) you can hit the ground running with creating things like lead magnets, social share graphics etc.
If you ever need to record yourself and your screen at the same time, Loom is an excellent choice and you can get started for absolutely free.
I use this for sending snippets to clients to show them how to do something as well as for tutorials that I slot into course content.
If you’re a Mac user and you need a video editing software, then look no further than Screenflow.
Similarly to Loom it gives you the ability to record your screen and yourself at the same. However you can do so much more with Screenflow.
For example, you can tidy up the sound, blur out sensitive information, add intros and outros, fuse multiple clips together, add transitions or text and so the list goes on.
At the time of writing this, ClickUp is still a relatively new project management platform – but it’s absolutely fantastic.
It’s essentially multiple tools rolled into one and the developers behind the platform innovate at an incredibly fast pace – there are constant developments and updates.
I now use ClickUp for all of my internal PM requirements, to help keep myself organised and have somewhere to store all of my ideas as they pop into my head.
I’ve added Trello into the mix as a good option if you are just getting started out and you need a platform that offers simplicity whilst still being robust.
Trello is built on the concept of boards as opposed to list and so you really have a clear overview of where everything is at in one glance.
I’d say Teamwork is the perfect choice if you’re a little further along in your business with a team and possibly a support desk.
We use Teamwork for managing all of our client work over at Defined Digital and DefinedWP.
It’s been a gamechanger for us and so I highly recommend it if you have a lot of moving parts that you need to keep a track of.
Dropbox is my favourite file management system.
It’s easy to setup and you can create folders and files just as you would on your computer, only they are in the cloud so accessible from anywhere.
Dropbox also integrates with so many other platforms, which allows you to keep everything centralised. You can also set permissions on folders/files determining who has access to what.
It’s a great platform whether working individually or as part of a team.
It also comes in handy when you are creating lead magnets and other files for your funnels and need somewhere to store them whilst easily being able to share them.
Google Drive is another solid file management option and is particularly great if you also use Google Docs, Sheets, Forms etc.
I’ve signed up for or purchased so many digital products, where Google Drive has been the storage method of choice and the great thing here is I can literally add the file to my own Google Drive by saving a copy, so I don’t have to bookmark links all over the internet or try and remember where to find something.
If you vlog, create paid courses or have a membership, it’s really important that you have some form of video storage platform at your disposal and no, YouTube doesn’t always cut it.
The reasons for this are two-fold.
Firstly, in the majority of instances, the moment you start uploading videos directly to your website, you will find your site will load at a snail’s pace as the server becomes overstretched.
Secondly, if the content you’ve created is content you are expecting people to pay to access, then you really ought to protect it as not to devalue or dilute your offering.
Some points to note here:
1. Yes you can unlist a video on YouTube – yes that video can still be found by search engines.
2. Video storage is not a requisite if you use platforms such as Teachable or Thinkific, which have their own video storage capabilities built in.
Vimeo is a great choice with plenty of flexibility.
On the free package you are slightly more limited with what you can customise, but if you upgrade to the plus plan you open a whole new world of options including customising the player so it’s branded or stating specific domain names your content can be shared on.