Probably the biggest struggle for most new entrepreneurs is starting or growing a business without much financial resources…aka money.
Dealing with money sucks!
Actually I take that back — dealing with a lack of money sucks. Money is a fun subject when you actually start making it.
So, how do you get your biz going and growing on a small budget? You find and leverage affordable tools!
Fortunately, we live in an era of vast technological resources, some of which are very affordable and accessible.
**Notice I didn’t say they were all FREE. If you’re serious about entrepreneurship, you have to be willing spend a little money on the right tools and information that will accelerate your results so you become profitable and sustainable.**
Cost: Starts at $29/mo
What it is: ConvertKit is an email marketing platform, primarily created with bloggers in mind. That being said though, I actually use it for FitFly also, and it just does everything I need it to and more.
It’s easy to use, but powerful. You can send regular email newsletters, set up automated emails based on triggered events like when someone subscribes to your list it can immediately send a welcome email, etc., and it has a really intuitive user experience.
My favorite thing is how easy it is to create sign up forms for my websites (every other service I’ve tried to use like Mailchimp is just way more confusing. I use ConvertKit for this site as well.
In the name of full transparency, I am an affiliate for ConvertKit, but I only promote products I personally use and love.
Cost: Free version available
What it is: Sumo is a collection of tools for your website to help you grow your email list, add social share buttons to your website pages, see heat maps of where visitors are clicking on your site, and lots more. It is hands-down my favorite tool.
Best of all, there’s a really solid free version. I use the paid version of it for this site, and the free version for FitFly. Easy installation for most websites, especially WordPress sites.
Cost: Try it for 7 days with a money-back guarantee, then $49 every 6 months
What it is: FollowAdder is an Instagram management software that helps you grow a very targeted following pretty quickly. When I first started using it, I grew two separate accounts over 10k followers in just a few months.
There’s nothing sketchy or spammy here like some other software out there, it just helps you organically get your account in front of more people.
I am an affiliate for FollowAdder, but again, I only promote products I personally use and love.
What it is: Kwote is an app for making images of inspirational and motivational quotes, sayings, and putting text on photos. I use it for making Instagram images, but could be used for other things too.
Cost: Free up to certain amount of storage
What it is: Google Drive is a cloud-based software that lets you create word documents, spreadsheets and more, and store them on the cloud for access anywhere. You can also upload files from your computer. Great for collaboration and for a free alternative to Microsoft Word or Excel.
Cost: Free version available
What it is: Buffer is an online service that allows you to schedule your social media posts ahead of time for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and more. You can also re-buffer them later to save time.
Cost: 30-days free, then as low as $9/mo
What it is: ShipStation isn’t technically a marketing tool, but it’s really amazing for anyone selling physical products online who needs to ship goods. It allows you to print shipping labels from your own printer instead of having to figure out how to do it at the post office or FedEx, etc.
What it is: Google Analytics is a marketing analytics tool that allows you to see how many visitors you’re getting to your website, what pages are being viewed, where the visitors came from, and much more. It’s vital for any marketer or entrepreneur. Information is power.
What it is: Google is google. I’m sorry I’m not explaining this one. If you don’t know what Google is, just get out :) — It’s not a joke that it made my list. Out of all the marketing tools for entrepreneurs on a budget, or anyone for that matter, Google is the single most powerful one. Anything you need to learn how to do can be found by typing into the white box. When in doubt, Google it.
Cost: $99 when you use coupon code JOSHEARLROCKS (thanks Josh!)
What it is: KingSumo Giveaways is a giveaway plugin that allows you to run giveaways on your website to help you grow your email list. You give something away, people enter the giveaway by providing their email addresses. What’s unique about it is the plugin provides a unique URL to each person who enters that they can share on social media or wherever, and they get a certain amount of extra entries for every person they get to sign up by clicking on their unique link. It encourages sharing your giveaway to create a viral effect, as where with normal giveaways, people don’t want to share it because it decreases their chances of winning.
That’s my list of top 10 marketing tools for entrepreneurs on a budget!
If you found it valuable, please do me a favor and share it with someone you think might also enjoy it :)