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Rise of DIY Marketing Tools: How They Help Small Businesses

By Garrett Spence   |    November 5, 2014   |    11:57 AM

What DIY Marketing Tools Are Small Businesses Using

Small businesses don’t have the marketing budgets of larger companies. In fact, marketing is often sacrificed for other business expenses. Small businesses can’t afford to hire marketing firms or in-house marketing professionals. Instead, they are doing their own marketing using DIY tools like website builders WYSIWIG and WordPress and social media.


A recent survey showed the prevalence of DIY tool use amongst small businesses. According to this national survey, 63 percent of surveyed small business owners are using digital tools to help with marketing. Further, of the small businesses that owned websites, “59 percent created their websites independently using DIY tools, and 80 percent of website owners are their own webmasters”.

What Tools Are They Using

This same survey indicated that most small businesses (nearly 90 percent of surveyed businesses) are using Facebook to market their businesses and build customer relationships. Yet, there are many other free or inexpensive digital marketing tools available to small businesses. Here are some of the most popular:

1. Hootsuite: Hootsuite has been around for many years, but it’s still the go-to platform for managing and updating numerous social networks. The free version lets users update a limited number of social networks. If users need to update more platforms than allowed by the free version, then they will need to upgrade to the Pro version, which is still relatively inexpensive. Hootsuite has a reporting option, allowing users to see insights on items like engagement, page analytics and clicks.

2. Google AdWords: Google AdWords is the easiest way for many small businesses to create and manage online paid search campaigns. AdWords offers tutorials on getting started and has explanations for all the different types of campaigns a business can run. A daily budget can be set so businesses don’t exceed their set monthly spend. AdWords dashboards provide information on impressions, clicks and best-performing keywords.

3. Google Analytics/Webmaster Tools: Google Analytics (which can be integrated with Google AdWords) provides stats on website visitors, pageviews and content. Small businesses use this information to determine how well their digital marketing is performing. Webmaster Tools was initially designed for webmasters and developers, but it’s relatively easy to use for small businesses as well. Webmaster Tools makes available information on whether the site has penalties, crawl issues, sitemaps and search queries impressions and clicks.

4. MailChimp: MailChimp is the standard for small business email marketing. Its templates are easy to setup and use. While not as comprehensive as a full marketing automation service like Marketo or Eloqua, the premium service is relatively inexpensive, and the service is pretty comprehensive for the price.

Other Available Tools

While the tools listed above are some of the most used, here are some suggestions for new tools for small business marketing.

1. AYTM: AYTM is a DIY market research tool for creating different types of surveys. Businesses can avoid the hefty expenses associated with market research firms and do their own research to determine how well products and services will play in the market.

2. TweetReach: TweetReach is for any business that uses Twitter. This free service provides in-depth information on the reach and impressions of tweets.

3. Populr: Landing pages are a popular tool for promotions, sweepstakes and capturing information. Yet, most people don’t have the web design knowledge to create them. Populr helps businesses create professional-looking landing pages using their service.

4. Moz: Moz (formerly SEOmoz) is a full suite of marketing tools to help businesses rank better in search results. The content is written by professionals in the digital marketing field and offers a lot of tips and tricks. The Moz Pro subscription is less than $100 per month.

DIY marketing is easier than ever with all the available tools. Small businesses are taking advantage of these tools to stay competitive and save money.