Digital marketing is very accessible for small businesses. But if you want to create better content there are a few must-have assets for digital marketing that will take it to the next level.
Good quality photography
Quality photographs that accurately represent your business are invaluable when it comes to promoting yourself online. If you’re going to have a website, you’ll need photos. If you’re going to post on social media, you’ll need photos. So having a stock of a few dozen good quality snaps will add real value to your digital marketing.
There are 2 ways you could go about this: hire a photographer or subscribe to a stock photo website.
There are a few free stock photo websites around. However, whilst the quality is good their selections are smaller so you might not find what you’re looking for instantly.
If you’d prefer to get the real thing (and that’s what I would recommend) don’t go forking out thousands. Spend a bit of time searching for a local, up-and-coming photographer who’s looking for experience and to build their portfolio. They’ll be more likely to charge an affordable price. Contact local art colleges or even have a look for local photos on Instagram; you can usually stumble across a semi professional photographer nearby.
But remember, photography is a skill, and good quality cameras don’t come cheap, so don’t expect to pay them minimum wage. Professional photographers charge in excess of £1,000 a day (substantially more in most cases), so a reasonable fee would be £100-£300, depending on how experienced they are.
Graphic design software
If you want your visual content to be even more impressive, then you’re going to need the software to produce it.
Infographics, adverts, fact sheets, online brochures and other pieces of collateral can be very shareable content, so it’s worth thinking about.
The best software to produce all this is Adobe Creative Cloud. In particular, the big 3: Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator. With these 3 you’ll be able to create anything!
They do come at a cost, with an annual subscription setting you back £638.40 +VAT per year. Keep your eye out for promotions though, as Adobe have been known to offer as much as 40% off periodically.
They are more tricky to use too. There are buttons for everything — I’m still finding new ones! So you might find it hard to use at first.
If you’re not as savvy with a computer, PowerPoint is actually a good substitute that allows you to design something impressive enough, at a cheaper price.
Social media management software
There are plenty of tools out there to help you manage your social presence. If you’re on more than 1 platform then having a tool to manage them all at once is a must.
Hootsuite is amongst the favourites, allowing users to monitor their posts, feeds, messages, mentions and even specific searches across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and half a dozen others. This is particularly useful if you get a lot of mentions and would benefit from logging in to 1 place rather than several.
Importantly, this software allows you to schedule content in advance. So – if you’re using a spreadsheet to plan ahead – you can schedule all your content in one go and it will be automatically posted in the future, saving a huge amount of time.
A decent computer
It sounds simple, but a decent computer can make a colossal amount of difference. Time sat waiting for your computer to catch up is wasted time.
It won’t cost you millions. Adding extra RAM to your current computer can cost as little as £20-£30, plus whatever fee PC World will charge.
If you’re buying brand new, then it’s worth splashing out a bit. If you’re out and about a lot, get a good quality laptop. If you’ll only ever use it at home, go for a desktop as the performance will be better and the cost will be lower.
So there’s 5 must-have assets for digital marketing. What have I missed? Add your comments below or tweet me @FLINT_Marketing.