3 overlooked SMB marketing tools you should be using

At Onfido, a start-up focused on B2B SaaS sales, it’s all about simplicity and track-ability. With this in mind, I’ve spent the past 3-4 months picking and choosing marketing tools for our various needs. Here are three that I am most happy with:

1. Nickelled – user guides that are easy to set-up and track

Most businesses, in particular B2B ones, struggle to communicate all the virtues and indeed uses of their products to potential customers. Various solutions have been cropping up – videos, interactive guides, even GIFs! I feel like we’ve found a tool that meets the twin needs of being quick and easy to setup and deploy, but also something we’d be happy showing to CEOs and heads of HR departments – Nickelled guides.

What makes it great?

  • Creating a guide is as easy as installing a Chrome extension, going to the first page you want to use as a guide and hitting start! You then click the elements you want to highlight, add notes, and move on to the next steps.
  • Tweaking/editing the guide (as will often be required when a complex product is involved) is simple, intuitive and ever-improving.
  • If you can’t fix it yourself, the guys at Nickelled are Always on hand to help – literally even in the middle of the night!
  • Your Nickelled account provides simple analytics such as number of pages viewed per guide. You can get them to put an instance of Google Analytics onto your guides and get more in-depth visitor, bounce rate tracking etc.

Get in touch if you’d like to discuss how we’ve used such guides, what’s worked well and what hasn’t.
[NB: whilst writing this we were on a special free package, with pricing being negotiated, so no comment on the economic value here.]

2. Shortswitch – trackable, brandable short-linking

We provide links to our site, our guides, our job descriptions several times a day. But which ones are actually being clicked? A simple way to track this is, of course, short linking. While bit.ly and goo.gl (and a host of others) provide this for free you are, to a certain extent, helping propagate their brands rather than your own. Bit.ly’s free version has a further limitation – a specific page can only have one short-linking token associated.
At Onfido, we had acquiried onfi.do for a not-astronomical sum (thank you, Dominican Republic), so we wanted something that would allow us to build links on top of this. Shortswitch provided all of the above and more.

What makes it great?

  • Shortswitch’s easy bookmark bar applet means that (post sign in) it’s quite easy to create the link – for the entire team. No need to sign in each time (as long as cookies are enabled).
  • You can create as many shortlinks to a page as you like. Great search functionality (for instance see the image below that came from searching for the word ‘nickelled’).
  • Relatively cheap – the package we use comes in at $10/month or $100/year (I believe the pricing is subject to change).
  • It has enabled analysis into the effectiveness of our distribution points as below:

Nickelled usage from team mate's signatures

Of course, it’s next to impossible to track the impact of the click but it’s a great starting point.

3. AdRoll – fairly comprehensive and yet relatively cheap Re-Marketing tool

Re-marketing – the practice of showing ads to past visitors of your site to entice them back – is now a well established tool in the online marketers arsenal. However, most SME’s only use AdWords which covers between 60-80% of the internet according to various sources. Significantly, it doesn’t cover Facebook which, needless to say, is where many of your customers spend a lot of time! To overcome this, we use AdRoll.

What makes it great?

  • Show re-marketing ads across millions of websites as well as the ‘walled-gardens’ of Facebook. They have a helpful support team – working with me to establish an appropriate daily frequency cap per user.
  • Initially, they can help set up (some very rudimentary) ad creatives in case you’re not lucky enough to have an awesome graphic designer like we do!
  • Beyond ad creation too, it is quite simple to set up and get going with. An account manager helped us initially, but then got replaced by a so-far helpful enough customer service email
  • In the process of writing this, I logged in to the site and got a pop-up saying I can even use a list of emails to re-target to people. Not sure about the specifics but it looks exciting. Kudos to AdRoll for pointing out a potentially highly useful feature to me (without a Nickelled Guide on implementation mind you!).

In my next post, I will discuss how we record our marketing experiments to enable the test & iterate methodology of ‘agile’ fame, across the team. Feel free to get in touch in the meantime about any of the above, about Onfido, or just about anything else!

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Kartik does online marketing stuff at Onfido. He plays with marketing technology, gets excited by data and comes up with weird logic regarding pool, football and every thing in between.
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