By Evan Brown
It is unsurprising that the owners of wedding businesses often find themselves overwhelmed by their limited budget or resources. As indispensable as keeping on top of your work is the use of viable DIY tools to help you continue on your path to success by streamlining work.
Although even a startup requires a healthy amount of software to conduct operations, it doesn’t entail you to break the bank on web-based products that cost a fortune.
Here is our list of 9 incredible and free solutions that are just as effective to get the job done and allow you to DIY most aspects of your business. From project management to graphic design to email marketing; DIY your path to success with these handy tools:
Canva makes digital designing seem like a piece of cake. In an era defined by our reliance on visual content as an indispensable part of our marketing collateral, designing professional-looking and sleek graphics have never been more important. However, for wedding businesses operating on a shoe-string budget, squandering a fortune on custom graphic designs can snap their already overstretched budget.
This is where Canva comes into play.
Are you thinking about designing a mesmerizing infographic educating couples-to-be about the best wine pairings, a high-quality slideshow to flaunt your portfolio or a bespoke Pinterest pin? From custom illustrations, posters, and social media headers to EBook covers and fully-designed sales proposals, sky’s the limit with Canva.
The best part is that using Canva circumvents the need for any prior design skills. With a suite of awe-inspiring templates, play around with colors and visual elements without fretting over the results. This affordable and versatile DIY graphic platform can help your wedding business build a professional appearance and gain credibility.
Keeping an updated email list is one of the best ways of maintaining and establishing connections with your customers. All effective entrepreneurs in the wedding industry leverage MailChimp to communicate with individuals that have expressed an interest in their service or product.
Building a powerful mailing list is in itself a mysterious artwork. Once you have gleaned a viable list of email subscribers, the next step is to regale them with compelling content that is geared towards engagement.
MailChimp also renders Email marketing a breeze. The Emails procured using this tool appears well-designed, professional, and allow you to track if your target audience is perusing the content you have pushed out.
Since the last thing you want is to get under the skin of your potential customers, MailChimp software gives your subscribers the choice to “unsubscribe”. We absolutely love MailChimp for small wedding businesses and startups, since it has a minimal learning curve, alleviates the need for design or coding skills, and is easily integrated into your other marketing software and tools.
3. Google Analytics
If you have a working business website, it’s high time you install Google Analytics Dashboard to keep an eye on the health of your website.
In a matter of clicks, Google Analytics lets you track the most vital growth metrics of your web presence and compares to those of previous months. Determine which pages are more popular and which pages are causing people to bounce off your site, find out how many customers are viewing your content, learn where in the world your users come from, and view which social profiles refer the most traffic.
Google Analytics lets you glean an incredible amount of insight. The challenge lies in leveraging that data, figuring out the key takeaways, and determining how best to enhance the user experience.
By 2019, videos will dominate 80% of the world’s internet traffic.
Being the medium of the future, Videos would make your wedding business stand out from this saturated industry. This is where RendrFX comes to play.
RendrFX offers up to 350 professionally designed motion graphics templates to its users. Business owners can leverage its user-friendly storyboard editor to create awe-inspiring custom videos at an extraordinarily affordable price.
The benefits and applications of custom videos are innumerable. Whether you want to share national days or holidays, post explainer videos, promote your services, share a testimonial, or announce sales, custom designed video content can work wonders for your branding forays.
BONUS – sharing these videos can boost profits manifolds and bring in new leads. Moreover, your business appears more relevant, more successful, and incredibly professional. Win-Win!
In the digital era, your wedding business cannot thrive without a stunning website that captures the eye of the excited couple-to-be or satisfy shrewd wedding planners looking for reliable and professional wedding vendors.
WordPress is one of the best and most popular content management systems for creating breathtaking websites that get readily discovered by Yahoo, Bing, and Google, for absolutely free of charge.
Granted you might need to put aside a few bucks for a couple premium plug-ins or to find a decent host, the option is extremely budget-friendly and optimal for small businesses in the wedding industry.
Even without a prior coding experience, when you delve into the various features of WordPress, you’ll find that alt-titles, tags, titles, and meta descriptions are easy to optimize and change.
Adding pages filled with valuable information or keeping your content fresh is made easy by WordPress.
Not to mention, the barrage of YouTube tutorials, user guides, and free information available to guide everyone from beginners to pros through tricky situations.
Outside of Email and Social media, content marketing is becoming the most cost-effective and popular methods of informing your consumers about your services or products. Quality content is used to keep target clients deeply engaged through every step of the buying cycle.
While generating viable information for your reader is a good start, you will also need to engage with search engines so that your website appears as high as possible in search results. This is where SpyFu can help augment your content creation efforts.
SpyFu can help you reap the benefits of research and hard-work that your contenders invest in their Search Engine Marketing (SEM) efforts and advertising campaigns. Sneak a peek under the hood, observe what works for them and what doesn’t, and start outmaneuvering them.
From organic traffic to paid advertising, this tool can help you size up your competitor and the bigger online landscape in your industry. When properly applied, the insights gained can prove to be game changing.
This excellent social media management tool can greatly come in handy when it comes to streamlining your posting efforts.
Since social media can work wonders for your marketing initiates, capitalizing on Buffer will indubitably build your brand, engage your audience, and boost your followers. The ability of Buffer to allow you to analyze the success of your posts, create drip campaigns, schedule posts, and connect multiple accounts to one dashboard, is what makes Buffer so indispensable.
While the free plan of Buffer caters to SMBs looking to boost their social presence online, you will have to consider an upgraded plan to unleash the full potential of this expedient tool.
Talking about the best free online survey tools out there, SurveyMonkey takes the lead!
Surveys are a good way to glean tangible insights on your business, uncover trends, engage customers, and collect consumer information. SurveyMonkey’s software is easy to comprehend and incredibly simple to use.
Create, design, and publish a business survey in a matter of minutes. Furthermore, SurveyMonkey gives you the ability to analyze the results on the backend.
For shopping lists and daily reminders, sticky notes more than suffice. However, a cloud-based management software is the real deal when it comes to your business.
Calling itself “the workspace for your life’s work,” Evernote has proven to be just that for new business owners. The service acts as a cross-device, shareable hub of ideas and thoughts, and allows users to keep track of photos, lists, links, and notes effectively.
Evernote can help you sync ideas between desktop and mobile so that you can refer to them anywhere, Photograph thought-provoking or inspiring marketing ideas and categorize them, or Clip interesting articles on the go to organize your reading list.
Whether you’re managing personal responsibilities or tackling mammoth business tasks,Evernote can come to your rescue!
Given the proliferation of wedding businesses sprawling across the industry, SMBs are at a risk of falling into oblivion amongst the bigger fish in the sea.
While small businesses do not the luxury of a mammoth cash flow and personnel at their disposal, they can always DIY their branding efforts and leave a mark on their audience.
These nifty management tools are sure to make it easier to manage small scale wedding businesses on your own and DIY your way to greater success.
What’s your favorite business tool?
Evan is an Expert in Digital Marketing. He has been working in the social media space since 2008, with a focus on design services, user interface planning, branding and more. Currently, he is leading content marketing efforts at DesignMantic. He is also a design pro, who has shown a predilection towards DIY design projects.