Some of my favourite tools of the trade- most of these are useful for non-writers too. It’s amazing how many brilliant and free resources are out there: here are just some of the ones I use and enjoy every day. Gotta love the digital world for giving this stuff away for free. Most of these tools also have an upgraded or pro version (some of them allow you to test it out on a 30-day trial), so if you find you really are using something a lot, it might be worth investing in an upgrade. Having said that, if you are working on a relatively small scale, the free versions usually work just fine too!
I love this tool for content research. Buzzsumo basically allows you to find the bits of content in any niche that have been linked to the most. A massive eye-opener, using Buzzsumo is a great way to find out what content is doing well out there and it’s also great for influencer hunting. I use it for inspiration, content research, and even for outreach. The free version is quite limited, so use it sparingly.
This app is cool and not just because of its name. An online text editor, the Hemingway App will give you some key metrics like readability and data on what words you are using. The colour coded system makes it easy to follow, and the app’s formatting is brilliant. As a writer, sometimes you have to follow your own advice and disregard the readability score, but it’s a fantastic little tool. Especially great for people starting out as online content creators.
I’ve been using this tool for awhile, and I find the way it scores your headlines on readability really compelling. The breaking down of the headline into different sets of words really helps you realise how to construct a powerful headline. A great little tool that has been popular with everyone I’ve shared it with. Love how people always get competitive with themselves, trying to outdo their own top headline scores.
Great for client comms and team management, Basecamp is a lifesaver! It’s a brilliant way to control email traffic and you can easily add people to projects and share files. Basecamp is really easy to use and is a great way to initiate clients into using online project management tools.
I love my wunderlist, and not just because it goes ‘ping’ every time I finish something. This simple online to-do list helps me keep track of my life, and I can easily create different lists for different projects, sharing the list with relevant parties. Way better than a paper version, though I still love making those lists too… Not just about lists either, wunderlist has a file sharing and comments function too.
A totally amazing tool that is also really fun to use. I love the effort they’ve put into making the experience of the site so fun. Generates useful questions and sentences from your keywords. The data comes in either a visual or a list format, and you can easily download it all. Great for longtail keywords & content research- I often get post ideas from here.
A free keyword density tool that can analyse text, HTML, as well as websites, is a real godsend. I use it to check my copy for keywords and to iron out any writerly ticks. If I have repeated bland phrases like ‘our company’ or ‘we promise that’ too often, this is where I have a second chance to write it better.
When I want a bit more help with my keyword research, I use this tool for longtail keyword research. It helps me find out more about people’s search behaviours and gives me an idea of the sort of questions people are asking. Easy to use and reliable, finding a good longtail keyword research tool is essential for any digital copywriter. Sometimes the things people search for do make me laugh though (or cry).
Having a hard time coming up with your next post? I get that too sometimes! This handy blog topic generator can help, just insert your keywords and watch as it magically generates some great post titles for you. Yes they can be a bit formulaic, but they work! And it’s an invaluable tool for inspiration. Try it out the next time you are feeling a little low on inspiration.
Another good one for title ideas when you are feeling a bit stuck. Only discovered this recently, will be testing it out further over the next few weeks. Every little helps when you are stuck as far as I am concerned!
Plenty more where those came from! Just some of the great free tools I use. Which ones do you like?