- Introduction: What is Cost Optimisation and Why is it So Important?
- Tools available to simplify your life
Introduction: What is Cost Optimisation and Why is it So Important?
The UN’s department of economic and social affairs said that global inflation is projected to rise to 6.7% in 2022, up from 2.9% during the period 2010-2020  and as far as India goes, this rate stands at 7.79% in April 2022 which is the highest since May 2014 . What does this global surge mean for businesses? The first thought that crosses your mind is- budget cost-cutting and layoffs. But that is not the case. In the first quarter of this year, India’s startups raised $8.4 billion, a 22% growth when compared to last year . So, what does inflation mean for businesses? It means cost optimisation.
Cost optimisation is the process of figuring out the most cost-effective way to achieve a goal. Marketing cost optimisation is an important process in marketing because it can lead to higher profits and better customer satisfaction. Cost optimisation can be done by using marketing management software to analyse the budget and find out what is working best for the company and what isn’t. This way, you can save money on things that are not doing well and put it towards things that are working better.
Also read: MIA’s research report on Best Brand Building Practices.
Tools available to simplify your life
In this article, you will find some interesting marketing tools that can help you optimise your marketing cost and increase efficiency. Amongst the vast array of choices available, here we mention two in each category
1. Market research & competent analysis
i. Google trends: If you want a quick peek at your customer interest in particular topics, Google Trends is the way to go. Moreover, it is free!
ii. Survey Monkey: One of the most effective ways to conduct market research is by asking your customers a few open-ended questions. You can do this for free with SurveyMonkey. With a free SurveyMonkey account, you can ask up to 10 of your own questions and get as many answers as there are responses.
i. DonationXChange: DonationXChange is for businesses and organisations who have CSR efforts and want to increase their effectiveness by seamlessly integrating a corporate-gift-giving program into the rest of their activities. You can create a custom sponsorship application for your site, set up a custom link with partners, customise workflows, reviews etc. It is a paid tool priced as per the services a customer needs.
ii. Wizehive: Wizehive automates the bulk of what is needed to sponsor an event and helps you monitor stats like emails, chats, and more. They also have a fast support team who can guide you through what software features will be most helpful. Custom pricing based on the plan selected by the customer.
3. Customer insights
i. Google Analytics: is a free web analytics service that helps track and report website traffic and helps measure advertisement ROI.
ii. Hotjar: is a website visualisation software that gives deeper customer insight with the help of its multifold analysis comprising Heatmaps, Visitor recordings, Conversion funnel reports, Form analysis, Feedback polls and Surveys. Hotjar provides data-driven user recommendations to improve conversion rates and website user experience. It offers a free plan that allows up to 35 sessions daily.
4. Content Creation Platforms
i. Hemingway: is a writing app that anyone in any industry can use to check over written work. They say their app makes your writing clearer and sharper. This software can analyse your content and provide suggestions to make it more readable. With its Readability metric, you will always be able to tell how readable your text is and what areas you might want to brush up on. While the online version of the app is completely free the desktop app comes at a nominal price.
ii. Grammarly: is a hugely popular tool to help you write mistake-free content. This app can help review your content and provide a range of feedback to help you improve. It will also highlight any errors or flaws in your work. Content Analysis also gives you suggestions on improving the tone of your content and helps you make it easier to read by suggesting alternative words or phrases. Grammarly offers both free and paid plans for the customer to choose from.
Content design and graphics
i. Piktochart: Today, the data summary is represented in the form of high-quality infographics. Piktochart has been designed to enable creators to visualise any form of data through charts, graphs, or stories. It offers various templates and designs that are ready to go. The platform offers a free version as well as a premium version which is paid.
ii. Canva: Canva is an all-in-one design platform that is used by lots of designers and content creators to create cover visuals, images, visuals, graphics, designs, GIFs, and much more. It is easy to understand and can even be used by a layman with its fantastic interface that guides you in creating content. The free version of Canva lets you work with a selection of free templates and images, to choose from.
i. Audacity: Audacity is a great podcasting tool that includes multitrack audio recording and editing for newcomers and veterans alike. One of the reasons it is so popular is its easy-to-use interface and helpful features. Audacity has a simple editing console and produces high-quality audio files. It is also free to use and open source, so it can be used by journalists and podcasters whether you have limited or extensive resources. It is free e open-source software.
ii. Buzzsprout: After posting your podcast to the internet, you will need to host it. Buzzsprout is a popular hosting platform for podcasts and can help you share and manage your recordings easily from one place. Another excellent feature of this tool is its ability to keep an eye on the performance of your hosted content. It can give you valuable insights into different statistics and metrics, such as article rankings, social media engagement and traffic. Stats in an episode, like the number of devices, used to listen to it, where the traffic came from, and the number of shares, help you adjust and tailor content for even more listeners. It offers a free plan for 90 days for you to set up after which one must upgrade to a higher tier plan.Audacity is a great podcasting tool that includes multitrack audio recording and editing for newcomers and veterans alike. One of the reasons it is so popular is its easy-to-use interface and helpful features. Audacity has a simple editing console and produces high-quality audio files. It is also free to use and open source, so it can be used by journalists and podcasters whether you have limited or extensive resources. It is free e open-source software.
i. WebinarNinja: WebinarNinja is a webinar software with a simplistic user interface for creating and hosting webinars. People love it because it is easy to use and does not require any special technical knowledge to understand how to use it. It is possible to launch live webinars, edit recordings and create professional-looking pages with Webinar Ninja. You can also consolidate all your work with them into one easy-to-use library that you can use across multiple projects. It also has a free version of the platform with limited services.
ii. Biteable: Making videos that look nice can be complex for some content creators. With Biteable, creating those videos is quick and easy. More importantly, you do not need any prior knowledge of video editing to use it! Biteable provides a library of templates that help users create new video content without coding skills. They make your videos easy to create and interactive. Many companies use the Biteable platform to generate content for their company. With the free version you can still create videos with some limitations.
5. Content Distribution Platforms
Distribution through social media
i. Sprout Social: Sprout Social is a social media management platform that aims to help businesses build and grow relationships with their users. You can use it to manage your social media channels from one place or focus on increasing your followers and likes. In modern-day marketing, social media management is a necessary and integral part of brands of all sizes. Sprout Social is a way to monitor and engage with consumers and provide great insights that can impact the success of a business. It offers a free trial period of 30 days after which the basic (standard) plan starts at $89 /user/month.
ii. Buffer: is a software application that can help you make the most of your most-engaged times by creating unique, custom social media schedules for every social media profile you own. As a Publish Free user, you can create one custom schedule per platform, ensuring timing is optimised. With a free account, you can manage up to three social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn) with up to 10 updates in your scheduler. The paid account charges $10 /month and allows to manage 12 social profiles with unlimited posts and add up to 2 team members.
Email & CRM
i. Litmus: Litmus is an email testing & analytics platform for marketers. They provide expert advice and insight via their informative newsletter and guides. The offer a free trial for each of its pricing tier with the basic plan starting at $79/month.
ii. ZOHO: Zoho CRM automatically analyses your business data and personalises the content like never before so that you can be more impactful with your marketing campaigns. Zoho CRM is built with features that make it easy to follow up on leads and consistently track the best candidates. When you are ready to send a round of follow-ups, you can save time and have all the information needed right at your fingertips. The free edition of Zoho CRM supports up to 3 users and includes all the critical features required by a company that size.
6. Loyalty programs platforms
i. The loyalty box: The Loyalty Box is a complete solution for small to midsize retailers looking to reward customers and get insight into their buying habits. The software offers a more straightforward and more affordable way than competitors to establish customer loyalty systems. It also helps business owners grab essential insights into their shoppers’ behaviour. The Loyalty Box is an excellent platform to offer customers a range of loyalty programs, including points, cash back or gift cards. It also saves you the time to manually log who your leads are and when they will receive their following message. Best of all, it is fully automated, so you do not have to spend hours doing all that work yourself. Though they do not have a free version, they are priced just at $50 per feature per month.
ii. Giftbit: Giftbit enables companies to reward employees, customers, and clients with digital gift cards. You can choose from an extensive digital rewards catalogue to send your recipients. You can also send the gift of choice and allow them to pick what they want. Giftbit has a laser focus on creating an easy-to-use and transparent solution. You can use their platform to send emails tailored to your needs, download email, or SMS gift links, or connect with them for automated gifting solutions. And, if you are ever worried that the gift card has not been claimed, you can query it to find the status. Giftbit provides reporting on every card that has been sent out – so you will always be in control of what is happening. Giftbit allows free sign up with no subscription fees and charges only the face value of the gift cards you send.
Even though the times may seem tricky, there is always a way out. With all these fantastic free tools available in the market, the cost of marketing can be brought down significantly. Such tools are a boon, especially for startups and entrepreneurs who have just embarked on their journey to creating success.
To know more about other tools and digital marketing budget optimisation, download the report.