Want to get better at social media?
Silly question. What business doesn’t?
Cork-based digital marketing duo Frank Prendergast and Marci Cornett help small businesses and solopreneurs attract their dream customers online through copywriting, digital marketing strategy, messaging and brand voice development.
We asked them to share their tips on the best tools to help you improve your game for free.
“By now, we all know there’s no quick charm that will magically cause your reach and engagement to soar. But there are a few free tools that will give your content creation game an edge.
We’re big believers that every small improvement can compound into big-time payoff. So here are the tools we use to help us gradually, easily, and sustainably improve the way we show up for our audience on social media.
1. Neontools Hashtag Analyser
How do you hit that happy hashtag medium? You know – that sweet spot between the ones everyone and their gran use, and the obscure ones that do nothing for reach and engagement.
You use this hashtag analyser.
Search any hashtag to find out if it’s ‘likely to get lost in the crowd’, and to get a list of related hashtags and the number of times they appear in other posts. (We tend to choose ones that fall in the 10-100k range.)
You can also create named collections for your favourites to easily copy and paste your hardest-working hashtags.
2. Onelook Thesaurus
If you find yourself repeating too many of the same words in your content – and dull ones at that – the Onelook Thesaurus will seem like a breakthrough (or ‘revelation’, or ‘triumph’, or ‘groundbreaking discovery’).
It does what a normal thesaurus does, but you’ll realise straightaway there’s something different going on. You can search phrases, concepts, and even meanings – handy for those times you forget the word you want just as you’re writing an update (it happens).
You’ve also got the option to categorise results into adjectives, nouns, adverbs, and verbs. Amazing! Am I right, word nerds?
3. Pixlr Editor
If Canva is like working in a colouring book, then Pixlr is like working on an artist’s canvas. It gives you a lot of freedom to design and create…which I know can be daunting if you like things straightforward.
But if you’re frustrated by Canva because of the features they don’t offer, or don’t offer for free – such as drawing, resizing images, and uploading your own fonts – then you’ll find Pixlr refreshingly liberating.
4. Coolors Colour Scheme Generator
Is the overall aesthetic of your account looking a little…how shall I put this…hodgepodge? Coolors makes visual consistency so easy.
Create and save a palette of pleasingly aligned brand colours then grab their codes every time you’re designing (like in Canva or Pixlr).
You can even get shade variations and play around with complementary colours, say if you want to bring in a special seasonal colour that harmonises with your core brand colours.
Now we’re getting into the stuff of high-level social media strategy. Sparktoro gives you a peek at where else online your audience – or your competitor’s – hangs out.
See which sites they visit, what social accounts they follow, which podcasts they listen to…
Why is this useful? You’ll suss out collab opportunities, get content ideas, or figure out where else your brand could be visible, based on the places where your audience spends time.
The free version does limit the number of searches and results, but it offers plenty to get the ideas flowing.”
Frank and Marci are a married couple based in Cork City who love helping small businesses and solopreneurs grow online. Sign up for their friendly and fun emails to get their free guide on ‘3 Writing Tips for Attracting More Dream Customers’.