Something that you’ll learn very quickly, especially online, is that branding is of utmost importance.
You need to have a strong and consistent brand to cut through the noise of the Internet. Unfortunately, not everyone has the same kind of budget and wherewithal as big names like Nike, Apple, and Amazon.
What can small and medium businesses, as well as bloggers, startups, freelancers and entrepreneurs do to improve their branding without breaking the bank?
Just as developments like social media, WordPress and WYSIWYG editors have helped to level the playing field, the same can be true with a number of incredible branding tools and resources. Many of these are remarkably cost-effective (or even free!) because they’re designed around a self-serve interface that taps into intelligent automation, machine learning and other evolving technologies.
Are you ready to take your brand to the next level?
1. mysimpleshow Video Creation Tool
It’s obvious enough that video is playing an increasingly prominent role online. This isn’t just true with vloggers and influencers who put themselves in front of the camera for the world to see. Brands and companies can benefit greatly from professional-looking videos to explain concepts, offer walkthrough tutorials, and demonstrate how they can offer an excellent solution to a common problem.
Making that whole process remarkably simple is an online tool called mysimpleshow. What’s great is that you don’t need to do any of the actual video editing yourself, nor do you need necessarily to locate the appropriate visual assets. Instead, all you do is put together a script of what you want the voiceover to say.
From there, mysimpleshow is able to cut that script down, zero in on important keywords, and grab some appropriate artwork that can then be simply animated and rendered into a short video. It’s powerful, simple, and effective, and a great way to boost your branding in a fun, visual and creative way.
2. Famoid Social Boosting Services
In the 1989 movie Field of Dreams, Kevin Costner’s character is famously told that if he builds it, they will come. As much as you would like that to be true on the Internet and in business, it’s simply not the case. Just building the thing isn’t enough to attract an audience. And what you’ll find that is people will naturally gravitate to where other people are too.
An Instagram account with 10,000 followers is immediately more interesting and captivating than one with only 100 followers, even if the content is almost identical. You just need to get the ball rolling. Or maybe you need a bit of a boost to get over a hump.
For that, you might consider signing up for something like Famoid. They offer services for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. You simply decide on the number of high-quality followers that you’d like to have (they also have packages for views and likes), proceed through checkout, and wait for delivery… which is practically instant.
They guarantee that all the followers you get are real and active, and you are also offered drop protection. What this means is that if you lose any followers that you have already purchased, the system will automatically replace them for the first 30 days following your order.
From a branding perspective, these bigger numbers can help with organic reach and offer more legitimacy to your brand when new followers and fans arrive on your social page. Packages start as low as $2.95 and they don’t require your password to render the services.
3. BigCommerce eCommerce Management
It seems like everyone is talking about eCommerce and online stores lately. However, this is rightfully so, as it just seems to keep getting easier to go live with an online store or dropshipping business of your own. This is especially true when you factor in how many solutions are now focusing on WordPress eCommerce as well.
This is no exception for BigCommerce, which has years of experience in online commerce already. With more individual site owners, bloggers, and entrepreneurs looking to get into the online shopping space, using a simple drag and drop solution makes the whole process a lot easier.
In addition to finding an eCommerce platform and site management tool, it’s important to make sure you are working with a solution that will continually develop and adapt to changes over time.
4. Designhill AI-Powered Logo Maker
At the heart of any great brand, regardless of niche or industry, is a great logo. There’s no mistaking the golden arches of McDonald’s or the adorable panda of the World Wildlife Fund. From Android to YouTube, Coca-Cola to Disney, the logo is at the heart of a brand. It’s displayed prominently everywhere.
But what if you have neither the time nor money to invest in a professional design and branding firm to come up with a custom logo for you? Turn to the incredible power of artificial intelligence and try your hand at the Designhill AI Logo Maker. You will be able to create a professional logo literally within minutes.
With a near-perfect average score from over 10,000 customer ratings, Designhill’s solution has been remarkably well received by the online community. It’s totally free for you to use the tool to create a logo of your own; you only have to pay when you come to a design that you really love. The wizard walks you through some initial choices to get a sense of your design inspiration and style, like choosing iconography and color palettes.
You’ll then be presented with an array of completely custom logos that you can tweak to suit your preferences. Once you’re ready to roll, you can download the ready-to-use files for online, print, and all kinds of other uses. It’s affordable, fast and really, really easy.
5. Affiliate Marketing Directory with 12,000+ Offers
Are you an affiliate marketer? Are you overwhelmed by having to search through innumerable networks and directories to find just the right affiliate offers to promote? And then there are so many more that might fly under your radar because they’re not offered through the traditional networks, but these might be the ones that are perfectly suited for your audience and the traffic you’re able to generate?
Fret no further. The affiliate marketing directory at ZacJohnson.com contains over 12,000 affiliate programs and offers across the web. No matter your niche, no matter your audience, you’re bound to find the perfect offer or program.
You can search based on name or keyword if you have a good idea of what you’re trying to find. Alternatively, the thousands of offers are also organized into a number of key categories. These include affiliate programs for clothing, crypto, dating, credit repair, education, music and movies, legal, sports betting, site tools, web hosting, VPNs and more.
Use this huge directory to find the best offers, join the best affiliate programs, and take advantage of the free affiliate training too.
6. FreelanceMyWay To Find Freelancers
There are only 24 hours in the day, and there are only 7 days in the week. No matter how energized, no matter how motivated or driven you might be, you are at the mercy of the physical reality of the situation. And truth be told, no one really wants to work an 80-hour week. Work smarter, not harder.
There is always work that needs to be done, and much of this work is probably going to fall outside of your natural expertise. It’s far more effective, both in terms of cost and quality, to hire a professional to handle these tasks for you. That way, you can focus your time, energy and attention on what you do best.
With FreelanceMyWay, you gain access to a great number of top quality freelancers across a variety of disciplines. Need someone to develop a mobile app to further extend your brand into the hands of your customers? You can do that. Need someone to craft together the perfect press release to accompany an upcoming product launch? You can do that. From data entry to graphic design and everything in between, there are freelancers on FreelanceMyWay that are up to the task.
This all relates back to your brand because you want those logos, social media posts, press releases, blog posts, mobile app designs, product packaging designs and everything else to be true to what you want your brand to stand for and represent. FreelanceMyWay vets all of its freelancers through a three-step verification program to ensure that you get the best quality and efficiency for the job. And the milestone payment system means you only pay when suitable work is delivered.
7. Bluehost WordPress Automatic Updates
Of the many different solutions and tools that one can choose from, the right web hosting company is going to be one of the most important. Jeff Bullas currently recommends Bluehost, which also has a wide range of self-service and automation tools that can help you run your online business, without the need to ever touch a line of code.
For example, when a new user creates an account on Bluehost, they will instantly have WordPress installed for them. There are also various WordPress updates and security tools that automatically update and protect your site at all times.
When it comes to server and site management, this is also extremely easy, as Bluehost has a great visual user interface, which takes the technical and design skills out of managing a site.
8. Avatar Creator Tool for Personal and Bio Branding
Are you interested in creating a custom avatar that you can then use on social media and in other types of materials? You don’t need to hire a professional artist to do this for you as a one-off project, because you can utilize the free avatar creation tool on Blogging.org instead.
If you’ve ever used a “create a character” type utility inside a video game, you’ll feel right at home through this self-serve avatar creator. The interface is designed to be simple and straightforward, just like a casual game. You can select the head shape, skin tone, change the hair, eyes, mouth, nose, clothes and more. The resulting avatar can then be downloaded as a 200 x 200 PNG or as a 400 x 400 PNG file. There’s no watermark either.
Depending on the kind of business that you run, an avatar could be a terrific branding tool to give a “face” to your online persona without having to put your actual face “out there” on the Internet. You can use this avatar across social media profiles, like Twitter and Instagram, as well as through commenting systems like Gravatar.
9. 50+ Canva Branding Templates for Everything
When it comes to great online tools for easy-to-understand graphic design and image editing, it doesn’t get much better than Canva. The browser-based tool is perfect for designing everything from infographics to YouTube thumbnails, ebook covers to memes fit for social media virality.
But branding can be a very tricky thing to master. If you’re not already savvy to the ways of marketing and brand positioning, it can be hard to find just the right mix of colors and fonts and images to convey a certain feeling or vibe. That’s why it’s so great that the talented team of designers at Canva have put together 50 brand kits with the gorgeous templates.
The templates provide a perfect jumping off point because the overwhelming majority of people wouldn’t know where to start with a blank canvas. You don’t want to look like you threw something together in MS Paint, right? These templates are fully customizable, but you start from a place where the combination works beautifully.
These range from a whimsical look with muted tones and minimal type to a bold, strong look with striking type and vivid colors. Do you want bold geometric shapes against a dark background? Or how about a free-flowing look that inspires the tranquility of nature? With 50 templates in a single resource, there is no shortage of possibility here. You’ll surely find at least a couple templates that work terrifically with your brand.
And then it’s just a matter of clicking on the template, hopping into the Canva tool, and letting your branding heart express itself through visuals and typeface.
How to take advantage of the best business resources and tools in 2019
At the end of the day, there are always going to be thousands of unique, creative, and effective online tools to choose from. The only way you are going to find out which ones work best is to actually give them a try and see how they fit into your current day-to-day business and marketing strategies.
After running through our latest set of recommended tools, be sure to check out these time-saving tools as well!
Guest author: Zac Johnson is a world-renowned blogger and entrepreneur with nearly 20 years of experience in the online marketing space and has helped his readers generate millions of dollars online. He shares his story and guidance at ZacJohnson.com