Last week I used SnagIt for the thousandth time and was introduced to Basecamp. It got me thinking about all the cool tools eMarketers love and love to evangelize. So, in this season of being thankful and making gift lists, I asked my colleagues to share the fabulous apps that make their lives easier. Coincidentally, most of these tools are free or low-cost.
-- As the tagline says, "SnagIt lets you capture, edit, and share exactly what you see on your screen - fast." The Email Diva finds it invaluable for capturing long, scrolling
emails for reports, or an error message to pass along to the IT department, or a part of a Web page for a presentation. It's one of those things that, once you've used it, you can't get
along without. Try the free 30-day trial and you'll see what I mean.
EmailStatCenter.com -- Simms Jenkins of BrightWave Marketing recommended this tool that his company created in conjunction with the EEC. This wiki is "the first centralized online repository of statistics and research specific to the email marketing industry." You can search by category and add your own contributions. The Email Diva was tempted to add "80% of statistics are made up on the spot," but restrained herself. For truly useful email stats, check it out!
Google Analytics -- Dylan Boyd, vice president of sales and strategy at eROI, recommends Google Analytics, "as a layer on top of email reporting for behavioral nav." This app, which is free to advertisers, publishers and site owners, "helps you identify the keywords, ads, referrals and campaign that contribute the most to your bottom line." Check out the demo; very impressive!
Notepad, CodeWright, TextPad -- Loren McDonald, vice president of corporate communications for Lyris, loves "Notepad for converting and editing 'dirty' copy from MS-Word and doing some basic HTML coding before pasting in to an email marketing solution." Scott Wolf, president and CEO of ArcaMax Publishing, endorses CodeWright: "It's a programming text editor and does more than Notepad." And, finally, Jeff Larche, vice president of interactive services at ec-connection, favors TextPad, which "color-codes the code of an HTML email to verify code integrity, and ensure that a WYSIWYG Web publishing program hasn't messed up any code or added unwanted header information."
Basecamp -- Basecamp describes its product as "The smarter, easier, more elegant way to collaborate on your internal and client projects." Charles Schmidt, senior developer at SpectraCom, set one up for a professional association Web site project that required the coordination of many busy volunteers. While another (for profit) project manager has spent weeks battling with IT over access to a VPN to facilitate collaboration, this site was up in minutes; it requires no training for users and offers a 30-day free trial.
Trillian -- Speaking of collaboration, Jeff Larche feels that the rapid turnaround times for email call for IM. This product, by Cerulean Studios, aggregates all IMs into one chat window.
DNSstuff.com -- Jeanniey Mullen, partner and director of email marketing at OgilvyOne Worldwide, flies her geek flag with this entry. DNSStuff offers "free online tools to monitor and maintain one of the most vital, yet vulnerable, lynchpins in the infrastructure supporting the Web -- the Domain Name System."
As the holiday approaches, I am so thankful for smart people who make my life easier with their clever products, and for colleagues who are willing to share their knowledge. (If it seems that there was a lot of gratuitous name-dropping, it's my way to thank them for their contributions.) If you would like to tout your favorite tool for eMarketers (one that is not produced by your company!), please drop me an email and I'll do a sequel. In the meantime, Happy Thanksgiving and
Send your questions or submit your email for
critique to Melinda Krueger, the Email Diva, at email@example.com. All submissions may be published; please indicate if you would like your name or company name withheld.
The Email Diva