A great artist needs great tools. So does a successful entrepreneur. And if content marketing is your focus, then you need to know which apps, websites, and tools are going to help you create the best possible content in the least amount of time – and for the least amount of money.
I sometimes think I spend more time researching content creation tools than anything else. It’s one of the topics people ask me about most frequently – and over the years, I’ve accumulated a huge list of tools that I use.
With that in mind, here’s a collection of the very best content creation tools that I’ve found. Some are paid, but I’ve tried to stick to the ones that are affordable for most people.
Canva is an online content creation tool with both free and paid options. Signing up is easy – you can even use your Facebook login to create an account.
The free option comes with dozens of free templates you can use to create:
- Social media posts
One of the things I like best is that when you use Canva’s templates, you can be sure that your social media images are the right size – and it’s easy to resize a Facebook cover image to work on Twitter or on your blog.
In addition to templates, they’ve got a huge library of images, fonts and colors you can use. Upgrading to the Pro option, will give you a free Brand kit, access to additional templates, and the ability to create animated graphics.
I don’t think PowerPoint gets enough credit as a content creation tool. It comes with Microsoft 365 along with Word, Excel, and other software. A lot of people think of PowerPoint as being only for business presentations – but that’s a mistake.
I often use PowerPoint to format my low-content books for publishing. It’s got some versatile design options. You can choose the layout for each slide, and since you can print directly to PDF it’s an ideal tool to use to design the layout of your book.
One of the things I really like about PowerPoint is that you don’t need to have a lot of design experience to make your slides look good. If you set up the basic layout, you’ll see an array of layout choices on the sidebar. When you choose one, you’ll see how your page would look with that layout.
Like PowerPoint, Microsoft Sway comes as part of the Office suite. However, unlike PowerPoint, you can download it for free even if you don’t have Microsoft Office. You can design your content on their website using tons of free templates and design tools.
The templates available are ideal for creating the following types of content:
- Presentations (slide shows)
- DIY projects (instructables)
- Blog posts
- Status updates for social media
One of my favorite things about Sway is that you can use it to create a custom palette. All you need to do is upload an image with colors you like, and Sway will generate a palette based on it. That’s a huge timesaver because you won’t need to fiddle with the color palette to get something that looks good.
GoConqr is a tool that I found when I was looking for something to help me create mind maps. However, it turns out that it’s also very useful for creating other types of content, including:
- Flash cards
- Slide shows
- Flow charts
- Webinars and online courses
It uses simple drag-and-drop technology. The premium option costs $32.95 per year, which is less than $3 a month.
If you collaborate with others, give Xtensio a look. It lets you effortlessly create beautiful, on-brand documents, presentations, case studies, one-page briefs, and a whole lot more.
Otter Voice Notes
If you’re the type of person who finds a blank page or document to be intimidating, then I highly recommend Otter Voice Notes for creating written content. It’s an online and mobile transcription tool that can take your video or audio files and turn them into written documents.
Sometimes it’s easier to talk about your ideas than it is to write them. I love that Otter Voice Notes has a mobile app because it means you can use it anywhere. If you’re out for a walk and have a great idea, you can simply use the app to record your thoughts and transcribe them.
Notevibes is a natural counterpart to Otter Voice Notes because it takes written documents and transforms them into audio files. They offer a free option and a premium option.
With the free option, you’ll get access to 24 voices in six different languages and you can convert up to 5,000 characters each month. If you upgrade to the premium option, which costs $7.90 per month, you’ll get 57 different voices in 13 languages, and the ability to convert up to 100,000 characters per month to audio.
What I like about it is that the voices are natural-sounding and the wide variety of accents (with male and female voices for each one) makes it easy to create great-sounding content without a lot of work.
Anchor is a tool that allows you to take audio and video content and turn it into a podcast. Podcasting is more popular than ever before and starting a podcast is a terrific way to attract a new audience and build your brand.
- Unlimited free hosting
- Record from anywhere capability
- Remote recording (so you can invite guests on your podcast)
- One-click distribution
The monetization aspect of Anchor is a big plus. They’ll match you with brands, so you can earn money with advertising – and in my experience, the matching works well and can help you create a nice stream of income from your podcasts.
Content creation is hard work. The key to doing it consistently is having the best possible tools to help you. The 7 tools I’ve outlined here are some of my all-time favorites. I hope you’ll check them out!