Unlikely Marketing Tools To Use Everyday
This is the first in a series of posts regarding the everyday tools we use at CleverFunnel. These posts will consist of a particular tool or app and why we (or just I) choose to use said tool.
When you think of marketing tools, what do you picture? You probably think of pieces of software like Photoshop, a CRM, or even a marketing automation platform. And while it’s true these things get used, they are not the be all, end all tools for marketers. There are many small tools and apps we use every day that you wouldn’t normally associate with a marketing position. Stuff that makes our jobs easier, faster, and overall, more polished.
Unlikely Tools: Notepad ++
To kick things off, Notepad++.
I know what you’re thinking. Why would a marketing person be using an app that’s meant for programmers? I use Notepad++ because I work at an agency.
Working at an agency, I tend to write a lot. Duh! Marketers! If I just stuck to writing blogs and other marketing material I would just use Google Docs or Microsoft Word, and it would be fine. This, however, is not the case.
I have access to many of our client’s website backends which are mostly WordPress, but which occasionally need some custom PHP or CSS or even plain old HTML editing done. The emails we create for our client’s outgoing campaigns are all custom HTML. My own projects are mostly code. Word processors or GDocs alone could never work. This is where Notepad++ comes in.
Highlighting. Auto-Completion And Tabs! Oh, My!
Yes, everything you’ve heard about Notepad++ is true. It’s very easy to customize to suit my needs. For example, I have it set to a dark background and white text. However, if I’m editing some code I can set it to highlight the syntax of that specific code. It’s very easy on my eyes.
Another nice feature that I take advantage of is auto-completion. Yes, I know other apps offer the same thing. It’s quick, and it’s easy to use. That being said, it’s easy to write lots of content with it.
My writing, working, and internet life would be a disaster without tabs. It would be like using Internet Explorer 6 all over again, with 20 windows open. Ugh. Needless to say, I can have multiple tabs open at the same time with this app. This is so, so, soooooo super useful; a tab for each client with notes or code or to do list. It’s just great.
Notepad++ is also extensible via plugins. There are many plugins available for just about anything you need. From spell check to code highlights for that obscure language that no one uses anymore, to FTP support for your personal website, the list is too large to display here.
However, beware of tab creep! Like in a web browser, you can have too many tabs open. You’ll eventually forget what tab holds what info. That’s when you know it’s time to clean house.
A very nice feature of Notepad++ is its autosave-like feature. It’s not autosaving in the traditional sense, like when you’re writing a blog and it saves the file at various intervals. That’s not how it works with this app.
What is does is keep all your tabs, layout, options and content in memory. It keeps this memory even if you restart your computer. How it works is you can open a tab, and add some notes, code, or anything else. Close the app and then, some time later, even days later, open the app again, and all your technically unsaved notes tabs and even app view layout will still be there intact and untouched. This makes saving your docs almost an afterthought.
You still have to save important things, but for everything else, you basically don’t need to worry about it. I wish more apps worked this way.
Major Time Savers
No good programming editor would be complete without some major time-saving features. Here are a few I use on a regular basis.
- Search and replace
- I love this feature
- Syntax highlighting
- Give your eyes the break they deserve, and speed up your reading
- Auto-saving, sort of
- Tabs support
- I couldn’t live without this
- Line numbers
- This is incredibly useful when debugging some website or email
As with most things in life, there are always alternatives. In this case, software such as Atom or even regular old Notepad(ugh) would work in a pinch. For me, personally, Notepad++ is a one-of-a-kind app that works the way I work: messy, yet organized, at the same time.