Content Marketing is a core component of Digital Marketing – fresh content is indexed in search and it can be shared on social media. As part of Google’s core business in providing digital marketing solutions to companies, it has provided a huge range of free Google tools for Content Marketing.

Why Content Marketing?

Sharing articles with potential customers, not only informs them on your business and services but also shapes customers’ tastes and preferences that align to those products and services by the company.

Along with Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), Content Marketing forms an important component of Digital Marketing. This is because fresh content is needed to share them through social media or email newsletters and creating more robust internal links in SEO.

Content can also be monetized for advertisements and product/service features, depending on each business.

Free Google Tools for Content Marketing

From researching on keywords and identifying trends for SEO, to the actual content creation, and publishing articles, there is a range of free Google tools for content marketing. This article will cover 15 of these free tools and services by Google:

  1. Google AdWords Keyword Planner
  2. Google Trends
  3. Google Search
  4. Save to Google
  5. Google Forms
  6. Google Keep
  7. Google Docs
  8. Google Slides
  9. Google Drive
  10. Data Gif Maker
  11. Blogger
  12. Google Calendar
  13. Google Sheets
  14. URL Shortener
  15. Gmail

Free Google Tools for Content Research

#1 Tool for Keyword Planning: Google AdWords Keyword Planner

Before planning a new piece of article, advertisers who wish to boost organic SEO should refer to the Google AdWords Keyword Planner for topics and keywords to write. An accompanying tool for the paid Google AdWords for search engine marketing (SEM), the AdWords Keywords Planner is given free. The tool is useful for SEO research on keywords competitiveness and to explore new keyword ideas. Content can then be strategized accordingly in line with these identified keywords.

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Google AdWords Keyword Planner

 

#2 Tool for Identifying Trends: Google Trends

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Complementary to the Google AdWords Keyword Planner, keywords can also be identified with Google Trends. Trends allow marketers to identify search patterns of a particular keyword across time and region. For example, based on a five-year period, the search for the topic ‘resort’ typically peaks in the July of each year. This coincides with the Summer holidays where people look for a quiet retreat to beat the heat. With knowledge of these search trends, marketers can spot opportunities for new content during those periods where people have a greater ‘appetite’ for them. This technique is described as news jacking or event-jacking.

Digital Marketing and WordPress Tutorials - Free Google Tools for Content Marketing - Google Trends - Leow Hou Teng

Google Trends

 

#3 Tool for Online Search: Google Search

Research cannot be completed without searching on Google Search. Before writing an article, perform a search to check out articles on the same topic written by competitors. Get ideas on the content to cover and what to write. Write more extensively and consider more engaging approaches such as including videos or infographics in the article. Keep in mind that the most relevant search and the site with a higher authority will be ranked higher.

#4 Tool for Organising Web Bookmarks: Save to Google

While most browsers have an existing bookmark functionality, often, these pile up when we hoard too many of them. Similar to Save to Facebook and Pocket, Save to Google allows users to add bookmarks to images, web pages, and locations to Google.com/save. Google stopped short of integrating it with Google Drive, which could have set it apart from Facebook or Pocket’s services. Nevertheless, use Save to Google to organise resources found online for content marketing or ‘future reading’.

Digital Marketing and WordPress Tutorials - Free Google Tools for Content Marketing - Save to Google - Leow Hou Teng

Save to Google Chrome Extension

 

#5 Tool for Collecting Survey: Google Forms

Traditional first-hand data can be collected using Google Forms, a simple yet powerful tool for creating short surveys, Rsvp, conducting tests, collecting feedback, etc. Forms come with pre-existing templates for Personal, Work, and Education, allowing users to start on Forms quickly. The completed form can be shared through websites, social platforms, and emails to collect responses. Collated results can be compiled into statistics-based or response-based articles.

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Google Forms

 

#6 Tool for Collecting Ideas: Google Keep

Gather new ideas with a quick note or doodle on Google Keep. Keep is a task manager for users to create notes and setting reminders for themselves or assigning to a teammate. Since Keep is tied in with Google services, receive a user notification on the phone or in the in box.

Free Google Tools for Content Creation

#7 Tool for Writing: Google Docs

Content writing can be done on Google Docs, Google’s equivalent of Microsoft Word on the internet. Besides providing the tool for free, these documents are stored on Google Drive and allows for seamless collaboration across a team.

Digital Marketing and WordPress Tutorials - Free Google Tools for Content Marketing - Google Docs - Leow Hou Teng

Google Docs

 

Working on Microsoft Word and collaborating through a Drop Box is a nightmare, especially when teams work on Mac and Microsoft platforms. Google solves it by bringing Docs on the cloud, allowing users to work together in real-time without overwriting each other’s work. They can conduct discussions in the document’s chat, or leave notes on any part of the document.

Working offline is also possible, and these documents will be automatically updated when the device connects to the internet.

Get these Recommended Add-ons:

  1. Proofread Bot
    1. Proofread Bot highlights grammar and sentence structure errors, making your writing more professional.
  2. ProWritingAid
    1. Analyses the article and summarizes the recommendations on improvements.
READ  Preparing Social Media Images with Canva

#8 Tool for Creating Presentations: Google Slides

Google Slides is Google’s take on Microsoft PowerPoint. A free Google tool for creating presentations, Slides is good for drafting out key points for an article. This allows ideas to be arranged coherently prior to writing an article.

Once completed, slides can be embedded on websites or uploaded to LinkedIn’s SlideShare. Embedded slides are not only more engaging, it can be part of a content strategy to repurpose content or to bring in new audiences from LinkedIn.

#9 Tool for Document Storage: Google Drive

Documents and files created with Docs, Sheets, and Slides are stored on the Google Drive. Drive gives 15GB of free storage for cloud backup, and a small fee of $2.79 per month for 100GB or $14 for 1TB can be added to back up your entire computer.

Like many other Google services and tools, Drive can be shared between teams, a feature that is similar to Dropbox’s. Teams can refer to shared files from Drive easily without requesting for it from another colleague.

#10 Tool for Creating Interactive Data: Data Gif Maker

A newly launched tool in 2017, Google’s Data Gif Maker creates fascinating animated charts to compare statistics between two topics. The gifs created can be downloaded for use on a website. While the tool has fairly limited use at the moment, meanwhile, use this to create amusing seemingly unimportant statistics.

Digital Marketing and WordPress Tutorials - Free Google Tools for Content Marketing - Data Gif Maker - Leow Hou Teng

Google Data Gif Maker

 

Free Google Tools for Content Publishing

#11 Tool for Publishing: Google Blogger

Now that the article is completed, where should you post it? Consider Google’s Blogger, a content management system (CMS) to organise and publish articles to other hosts via FTP for free. Blogger has been around for years, but since it has been bought over by Google, it now comes with greater integration to other Google services. This includes receiving analytics and blog stats and integrating AdSense to earn income from the blog. As a Google-owned property, Blogger may have additional perks in getting it ranked on Google Search.

Digital Marketing and WordPress Tutorials - Free Google Tools for Content Marketing - Google Blogger - Leow Hou Teng

Google Blogger

 

#12 Tool for Scheduling Content: Google Calendar

Get organised and productive throughout the day by keeping track of meetings and setting reminders for tasks on Google Calendar. The calendar can be shared between users or made public by embedding on a web page. Different calendars can be set to separate personal and work matters. Content scheduling can be done on Google Calendar by planning out the articles to be posted on the different social channels each day. Now, everyone in the team will know what is to be published each day.

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Google Calendar Android App

 

#13 Tool for Tracking Data: Google Sheets

Google’s version of Microsoft Excel is Sheets, an online tool for spreadsheets. While spreadsheets may not be needed in content marketing, Sheets may serve other purposes. For example, use Sheets as a content marketing calendar to organise article titles and social media call-to-action (CTA) by the posting date and time. Website traffic and keyword ranks can be tracked on Sheets too.

When exact figures are required for an article, tables, graphs, and charts may be drawn with Google Sheets. These may be downloaded as an image or uploaded to WordPress plugins such as Table Maker in .csv to display tables on websites. Tables are a form of structured data that will be indexed and presented in the search results.

Free Google Tools for Sharing and Tracking Content

#14 Tool for Shortening and Tracking URL: URL Shortener

After posting an article, to share an article on social media, use the Google URL Shortener. On platforms such as Twitter that is limited by word count, shortened URLs gives more leeway to write with the remaining characters. These shortened links can track the number of clicks and stats about the referrers, countries, browsers, and platforms. Unfortunately, these stats are accessible by anyone with the link, allowing competitors to view them. A better alternative is Bit.ly, which allows users to customise links into readable words, and shows stats similar to those of Google’s to the user/team.

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Google URL Shortener

 

#15 Tool for Email Marketing: Gmail

Staying in touch with influencers, subscribers, and other contacts through emails is an important part of content marketing. Gmail works as an email client to consolidate different email accounts at one location, saving the hassle of managing the web, work, and personal emails. With the Google Drive integrated with Gmail, large attachments can be sent through Gmail as a link. Together with an add-on such as WiseStamp from Chrome extensions store, many of email marketing tasks can be performed with Gmail.

Get these Recommended Add-ons:

  1. WiseStamp
    1. WiseStamp creates an email signature that allows users to share their social profiles in the emails they sent.

Hou Teng

Hou Teng

Art Director, Digital Marketing Strategist at LeowHouTeng.com
Hou Teng is a Singaporean graphic designer, specialising in both print and web. After graduating from Nanyang Technological University, School of Art, Design & Media, he has worked in advertising and launched an education startup as a side project. He has also worked briefly in a renovation start-up in Shen Zhen, China. While his strengths are in branding and layout design, he is also skilled in digital imaging, web design (HTML & CSS), WordPress content management and administration, search engine optimisation, and digital marketing.
Hou Teng