After the great success of our 2018 market overview, we have also compared 2020 content marketing tools. New content marketing tool providers are ready for 2022, which we compare in our Content Marketing Tools Comparison Update. In the update of our market overview, we compared the various tools based on an extensive catalog of 227 criteria and in 15 categories. This gives you the best possible orientation when selecting software. You can download the summary of the comparison as a PDF here.
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Content Marketing Tools: One software as a central work platform
Many companies still use Excel to create their editorial plan. This does not have to be the case. Content marketing takes a central position in the mix of measures of more and more companies. There are many reasons for this, but the direct link to target groups via dedicated channels and the direct and measurable impact on sales success play a major role. Financial resources and personnel capacities are allocated accordingly. Budgets and teams are getting bigger, tasks are becoming more complex and the division of labor is increasing. A common work platform is needed as an important part of a company’s content technology stack, with which all content can be planned, controlled, created and distributed.
Such platforms are content marketing suites. They are already on the market in large numbers, analogous to the success story of content marketing. The software solutions are characterized by a high range of functions and form the central element in the production of content in the company. They also allow content teams, external agencies and freelancers to be optimally integrated into the production process.
Many of the solutions also offer functions that are otherwise only covered by specialized standalone software. Companies should therefore check in each case whether the broad but often rather basic range of functions offered by content marketing suites is sufficient for their requirements, or whether special software is also needed. They should also pay attention to legal aspects in content marketing.
Content marketing suites are ideal for efficiently and successfully managing a company’s content across multiple locations. In this market overview, we have compiled 15 software solutions for you and hope to give you, who are looking for one, a good orientation guide.
Content Marketing Tools Market Overview Categories:
- General information about the providers
- Industry focus of the providers
- Languages of the user interface
- Basic functions of the tools
- Content strategy functions
- Content research functions
- Content planning functions
- Content creation incl. workflows
- Distribution functions
- Community management
- Content controlling
- Legal criteria
- Interfaces & integration options
- Additional services of the tool providers
- Price approach of the tools
We compared these content marketing tools:
contentbird – Content Marketing Suite
USP (according to own statement): „Unique combination of content operations software for collaboration, Trusted Content for content quality assurance, and contentbird Convert for generating leads through interactive content formats from within content.”
References: fleurop, bike24, dominos, fressnapf, billiger-mietwagen
USP (according to own statement): „ContentPepper is the first digital marketing platform that connects all marketing channels and helps create AI-powered content.”
References: advantegy GmbH, yourflip, Krebshilfe Köln, COVIS GmbH
Design interactive stories
USP (according to own statement): „Maglr is the no-code design platform to create, share, analyse and manage your interactive stories. Leave a lasting impression on your audience with a striking story that’s easy to share and provides real-time insight into reading behaviour.”
USP (laut eigener Aussage): „Strategic topic and editorial planning as well as social media management in a single platform.”
References: BMW, Lufthansa, Vodafone, Debeka, Birkenstock
USP (according to own statement): „facelift is the leading social media management tool. Create authentic content for higher reach. Community interaction and powerful impact analytics. Official partner of major networks, GARP compliant with highest standards, ISO27001 certified, TISAX certified.”
References: HDI, BASF, Grohe, Festo, Audi, Renault, Carrefour, Polizei NRW, BMWi
falcon io / brandwatch*
HubSpot Marketing Hub*
USP (according to own statement): „HubSpot’s marketing software gives you everything you need to generate more traffic, convert leads, and prove the ROI of your activities. In the process, our support team does everything in its power to help you grow your business sustainably.”
USP (according to own statement): „InterRed is THE central content hub solution for all channels: Online, Social, Print, E-Paper, App. Incl. DAM, PIM, action and topic planning, communication and workflow management; AI & Data Analytics. Multi Channel Publishing offers flexible content control for all strategies, a unique AI-based WYSIWYG editor to optimize editorial processes and much more.”
References: Axel Springer SE; VDI Wissensforum; DIE ZEIT Verlagsgruppe; Wort und Bild Verlag; Rheinische Post Mediengruppe
Marketing Efficiency Cloud*
USP (according to own statement): „BrandMaker gives marketers visibility and transparency into their marketing activities. As a result, marketing teams increase their efficiency and achieve a faster time-to-market. All processes, from budget and campaign planning to implementation, can be managed on one platform.”
Performance Suite (PS)
USP (according to own statement): „All-in-one SEO tool & one of the most comprehensive content suites on the market with automatic success control for created texts and link building. App, over 20 languages, over 230 Google countries crawlable.”
USP (according to own statement): „We provide a sustainable discovery experience.”
References: IKEA,METRO, Staples,Aldi, Decathlon
USP (according to own statement):“Scope finds the right content for your topics. You can curate this content and use the integrated workflow to distribute it together with your own content as a newsletter, on your website or on your social media channels. So you always have enough content!”
References: Comparis, Localsearch, Datenschutzpartner, Swisspeers, dfv Mediengruppe, venturelab
Searchmetrics Content Experience*
USP (according to own statement): „Paid media can be planned, organic search is sustainable. The Searchmetrics Suite now enables planning reliability for organic search as well, so that marketers who work data-driven can reliably achieve their ROI and traffic goals in the long term.”
USP (according to own statement): „The SocialHub is simple, smart, secure and reliable.”
References: Deutsche Bahn, Volkswagen, Rossmann, Rewe, Birkenstock
There are few outliers when it comes to basic features – broad feature set available across all vendors
Content marketing suites impress with a wide range of features. While some of these are rather freestyle, we first checked which basic features are included. The good news: by and large, all tools offer the basic features that our editors asked about. All of them offer an integrated search function and a user/authorization system. The suites are primarily SaaS solutions, and just under half can also be operated on their own servers. Most of the solutions are also multi-client capable and have an app for mobile use.
Before writing comes strategy and research – how do the tools support this?
Almost all providers are very well positioned in terms of the software’s strategy functions. With all of them, the target groups/personas can be integrated and the content can be used across departments. Scoring of topics and integration of the customer journey is also possible with most providers. In 16 of 18 solutions, the strategic goals, guidelines and channel strategy can also be integrated. There are greater differences in the research functions. Only 9 suites offer SEO functions or the option of keyword research, and only 7 solutions have integrated options for link building research. The situation is similarly clear when it comes to the question of whether influencers can be researched.
Numerous features make planning and content creation easy
The content marketing suites all offer a very wide range of features. Editorial plans, annual theme plans, briefing functions, functions for budget allocation or the specification of keywords – everything is available. However, it is surprising that relatively few tools (7/18) provide users with a W-question tool. The topic of AI has also only arrived rather sporadically in content marketing suites: only a few tools make topic suggestions to the user based on artificial intelligence. When it comes to planning and creating content, there are still gaps in the SEO and readability checking of content. On the other hand, workflows including release functions, integrated task management and a content editor are generally standard.
Out with the content – preferably directly via the tool
Content needs to be distributed, preferably directly from the tool with which it was created. All but two tools offer this function, albeit to varying degrees. For the standard channels Facebook and Twitter, they all have integrations; surprisingly, Instagram and YouTube are still a little thinner. LinkedIn is also not yet as widespread as one would expect. When it comes to XING, things are quite thin, but this is also largely due to the company’s interface restrictions. Those who also want to promote content directly from the marketing suite should take a close look at which tool makes this possible. Only just under half of the tools offer this feature.
The content marketing tool as a central platform needs interfaces and integrations
New software must integrate into the existing tool and software mix. This also applies to marketing suites. Almost all providers provide an API interface. Google Analytics integration is also standard. However, only a few tools have an interface to monitoring tools, while the option to connect to CRM tools is quite common. Integration into the shop system, on the other hand, is still rather a rarity. Most content marketing suites, on the other hand, have the option of exporting statistics. The connection to CMS solutions is also standard for all tools, to varying degrees. Every tool has the option to export statistics.
Costs of the tools very different but with similar price logic
Anyone who selects a content marketing suite naturally also looks at the price. Of course, it is first interesting to know what the costs of the software for a company are made up of. In this market overview, most providers rely on the price logic based on the number of users who are to work with the tool. The annual license costs of the providers vary greatly and presumably also reflect the target group of the solution: from 46 euros per month to a minimum monthly cost of 12,000 euros. However, some providers negotiate the conditions individually and have therefore not provided any details. The minimum contract term is 12 months for most providers. Perhaps also interesting: If you are interested in service providers around content marketing, take a look at our comparison of content marketing agencies.
Note: The data for content marketing tool providers marked with * was taken from the Market Overview 2020. No updated data was available at the editorial deadline for the market overview.