The best marketing software - according to SaaS founders

Updated on 13th March 2021

One of my favourite Meet the Maker questions is to ask what tools they rely on, beyond their own. Here's their answers...

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Surges strives to be the most trusted SaaS review site on the web. I wouldn’t recommend any digital marketing tool I wouldn’t pay to use with my own money.

However, with thousands of SaaS platforms that exist, it’s a continuous work in progress. There’s always more tools out there. That’s why one of my favourite Meet the Maker questions is to ask what tools they rely on, beyond their own.

So, below is the best SaaS, as recommended by the maker community. In their own words…

Avi Wilensky @ Press Notify

Top tools: Semrush & Screaming Frog

Press Notify is the fastest way to create and send press pitches to all the leading tech publications in one go.

The man behind it, Avi, is forever building new tools and digital projects. His biggest challenge is not coming up with new ideas, but making sure they get discovered by others.

That’s why he’s a big fan of SEO all-rounders Semrush and Screaming Frog. The former for exploratory keyword analysis and the latter for its unrivalled ability to forensically crawl websites at scale.

Ervin Kalemi @ Publer

Top tools: Crisp

Publer was one of my best finds of 2020. Still a toddler in SaaS years, this self-proclaimed social media superhero is bursting with features, such as cross-posting, scheduling and evergreen post recycling.

Ervin swears by live chat platform Crisp to deliver incredible customer service. The tool lives where your customers are, on Live Chat, Email to Facebook Messenger, Twitter DM or SMS. Ervin rates it above conversational darling Intercom, saying “it’s very practical, cost efficient and the team behind it is awesome.”

Jeff Oxford @ LinkHunter

Top tools: Surfer SEO, Ahrefs & Screaming Frog

LinkHunter is a backlink machine. Connect it to your email account and use its premade campaign templates to get prime links for your top content – something I did to secure over $3000 worth of backlinks in my review!

Jeff gave an honourably shout out to Screaming Frog and Ahrefs but reserved his highest praise for Surfer SEO to easily create content with the potential to rank highly on Google.

Ryan Kulp @ Fomo

Top tools: Headway

Fomo is a tiny pop-up that taps into the power of personal recommendations to boost your website’s conversions. It recycles product purchases, newsletter subscriptions and just about any other action you can think of as social proof notifications.

Ryan loves Headway, a great way to keep customers in the loop about your product. So much so, he even tried to buy Headway from its owners!

The SaaS powers public and in-app changelogs for the likes of Superhuman, Streak and Buffer, letting customers know about any new features and what you’re working on next. A neat tool I hadn’t heard of before, so, thanks Ryan!

Maker Ty Lingley @ Unbounce

Top tools: PartnerStack

Unbounce is an antidote to one-size-fits-all homepages. The drag-and-drop landing page builder has an unrivalled back catalogue of templates and features, making it easy to create high-converting destinations for your campaigns.

Ty is responsible for the partner program at Unbounce. It’s powered by PartnerStack, which turns the agencies and affiliates that recommend your product into an extension of your sales team. Unbounce is growing fast and uses PartnerStack to track partner links, leads, and deals, as well as giving every partner the tools and support they need to succeed.

Laura Roeder @ MeetEdgar

Top tools: Demio, Podia & ConvertKit

MeetEdgar is my go-to tool for resharing Surges’ reviews and interviews on social media. What should be a weekly scheduling job is automatically taken care of. Behind its success is a number of unsung heroes.

MeetEdgar founder and CEO Laura Roeder calls on Demio for the regular user webinars and content hacks they run, as well as Podia for courses. Of course, no growth success story is complete without email, and that’s where ConvertKit comes in. The service uses forms to convert visitors into subscribers, email for fans, and sales pages for monetising your passion.

Mary Siewierska @ Woodpecker

Top tools: Buffer

Nobody loves cold outreach, right? Woodpecker is on a mission to change that with its B2B lead qualifying and automated follow-ups and personalisation, making a salesperson’s life a whole lot easier.

Mary had a lot of praise for Buffer. Digital marketing often involves a lot of plate spinning and it can be hard to keep up. Buffer takes care of all the hard work associated with social media, helping startups such as Woodpecker to punch above its weight.

Alex Zaccaria @ Linktree

Top tools: Intercom

When social media profiles still only let you post one link, Linktree stretches that much further. This editable webpage is a directory of everything you want to share with your social followers. It might sound primitive but it solves a real problem for its millions of users.

In terms of helping him really connect with Linktree’s audience, Alex cited Intercom. The conversational marketing and support tool enables his relatively small team to serve a global audience, all hours of the day. So, if a user has a question, they’re never more than a click away. It’s the one way the team can stay close to the people who use Linktree inside out and a constant source of produce development ideas.

Jane Portman @ Userlist

Top tools: Mailchimp

Userlist is an automation tool for sending out engagement fodder for your SaaS users, based on their actual in-app behaviour.

Userlist’s co-founder & CEO, Jane Portman shared the secret to her success as a prominent force on the onboarding scene – apart from her deep, deep knowledge of all things onboarding that is. The answer: Mailchimp.

Mailchimp powers her email list for her pet project podcast UI Breakfast, with Jane a fan for their reliable and ethical approach to SaaS. Her love for Mailchimp runs so deep that she even has a figurine of their mascot, Freddie, on display on her bookshelf.

A big thanks to all our makers for sharing the tools that help to power their products and make them what they are.

If you’re considering setting up a small business online, check out these handy tips from entrepreneurs.

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