What’s in your “Freelancing stack”?

We know the marketing stack inside and out, and we talk a good game about our clients’ tech stacks too. But what about the tools and platforms that B2B Tech marketing freelancers use to help streamline their work? We recently asked our Associates what their go-to's are, and the conversation was lively!

We’re happy to share a plethora of tips, tricks, and apps to help organise, communicate, and collaborate. With so many tools out there, it can be hard to know where to start and who to ask, but these are the most recommended from our community – proven on global projects for some of the biggest IT and technology clients in the world.

And of course, if you think we’ve missed a trick, let us know and we’ll add it in.



Anna, our People Manager, suggests Calendly
“I use Calendly for scheduling meetings. It synchs up with ALL my various calendars seamlessly, it has workflows and reminders, saves me oodles of time trying to find a time that works for me and the other person and super easy to use. There is a paid and free version. I use the paid version as need a variety of meeting types and want to be able to have the workflows as well.”

Suggested by Nat, our Social Media Manager
Working across multiple projects, budgets and clients and need to find a way to track it all? Look no further than Clockify. You can track productivity, attendance, and billable hours with a simple time tracker and timesheet.

Nigel, one of our crack Associates, suggests Jamboard from Google Cloud
“If you have Google account, Jamboard is a very easy to use whiteboard system that lets groups all work online in the same space”, which is very powerful indeed. “Far better than either the Teams or Zoom whiteboards.”

Google Account
Nat also uses Google to run her Social Media business
Helps to keep everything in one place. Create and share your work online and access your documents from anywhere. Manage documents, spreadsheets, presentations, surveys, and more all in one easy location.


Campaign planning

Suggested by Emma, one of our busy bees
“Great for mapping out campaigns, running workshop brainstorms, and even web page mockups.” LucidChart allows you to quickly visualize your team's processes, systems, and organizational structure. It’s intelligent diagramming lets you visualize complex ideas faster, clearer and more collaboratively.

Emma also finds Asana useful
Asana is great for project management and running meetings. Keep remote and distributed teams, and your entire organization, focused on their goals, projects, and tasks with Asana. From routing requests to tracking approvals, manage your production processes and eliminate ad hoc tasks that waste time.

The Atlassian account team uses Trello for shared project management
Start with a Trello board, lists, and cards. Customize and expand with more features as your teamwork grows. Manage projects, organize tasks, and build team spirit—all in one place. “We were introduced to Trello by our client, as it’s an Atlassian product, and now find it incredibly valuable for a variety of uses.”

Associate Angela, a Hive member, suggests Funnelytics
Funnelytics is a visual performance tool that offers a top-level view of your entire marketing funnel. "With Funnelytics, you can view your complete customer journey and its real-time performance in one place.

Anglea also likes Coggle for mind mapping
The free version of Coggle gives you 3 free boards for mind mapping. You can use it to map out your processes, systems, and algorithms, as well as being able to invite your friends and colleagues to collaborate with you on your diagrams.



Emma also uses Copy.ai
Experiencing a copy blank? No idea where to start? Copy.ai can help provide a framework for you emails, blogs or whitepapers. It’ll never replace a copywriter – but it can be helpful to give you the building blocks if you're stuck for time or ideas.

Nat uses Grammarly on her social media content
Copy is always better after it’s been edited, but if you are short on time or working alone Grammarly can give you some quick tips on how to improve your content. You can also test suggestions from Grammarly while you write in desktop applications and sites across the web—as you move between apps, social media, documents, messages, and emails.

One of our multilingual bees, Ugur, suggests QuillBot
QuillBot's paraphrasing tool helps millions of people rewrite and enhance any sentence, paragraph, or article using state-of-the-art AI. If you need to create content or rephrase an existing text to create "new" content, we recommend using Quillbot.com in its premium version (also available as a free tool with limited functions). It's great for writer’s block too.


Designing and editing

Elisabeth, our Account Director, and Nigel are avid Mac users and recommend Apple-native apps
iMovie is very capable video editor that’s super easy to master. Preview allows you to make basic edits to PDFs, and Photos now has decent Photoshop-style editing tools (without layers). People aren’t always aware that Quicktime is also for screen recording, so you can do most of what Camtasia does between Quicktime and iMovie If you need images.

Nigel and Ugur have collected a great list of free to use image libraries and editors:

Free stock photos & videos you can use everywhere. Browse millions of high-quality royalty free stock images & copyright free pictures.

Pixabay offers a library of royalty-free images that a free to use without credits, including for commercial use. A real resource when you don’t have creative budget or just need a one-off image.

Not as sophisticated as some of the paid libraries, but between Pexels, Pixabay, and Unsplash, you can usually find what you need. The website claims over 265,000 contributing photographers and generates more than 16 billion photo impressions per month on their growing library of over 3.48 million free to use photos.

HandBrake is a tool for converting video from nearly any format to a selection of modern, widely supported codecs. “If you need to make videos smaller or change formats, Handbrake is well worth installing. It doesn’t edit or trim video, but it uses very effective compression tools and there’s a menu to help you get what you’re after.”

Recommended by just about the whole Hive!
An excellent and intuitive tool for all kinds of graphic content, Canva is widely recommended by digital marketing agencies and is “easy enough to use by non-creative marketers too.” App-based so you can use it on your device and post directly to social, or use the online browser version for more complex content.

Ugur suggests a few of his go-tos
iloveIMG is a free webapp that lets you modify and edit images. Crop, resize, compress, convert, add stickers, filters and frames. Snappa helps you create custom LinkedIn posts using professionally designed templates. “The wide selection of ready-made templates is free to use and easy to customize.”


Prospecting and selling

Another couple of suggestions from several team members
Search, engage and convert over 250 million contacts at over 60 million companies with Apollo.io’s sales intelligence and engagement platform. It also has LinkedIn integration for lead contact information. Zoominfo provides packages to access its database of information about individuals and companies to sales, marketing, and recruiting professionals.



Forrester’s SiriusDecisions
Dawn, the CMO of Software AG, one of our favourite clients, swears by their Buyers Journey model
SiriusDecisions Research delivers operational intelligence and fact-based insights to functional leaders of B2B organizations and their teams so they can align across the revenue-generating ecosystem of product, marketing, and sales.

A go-to TMB partner for research and highly targeted lead generation
The largest media resource specifically for enterprise tech buyers. TechTarget is the global leader in purchase intent-driven marketing and sales services that deliver business impact for enterprise technology companies. “TechTarget’s intent data doesn’t come from content syndication, but rather from opt-in publications. This makes a difference when planning tricky lead gen campaigns.”

Growth Hub
Ugur is part of the ITSMA community in addition to buzzing along with the Hive
The Growth Hub is an independent community of professional B2B marketers of all levels that provides easy, round-the-clock access to the largest global B2B community of marketing experts and practicing professionals from leading global enterprises. All Growth Hub community members have unlimited access to a wealth of research and insights, a panel of respected experts, and peer-to-peer learning and networking

Nat uses this free tool to keep her facts straight
Organize all your trusted news and research sources in one place.


Digital Marketing

A collection of platforms and tools collated from the wider Hive

SEMrush is great for keyword research and online ranking data, including metrics like search volume and cost per click.

WordPress is a free open-source content management system. Create a website or blog using one of the thousands of free templates available. Collect leads, create contact forms, create subscriptions, automatically backup your site, and a whole lot more.

Great for moving data from one app to another, and also for connecting and linking apps and systems. REALLY easy to use!

Widely known, but Bitly (or Owly) is great for shortening URLs if you need space or want to make something short where you can’t hyperlink (like in a video).

Not free, but Backblaze is dirt cheap and super-easy as far as backup systems go. If you do paid work on your PC or Mac, you definitely need a reliable backup tool to protect your business from mistakes, hardware failures, and scary things like ransomware.


This is by no means an exhaustive list! Let us know what’s in your freelancing stack and help out our freelancer community. Add your suggestions in the comments!