Resources

Small Business Resource Directory

Welcome to Chad Deckard’s Resource Directory

Please take in consideration that every service and vendor on this list is a service or vendor that we use ourselves to run our business. If it’s on this list, you can bet we’ve worked it over pretty good. No one has paid to be on this list and no one can apply to be on this list. This is our in house resource directory of what we think is the best of the best resources on the market today.Now, at some point we may change our mind, add new players or tweak some aspect as we learn more, but you can rest assured that we believe in the folks on this list and have no problem recommending each and every one of them. Thank you for being a part of my personal Marketing Community and don’t hesitate to share any great finds you have with us here!

Business Planning

Business Plan
Creating a plan for your business that includes marketing strategy, tactics and financial forecasts is the first step in creating a sustainable business.
LivePlan
The easiest way to get your business plan done today.With expert advice, built-in help, access anywhere, and more than 500 complete sample business plans, LivePlan makes it easy for you to create a professional plan that will impress any audience

Ideal Customer

Ideal Customer
Marketing without strategy is the noise before failure. For any marketing strategy and corresponding set of tactics to work, you must first narrowly define your ideal client and then apply the strategy towards attracting more happy customers.
Topo.ly
Topo.ly easily creates maps on the fly with a simple copy and paste from Excel. Then the fun begins. Filter to show or hide locations based on attributes from your spreadsheet. Change the icons of your places, and click on them to view all the location-specific data from your original spreadsheet. Search all locations on your spreadsheet to instantly fly to its spot. And share your maps with everyone on your team or even extend them to your customers.
Ask Your Target Market
AYTM is leading innovator in DIY online market research. Simply define your target audience from their built-in panels of almost 4.5 million people, write your survey in their easy to use, intuitive survey editor, launch it and see results streaming back usually within minutes (24x7x365). AYTM delivers your results to a robust analytics page for creating beautiful reports, cross tab capabilities with Excel, PDF and Power Point exports included. No subscription fees, only pay when you use AYTM’s panel and if you have your own list, it’s completely free. White label package available.

Customer Relationship Management

CRM
In a perfect world, every customer relationship would be steeped in a complete understanding of the customer’s current wants, needs and desires. The trick of course is that getting anything that looks like that at all requires three things – incredible planning, thoughtful technology and consistent execution.
AddressTwo
AddressTwo is an online CRM Software where you can create multiple user accounts, each with their own login credentials, at no additional cost—create unlimited user logins. Customers can be assigned to specific “account managers” according to the different usernames you create. What’s more, however, is that every event that’s recorded in AddressTwo is stamped with the user’s information. How many calls did your sales team make last week? How much is in one particular salesperson’s sales forecast (or “pipeline”)? Are they meeting their goals? Are they staying productive? You can see up-to-date, real-time reports of the activity your users are generating.
Nimble
Nimble unifies all your contacts, calendars, conversations from Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google. Monitor the most popular social networks from one screen, engage prospects, and build deeper relationships.
Infusionsoft
Infusionsoft is the only all-in-one sales and marketing automation software for small businesses that combines CRM, email marketing and e-commerce.

Email

Email
No matter how enamored you may be with social media, email still outpunches just about every tool out there when it comes to cost effective lead conversion.
Constant Contact
Constant Contact offers email marketing, event marketing, online surveys, social campaigns, and learning center training and assistance.

Campaigner
Campaigner has email creation options to suit your style whether you’re new to email marketing or are a seasoned pro. Our tools take the work out of email creation and guide you through, step-by-step. You’ll hit the ground running when you use one of our 700 professional, pre-designed email templates, perfect for any size or type of business. Or if you’re sporting some technical mojo, you can customize a template, or upload your own HTML. We make it quick, easy and nearly effortless.
AWeber
AWeber creates profitable customer relationships for your business! AWeber’s email marketing tools like professional email signup forms & autoresponder services make it easy for you to build your email list and stay in touch with prospects.

Graphics and Design

Graphics and Design
Image isn’t everything, but it’s a big part of the package. When it comes to your business, a properly executed identity can set the expectation for your client’s or potential client’s experience with your firm.
Visual.ly
Visual.ly offers infographics and data visualizations that are shifting the way people find and experience stories, creating a new way of seeing the world of data. They help communicate complex ideas in a clear, compact and beautiful way, taking deep data and presenting it in visual shorthand. We’ve collected the best examples on the web and gathered them for you to reference, share, and enjoy.
Stock.XCHNG
Stock.XCHNG allows you to browse through the categories of our huge gallery containing over 350,000 quality stock photos by more than 30,000 photographers! Need a wallpaper for your desktop or illustration for your blog? Need a pic for your commercial website design? Looking for inspiration? Have a look around. Share your photos with fellow designers! SXC is a friendly community of photography addicts who generously offer their works to those who need them free of charge. If you have some nice photos that you’d like to share with others, join us! Not only does it feel great to share, you will also get huge exposure for your work! Chat with other members in our forum! Looking for something? Need an opinion? Have a question? Post a topic, and someone will definitely help you out.
crowdSPRING
crowdSPRING is the world’s #1 marketplace for custom logo design, graphic design and naming. The process is simple, fast, effective and affordable. Small businesses that need a logo, website, custom graphic design, industrial design or written content post what they need, when they need it and how much they’ll pay.

Content

Content
By now you’re probably sick of hearing that content is king and you must produce reams of it in order to compete these days, but it’s true, there’s no way around it.
Hubshout
Hubshout transforms your website into a hub of information for your category using our proprietary technology and search engine optimization. Our SEO services spread your message across the Internet, improving your rankings with the search engines. Learn more about our services.
Inbound Writer
Inbound Writer is a cloud based content optimization application that blends art and science to reach and engage your audience.
Speaker Text
Speaker Text creates fast affordable, human-generated transcripts for videos and podcasts. Works with YouTube, Blip.tv, Ooyala, and Brightcove.
Casting Words
Casting Words is a quick, high quality, audio transcription service – just upload your file and go. Straightforward rates, fast ordering and a range of turnarounds. Audio, Video, CD/DVDs.
DivvyHQ
DivvyHQ is made up of about 5 developers, graphic designers, writers, content strategists, thinkers, dreamers and beer drinkers. We’re all pretty much obsessed with making the content marketing process easier and work better, so the goal for DivvyHQ is to make it the World’s best content marketing and editorial calendar application.

Search Engine Optimization

SEO
Getting your business found by Internet surfers is one of the most important reasons for creating a web site. It makes little difference if Internet surfers or potential customers are across the globe or across the street; if they can’t find your web site when they are searching for products and services you offer, you are the proverbial needle in the haystack.
Planet Ocean
Planet Oceans primary focus is to simplify the complexity of doing business online. We specialize in revealing and simplifying search engine strategies and gear our services toward online marketing professionals to give them a competitive edge. Since 1997 we have revealed every strategic detail for ranking at the top of the major search engines.
WordTracker
WordTracker is an essential investment if you are serious about search engine optimization. It’s a must have resource for any search engine marketing professional. Wordtracker is a wonderful keyword research tool.
SEOBook
SEOBook has over 100 training modules covering topics suchas keyword research, link building & many more! Exclusivecommunity & forum access. Members only videos and tools. Every order comes risk free and with the best selling SEO Book as a free bonus!
SEOmoz
SEOmoz is the most popular provider of SEO software. Our easy to use tools and tutorials make search engine optimization accessible to everyone.
HubSpot
HubSpot All-in-one Marketing Software gives you all the toolsyou need to make marketing people love. Get Found: Help prospects find you online. Nurture your leads and drive conversions. Measure and improve your marketing. Access the marketplace for apps and integrations.
Raven Tools
Raven Internet Marketing Tools is an online platform that helps users quickly research, manage, monitor and report on SEO, social media and other Internet marketing campaigns. Its collaborative, multi-user features and fast, professional reports make it the software choice of thousands of online marketers worldwide. Raven Internet Marketing Tools, a privately-held Nashville-based company, was founded in 2007.

Advertising

Advertising
Advertising is one of the marketing tactics that comes with aninvoice. You must write a check to run ads or send direct mail,often before seeing any results. In our experience, people shy away from advertising, not because of the cost, but because they don’t know how to get results and they don’t understand the long-term residual effects. Think about it, if you knew that for every $100 you spent you could produce $200, you would get out your checkbook and spend away, right?
AdWords
Google AdWords allows you create ads and choose keywords,which are words or phrases related to your business. When people search on Google using one of your keywords, your ad may appear next to the search results. Now you’re advertising to an audience that’s already interested in you.
NextMark Mailing List Finder
NextMark let’s you choose from 60000+ targeted mailing lists from 1400+ suppliers – Virtually every mailing list available all in one place! NextMark, Inc., a leading provider of direct marketing tools and resources, today announced the re-launch of its free online Mailing List Finder.

Public Relations

PR
PR is such a powerful, credible and low-cost tool and is an area often underutilized by small businesses. There’s no real magic to generating positive press. It’s a matter of building relationships with a handful of key journalists and a commitment to consistently putting announcements and small stories out every month using a combination of local press contacts and online social media tools.
HARO
HARO taps into the largest source repository in the world withover 80,000 mainstreet and expert sources who will responddirectly to your query on your terms. No more flipping throughyour rolodex; searching out-of-date databases, or being bothered by unsolicited sources with off-topic pitches. Submit your query and let HARO deliver the perfect sources right to your inbox.
MyLocalReporter
MyLocalReporter – Here’s how you can get BIG news coverage for your business or non-profit: Tell us your incredible story » You know what’s newsworthy about your business better than anybody! Select reporters from MyLocalReporter tool » Find reporters interested in what you do! Create and submit your news pitch » State your news, click submit, and let MyLocalReporter make the pitch! Talk to Reporters » We’ll email reporters telling them your news, encourage them to email you back, and prepare them for your call!
Submit My Press Release
Submit My Press Release reaches millions of people instantly.Boosts your website traffic and SEO. Will be seen on search sites like Yahoo! News and Topix – guaranteed! Can reach more than 250,000 RSS subscribers and 30,000 opt-in journalists.

Video Tools

Video Tools
Video has become an essential marketing tool. It’s a great way to tell your story, show the human side of your business and communicate highly complex ideas in an easy to digest manner. But while video has the power to deeply engage, it also has the power to bore the viewer to tears—and creating compelling video is different than writing, say, a compelling blog post.
ViewBix
Viewbix is a one-of-a-kind video tool that will enable your website visitors to turn their traditional website video into a fully interactive and social media friendly marketing machine. By enabling your traffic to embed links, add social apps that keep those links in tact when shared, maps, local weather forecasts, email and newsletter collection and many more powerful marketing techniques, Viewbix is a new solution for you to increase conversions, create more engagement and provide a better user experience.

Social Media

Social Media
As I continue to try to help small business owners and marketers embrace all things social, I’ve begun to talk about it in different terms. We’ve moved beyond the notion that social media is department or even a set of tactics, but what is it then.
TweetDeck
TweetDeck is your personal browser for staying in touch with what’s happening now, connecting you with your contacts across Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, etc.
PostPlanner
PostPlanner schedules Facebook posts with your own Brand Name & Website Link under every post. Search our database of 5000+ proven status update ideas.
SproutSocial
SproutSocial is a social media management tool created to help businesses find new customers & grow their social media presence. Try it for free.
NorthSocial
NorthSocial creates amazing timeline pages. Customize your brand’s Facebook page with the deepest collection of apps for promotions, fan engagement, and tracking social ROI.
Vertical Response Social
Vertical Response Social enables you to manage your social media marketing from one easy-to-use website and engage with more customers.
Rapportive
Rapportive shows you everything about your contacts right inside your inbox. We combine what you know, what your organization knows, and what the web knows.
Buffer
Buffer makes it super easy to share any page you’re reading. Keep your Buffer topped up and we automagically share posts for you through the day.
KnowEm
KnowEm helps protect your brand or username from Social Media Identity Theft. Since April of 2009 KnowEm has been tracking and monitoring hundreds of social media networks populated mostly with user-generated content. Our database of networks is updated frequently as new sites are released and our staff reviews them for quality. We track multiple metrics on these sites to determine which networks are gaining (or losing) traction in the world of social media. By using and storing these metrics we watch for patterns and spikes in traffic and popularity.

WordPress

WordPress
You know I’m a huge fan of blogs for small business and an equally big supporter of the WordPress blogging platform. The wide adoption of WordPress is aided greatly by the fact that its open source architecture means that outside developers can create add-ons to extend the basic functionality.
Genesis Theme
Genesis Theme is a professionally designed premium WordPress themes. StudioPress developed the Genesis theme which is the industry standard in WordPress design frameworks.
Premise Landing Pages
Premise empowers you to quickly and easily build custom, graphically-enhanced landing pages without cost, code, or hassle.
Scribe SEO Content
Scribe shows you the language searchers use before you begin towrite. Once your content is created, Scribe reveals other profitable keywords. Scribe analyzes your natural, reader-focused content, and tells you how to gently tweak it to spoon feed search engines based on 15 SEO best practices. Scribe helps you build back links, crosslink the content within your own site, and identify influential social media users who want to share your stuff.
Pippity
Pippity is a WordPress lightbox popup plugin that allows for A/B split testing, advanced filters like referrer status, specific category and more.

Web Hosting

Web Hosting
As I have recently discovered, a cheap, no name host can lead to a world of headache from crashing our servers to crawling speeds. Below are a list of Web Hosting Services I recommend:
Amazon Web Services
Amazon Web Services (AWS) delivers a set of services that together form a reliable, scalable, and inexpensive computing platform “in the cloud”.
Synthesis Web Hosting
Synthesis Web Hosting offers superior WordPress hosting that thrives under viral traffic loads while keeping the hackers at bay, from people who actually run high-traffic WordPress sites.
Media Temple
Media Temple provides reliable web hosting services, Linux Server Hosting, and 24/7 live support.
Lunar Pages Web Hosting
Lunar Pages offers affordable business and personal web hosting plans: best web hosting, free tools, uptime guarantee & free set up.

Web Tools

Web Tools
You can automation and lots of wow factor when you add a handful of the right applications to support your campaigns, nurturing and follow-up. Here are a couple tools we use quite frequently:
Wufoo
Wufoo’s HTML form builder helps you create online web forms. Use our web form creator to power your contact forms, online surveys, and event registrations.
AudioAcrobat
AudioAcrobat is easiest way to stream audio. Produce and publish great audio to your Web site and emails. Create your own online radio show.
MailVU
MailVU allows users to send free video email with self destruct feature. Get a free account. Record up to 10 minutes and play on iPhone, Android and other smart phones.

Customer Service

Customer Service
The most fundamental shift of all in marketing is the need to logically and systematically move prospects along the path of know, like, trust, try, buy, repeat and refer – this is the entire game these days. Now, what tools and tactics you bring to this game will certainly differ, but the end game is still the same.
Zendesk
Zendesk offers help desk software and support ticket software as well as web-based customer support software. Zendesk is used by thousands of companies worldwide.
Get Satisfaction
Get Satisfaction is the leading customer engagement platform that helps companies build better relationships with their customers and prospects.
Customer Thermometer
Customer Thermometer is the only customer satisfaction survey customers can answer from their inbox, giving you industry-leading response rates. Customer Thermometer is an easy and unique way to gather the thoughts of your customers. Write, create and send beautiful, branded emails in seconds. Your customers click directly from their email inbox. You track their responses in real time.

Tracking

Tracking
The engine that drives the smart content experience is data. You need to stay on top of your campaigns and conversions by using tools that help you know what’s working and what’s not, what’s converting and what’s not and what’s drawing traffic, links and views.
Google Analytics
Google Analytics lets you measure your advertising ROI as well as track your Flash, video, and social networking sites and applications.
Woopra
Woopra features real time web analytics, live chat, and webstatistics including tracking conversion and funnel reports.
Spring Metrics
Spring Metrics features easy conversion tracking, optimization & website analytics for e-commerce.

Virtual Assistance

Virtual Assistance
As a small business owner, you can’t do it all. Letting go sometimes is hard, but you must spend your time on the tasks that are most valuable for your business. A Virtual Assistant (VA) provides professional administrative, technical or creative assistance to a client from a virtual office.
ifttt
ifttt is a new service that makes it easy to automate your life on the web. It allows you to link all your favorite web apps to create supercharged integration between tools like Gmail, Dropbox, Instapaper, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Foursquare, and oh-so-much more. Use ifttt to get more from your online life.
Fiverr
Fiverr stylized as fiverr, is a global marketplace offering tasks and services online starting at $5.
Fancy Hands
Fancy Hands is a team of personal assistants ready to work for you right now. You should focus on what’s important; let us focus on the rest.

Online Communication Tools

Online Communication Tools
In my years of business I have learned one very important lesson. People like to keep things simple. They want to be able to find what they are looking for with ease. They want to get ahold of you instantly. They want all the right information in front of them with a snap of their fingers (Sounds familiar right?).
Agendize
Agendize makes it easy for customers to call, chat and book appointments from your website using click to call, live chat, online appointment scheduling, etc.
Olark
Olark offers live chat and real-time monitoring of your website visitors so you can sell better and provide excellent support.
HelloFax
HelloFax is an online fax and electronic signature service. You can upload documents, add your signature and other text to them, and then fax them for free.
WorldTimeBuddy
WorldTimeBuddy allows you to Effortlessly convert between multiple time zones, plan and schedule conference calls, online webinars and international meetings.

Finance

Finance
Sure, most of what we’ve recommended on this list has to do with marketing, but once you start making sales, taking orders and ringing the cash register you need to organize the way you invoice, collect money and keep score. A new breed of online financial suite is making this once arduous accounting task much more intuitive.
FreshBooks
FreshBooks is an online invoicing software as a service forfreelancers, small businesses, agencies, and professionals.
Manilla
Manilla offers a secure, online place to organize and manage your household bills, financial accounts, travel rewards programs and more. Easy access to all of your accounts with a single login to our secure site. Automatic reminders help you avoid late fees.
inDinero
inDinero is the fastest growing way for business owners to manage their money. Our real-time dashboard makes small business accounting easy for everyone.

Project Management

Project Management
Collaboration, outsourcing and virtual workforces and offices are trends that are here to stay and getting even hotter as companies look for ways to work more efficiently and cut overhead costs.
Basecamp
Basecamp is trusted by millions and is the leading web-based project management and collaboration tool. To-dos, files, messages, schedules, and milestones.
Central Desktop
Central Desktop delivers a pure Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) social technology platform that allows next-generation business teams to communicate. We offer an alternative to email, IT-heavy SharePoint implementations and lightweight file-sharing sites. We connect your people, content and customers in the cloud, so everyone can get things done together. From one private, secure, centralized website.

ChadDeckard.com Resource Directory

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