It can be a right pain trying to keep up with more than one social media platform, so in this post, I’m going to share with you five social media management tools to help you save time and improve your social media marketing efforts.
Everypost has a simple black and white dashboard that makes your promoting efforts quite easy. After logging in, you can add accounts at the top right corner and select the updates you want to post. Easily connect to several social accounts. You can also grab visual content from a variety of sources such as Pinterest, Flickr, YouTube or Instagram and use this to create your own. Everypost also has an option to post immediately or schedule the post for later. It comes with five pricing plans. The most basic is free.
Buffer, my personal favourite, is easy to use, has a simple interface and is good for a team. Once you create an account, select the social networks you want to add by navigating to the left side menu. After that, create and share content using the Content tab. One of the cool features of Buffer is its analytics. The Analytics tab provides you with a wealth of information about your social media marketing efforts – I love being able to see the engagement my posts get, if something gets lots of clicks and retweets, I know to share it again and again!
You can also schedule posts and tweak the frequency of daily postings as well. To invite team members, navigate to the Settings tab – good for those of you lucky enough to have a virtual assistant, if you work in PR or if you are running a blog with a friend. One another nifty feature is the browser extension and mobile application. The latter allows you to manage your social media marketing at any time – queue me scheduling Tweets at work when I’ve forgotten! Buffer is available free with limited features. To unlock its true power, you need a pro account – which I’ve had now for two years. Being able to schedule 100 Tweets rather than just 10 is really helpful when you know you’re going to be busy.
SocialOomph has a number of outstanding features that improve your social media marketing efforts. After you create an account, you need to verify your email before you can use the account. There are five tabs to manage your social media. The Networks allows you to connect your social media accounts. In the Posting tab, you can create posts, shorten URLs, schedule posts and purge Twitter messages. The Following tab allows you to manage your followers or identify new people to follow. You can also set it up to instantly follow back people who follow you. In case you get lost, there is a Help tab to help you find your way back. SocialOomph comes with a free 7 day trial of the full feature package but there is also a free version with limited features.
Used by millions of people around the world, Hootsuite is one of the most popular social media management tools. Once you log in, simply add your social media profiles. Hootsuite currently serves Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram, WordPress and YouTube. Once you set this up, you can decide where you want to post to or send the same content to all channels. Before posting each post, you can get details on character counts, shorten URLs, attach images and even schedule posts. Hootsuite also has a great analytics dashboard for useful insights into your social media marketing efforts. You can also assign campaign management to members of your team. To access the full raft of features, you need a paid plan though they do offer a free plan with limited features.
5 Sprout Social
Sprout Social is not for the newbie user. But, if you are a quick learner, it comes with stats that you rarely see in other tools, and we all know how much I love stats! When you first log in, you may feel a bit intimidated by the numerous tabs and instructions, but just give yourself a bit of time to poke around and see whats what. On the right hand side, you can view your social media profiles and team members. On the left, you can view your audience demographics and trends. This also shows the daily and/or weekly interactions and impressions. At the top of the dashboard, you can manage team tasks and scroll through the various social media channel feeds. One cool feature is a Discovery tab which shows you new followers, mentions or conversations. A Smart Search feature also allows to identify keywords that your audience is using.
At the end of the day, your choice of a social media management tool will depend on your audience, what you use your blog for and if it’s just a hobby or something a bit more serious. Some content does well on some social channels than others while some types of posts do well with specific types of social media sites. Be sure to check out the feature of each tool closely before spending cash on it. Luckily with a free version, or trail versions of all the above you can have a play and see what suits you most. I have to say my favourite is Buffer, although I’ve not fully explored all other options yet!
What tools to you use to help manage your social media accounts?