Having a social media strategy can really give your marketing a big boost. But managing and updating just a few social media accounts can put even the best organizational master to the test. You are not only tasked with creating content, but you also need to know the best times to post, what your audiences are interested in, and then of course, finding the time to do it all.
Social media tools that help you manage your profiles abound, taking some of the pressure of social media management off of your plate, while providing divine guidance, if you will, from above.
5 social media management tools
This easy-to-use app lets you manage accounts on major platforms such as Google+, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, and the user interface is simple but not basic. It’s ideal for creating content and scheduling posts, and then analyzing your campaigns. The app also recommends posts for you to share with followers from categories like inspiration or marketing. Pricing ranges from a free plan at $10, a small business plan for $50, a medium-sized business plan for $100 and a large business plan for $250.
A free social media management tool that also features paid Pro and Enterprise plans, Hootsuite is probably one of the better-known apps for handling social media. It features an easy-to-use interface where users can see LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook profiles, as well as Google+, Foursquare, WordPress and others. You can schedule posts ahead of time, and its analytics platform lets you see insights like the tweets that get the most responses and when followers are clicking over to your profile.
Like Hootsuite, Sprout Social lets users manage social media accounts on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Feedly. The streamlined access via a single inbox for multiple social media profiles makes it easy to manage your programs. In addition to posting content via the app, you can monitor your accounts and analyze data, too. Sprout Social’s analytics provide insights like mentions and helps you improve your follows, but it’s one of the costlier social media management tools at $59 per month for the basic plan.
An out-of-the-box management tool that goes beyond just social media, Raven Tools lets businesses combine other advertising components like SEO into their management efforts. From one dashboard, you can then see your social media profile activity and SEO, allowing easy viewing and analysis of all of your campaigns in one place. You can do all of the activities most other apps allow, such as creating and scheduling content, monitoring and analyzing keywords, and creating custom reports. To boot, the app lets you integrate Google Adwords for a one-stop shopping experience for all facets of a digital marketing campaign.
A great tool for data gathering on Facebook and Twitter accounts, Crowdbooster isn’t for direct management of social media posts. However, it does offer a wealth of data about your social media profiles, which can ultimately help you refine your social media strategy so that it gets better results. The service isn’t free, but its basic plan is minimal. At $9 per month, you get access to significant data – like when users view an image or video – and the platform will alert you when new Twitter users join the service, for example, that are within your target audience.
The right social media management tools depends largely on the number of profiles your business maintains, your marketing goals and your budget. If you’re just starting out, Buffer or Hootsuite are a good place to start. If your business manages many digital components, explore heftier options like Raven Tools.