When it comes to growing your business through social media, you’re only as good as the quantity and quality of content you share with your audience. Growing your business through social media means growing your audience through social media. Knowing and using the best social media management tools will help you with this.
This list will cover and compare the best social media management tools in 2019 that will help you build an engaged audience and grow your business.
What is a social media management tool?
A social media management tool is software that allows you to schedule, manage, and monitor all your social media accounts in one place. This makes it much easier for you to create content and manage your social media strategy. You no longer need to work with each social media property individually. You can have a cohesive message and strategy across several social media accounts all in one place.
Most social media management tools also allow you to collaborate. This is useful if you have a team or several people managing your social media accounts. It becomes much more difficult to coordinate a strategy without it.
Perhaps the most useful feature of a good social media management tool is the ability to schedule out posts and content ahead of time.
Part of a good social media strategy is being relevant and timely. These tools allow you to monitor trends, hashtags, and your audience to produce timely content. But a just as useful feature is the ability to schedule out content weeks in advance.
This allows you to not only plan out your content and stay one step ahead, it allows you to work on your social media marketing efforts in batches. No longer do you need to check in several times a day with great content that will engage your audience. You can now plan your content every Monday morning for the week ahead (or any day you’d like!).
With that, let’s take a look at the top 10 social media management tools, their features, how they differ, and how they can help you and your business.
Buffer is one of the original social media scheduling tools that has seen a lot of improvement and change over the years. The core of Buffer has stayed the same however, and that’s a good thing. Buffer does all the things you would come to expect out of a social media management tool.
The tool is broken up into 3 separate tools: Publish, Reply, and Analyze. For the purposes of this post, we’ll only look at Publish, which is their social media publishing tool. Reply is their social media support tool and Analyze is their social analytics tool.
Publish allows you to manage multiple social media profiles, schedule posts ahead of time, and collaborate with a team, in one dashboard.
Buffer also works with the social media properties you’d expect it to work with: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram.
With that, Buffer is a solid choice if you’re not sure where to start. They offer a free plan that is more than enough for most people starting out and just dipping their toes in social media marketing.
Buffer unlike many other tools on this list, offers a free plan that allows for up to 10 scheduled posts. The paid plans start at $15 a month and allow for more scheduled posts and more users per account, as you move up the paid plans.
Meet Edgar is positioned as the social media management tool that manages itself. Unlike other social media management tools, Meet Edgar helps semi-automate your schedule by recycling and rescheduling content. Instead of just publishing your content once, Meet Edgar can schedule it again in the future for you, allowing you to resurface the great content you create more than once.
Often, when we schedule out content, it can get lost in the void. Some of our audience sees it but most won’t and don’t. Meet Edgar helps keep your social media feed active by resurfacing older content.
Plus, with its Auto-Variation feature, publishing the same content more than a few times won’t be duplicated. Meet Edgar helps by rewriting your post and creating variations so that reshared content won’t appear as though you’re bombarding your audience with the same content over and over.
Meet Edgar offers a 30 day free trial then starts at $49 a month.
SocialBee is what we use to schedule our social media posts and manage our social media accounts. It’s like Meet Edgar in that it can resurface content you’ve scheduled.
It has all the features you’d expect but it can also automate scheduling for you. Connect your RSS feed and it will automatically schedule posts on your social media profiles.
SocialBee offers an addon concierge service that you can take advantage of, which provides you with help and management of your social media accounts by their team of social media experts.
SocialBee offers a 30 day free trial and starts at $19 per month.
Hootsuite is another one of the original social media management platforms that started all the way back in 2008. Since then it has integrated more social media accounts and expanded its offering from a simple social media management tool to a content curation and advertising tool.
Hootsuite includes all the features you would expect, in addition to a content curation feature, and paid boosting feature.
With content curation, Hootsuite allows you to build a content library that you can preapprove for your teams to post and share if you hire our the management of your social media accounts. It also helps surface relevant content for you to share to your audience, making finding the right content to share a lot easier.
With the paid boosting feature, not only can you share and track the content you share on social media, you can also put some paid spend behind your best posts to boost the reach, right through Hootsuite.
Hootsuite offers a 30 day free trial and starts at $29 a month for their most basic plan.
Sprout Social is a more complete and feature-packed social media management tool than others we have looked at on this list. It offers everything from social media post scheduling and analytics, to social media listening and engagement.
Sprout Social seems to be geared more to businesses and agencies that essentially rely on social media to sustain and grow their business. Instead of using several tools to level up your social media game, do everything in one place.
Social listening allows you to monitor conversations around your brand whereas Social engagement allows you to insert yourself in the middle of conversations around your industry and niche.
While the price tag is higher than others on this list, it is the complete package.
Sprout Social offers a 30 day trial and starts at $99 per month.
Crowdfire has one of my favorite interfaces of the social media management tools I’ve used and tried.
One of my favorite features are the hashtag recommendations, making it much quicker and easier to post to Instagram.
Crowdfire also integrates with WordPress, Shopify, YouTube, Twitch, and more to make it easier to semi-automate any content updates you make to your social media profiles.
Crowdfire has most of the bells and whistles you’d come to expect with a social media management tool and has a free plan to allow you to play around before committing to a paid plan.
Crowdfire offers a free plan that allows up to 10 scheduled posts. It also offers plans that start at $9.99 per month for 100 scheduled posts.
Agorapulse is a social media tool and CRM all in one.
It offers social media content scheduling, deep analytics, and team collaboration. Agorapulse is also a CRM tool that allows you to track and monitor your followers and your conversations with them.
You can add internal notes to your followers and view the conversation history with each of them. This allows you to identify your most passionate followers and your most qualified leads.
The CRM features alone make this an interesting tool for businesses that have an established and well known brand in their space and receive many support requests over social media.
Agorapulse offers a 28 day free trial and starts at $99 per month.
Sendible appears to be a social media management tool aimed for agencies and freelancers that help manage the social media accounts of their clients.
It allows you to integrate dozens or more profiles to one account, allowing you to manage the social media profiles for different clients. It even allows you to email clients reports and analytics from your efforts.
In addition, Sendible has some interesting integrations that I haven’t seen from other tools such as Canva and Google Docs.
Sendible offers a 30 day trial and starts $29 a month with unlimited scheduling.
Tailwind is one of the few tools that is a Pinterest Developer Partner, which means it’s one of the few tools allowed by Pinterest to use for automation and post scheduling.
While Tailwind doesn’t integrate with as many platforms as other tools on this list, what it does do, it does well. With its focus on Pinterest and Instagram, Tailwind allows you to schedule and manage posts, reuse your best pins, and bulk upload images for scheduling.
Other features include measuring the ROI on your pins, industry trends, competitor analysis and comparison, and a content discovery engine to help you find and share the best content in your industry and niche.
The free trial allows you to schedule up to 30 posts on Instagram and up to 100 posts on Pinterest. After that, plans start at $9.99.
IFTTT (If This Then That) is not specifically a social media management tool. It’s actually an automation tool.
Also, it allows you to search through or create “recipes” that do something when another thing happens. For example, if I post a picture on Instagram, post that picture on Twitter. Or, if I publish a new blog post, share that post on Facebook.
IFTTT is the completely free way to help semi-automate and manage your social media accounts. However, it doesn’t include the bells and whistles of the above mentioned tools, such as analytics or a nice dashboard, but it gets the job done if you’re looking for a lightweight and completely free way of managing your social media profiles.
How to make the most of these social media management tools
Ultimately, which tool you choose from this list will net to the same result: you’ll be better equipped to grow and build an audience on social media.
But a tool is only as useful as its application. To make the most of your social media management, you need a great strategy.
This is where a tool like Linkiro comes in. Building up an engaged audience is great but how useful is the audience you’re building if they don’t engage with your product.
Linkiro allows you to add a call-to-action to the websites you share on social media. If part of your social media strategy is content curation and sharing interesting articles and websites that your audience may find interesting, you can reclaim some of that lost traffic with Linkiro.
For example, if you’re a non-profit that talks about environmentalism, you may share an interesting article you found on the Washington Post about research around overfishing. With Linkiro, you could place a popup on this article, that links back to your non-profit website.
How will you be using these social media management tools? Which of the ones we listed are your favorite? Any that we missed?
Let us know in the comments below.