Social media is considered to be the most convenient method of communicating with customers in the world of digitalization today. Almost every brand is maintaining its social media presence to stay high in the minds of consumers. They share their recent activities, schemes, offers, etc. through social media channels. But to engage with the customers through social media channels, especially when you are dealing with multiple channels, is not an easy job. It is a time-consuming task when you opt to go to each social media channel, log in to it and post your data, go through all the messages/comments and reactions you receive and engage with your audience.
However, you want to post on each social media platform at times when your customers are mostly available. But, what if your Instagram audience is most active at 1 am while your LinkedIn customers are active early in the morning. You cannot be available at all times, day-in and day-out to see what’s happening at your social accounts.
Thankfully, you don’t need to worry about these things anymore. There are several social media management tools available that you can make use of. These tools will enable you to handle all your social media activities from different social media channels in one place. And don’t worry, these won’t cost you much. Out of several paid and free social media management tools, we have brought you some of the most amazing free tools to start with.
Among the many social media management tools available, Buffer is one of the best. It allows you to schedule your posts listed in a queue format, which makes it very easy to scroll through and understand in a few seconds about your next move on your social networks. You can attach up to three social networks using Buffer. Up to ten posts can be scheduled using this tool. You can set the timings for each post at each network.
Buffer also comes with the ‘Analytics’ feature. Using this feature will allow you to analyze the behavior and pattern of your audience, based on which you may further schedule your posts. Buffer allows adding its chrome extension, which makes your process of social updates even easier and faster.
These features can be used using their free plan. Buffer also offers its paid plans with other advanced features like:
- Buffer Reply: It allows you to reply to conversations from its portal itself, and you need not go to your social accounts to respond to the users.
- Buffer Analyze: This feature allows you to analyze the performance of your social media accounts and create reports on them.
The paid plans offered by Buffer are:
- Pro: $15/month
- Premium: $65/month
- Business: $99/month
When it comes to social publishing and marketing, Hootsuite stays on the top of the list. Like Buffer, it also allows you to schedule your posts in advance. But, unlike Buffer, where you can schedule up to ten posts at a time, Hootsuite allows you to schedule up to thirty posts at a time. You can integrate up to three social networks using the Hootsuite and can post in multiple ways.
The best feature offered by Hootsuite is its ‘stream’ feature. You can use the stream page to set up tabs for your different social networks and then add a series of streams for each of them. For example, if you use the Twitter account, you can have comments, home page feeds, list of posts you create as streams under the Twitter head.
Another fantastic feature of Hootsuite is its calendar view at the Publisher screen. It also allows you to collaborate with your team members through its built-in team-work feature. You can also create in-depth reports on your social media performance and generate leads through social contests using this tool. It also allows you to integrate with more than 150 apps. (Include both paid and free apps).
The paid plans offered by Hootsuite are:
- Professional: $29/month
- Team: $129/month
- Business: $599/month
- Enterprise: Custom plan; contact for pricing
SocialOomph offers a wide range of features to its users. But, many people face difficulty setting up social accounts at this management tool. Once the accounts are set up, this is the tool loved by its users. It enables you to both schedule and queue your posts and offers multiple ways of posting. You can collect content from the RSS feeds and also import posts in bulk.
SocialOomph also enables you to post blogs that can also be queued as per your requirements. These blogs can also be shared to your social media accounts using another set of queues.
But one of the greatest limitations of using this social media management tool is that its features mainly lean towards Twitter. You can manage up to five Twitter accounts using this tool. But, to manage your other social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. you need to buy their plans.
Later allows you to manage your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram profiles. But its focus is mainly on visuals and so on Instagram. You can check your Instagram analytics and repost your content using the free plan. Using the Later tool, you can schedule your posts for each of your social accounts. But the number of posts is limited on a monthly basis.
The maximum number of posts that you may create for each network in a month is as follows:
- Instagram: 30 posts
- Twitter: 50 posts
- Facebook: 30 posts
- Pinterest: 30 posts
One of the best Later features is its Media Library, where you can upload unlimited images and may use and reuse them anytime. You can also add labels and notes to your pictures and highlight any image by using the ‘star’ feature. It also has specific filter options to help you make your search for an image easy. This is mainly helpful when you have a large number of images in your media library.
Unlike other social media management tools, at ‘Later’, you are required to upload your image first and then add a text description to it. Using the free plan, you can upload only static images. To upload videos, Instagram stories, and multi-photo posts, you need to buy their paid plans.
ScheduGram is the social media management tool that helps you create and schedule posts for your Instagram account. Using ScheduGram, you can manage multiple Instagram accounts giving access to any number of users. You can make use of its photo editing tool and can post either single or in bulk. If you have scheduled your post, you will receive a notification email when the post is shared at your Instagram account.
Followerwonk helps you manage your social networks emphasizing on Twitter. You can use this tool to understand your audience’s behavior at a much deeper level. You can find the most relevant influencers by analyzing the Twitter bios, comparing different accounts. You can also analyze your followers by analyzing their locations, other accounts they follow and much more. By analyzing your users’ patterns, you can plan your posts accordingly to get the maximum results.
Using the Followerwonk tool, under the free plan, you can connect one social profile and can view its authority rankings, etc. The more advanced features are available using their paid plans that range from $29 to $79 per month.
If Twitter forms a significant part of your social media strategy, then you may use TweetDeck as your social media management tool. Using this tool, you can custom your timelines. It also allows you to create and manage Twitter lists and searches. You can also add team accounts using TweetDeck. TweetDeck is also free for Twitter users.
Although TweetDeck does not allow you to integrate with multiple social networks, it is an excellent tool for social marketers who manage multiple Twitter accounts where these live discussions are basics for the achievement of their business goals.
Friends+Me allows you to manage your Google Plus, Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler, and LinkedIn accounts using their free plans. You can also manage your Pinterest and Instagram accounts using this social media management tool, but you need to pay for these.
It mainly emphasizes on Google Plus. It has an easy to understand website design. It offers different plans based on the size and requirements of the business. You can create a maximum of two queues at a time, and for each queue, you can create a maximum of five posts. These can be scheduled to be published at your desired timings.
You can shorten your links, create the browser extensions, integrate with Zapier using this tool. You can buy plans on a monthly or annual basis, and the price range from $7.50 to $216 depending upon monthly or yearly billing.
9. Zoho Social
Using the Zoho Social tool, you can manage your multiple social profiles from a single dashboard. You can schedule posts, collaborate with your team members, and search for relevant keywords using Zoho Social.
Apart from other features that many other social media management tools offer, Zoho Social brings you the highlights of Facebook lead ads, advanced reporting, CRM integrations, URL shortener, and SocialShare browser plugin. These features are free to use, but you can manage one brand using the free plan.
It also has more advanced features and divides its paid plans under two categories; Business and Agency plans, and the prices range from $8.33 to $125.