You’re an entrepreneur, and you want to save time promoting your business on social media. You also want to engage authentically with the people who follow you. That seems like a lot of work!
But it doesn’t have to be. That’s what social media management tools are for.
In this guide, I’m going to answer the most frequently asked questions that I get about social media management tools. Then, I’ll recommend the best social media management tools to use.
Do I need a social media strategy before I choose a tool?
You must have a social media strategy so that you can choose the best social media management tool for your business.
When you think about social media strategy, focus on whether your strength lies in educating your audience (content marketing) promoting a specific solution (direct marketing) or generating leads through advertising.
How do social media management tools work?
The best social media management tools allow you to manage all your social media accounts in one place. They also give you insights into how well your social media campaigns are performing, and help you find new leads and customers.
Why do I need a social media management tool?
The biggest benefit to using social media management tools is time savings. It can take hours to post, engage with followers, and manage social media accounts across the multiple social networks you use.
Do I need a social media manager to use social media marketing software?
While most social media managers know how to use social media management software, you do NOT need to hire a social media manager. Social media management software is so easy to use, that you can do it yourself.
I’m not on social media. Do I still need social media management tools?
While you don’t have to be very active on social media, you will need social media accounts for the social media platforms where you want to do your social media marketing.
What are the best social media management tools for starting a business?
When you’re starting a business, the social media content that you post can really help you build an audience and get the word out about your business.
If you’re just starting a business, I recommend you go with Zoho One and Zoho Social as the social media platform.
With a lot of custom reports, you can easily monitor and manage your brands on social media for much better listings.
All of your reports are easily accessible, and you can view audiences and engagements on a single page for ease of use. With the easy to use interface and interactive dashboard, this social media management tool is straightforward.
It has support for most popular social media platforms to increase your range of exposure. However, it does not have support for all social media platforms such as Pinterest and other less popular ones.
- Audiences and engagements can be viewed on one page
- The interface is relatively easy to navigate
- Supports a wide range of the most popular media platforms
- This app is quite easy to use without the steep learning curve
- Continuous activities with long term scheduling capability
- Easy to create drafts and comments
- It is not always compatible with picture sizes
- Might be a bit overpriced for what you get
- Not all social media platforms are supported
Since Zoho Social is a part of the Zoho One platform, your social media activity and analytics will easily integrate into the entire Zoho platform. Imagine, all of your sales, marketing, social, accounting and web data all in one place. Not only that, but the Zoho One platform has an amazing AI (artificial intelligence) feature that practically does all the analysis for you — assuming your data is inside the platform.
How do social media management tools help with search engine optimization?
Although social media does not directly improve your SEO ranking, the links you share on social channels will drive traffic. Assuming your content is useful and readers stay on the site and click through to more useful content. And this is what improves your Google rankings.
So what role do social media management tools play? Well, they allow you to schedule your content across platforms and reach much broader audiences with your content.
How to Choose Your Social Media Platform
The first thing you need to do is select the social media platforms that you want to post to. You may want to post to all of them, or you may just want to focus on a couple.
There is no right or wrong answer. The most important thing you have to consider is where you naturally want to spend your time and which social media platforms you enjoy the most.
What are the best social media management tools I can use for free?
First, let’s just say that almost all the social media management tools I’m mentioning here come with a 14 day free trial. So you can try them all for free.
But what free tools are available for free that will help you do social media marketing?
Here’s my list.
Hootsuite is social media dashboard software that can be used on any social media platform. It has social media management tools to schedule social posts, share content, and monitor social media performances.
If you’re a small business and doing your own social media management, you can do 90% of what you need on Hootsuite’s free plan.
- Outstanding social listening for free
- Schedule social posts across multiple platforms
- Easy to understand analytics
- Manage customer service inquiries
- RSS integration (lots of platforms don’t have this)
- Have to use Owly Short Links
- Expensive Custom URL Shorteners
- Lower Facebook Reach & Engagement
Buffer is social media management software that helps you manage social accounts across all social networks. Buffer has features like scheduling posts, analytics, mobile apps with push notifications, customer service chat integration.
The free social media management tools are limited but enough for new marketers on a tight budget.
- Share the same post across platforms
- Create custom posting schedules across platforms
- Calendar view
- Create custom images with Pablo
- Not designed for social listening
- Scheduling to Instagram and Pinterest is difficult
TweetDeck is social media management software that helps you manage social accounts across all social networks. Tweetdeck has features like scheduling posts, analytics, mobile apps with push notifications, customer service chat integration. The free social media management tools are limited but enough for new marketers on a tight budget.
- Curate Twitter experience
- Good for social listening on Twitter
- Schedule Tweets
- Only works with Twitter
- Scheduling over long periods of time difficult
Are there any social media management tools that use AI?
While there are plenty of AI writing tools that you can use to create social media posts. The BEST AI social media platform award goes to Lately.ai.
Just paste the URL of your blog post or video and Lately.ai will automagically created DOZENS of social media posts for you!
- Create posts for all your channels
- Bulk schedule with one click
- See all posts in a calendar
- Converts videos into short social clips and posts
- Price is high
- Analytics can be confusing
What are the best social media management tools for teams?
All of the platforms covered in this article give you the ability to add team members. But with multiple users, you need a process and system for posting responsibilities, editing and approvals.
I have two recommendations for team collaboration; CoSchedule and Loomly.
This is one of the best social media management tools because it comes with a lot of great features included will help with your scheduled business posts.
With CoSchedule, there is a free version available with limited features so you can test drive it. New features are added to this app to make it much easier to manage your social media listings and many other jobs.
It also comes with quite an easy dashboard to make it much easier to use for all of your scheduled tasks. Unfortunately, this tool does not come with a free trial or a lot of paid options to customize it to your personal preferences.
But let’s talk about how your team members can use CoSchedule.
CoSchedule sells itself as a social campaign tool that’s ideal for a company with team members who need to collaborate on a variety of marketing campaigns.
The main features that allow for that are tags, labels and calendars.
Related: read our full review of CoSchedule app here.
- There is a lifetime free version available
- Dashboard for team members
- New features are added every month
- Very easy to use with the SEO ready feature included
- It comes with quite a user-friendly interface and dashboard
- Automated marketing schedules to save time
- Call and payment reminders available
- There are not a lot of paid packages available
- No free trial is available for this app
- Non-regular users may get confused with regular updates
Loomly is social media management software that helps you manage social accounts across all social networks. Loomly has features like scheduling posts, analytics, mobile apps with push notifications, customer service chat integration. The free social media management tools are limited but enough for new marketers on a tight budget.
- Excellent post approval feature
- Post time optimization
- Post ideas feature
- Affordable team features
- May be overkill for a small team
- Doesn’t natively connect to instagram
Are there any social media management tools that provide “done for you” posts?
Do you have post envy? That’s when you scroll through your social feeds and wonder how people come up with these creative and engaging social posts.
Wouldn’t it be great if the social media platform gave you ideas and a schedule for what to post?
Loomly does this for teams, but what if you want a DIY marketing solution?
Here’s my recommendation:
With this social media management tool at your disposal, you can help your business by improving and managing your social posts. PromoRepublic actually has pre-created posts that you can customize and schedule to post across your channels,
This social media management tool can be used with a wide range of media networking platforms for your convenience. It will also easily sync with all those popular social media platforms to get you up and running in a short time.
The calendar is well-designed, so you can easily schedule your posts to improve your small business and manage social media channels. Unfortunately, this tool cannot be used with Instagram, which takes away some of the versatility of the social media management tool.
- Gives you pre-done posts you can customize
- It will easily sync with most social networks
- Easy to use calendar included
- Analyze platform audience for best timing
- Easily save posts so you can re-use them
- Very easy to use scheduler and post editor
- The screen gets a bit cluttered quite quickly
- No automatic formatting feature from one social network to another
Post Planner social media management is great for social media marketing. This social media management tool allows those without any social media experience to create and manage social posts for free.
There are many social networks you can keep up with including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. You’ll appreciate the built-in hashtags as well as the post ideas that would otherwise take a lot of time to come up with on your own.
With these features and the easy-to-use interface, you’re sure to see an improvement in your social presence very quickly!
- Calendar feature
- Content curation ideas
- Access to engaging questions
- Track your mentions
- May not have content for your industry
- Limited posting to Instagram
Other Social Media Management Tools You Should Consider
WOW — that was a lot of questions answered! But there are still a couple tools that I believe deserve an honorable mention.
While these tools aren’t as well known as some of the ones I’ve covered, you can certainly check them out to see if they work for you.
This very flexible social media tool is a great way to gain more readers with your blogs and posts for promotions and exposure.
There is not much of a limit on the number of schedules you can create at a time for future use, saving you time. It has access to quite a number of the most popular social media networks for better exposure to your posts.
It is also compatible with Google My Business, so you can easily schedule and create great posts for your business. However, there is no automatic alert for when your schedules fail, so you will not be aware of that.
- You can easily schedule a lot of content to save time
- Access to many different media platforms
- Social media posts can be easily created and shared
- Very easily manage Google My Business posts
- Post recycling feature included for reposting option
- You can schedule your posts a few days in advance
- There is no automatic alert when your queue fails
- Comes with quite a cumbersome interface
- You do not get a lot of support for Instagram
This app will help you create a presence for your posts on a wide variety of social media platforms to increase your social listing.
It is easy to manage all of your posts and revive all the old ones to be posted again with timed schedules for maximum exposure. This will help make your presence known on a variety of social media platforms quickly and easily.
These schedules can be timed with different intervals to be reposted every time they are revived. However, there is not a lot of support for Revive Social on platforms other than WordPress sites, so that limits it a bit.
- Very easy to manage your newsfeed
- Schedule a lot of posts at a time and forget about them
- The app will easily track all your clicks
- You can share all your posts over and over
- Easily revive old posts to be seen many more times
- Very little social media support
- Mostly compatible with WordPress sites
- Not many paid packages available for your business
As of right now, these are the best social media management tools that we recommend to solopreneurs.
If there’s anything you got from this, it’s that you really need a firm understanding of how you want to use social media to build relationships and manage your business.