As of 2020, 50% of the world is on social media. Needless to say, your brand should be, too.
Social media marketing helps companies achieve a wide variety of business goals. From building a brand to driving more sales, an increasing number of organizations are discovering that social media marketing is the key to their success.
So, where should you begin?
The scope of social media marketing is broad and multifaceted. From tracking one’s performance, to designing graphics and writing social copy, social media marketing requires a great deal of creative and systematic thought.
The good news: there are a ton of social media marketing tools at your disposal.
What should you look for in a social media tool?
Here are some basic criteria to keep in mind when evaluating social media marketing tools:
The tool is a time-saver
Ultimately, you want your social media marketing tool to save you time.
Time-saving often equals automation. If the tool automates, make sure you confirm it’s achieving your desired results.
The tool is intuitive
Along with saving time, you want a tool that’s easy to use. Overly complicated tools defeat the purpose.
The tool is within budget
Your tool should be affordable or free. There’s no reason to have to go outside your budget.
The top 12 social media marketing tools we recommend are:
- Sprout Social
- Hubspot’s Social Inbox Tool
- Zoho Special
- Marketing Video Builder
Let’s dive in and explore each tool:
Pricing: Free plan, $29, $129, $599 per month, and enterprise pricing (with a 30-day free trial)
Hootsuite is a one-stop shop, allowing users to manage all social media accounts on one platform. Hootsuite has over 15 million users, many of which belong to Fortune 1000 companies.
In the words of their chief marketing officer, Penny Wilson, “What was once the focus of a small number of enthusiasts inside an organization, today social media is at the heart of the digital strategy of the largest and most successful businesses. Hootsuite makes social media approachable for all businesses, including those in regulated industries, government or higher education. Every day, we see companies use our platform in unique, innovative ways to engage with their customers.”
Pricing: $99, $149, and $249 per user per month (with a 30-day free trial)
Comparable to Hootsuite, Sprout Social offers multiple resources within a single platform, including post scheduling, monitoring, and reporting.
As Alfred Lua notes, Sprout Social “is one of the few social media management tools that provides customer relationship management features.” This benefit allows Sprout Social users to look at their customer base holistically.
Their reports are excellent for teams that don’t want to spend much time formatting and reconfiguring data, as they come in a format suitable to present to both department heads and clients.
Pricing: Forever free plan, $15, $99, $199, and $399 per month (with a 14-day free trial)
Buffer is often commended for its intuitive design and responsive customer service. It offers products for publishing, engagement, analytics, and team collaboration.”
One blogger remarks, “Buffer as a company is all about a set of principles that value diverse workforces, flexible structures, well-balanced employees and radical transparency…Considering the Buffer product is about interacting with people—we’d say things like diversity, flexibility and honesty certainly do make for more productive social relations.”
Hubspot Social Inbox Tool
Pricing: Component of Hubspot’s all-in-one marketing software, starting at $1,120 per month.
Hubspot’s Social Inbox Tool is primarily used to manage one’s social media engagements.
According to the HubSpot Knowledge Base, Inbox allows users to “identify interaction-generating content, respond to social conversations, gather intelligence about new followers, and see social stream matches.”
Hubspot’s Social Inbox Tool can be integrated into a company’s existing CRM, making it easy to determine the number of leads and customers you’re bringing in from your social media marketing efforts.
Pricing: Standard at $10 per month or billed annually, Professional at $25 per month or billed annually, Agency at $200 per month or billed annually, Agency Plus at $300 per month or billed annually
In addition to offering an all-in-one platform setup, Zoho Social includes a social calendar feature. Zoho also has the ability to track target keywords across one’s accounts.
TechRadar notes Zoho’s Agency and Agency Plus package include benefits “specifically for the needs of marketing agencies, which allows for brand and communications management for client lists, while also allowing for white labeling.”
Pricing: $99.95, $199.95, $399.95
SEMRush is an SEO tool used for keyword research, optimizing Google Ad campaigns, performing competitor analysis, and social media account management.
Specifically, SEMrush can perform scheduling and image editing. It also includes a UTM-builder and can be used to manage ads on various social media platforms.
Ultimately, SEMrush’s strengths lie in its ability to combine social media management with a company’s overall SEO strategy.
Pricing: $49, $99, $199, and $299 per month (with a 14-day free trial)
Agorapulse is a great resource for agencies, as well as any business with multiple clients.
Scheduling posts on Agorapulse is easy and flexible, allowing users to effortlessly queue and reschedule when necessary.
One can also build a CRM database in Agorapulse for customer tracking purposes.
Pricing: $29, $99, $199, $299 per month, and enterprise pricing (with a 30-day free trial)
Similar to Agorapulse, Sendible is ideal for agencies or organizations with several clients.
Unique features include the ability to personalize one’s dashboard, integrate with the graphics-focused app Canva, and download royalty-free images.
Pricing: $10, $24, $40, $80 per month, and enterprise pricing (with a 14-day free trial)
In addition to providing users an easy way to manage their social media accounts, Social Pilot also has a unique feature that curates relevant content for your brand (or client’s brand) from a variety of industries. This can be a helpful tool for your social team as they’re creating content.
For more information, you can check out their blog.
Kicksta is primarily used to grow one’s Instagram following.
After allowing Kicksta to access your company’s social media account, the tool will “like” approximately 30,000 photos per month on targeted accounts. After receiving the likes, these accounts reciprocate by following your brand.
Ryan Beltran, CEO of Original Grain, remarks, “Kicksta helps introduce new audiences to our brand while providing consistent organic Instagram growth.”
Marketing Video Builder
Pricing: Free or $33/month.
Created by Animoto, Marketing Video Builder helps users create their own “professional-tier” videos.
Videos on social media receive 1200% more shares than text and images combined, so this tool is well worth considering.
Marketing Video Builder offers pre-built storyboards to help inspire you. This tool also has integrations with LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and Getty Images.
Pricing: $129 per month
Falcon is a social media management platform where users can create posts using a “collaborative content calendar.” Falcon also provides analytics, customer experience management, and even a landing page builder.
Falcon can be integrated with Microsoft and Salesforce, and when used with Hubspot, it can also help segment your audiences.
There are many social media marketing tools out there, so before you begin your search and start comparing products, be sure to think about the most pressing goals for your brand.
Want help managing your brand’s social media presence? Contact us today!