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Not only will using a social media management tool make your life substantially easier, it doesn’t need to go through rounds of budgeting approval – because there are many robust free tools out there to help you accomplish all of your social marketing goals in 2019.
Social management platforms will help you manage multiple social profiles in one place, schedule posts in advance, run contests, track analytics across platforms, and the list goes on. These tools really are game changers for your social strategy!
Let’s get started – tools are ranked from top to bottom:
Buffer is a well established social media management platform. It has several good features – publishing with queue, engagement, analytics, and team features. It integrates with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, and Linkedin.
Publishing & RSS – Buffer has the basic publishing features such as scheduling and adding posts to a queue but it is not made for evergreen posts. Meaning, it will not let you upload hundreds of posts and then recycle them, or publish them on your social media until you tell it to stop. It does have the RSS feed that helps you publish posts from blogs.
Social Engagement – Buffer just launched a new product called Reply which is similar to eClincher’s Social Inbox but it only supports Facebook, Twitter and Instagram comments. it is also way more expensive. It costs $415/month for 3 user/15 profiles, in addition to the basic Buffer pricing.
Influencer Search – Buffer does not have an influencer search feature.
Client Management Support – Buffer has a limited team feature that allows a user to add team members and give them permissions to manage various social media pages but nothing else in this category.
Supported Networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest
$15 1 user/month , 8 social profiles , limited to 100 posts per month per profile
$99 5 user/month , 25 social profiles , limited to 2,000 posts per month per profile
$199 10 user/month , 50 social profiles , limited to 2,000 posts per month per profile
$399 25 user/month , 150 social profiles , limited to 2,000 posts per month per profile
Buffer supports: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest
HootSuite has probably been around the longest (since 2008). It has all the various applications that you need and some robust content features as well – content curation, organization, scheduling, RSS integration.
Publishing & RSS – Hootsuite has bulk scheduling which allows you to upload several posts at a time, but it does not have the Auto Post feature that recycles the content for you. It has a cool feature that allows you to create social sweepstakes or contests on social media. It also has RSS integrations just like eClincher.
Social Engagement – Hootsuite does not have a Social Inbox or anything like it, so you have to manually engage with each follower by logging in to each social media account separately.
Influencer Search – Hootsuite does not offer the ability to find influencers.
Client Management Support – Hootsuite has the basic team features plus post-approval and custom branded URLs.
Supported Networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, WordPress
$19 1 user/month , 10 social profiles , unlimited posting
$99 3 user/month , 20 social profiles , unlimited posting
$599 (for annual billing) 5 user/month , 35 social profiles , unlimited posting
3) Sprout social
Sprout Social is similar to HootSuite and other social media tools in that it combines a variety of social media tools. It has monitoring, scheduling, analytics, the whole gamut.
Publishing & RSS – Sprout Social has some cool features when it comes to publishing. It has all the basics and a few more customized features such as the individual statistics on each post, and agency features such as post-approval. It does not have the Auto Post with queues feature.
Social Engagement – Sprout Social does have the social inbox, which is great. It also has the social monitoring and keyword searching features that help you monitor your brand on social media.
Influencer Search – Sprout Social does not have an influencer search feature.
Clients Management Support – Sprout has the basic team features but not much else in this category.
Supported Networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn
$99 1 user/month , 5 social profiles
$149 1 user/month , 10 social profiles
$249 1 user/month , 10 social profiles
Sendible is a tool that was built for agencies in mind. It has many features and includes a CRM just like eClincher and Sprout Social. Let’s take a deeper look.
Scheduling & RSS – Sendible has a Smart Queue feature which is similar to eClincher’s Auto Post in that it helps you put your favorite posts on repeat. It also has a smart recommendation system that recommends the top posts for you.
Social Engagement – Sendible does have the Social Inbox feature and it has team member features just like eClincher’s. Sendible also has social listening features that allow the user to monitor different keywords and see what is being said about their brand.
Influencer Search – Sendible does not have an influencer search feature but it does have a CRM that allows you to treat your social interactions and the people that you interact with like leads. It shows you the entire conversation history and different information about them.
Clients Management Support – Sendible has a separate dashboard for each client and even has a white label solution.
Sendible’s pricing is calculated per number of services. A service is a one-way interaction with any social media network. For example: posting and streaming to 1 Facebook page would count as 2 services.
Supported Networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google Analytics
$29 1 user/month, 12 services, no reports
$99 3 users/month, 48 services 6 reports
$199 7 users/month, 105 services, 35 reports, unlimited scheduling
$299 12 users/month, 192 services, 60 reports, unlimited scheduling
eClincher is a comprehensive platform but yet simple to use. It has all the essential features a social media management tool should have plus unique ones – auto posting with smart queues, social inbox, RSS feeds integration and auto posting, suggested content plus curation, influencer discovery, custom analytics reports, Canva integration, media asset management, free image library, URL shorteners, and more. Let’s look at a few of those.
Publishing & RSS – eClincher has a robust system for publishing content. One of the most favorite feature is the Auto Post with Queues which allows users to automatically publish hundreds of posts for the next X number of months, with just a few clicks. eClincher offers the ability to recycle content as well as publish it once and remove it from the queue. There is also the RSS integration which allows users to automatically publish every single blog post (their own or their favorite industry blogs) onto their social media profiles. eClincher also offers a great scheduling tool with visual calendar, auto link shortening, free images, and animated gifs, and video publishing support.
Suggested Content allows you to use keywords or categories to quickly find articles to share with your audience.
Social Engagement – eClincher offers a Social Inbox which lets users manage all their social media engagement and interactions in one place. We’re talking about tweets, DMs, mentions, comments, likes, shares, new followers, even YouTube and Facebook Ad comments. There are also social listening and monitoring features to help you monitor your brand or other mentions, interact with followers, and start new conversations.
Influencer Search – eClincher offers users the ability to search for influencers on Twitter, view them by topic, ranking, location, and interact with them.
Clients Management Support – if you are an agency or have a several clients that you manage, then this feature is perfect for you. eClincher offers a dedicated workplace for each client, with a separate calendar, inbox, analytics, and assigned team members, so you won’t ever get confused and will be able to keep everything organized and clean.
In addtion, eClincher offers fully customized white label analytics reports, inbox work flow for teams, and internal / external post approval workflow.
Supported Networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Instagram Business, Google+, Google My Business, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, Google Analytics
$49 1 user/month , 15 social profiles , unlimited posting & analytics reports
$99 3 user/month , 30 social profiles , unlimited posting & analytics reports
$199 6 user/month , 100 social profiles (10 profiles per brand or client) , profiles/brands/users can be added , unlimited posting & analytics reports.