As of 2021, there are over 4.5 billion social media users in the world. As a result, it is not a surprise to say that social media can be a great avenue to improve your brand awareness and increase engagement. However, the opportunities are countless, and business should optimise their methods for engaging on different platforms. For the same purpose, businesses could employ different tools and services that would help them market better. Hence, our experts have compiled a list of the top social media tools and software for small-medium businesses could use to improve their social media marketing skills.
- Sprout Social
Sprout Social is one of the best overall social media software available on the market. The platform’s usability, publishing features, and analytics across all the social media channels are unmatched. A 30-day trial period also means more time to understand the service better.
The user-friendly dashboard allows you to handle all your social networks from one page and provides the necessary analytics and social media optimisation tools. The software has one of the highest ROI rates with excellent scheduling options. However, such prime services come with prime charges as well. Also, there is a limit to the number of social profiles you can manage. The pricing policy is quite simple, with the standard plan costing $89 per month. The professional plan costs $149 per month, and the advanced plan costs $249 per month. You can manage up to ten social media profiles with social calendars, response rates, and other intuitive response features.
There are several formidable analytics tools available in the market. However, none can match Hootsuite’s tracking and analytics abilities. The software lets you analyse trends and engagement in real-time and is available for both regular posts and social media ads.
The affordable plans are one of the key advantages of using Hootsuite. Other benefits include the availability of a free plan with limited features, a 30-day trial period, and a connection for 20+ social networks. However, there are a few downsides when using Hootsuite. Some analytics reports might be available at an additional cost, and the free plan has limited capacity for social profiles. Customisable reports and team productivity reporting are also available.
The professional plan costs $49 per month, the team plan costs $129 per month, the business plan costs $599 per month, and the enterprise plan costs the most, but it is variable depending upon the size and complexity of the project. Some important points to note here are: all Hootsuite plans come with unlimited scheduled messages, auto-scheduling, publishing calendars, and social inboxes.
Emails, projects, accounting needs, and webinars, along with social needs, can all be managed from one place when using Zoho. The CRM tool offered with the software is highly effective and simple to use. It allows the user to integrate social media platforms, and a free edition is available with limited features. Users can store and manage their emails with Zoho and create and oversee products. It is an all-in-one social media management tool that can greatly help SMBs and individuals alike.
Individuals can opt for the standard plan that costs $10 per month. The professional plan costs $30 per month, and the premium plan costs $40 per month. Agencies’ plans start at $230 per month. However, a free plan with limited features is also available.
The most notable features of MeetEdgar are its scheduling and automation options. It is one of the best automation software available on the market for social media management. The platform also allows continuous posting meaning the software will automatically find and generate relevant posts and re-share them on your social media channels.
The short 7-day trial period is a bummer, but the platform counters it with free engagement analytics and response suggestions. The plans are very affordable. The software is one of the best for time-strapped businesses which are looking to automate their channels. The category-based scheduling options greatly help in saving time and effort, and automated posting means your audience is constantly engaged. There are a few shortcomings of the platform, which includes integration with only Meta, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram. Even the most affordable plan allows the user to work three networks, and there is no central inbox for all your messages and chats. However, every plan includes an unlimited content library and easy uploading of the latest content.
The Edgar Lite plan starts at $19 per month, and the standard plan costs $49 per month. Both plans are largely similar, but the lite plan only lets you integrate with three networks.
Social media management and growth is not a one-man or one team job. It requires various teams from different departments to analyse the market and devise the most suitable strategy properly. As a result, team collaboration tools become a necessary part of any company’s social media management arsenal. Hence, our experts have chosen Loomly as the best large team collaboration tool available in the market. It has comprehensive plans that cover teams of up to 26 people. The best part is that all the plans come with the core features that every business needs, such as audience targeting, post preview, and automated publishing. The free trial period of 15-days is available with all the features. The base plan starts at $25 per month and allows the user to manage and share all their social assets from one place. Real-time post optimisation is also available.
The major disadvantages include costly plans for larger teams and annual upfront payment for reduced costs. The pricing policy starts from a nominal $25 per month for two users. The standard plan costs $57 per month for six users, and the advanced plan costs $119 per month for 16 users. The costliest premium plan starts at $249 per month for 26 users.
Integration is essential to stay at the top of all your social platforms. As a result, an efficient integration tool is required to handle the sheer number of social media profiles you have. Sendible is one of the best integration tools in the market. It can efficiently integrate Meta, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google My Business, YouTube, WordPress, Canva, Google Analytics, Google Drive, and many more. All in all, Sendible can integrate a total of 17 tools.
The key features include additional industry-leading integration features not available with close competitors. An intuitive dashboard lets you monitor all your social channels from one space, and the company offers a 14-day free trial period. The starter plans cost $29 per month, and the user can save 15% of the cost if they pay upfront for the entire year. However, the basic plans are available only for one user, and there is no free plan with limited features. The platform can be used to manage all aspects of your social media strategy from one place.
The pricing policy starts with the creator plans costing $25 per month. Next, the traction and scale plan costs $76 and $170 per month. Finally, the costliest expansion plan costs $340 per month. All Sendible plans come with at least ten queues, content publishing, and workflow tools. It also includes bulk scheduling, keyword tools, and an inbox for measuring engagement and monitoring.
The other tools on this list are the best in their respective categories. However, they are mostly on the expensive spectrum of the pricing charts. On the other hand, Buffer is one of the most affordable social media tools on this list. Their basic plans start at just $5 per month. Moreover, they provide a 14-day free trial period and a free plan for individual users. The free plan allows access to three social channels, and you can create ten scheduled posts as well. It works efficiently for Instagram, Meta, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
The pricing policy includes a free plan and a $5 plan. However, for an additional $5, you can get the team upgrade and handle unlimited social channels and add unlimited users. The tool also provides features such as link shortening and optimisation for hashtags. You can also choose a browser extension and a mobile app with a two-factor authentication service for better protection. The Buffer customer service and community are also very helpful.