The obligation to keep your social media marketing activities ticking over can seem to sap all of your most productive time and energy, leaving little time left for the things that matter – like concentrating on keeping the doors open on your business. But fear not! Our quick guide to 15 useful tools that can help streamline social media management should get you back on track.
Sometimes being on social media is tough. It seems like there are so many platforms to keep on top of. When does one find time to sleep? Well, with social media scheduling platforms like Buffer, you can rest easy knowing that your pre-scheduled tweets and posts are going out all over the world, just when you want them to. Some nice added features also, like cross-platform posting, and an easy way to identify and recycle popular material you’ve posted previously.
Hootsuite is a comprehensive social media management suite that, like Buffer, offers a range of scheduling options. You can connect a number of social media accounts up to it, and it provides some nice reporting options so that you can also keep track of followers, mentions, messages and the like.
It makes sense to pay attention to what’s popular on the web, and checking out what people are paying attention to themselves is one of the best ways to do it. Buzzsumo reveals the most shared posts on social media for keywords that you enter, divvied up by social media channel (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ etc). You can also filter by content type and date for extra specificity.
Triberr labels itself as an Influencer Marketing Platform, and it’s not hard to see why. Largely oriented towards Twitter (but also enabling sharing on other channels such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+), members sign up to be part of blogger ‘tribes’ who regularly share each other’s content via social media. Those who have been on the system for a while now can find themselves with a potential reach of over 20 million people. Not bad for the 20 seconds it takes to sign up.
Ever been in this situation? You’ve got an awful lot to say, and you’re desperately trying to fit it within Twitter’s 140 character limit. But the link you wish to share is just massively overlong. Enter bit.ly, and many similar URL shorteners like it. You simply paste your original link, get a shorter link and use that instead. Easy!
RiteTag is a great little tool that allows you to see what’s trending by way of social media #hashtags right now (and if you don’t know what a hashtag is, or why you should be using it, check out this beginner’s guide to the hashtag by Mashable). The site has the top hashtags currently trending, and also allows you a hashtag search to see if the one you are thinking of using would be the best for your purpose.
Some of the images that you see on social media are so amazing you could swear they had been dreamed up by a graphic designer. Then you usually find out … no, it was just someone with an internet connection and a free Canva account. Canva offers you beautiful imagery and free photo sets, available in re-canned graphic templates that will make you look like a total graphics boss, all without really trying.
Like Canva, PicMonkey is set up for the everyday person who would like to inject some graphics pizzazz into their world, but who can’t afford the hefty price tag of hiring a graphic designer. PicMonkey comes with a range of filtering and editing tools allowing you to edit your own photos, or you can create a collage using images from a range of sources. Operating on a simple drag and drop basis, its intuitive user interface means it should be a hit with everyone from pre-schoolers right up to senior citizens, but it should also be a great help for the small business owner or manager.
Everypost is a social media platform app that enables you to gather your favourite content from across the web and share it across a range of platforms. Touted as a one-stop-shop for social media curating, customisation, scheduling, analytics and collaboration, it is rapidly gaining fans who are switching over from alternative social media management platforms.
10. Social Oomph
Social Oomph is yet another social media management tool, with a key strength in automation. The basic plans provide a level of functionality similar to those found on other social media management platforms, while the more advanced plans give you additional functionality for doing tricksy things like the ability to queue items to recycle them and to email your updates instead of having to open your social media software. Nice!
11. Click to Tweet
Click to Tweet is an ingenious little tool that you may have seen floating around on blogs across the web. The idea is that you enter some text you would like your followers to share into the text box on the site and then press a button to generate a custom tweetable link which can be used in your blog posts, in emails to your list, on your website or wherever. It also comes with some nice analytics so that you can track how your content is being shared. The best part? It’s totally free.
Struggling to find great content? Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way that you could be updated with all the latest blog posts and content relevant to your topic without having to traipse all over the net looking for it? Well, uh – there is. It’s called Feedly, and it is a news (RSS feed) aggregator that you customise to suit your content needs. Check it out.
While not technically a social media management tool per se, Evernote is a very frequently used tool by content managers everywhere who are focused on where and how to organize all the stuff they’ll later want to write about on the web. There are lots of great features here to tag, search and otherwise organize the content you clip so that you’ll be able to easily find them all later when you’re writing up masterpiece.
14. IFTTT (If This, Then That)
IFTTT is an innovative application that allows you to string together core functions from over 300 popular apps – including Evernote, Skype, Buffer and Dropbox – and link them together into a kind of daisy chain of seamless functionality (called ‘recipes’) … and all without having to learn any code! Highly recommended.
As a business, it’s your job to track your reputation on social media – to be aware of who is talking about you, what they’re saying and when. But this social listening exercise can rapidly fly out of your control with no centralized portal to manage it all. BuzzBundle performs this task more than ably, happily supporting a range of sites across a flexible dashboard that will allow you to take back control of the conversation.
There’s no need to spend all your waking hours tied to a chair at your desk, desperately trying to keep up with a punishing social media schedule, when you have all of these awesome tools to help you through. Instead, set your social media schedule on auto-pilot and spend your time doing the things that you love – go on, you deserve it!
Parker Davis is the CEO of Answer 1, a leader in the virtual receptionist and technology enabled answering services industry. He believes that the application of data analytics, investment in technology, and fostering a positive company culture together create highly efficient and scalable growth companies. In 2016, Answer 1 will achieve record revenues while also being awarded the Top Companies to Work For in Arizona award. Parker is also the Managing Partner of Annison Capital Partners, LLC, a private investment partnership.