Social media marketing is now widely used to promote products and services on an online platform. More and more businesses, companies and brands are turning to social networking platforms when promoting new products, rebranding or expanding operations, or to simply have more visibility in a virtual environment.
Social media marketing is mostly conducted on the more popular platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Sometimes, managing so many social networking accounts can be daunting and confusing, prompting the need for effective tools that can ease the burden of sifting through mountains of comments, questions and inquiries.Fortunately, there are hundreds of free social media marketing tools at your disposal . The disadvantage of this wide variety however, is the difficulty in finding the ones that will serve your needs effectively. To know which tools to look out for, here's a list of tools created specifically for essential functions like providing analytics, scheduling posts and filtering through content.
- Buffer. Buffer allows you to access and manage your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts from a single dashboard. You can even schedule your posts for the three social networking platforms so that you can maintain silence through your updates.
- Commun.It. This tool helps you manage your Twitter account by making it easy for you to track your most active followers, answer questions sent by other Twitter users and to sift through direct messages or mentions that may need your attention. It gives you reports of your Twitter activities – including information on users that unfollowed you.
- HootSuite. This easy-to-use tool has a straightforward dashboard where you can simultaneously see and manage your social networking accounts on Twitter and Facebook.
- Scoop.it. This tool makes it easy for you to save website content such as articles and images for sharing on your social networking accounts. Upon installing Scoop.it, you now easily save content URL for sharing. You can also integrate this tool with HootSuite.
- Storify. Like Scoop.it, you will be able to save online articles for future posting. As you scour for new content on the Internet, Storify allows you to organize your finds according to its topic.
- Google Reader. This tool is an RSS feed reader that regularly checks for new content on your favorite news sites and blogs. You can customize the notifications that you will receive so that you can be instantly updated of new web content that you can share with your network.
- Topsy. If you want to know the latest trends and topics about your industry, related products and competitors, Topsy is a useful tool for that purpose. This will help you stay up-to-date with the latest news and happenings that can affect your brand.
- CrowdBooster. CrowdBooster is a powerful tool that tells you essential metrics that will give you an insight on when the most ideal posting times are, the Klout scores of your Twitter followers and your top and most popular posts on Facebook. For all the information that ChartBooster provides, it's understandable that they offer their services for a price.
- Facebook Insights. This tool will help you track the growth of your Facebook page and the impact of your posts. The analytics that this tool provides can help you gain a better understanding of your fans and the areas of your campaign that need improvement.
- Klout. This free media media marketing tool gives influencer results using social media activity and interactions as its basis. There are 400 variables measuring one's Klout score. It also gives insights on which areas in your campaign needs improvement and which activities provide the strongest influence for your brand.
- HowSociable. Much like Klout, HowSociable provides you with a magnitude score based on your social media activities. Your score will determine whether you have a strong enough online presence and whether your brand is reaching your target audience.
- Engag.io. Aside from a social media accounts management system, Engag.io also provides insights about the people that you are interacting with online. This will help you gauge whether you should pour more attention to certain individuals (who may have a large following of their own) and see if the people you interact with are more likely to share your content.
- Brand Monitor. This useful tool also provides a dashboard where you can manage your social media accounts. It also takes you to conversations between users where your brand is mentioned. This will help you become a more active participant in interactions where a genuine interest for your products is already present.
- Google Analytics Social Report. If you already have a Google Analytics account to measure your website's performance, Social Report can be easily integrated into your dashboard which will help you have access to an overview of your social media marketing progress. This tool will give you an easy-to-understand visualization of the visitor and activity traffic in your social networking accounts so you'll know which are the busiest times on your accounts and what type of content encourages the most interaction from your followers.
These are only some examples of the wide variety of tools that you can use to make your social media marketing more organized and effective. Without these tools, you will have a hard time determining whether your campaign is doing well or not. These tools will also help you make improvements in your strategy to make it more effective.
You can use these tools as often as you like and you are not limited by the ones that were provided on this list. To know which ones work best for your objectives, feel free to try as many of them to see which ones you feel the most comfortable in using.