Social media is a crucial part of any digital marketing campaign. After all, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social platforms serve as an excellent—and affordable—way to spread awareness of your company and build an appealing brand image that draws in new customers.
But getting the most out of your social media efforts isn’t always easy. This is especially true for startups and other small businesses who are just beginning to build their social media presence. After all, digital consumers have a notoriously short attention span, which makes it easy for your content to get lost in the crowd.
Thankfully, there are a wide variety of social media tools (both paid and free-to-use) now available to marketers that can help you with just about every social media marketing task, from scheduling posts to crafting engaging content. These five tools–which I use daily–are some of your best options for driving social media success, so check them out and let me know what you think!
There are seemingly countless social media management platforms available these days, but Sprout Social continues to stand out from the rest thanks to its versatility and simplicity. For starters, Sprout Social is able to connect with each of your major social media platforms (even LinkedIn and Google+), allowing you to quickly craft multiple posts. Better yet, Sprout Social’s unified social inbox allows you to view all of your conversations–across all channels–while monitoring important keywords and hashtags, all in one convenient location.
While not exactly the cheapest tool on this list, Rival IQ is an extremely powerful social media analytics platform that can give you the data you need exactly when you need it. In my opinion, it pays for itself ten times over if you actually use all of the features. With Rival IQ you can analyze your performance, gain critical insights, and beat the competition across social media, SEO keywords, and website content, with one centralized dashboard. There’s nothing else out there like it!
Blogging has proven to be a popular (and effective) method of generating website traffic for many businesses, but all too often, your latest blog post is forgotten after only a few days. Buffer solves this problem for businesses by helping you schedule and publish your content later on. By crafting a posting schedule with the tool, you’ll get in front of your audiences at the ideal times and build your following along the way.
High-quality visuals are essential for a successful social media platform. Unfortunately, producing top-notch graphics and accessing beautiful photos for your posts can seem like an insurmountable obstacle for companies on a budget. Not so with Canva. This easy-to-use design tool comes with an impressive stockpile of great-looking images and font options, as well as simple design templates that make crafting Facebook ads, Instagram posts, and other graphics a breeze. Best of all, you can start using this tool for free (though there are some fees associated with additional features).
Audiense is a social media tool designed to you build new audiences, understand your audiences, and deliver the right experience to them, this platform can take your social media campaigns to the next level. So whether you want to discover influencers on Twitter, or quickly build your Instagram following the right way, or track the growth of your social accounts over time, Audiense has something for everyone.
There’s a lot of work that goes into creating a successful social media presence, but with the help of the many tools available to marketers today, even the smallest startup can turn its social media profile into an engaging, audience-building machine. And the best news is that these tools are only a small sampling of what’s available online.
As you leverage these and other social media helpers, you’ll find it easier than ever to streamline your social media efforts in order to generate powerful engagement for your brand.
What tools would you add to this list? Share them in a comment below or on Twitter!