Social Media management has never been easier with multiple tools available but where do you start?
Crowdboost is great for the number crunchers among you, if analytics are key for you because you base success heavily on them then this is the tool for you. Analytics are available at a glance, along with recommendations of your statistics, how to improve them and optimise your delivery.
Another popular tool is Tweetdeck for the Twitter champs out there. This offers real time tracking, organising and management of multiple accounts and filters. This allows you to keep track of multiple timelines at once from different accounts /filters.
A filter, is the way that you refine your search to help you find what you are looking for. This might be for specific subject matter using keywords and hashtags. You can focus your filters to hone in on Tweets with images or videos, leaving you with a strong visual presence and filters that mimic other social media platforms such as Instagram.
So you have two popular management tools with a specific set of focuses yet in our experience of the social media market, convergence is where it is at.
We all want a one stop shop for convenience rather than the butcher the backer the candlestick maker. We want the reliability and options of a social media supermarket.
Hootsuite is the one tool that won't leave you shopping around but why, what is it that Hootsuite offers, to make social media management easier and most time effective?
- Auto-scheduling of unlimited messages, saving time. In 2009 Hootsuite launched Hootlet, the feature that provides a shortcut way to share a link through Hootsuite by simply hitting the Hootlet icon (a small owl) on your toolbar. This allows from any page your tweet to go with a shortened URL. Not only can you specify when your tweet will be sent but Hootlet analyses users social activity (and their followers) to deliver the message at an optimal time to avoid swamping followers with too many updates!
- Managing of multiple accounts across platforms including Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, connecting you to like-minded content and brands.
- Free social media reports by email, that show your ROI on social media, these include analytics, number of clicks per day, geographical info of the people clicking through, top refers and most popular links.
- Multiple stream management of one platform if needed, such as multiple Twitter accounts simultaneously.
- Accountability, members from the Hootsuite team manage your social media accounts for you in real time. You can trust your accounts are being dealt with and can delegate specific accounts to specific Hootsuite members. Depending on the amount of accounts you have, depicts the amount of team members you require, this could prove expensive.
Further to that is the legendary Customer Service that comes from instant responses and drafted answers to FAQs that can be saved and sent to customers directly as and when asked. There is the slight downside of sharing passwords as Twitter doesn't have any administrative features so for it to be managed by multiple people you would have to share the passwords.
To avoid this each team member would need access to one of the Hootsuite apps to manage business social networks which would give each person their own login.
- Cross posting using Google+, Hootsuite is one of Google+ few API partners, most of Google+ features including posting to your circles, locations and links are available through Hootsuite. If you will be using this, please note that you will need to manually create your updates in Hootsuite to generate the full summary and thumbnail of your link, this results in more click throughs and will be more visible. Cross platforming using the Hootsuite app is easy and works on Mac, OSX, Windows, Linux and mobile platforms including iPhone, iPad, Android, and Blackberry on all modern browsers.
Aside from these many benefits we personally favour Hootsuite because of the relational aspect, your accounts are left in the hands of people, not an automated service giving you more security. It enables you to generate leads and direct traffic to your site as well as connecting you with more than 35 social media platforms.
In a survey from monitoring tool Pingdom, Hootsuite came out as the top social media management system with over 20% of companies using it. With its accessibility, instantaneous response times, relational aspects and umbrella of services, we personally are yet to see a social media management service that challenges its increasing reign.