Best Online Social Media Management Tools
Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, Google Plus are just some popular social media platforms available today. As social media becomes an ever-increasing part of marketing businesses, products and services online, the time required to manage all those social media accounts can be significant. Finding a tool to help automate some of your social media activity is a good way to cut down on the replication of sharing posts across platforms and using your time more economically.
So what are the best online social media management tools out there?
I’ve chosen two below, HootSuite (a tried and trusted application) and MeetEdgar (the new kid on the block). Whilst HootSuite and MeetEdgar both work in slightly different ways, used correctly, both can save you considerable time and effort whilst boosting your website traffic and visibility across your social media platforms.
Created in 2008, HootSuite was developed by Ryan Holmes, to manage multiple social media accounts for his digital services agency, Invoke Media. HootSuite is used to schedule posts and messages to Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Linkedin, Google+ and Mixi. The great thing about HootSuite, is that it’s not just about pushing content out to your social accounts, you can also track activity (messages, mentions etc) and send responses from within the app.
There is also a bulk scheduling tool, to enable the user to schedule tweets and posts well ahead of time, which helps streamline the process of managing social media accounts.
- Website: HootSuite.com
- Pricing Options:
- Free Plan (which allows up to three social media accounts and 30 scheduled posts per month)
- Paid Plans from $19 per month (on an annual plan) or $29 per month
- Key Features of HootSuite
- Scheduling posts & tweets to social media accounts (including bulk scheduling tool)
- Monitoring and responding to activity through your social accounts (direct messages, replies, retweets etc)
- Content Curation including RSS feeds
- Analytics and reporting
- Team Management; The Team, Business & Enterprise plans allow for more than one user to access and administer your HootSuite activity
- Security; Custom permission levels, adherence to compliance regulations and standards, notifications of any suspicious activity on your account etc.
Does HootSuite have an affiliate program?
YES and NO. Whilst HootSuite has had an affiliate program in the past; and they still have a page about their affiliate program here; they are no longer accepting new applications for affiliates. This is a real shame as HootSuite would be a fantastic platform for online marketers to promote.
MeetEdgar was developed in 2014 by founder and CEO Laura Roeder, to enable marketing professionals to manage their social media presence with more consistency and in less time.
Laura was frustrated that there weren’t any social media tools that would save and recycle updates after posting them – or that would post content more than once automatically. This is the key difference between existing tools like HootSuite and MeetEdgar – as MeetEdgar has a cool ‘library’ feature and the ability to recycle/reshuffle posts into a kind of playlist.
However, the recent changes to twitter posts have put a dampener on the recycling of content as this is no longer permissible. MeetEdgar have been working on solutions to address this issue, as the Twitter rule change undermines one of the core features of this software.
MeetEdgar is quick and easy to use, and currently integrates with Facebook, Facebook Pages & Groups, Twitter and Linkedin. MeetEdgar does not integrate with Instagram or Pinterest, however there may be plans to do so in the future.
- Website: MeetEdgar.com
- Pricing Options:
- 30 day free trial, then $49 per month
Does MeetEdgar have an affiliate program?
KIND OF. MeetEdgar does not have an affiliate program as such, but instead offers a referral program called the Octopal program. By referring new users to MeetEdgar you can earn credits on your MeetEdgar account, for each referral you will receive a $10 credit against your account. If you are able to refer a lot of friends and colleagues to MeetEdgar, then this is a great way to offset your monthly subscription fee. There is no limit on how many people you can refer to MeetEdgar.
There are pros and cons for both of these social media management tools. Personally, I find MeetEdgar much more user-friendly to use, and the content ‘library’ recycling content is genius. However, given that it only can post to three social networks (Facebook, Twitter & Linkedin), and Twitter no longer allows duplicate content, the value of this product for me is limited. It’s also a shame that they don’t offer a tiered pricing structure, as the $49USD per month is a fair bit to invest when you are a smaller business. Essentially it is a scheduling, curation and sharing tool – with the ability to recycle posts on Facebook and Linkedin.
HootSuite has more functionality, particularly in that you can reply to tweets and direct messages from within the app, and they operate across six social networks instead of MeetEdgar’s three. For this reason alone, it is a better choice for me, as I have a social presence on Google+ and YouTube. Whilst HootSuite doesn’t have the content recycling feature (content library) that MeetEdgar has, it does offer more features and I am tending to lean towards this for the size of my business. That said, HootSuite does offer good scale-ability and you can add more users onto your HootSuite account as your business grows.
I think that MeetEdgar would suit social media specialists who are solely responsible for posting and distributing content – whereas HootSuite offers a more complete social media management solution.
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This post contains referral links which means that if you purchase from one of my links, I will receive a small percentage of the sale. “Basically, if you buy through my website, I might get some pocket money, but not enough for Jimmy Choos.”