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Review – Compare Social Media Scheduling Tools

SEO and social media consultants

Need to schedule posts?  When you compare social media scheduling tools, the may all look the same up front but each has different features that suit different business models.  Building online communities, engaging, posting, tweeting, curating, monitoring and analysing content can be time consuming and overwhelming, especially if you’re juggling multiple accounts.  Social media reporting is one of the most time consuming aspects of a social media manager’s job.  So, how do the different tools compare?  Investing in the right social media scheduling tool can save you oodles of time and effort, but finding the right tool for your business needs is a minefield. We take a look at the pros and cons of three popular social media scheduling tools on the market to help you compare social media scheduling tools and make the right choice for your business.

Buffer Social Scheduler

Buffer Social Media Scheduling Tool

User-friendly Buffer is a crowd favourite thanks to its integration with major social media accounts.  Content scheduled in Buffer displays in a queue format providing an overview of upcoming posts at a glance. You can specify publishing times or follow Buffer’s recommended times.  A key selling point is the ability to publish content on the go from your mobile.

Pros of Buffer

• Integrates with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.
• Mobile apps.
• Analytics on engagement and post reach.
• Flexible scheduling.
• User-friendly.
• Team collaboration.
• Two people can be assigned to one account.
• Good for small budgets.

 

Cons of Buffer

• Doesn’t monitor discussions, mentions, searches or hashtags.

Hootsuite Social Scheduling Tool

Hootsuite Social Scheduling Tool

Social media management heavyweight Hootsuite, wins social media managers over with its all-in-one account management, scheduling and monitoring functionality.  Compared to other leading social media scheduling tools, Hootsuite’s Instagram and Foursquare coverage makes it a big favourite.  Hootsuite makes managing multiple accounts easy thanks to its integration with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+, Foursquare and more via apps.
Hootsuite is popular for its analytics, which allow you to monitor discussions and measure results, including mentions and hashtags.

Pros of Hootsuite

• Integrates with Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+ and Foursquare.
• Extensive range of apps to manage accounts, including Pinterest and YouTube.
• Character limits.
• Impressive analytics and insights.
• All-in-one dashboard.

Cons of Hootsuite

• Detailed analytics reports can be expensive.
• Costs can add up purchasing apps.

Sprout Social Scheduling Tool

Compare social media scheduling tools

Similar to Buffer and Hootsuite, Sprout Social allows you to manage multiple accounts across Twitter, Instagram Facebook and LinkedIn. Sprout Social allows you to schedule posts and monitor and analyse campaigns from the one dashboard.
A top selling point is its focus on customer service. Sprout Social offers a single stream inbox with the ability to monitor and respond to messages from various networks from the one inbox.

Pros of Sprout Social

• All activity in a single inbox.
• Scheduling functionality.
• Inbuilt CRM.
• Monitors response time.
• Keyword monitoring on Twitter.
• The Discovery feature provides suggestions on who to follow or unfollow.
• Impressive reporting.
• Apps for iPhone and Android.

Cons of Sprout Social

• No Pinterest integration.
• It can be expensive.

So what about Instagram?

Best apps for scheduling instagram posts

Schedugram is the leading Instagram scheduling app that allow automated posting.  While all the above programs will allow you to plan content, you’ll need to respond to a push notification to actually post.

Shedugram allows you to post videos and photos, schedule first comments (for hashtagging), tag and edit images and check your layout in advance.  It can be a bit buggy and slow – the main complaint from users is that it’s a bit frustrating to use.  You also can’t bulk upload images or select the display image on videos.

With an abundance of social media scheduling tools on the market, it can be difficult to compare social media scheduling tools to find the one that best fits your needs.  There’s also the question of Facebook’s own scheduling software and the impact of third party schedulers on reach.  Need help to choose the right tool for your business?  Talk About Creative can talk you through your social media needs and help you find the right social media scheduling tool or solution for you.

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