Businesses both big and small have a very important task these days, managing not just a website, but also Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest on a daily basis. It can be a tall task, especially for those small businesses without the flexibility to have a social media manager on their payroll. But developers are rapidly releasing solutions so the social media management process is more manageable and also doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Here’s a look at some of those solutions and what they have to offer.
HootSuite. Probably the most widely known social networking management application is Hootsuite. It’s so popular that 79 of the Top 100 Fortune companies utilize the app for at least a part of their social media management. From one spot you can view streams of numerous social networking sites to monitor activity and schedule future posts. It’s only $8.99 a month, but a major downside to this application is the amount you have to pay some of your analytical data, with some reports costing as much as $50.
ViralHeat. The people behind this application believe it is the most comprehensive place to control all forms of business social media available right now. With a single dashboard that controls all forms of social media, the application gives the user easy access to scheduling future posts, reviewing analytics of previous posts and even accessing old posts. ViralHeat is known to be a great solution for smaller businesses, but some critics warn that as growth happens, a more robust solution may become necessary.
Buffer. A little different in design than ViralHeat and HootSuite, this application focuses on being a “virtual queue” to send and schedule posts through various networking sites. This allows the content manager freedom from the pressure of multiple delivery times throughout the day. This application can be used with sites like Hootsuite to enhance its functionality, or simply by itself. However, there’s no dashboard with this application, and it’s focused on the scheduling of posting more than anything else.
These three applications are just a small sampling of the hundreds available today to help businesses balance the increasing pressure for a stronger and more interactive social presence. Likely one of the hardest decisions when looking to add a management tool is simply weeding through the many options available.