There are a multitude of great social media management tools available for both marketing and monitoring that can greatly help you succeed with your campaigns and improve the effectiveness of your social media strategy.
I’ve put together this list of the top ten FREE social media marketing tools that you may not know about:
Buffer, also known as BufferApp, is a really handy tool for people who want to share a lot of content throughout the day without the hassle of keeping track of your findings and then scheduling your posts. After installing the browser extension, all you have to do is click a button to add the article or page to the queue. Posts are then distributed at different intervals set either automatically based on your followers or else based on a customizable schedule you can create.
Pros: User friendly interface that’s easy for beginners. Free to manage one Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn account and up to 12 other platforms available for paid plans. Saves you time and helps you optimize the best days and times to post in order to reach your target audience. BufferApp for smartphones makes it even easier for you to share the content you find “on the go”. Buffer analytics are available for paid plans as well. You can use your own link shortener account if you have one such as bit.ly.
Cons: Only 10 posts can be scheduled on the free plan and only one account can be used with the 3 out of 12 social platforms.
Addict-o-matic is a really great way to search social media platforms for news, blogs, images, and videos, related to a keyword. This can help you track what people are saying about you and your competitors as well as where that content is being shared. This tool is incredibly useful for both monitoring conversations surrounding your brand (and competitors) as well as reputation management. This is a good free alternative to Google’s Google Alert alternative, Mention.
Pros: Very easy to use with a customizable user friendly dashboard. Ability to bookmark the page so you can always come back and find fresh information. Searches Twitter, WordPress, Bing News, Google Blog Search, Flickr, YouTube, Twingly Blog Serach, Blinkx Mainstream Vid News, Delicious Tags, FriendFeed, Technorati, Topix, Yahoo News, Newsvine Tags, Digg, Bloglines, Google News Images, Truveo Video Search, Yahoo Web Search, Wikio, Yahoo Top News Sources, Tweetmeme Links, Addicto Top Blogs – Bloglines, and Ask.com News.
Cons: Twitter results don’t work very well. There is a lot of irrelevant content to filter through in order to find what you want.
Swayy is a content discovery tool that will allow you to find lots of interesting content based on either your previous post content or by categories. All the content is saved to your dashboard where you can easily distribute the links on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Pros: Very easy to use with a user-friendly interface. Great and easy way to find interesting and relevant content to share with your audience. Suggests hashtags to include in your posts and share buttons to distribute your content in just one click. Free analytics are displayed for your activity. Integrates with bit.ly link shortening accounts.
Cons: There’s a lot of content to filter through if your audience has a broad range of interests. It doesn’t automatically post content so you have to sign in and post manually.
Compfight is a great way to find images to use in your posts on blogs and social media platforms. You can search by keyword to find photos on Flickr with Commercial Use licenses or from Creative Commons.
Pros: User friendly interface for beginners. High quality images available for download. Prevents you from violating a copyright and risking a lawsuit.
Cons: You have to mention the photographer with an HTML code they provide you to use the image, but in all honesty that’s a fair price to pay.
Tagboard lets you search hashtags across Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, App.net, Vine and Google+ as well as schedule posts for Twitter and Facebook.
Pros: Clean, user friendly interface that’s great for beginners. Makes it really easy to monitor conversations about your brand, your competitors, your contests, what people are interested in, and more. It’s also a great way to find content that will interest your audience. Gives you that ability to reply, retweet, or favorite any of the content.
Cons: Can only schedule posts for Twitter and Facebook.
Knowem checks the availability of usernames on over 575 popular social media networking platforms, social bookmarking sites, domains, and more.
Pros: Very easy to use. Allows you to easily secure your brand’s name on all the key social media networks which is essential for trademark protection and brand reputation management. It will also help you protect yourself against identity theft.
7. Moz Open Site Explorer
Moz Open Site Explorer is a domain/page authority tool that shows you who is linking to your website (inbound links), top pages, anchor text, linking domains, and lets you compare link metrics. You can even see how the most-linked-to content has performed on the social web.
Pros: User friendly interface and easy to use for beginners. Side-by-side comparison reports make it a breeze to measure up against your competitors. You can check your site for free up to three times a day.
Cons: Can’t check social platforms and have limited access to analytics with free plan.
8. Social Mention
Social Mention is a real-time social media search and analysis tool that makes it easy to monitor conversations and sentiment surrounding your brand.
Pros: Very clean and user friendly interface that can be easily be used by beginners. Option to set alerts so you stay up to date on conversations and can reply on the dime. Great way to find brand advocates by searching through Top Users.
Cons: Doesn’t give you the ability to respond to the content that was found which would make it a lot easier to manage.
9. Tweak Your Biz Title Generator
Tweak Your Biz Title Generator is an interesting tool that will help you find catchy titles for your blog and article posts. Simply put in your topic and get instant results.
Pros: Very easy to use for beginners. Lots of suggested titles for different kinds of posts such as; lists, best, how to, questions, love, secrets, business, celebrities, and more.
Cons: Better as a starting point than a “copy and paste” solution as titles will often need tweaking. 99% of the suggested titles will be irrelevant.
10. Manage Flitter
Manage Flitter gives you the ability to “clean up” your Twitter followers and who you are following, find influential and relevant people to follow, as well as schedule tweets based on when your followers or target demographics are online.
Pros: Very user friendly interface that is easy to use for beginners. Great way to save time by mass unfollowing people or following with just one click. Helps you quickly see people who aren’t following you, have no profile picture, are non-english, or who are inactive on Twitter so you can unfollow them. PowerPost lets you schedule tweets because it shows you when people in a certain location or your twitter followers are online.
Cons: There are a lot of limitations on free accounts such as you can’t find influencers or good matches to follow in order to get more followbacks and no access to analytics.
These are just ten among hundreds of free tools available out there that will really aid you in carrying out your social media strategy. However, there are constantly new startups and the social media landscape is always evolving so it’s likely there will be dozens more to add to this list.
Have you used any of the tools mentioned above? What did you think of them? Also please share any other free social media tools you think can help businesses succeed that I may have missed!