If your company does not have the budget for Socialbakers or Adobe Social, you may want to take a look at these eight free social media management tools.
As social media marketing continues to boom, there are plenty of free tools available to help you analyze your brand’s performance on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social networks. In order to cut through the clutter, we have selected eight of our personal best ones here.
Twitter Analytics is a simple yet useful tool to assess how your brand is doing on Twitter. It offers decent performance data such as tweet impressions, followers, top tweet, top mention and profile visits. And it also shows you monthly changes.
All these stats can inform you what might be going wrong and what is going well with your audience. Most importantly, Twitter Analytics is 100 percent free and will not ask you to pay more to access advanced features.
TweetDeck is another first-party social management service developed by Twitter. It allows you to schedule tweets as well as receive notifications and respond to messages in real time. Some social media marketers use a combination of TweetDeck and Bitly to schedule tweets, rather than depending on third-party services like Hootsuite.
Facebook Insights functions like Twitter Analytics, providing stats around your page likes, post reach, engagement. It also allows you to compare your competitors’ performance by adding their company pages to “Pages to Watch.” Therefore, if one of your competitors is doing particularly well on Facebook, you can go to its page and learn how the brand is using the social network.
In addition, Facebook Insights offers weekly reports to compare your posts and help you decide what is popular with your audience.
Different from the above first-party systems, Hootsuite is an all-in-one social management platform. Its dashboard offers an overview of all your social performance across Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram and whatever other social channels you have connected.
It also has TweetDeck’s scheduling capability and is able to create shortened URLs, so you can reach your audience when the majority are online. Hootsuite is especially useful for social networks like LinkedIn where users cannot schedule posts.
Followerwonk is a nice complimentary tool that delves deeper into Twitter Analytics. Its Search Bios and Sort Followers features offer in-depth analysis on your followers and who you should follow in your field.
When you type in “marketer” in the Search Bios search engine, for example, the platform will surface a few users who use the word “marketer” or related words in their profiles. Followerwonk adds followers and social authority to each user to help decide if he or she is an influencer you are looking for.
Followerwonk also allows you to analyze a specific tweet and compare your competitors’ followers.
Sprout Social offers engagement report, trends report and Twitter comparison. Engagement report is based on your social replies to inform how actively you are interacting with your Twitter followers.
Trends report gives an overview of what subjects are resonating with your Twitter followers. For example, Sprout Social shows that over the past month, #marketing, #ecommerce, #advertising and #CES2016 were the most mentioned hashtags with @ClickZ.
And Twitter comparison allows you to compare your Twitter performance with your competitors. If your competitors are doing better, you can go back to your own and their Twitter accounts to figure out what went wrong and how you can improve.
BuzzSumo and Social Analytics extensions
These two straightforward Chrome extensions provide social share data on any page, revealing what content on your site or a competitor’s site is getting shared on social. Those insights can help you plan your future content and do better on social.
It’s worth noting that after Twitter removed its share counts, Social Analytics is very slow on getting stats on Twitter.
Aside from the free social management tools that we have recommended above, our very own head of social, Matt Owen, suggests a few more:
- Klear (formerly known as Twtrland)
- Oktopost for B2B marketing
No matter which service you prefer to use, remember to start by using the social network’s own analytics tools first, before using a third-party platform to complement your analysis.
There you have it. Now you have no excuse not to manage your social media effectively… go get ’em!
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