10 Social Media Tools You Need

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Social media has risen dramatically over the past few years and shows no signs of slowing down. Facebook now has over 1 billion users alone. The number of people on Twitter, the second largest social network, outnumbers the US population at 500+ Million. Modern society has gone from being always plugged in to the internet in general to always being connected to social networks. It’s estimated that over 90% of adults now use social media regularly and with the number of teenagers that have grown dependent upon social networks for any kind of communication at all, that number will likely rise.

The beauty of social media is the how fast information can travel. News, events and ideas can spread rapidly and there is potential for anything to go viral in a number of minutes. This can also be a curse for businesses. If companies aren’t careful, their social presence can take on a grim life of its own. Whether it’s just bad timing, poor execution or being completely unaware of a social trend, many companies have felt the sting of social media gone wrong.

Monitoring brand or product mentions, trends, decisions, industry influence and many more are very important. Social media managers are now employed in some capacity to protect and improve the social presence at almost every organization nationwide. Given the hundreds of social networks used by people across the globe, it is a huge responsibility for social media managers to do such tasks and in order to do it efficiently, they must have powerful tools.

There are hundreds of social analytics tools and suites to choose from. Each has different areas of specialization and prices can range from free to a $100+ a month, so there’s surely a tool to meet your needs. Below are the top 10 social analytics tools to consider for your business:

1. Hootsuite- The most popular social media management app with numerous options and settings. It does not have a limit to whichever network is being monitored since it includes Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and many more. Hootsuite has custom built-in analytics system which can monitor chosen keywords.

2. Sprout Social- This social management platform with a user friendly interface provides an easy way to manage multiple Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. The queue feature allows you to drip out messages through your social accounts a certain times of the day so you can put sharing on auto-pilot. Sprout provides nice social analytics reports detailing the level of engagement and following over different time periods. Unfortunately there is not a free version, and the cheapest plan is $39/m.

3. Radian6- Radian6 can pull in all kinds of activities from all social media sites. Just by entering a keyword relating to your brand, it will supply you with comments and updates that are relevant to you. It can also be integrated with other accounts like Google Analytics and Web Trends.

4. TweetDeck – Don’t let the name fool you. TweetDeck is for more than twitter. This can be used for both mobile and web and will allow you to keep track of updates live when you connect with Facebook , Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Google+ and more. A special feature of TweetDeck is it can be installed as a separate program on your hard drive as a desktop application while iPhone and Android apps are also available.

5. Spredfast- Data mining and integration is the strength of this tool. Allowing you to measure and manage the data you gather from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flickr and see how many people you are able to reach.

6. TwitterFeed- Like TweetDeck, TwitterFeed does not only cater to Twitter, contrary to what its name says. Using RSS feeds, social media accounts can be updated through the integrated platform. Automatic updating can be done by connecting RSS feeds with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, StatusNet and HelloTxt.

7. Social Bakers- This tool is great in identifying the content in your account which made the most impact and growth. It rules in measuring brands and countries on all social media sites and has a built in analytics tool which is very dependable. A special feature of Social Bakers is its capacity to compare your performance with your competitors and to identify which areas you need to work on to improve your popularity on social media.

8. SocialOomph- SocialOomph boasts a variety of social tracking and automation features for all the major social platforms. It has free and premium services which allow you to schedule tweets, track keywords, clean out your direct messages, have multiple profile accounts and more.

9. SocialPointer – If the tool that you are looking for is something that can help you interact with potential new clients, keep track of the activities of a competitor or find out what your users say about your product in real time then SocialPointer is the tool for you. SocialPointer is in beta, but claims to be the first social media management platform that is dedicated to real-time responses.

10. MutualMind – This is a tool created for larger business. MutualMind provides accurate information from all social media sites giving you data that is beneficial for your business. Its price is higher compared to the rest but it also provides social monitoring, management capabilities and intelligence along with the ability to white-label all these services.

Author Byline: Paul Coulter is a digital marketing consultant residing in Toronto. Read more articles by Paul Coulter.

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