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Social Media is Powerful
Social Media is a powerful marketing tool for all businesses. It’s cheap, has a far reach and opens up engagement with customers. But this is nothing new, we’ve all seen the explosive growth in social media and we know its an essential part of our web strategy.
If you don’t believe me, take a look at the graph below extracted from a Search Engine Journal infographic (click to see full infographic).
It’s clear social media is on an explosive growth path and should be utilized.
Doesn’t Mean it’s Easy
But saying that social media marketing is important, doesn’t mean we suddenly have the skills, tools, time and resources to get it done. Social media management is time-consuming. You have to manage multiple accounts, find content, monitor competitors and communicate with your customers.
*On a side note, if you’re looking for a company to help with your social media content, check out ZootRock, a Process Street user, and a recent 500 Startups graduate.
Don’t Worry, There are Tools to Help
Luckily in today’s connected world, there are tools to help you get this done quickly, easily and on the go. The specific type of tool I speak of is a social media management tool. There are a number out that have different purposes, but the two standout platforms in today’s market are Buffer and Hootsuite.
Buffer vs Hootsuite
Buffer and Hootsuite let you manage multiple social media accounts through their web, mobile and browser apps. These products are feature packed and let you do a whole bunch of things including:
- Monitor mentions of your brand, keywords, and competitors
- Schedule (manually or automatically) new content across different networks
- Engage with customers, partners and prospects
There used to be a huge gap between these two products, but these days they have both cross developed their feature set so they are becoming more and more alike, and today there are just a couple of key differences that I notice based on my usage.
Hootsuite has more monitoring and engagement capabilities. If you’re really interested in watching what’s going on across different social media profiles, keywords, users and engaging with all of that, Hootsuite is the better option. It’s easier to customize and monitor different feeds and to personally respond to posts.
Buffer, on the other hand, is great for posting content. There are Buffer buttons everywhere, and they have a really cool “suggestion content” section inside the app to help you find and schedule more content faster and easier. So if your goal is finding content to post and being able to do that quickly and easily, buffer is the way to go.
They even launched a new iPhone app called “Daily” to help find and schedule content, which is REALLY awesome if you are in the web / productivity / social media type industry. If your market is Accounting, Wealth Management or Human Resources it may not be so useful. Buffer also has an awesome blog that I highly recommend if you’re trying to improve your social media skills.
Take Your Pick
These products like ours and many others I have written about are always evolving, adding new features and tweaking their business models, so to really get a feel for them you should sign up and try them out yourself.
Both products have free plans that allow a limited number of social media accounts and scheduled posts, I use both services – one for work and one for personal. With the free plan, it makes it easy to try out both and figure out which one to go with.
lazy busy and want someone else to do the heavy lifting, here are a few posts comparing the features and benefits:
Buffer or HootSuite: Which is the More Powerful Social Media Tool?
Social Media Smackdown: Hootsuite vs Buffer
HootSuite vs. Buffer for the Heavyweight Championship
Just Do It
If you’re in charge of managing social media for your business, you definitely need to be using one of these tools. They will save you a bunch of time and stress compared to the native platforms and make it easy to manage social media on the go.
If you’re looking for a place to start, How to Generate Leads with Content Upgrades explains how bloggers have used one powerful technique to boost conversions by over 700%.
If you want to learn more about Social Media marketing, check out this case study I did on how Crane got 20,000 Facebook Likes using a Sharpie Marker.
For more posts like this, make sure to subscribe to the Process Street blog. ‘
Looking for more? Check out this list of social media tools.
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Thanks for sharing the helpful tools with us. Nicely explained the difference.
No worries Nigel, glad you enjoyed.
I’m very much a Hootsuite fan – moved to it after Tweetdeck went Twitter only, and have never found enough reason to move to Buffer, especially when managing multiple accounts – Buffer just wasn’t expansive enough.
I’ll look out for your next post 😉
Hello Vinay, I really enjoyed reading this post. Very true that SM is a powerful marketing tool for businesses and we should all have the means to take advantage of that. It is essential to use a social media management platform that uses a ticket inbox and organises all upcoming postings in a single calendar, allowing team members to plan ahead postings for social media channels.
As customer support is a very important aspect in any business, the ideal SM management tool should enable immediate responses from company representatives to both negative as well as positive comments. Finding the right tool is a major time-saver and stress-buster for any business. We’ve been using Swat.io for quite a while and it definitely grasps all of the advantages of more popular tools, such as Hootsuite or Buffer.
Thanks for the tip Georgiana, I will check it out when I get a chance.
Thanks for sharing the essential and most useful tools with us. I am very happy to read this post. This Post quick guide me for Intelligent SMM ………………
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