There are numerous social media management programs on the market today, and they all have the ability to assist you with planning cohesive content on a weekly, monthly, and even yearly basis.
These management programs are an excellent choice for anyone out there who is in the market for efficiency and saving time by automating content shared across all platforms.
With social media management platforms such as Sprout Social and Hootsuite, users can not only automate posts but also better understand an audience by uncovering trends through analytic data reports and listening to what is being said about an agency or business across the digital sphere.
These platforms typically cost around $100 per month to start; sure, it’s not cheap, but the cost comes with much value, especially if you’re managing multiple social media accounts. Yes, you can manage a Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Youtube account all in one space.
Now, social media management programs come with so many pros, followed by a couple of cons, so we have some tips and insight to help you determine if one of the following programs is right for your agency or business.
Pros and Cons
Social media management programs allow users to uncover trends by reviewing data analytics, determining the type of content your audience wants to see, the best time to post, and even collecting content ideas from similar social media accounts.
It’s easier than you think to pull data from a handful of your posts and review engagement to determine the type of content your audience would like to see. Doing this will strengthen your agency or business’s connection with its audience by listening to their thoughts and interests as a pathway to generating future content. Aside from having the ability to automate social posts, manage multiple accounts in one space, and listen to your audience, the biggest pro to using a social media management platform is the ability to curate content by uncovering trends and understanding your audience.
Now, the biggest con when it comes to all social media management platforms is the cost. For instance, Sprout Social’s standard program option starts at $99 per month, which allows up to five social profiles, and its professional program costs $149 per month, allowing you to connect up to 10 social profiles. But, if you can convince your leadership that social media management programs add absolute value to your agency or business, the cost should not be a problem, as it could save the department time, increase productivity, and elevate sales.
Another con is some of the post features available when posting natively on the social media platform are not available through social media management software, particularly on Instagram.
Lastly, pre-scheduling your posts may not be ideal if you are a public safety agency or organization where incidents can come up without notice. The last thing you would want is for an unrelated scheduled post to publish during a critical incident.
Now, you may be asking yourself, “What social media management platform is the best one out there?” We have two recommendations that we would like to share with you today: Sprout Social and Hootsuite. Sprout Social has a proven track record of assisting over 25,000 business and agency users to gain a stronger connection with their audience. In addition, since 2010, the platform has optimized its dashboard and capabilities, staying competitive in the marketplace.
“Sprout Social is packed full of great features for businesses and large enterprises. It makes it easy to manage multiple social media accounts in a single intuitive interface. However, per user pricing means using the app with a large team can be very costly.”
Another social media management platform we recommend second next to Sprout Social is HootSuite. Although Hootsuite is the global leader in social media management, with over 200,000 users, it lacks in making sense of user data. The platform, which has been around since 2008, has packages that start at $49 per month and work their way up to $599 per month.
“Hootsuite provides a thorough list of advanced features to help businesses schedule posts, monitor trends, and engage with their audience through multiple social networks. On the other hand, there are viable alternatives to Hootsuite at the enterprise level that provide a slicker user experience and more advanced features for competitive analysis and content marketing.”
Social Media Management Tips
Social media management tips? Okay, be sure to utilize the social media calendar on either Sprout Social or HootSuite to plan content and schedule ahead. The greatest component of these platforms is the ability to plan ahead, way ahead, which saves hours in the long run. It’s great because, as a social media manager, you are likely finding yourself working around the clock posting content, monitoring engagement, and responding to messages, even on the weekends. In addition, the automation of content will allow you to work on other projects, strengthen social strategies or enjoy some well-deserved time off, mitigating issues related to posting too late or entirely forgetting to share a post.
The integration of a live social media calendar (which both of our recommendations have) is also a great space where your leadership can review scheduled content and make any necessary edits without the back-and-forth of email messaging. It’s also great because if your administration ever wants to see what content is scheduled for the week, it’s all there in one singular space.
Another tip is to schedule all holiday, closure, or any planned event posts ahead of time. These posts can be done a year in advance and will provide you a sufficient amount of time to generate a graphic, snap photos or make any necessary edits to the verbiage. Generally, these types of social posts remain the same every year, so why not knock them out early if you can?