6 Free Social Media Management Tools to Make Your Life Easier.
You probably already know that millions of people are on social media today. The current number of users is said to be about 3.96 million and the number is expected to increase. And so, many businesses have taken advantage of social media to engage their customers and advertise to potential customers. On the other hand, a lot of businesses, unfortunately, are not getting the most out of social media because they are unable to stay consistent. And social media really demands consistency with posting and engagement.
But this would not be an issue if they knew about free social media management tools they could use to handle the everyday social media management processes. Most of these tools have paid versions but if you are running a small business or you are a startup, you can start by using the free versions until it is necessary to scale. So, without further ado, what are these free social media management tools you should know? I have highlighted them below;
HootSuite is definitely one of the most popular free social media management tools as it offers a free version for 2 social accounts, 5 scheduled messages and 1 user. HootSuite provides the basic features, including scheduling and reporting. With this tool, you can schedule multiple posts across the different social media platforms, receive valuable insight on the progress of your posts and even collaborate with your team members.
HootSuite also took reporting to a whole new level with HootSuite Insights to enable social listening. Although this is a separate app that is available for a fee. Perhaps, HootSuite’s most prominent feature is the Streams that allow users to create a series of Streams for each account to represent different aspects of that account. For instance, you can have streams for scheduled posts, retweets, timelines, mentions and so on.
Social media is largely visual. Of course, some are more visual than others like Instagram is more visual than Facebook or Twitter. But either way, visual content has been known to do better than written content because people apparently like beautiful things. So, this is where Canva comes in. Canva is a design app to help you create marketing assets for different social media platforms and even other forms of visual content such as book covers, presentations and so on.
Canva has a huge library of free stock images and customisable templates for different purposes; the templates come in the required visual dimension of each platform. All you have to do is choose a template and customise it to your taste or brand style as you can also upload your brand assets and visuals. Another great thing about Canva is that it integrates with the major platforms, so you can schedule and post directly from Canva.
Buffer is another very popular social media management tool you probably have heard of. Buffer provides users with an interface in a queue-like format to arrange their scheduled posts in a queue. So, as you update your scheduled posts, the new posts join the queue. This gives you a simple interface to seamlessly organise and manage your social media posts. Buffer provides sufficient features for the free version as you can schedule 10 posts for up to 3 platforms.
However, the free version doesn’t provide in-depth analytics. For more details on the performance of your posts, including the best time to publish based on your followers’ behaviour, you will need to go for the paid version. Buffer also has a Chrome extension that makes it easy for users to work directly from the Chrome browser.
Planable is a great tool for collaboration. Collaboration is the major team of this app. So, if you are a team looking for a social media tool to increase efficiency and productivity, Planable is a good fit. It helps users create, plan, collaborate on and schedule social media posts. You also can review, edit, make comments and have conversations around each post. Planable supports the major social media platforms, including LinkedIn and Google My Business. It is free for 50 total posts.
If your brand is very active on Twitter, then you will find Tweetdeck useful. It is a free app that helps you manage multiple Twitter accounts from one interface. So, instead of navigating all your Twitter accounts or the different aspects of your account, you can do all you need to do from a single dashboard. With Tweetdeck, you can schedule your tweets, build your lists and view your notifications, messages, mentions/tags. And the best part is that it is completely free.
Later is an amazing social media management tool to consider. It helps you craft, plan, schedule and post your content across the different major platforms. Later also provides users with a Visual Planner to help plan and schedule their visual content. Plus, the tool arms you with valuable analytics and reporting to track the performance of your content. Later has a free version for one account of each platform and 10 posts/month. But you will need to pay to have access to in-depth analytics.
Now, remember that there are other social media management tools out there but this list is streamlined to the tools that have a free version. As has been implied above, if you need more features, you may need to go for the paid version but if you are a personal brand or a small business, the free version of most of the tools on this list would suffice.