The social media landscape of businesses is evolving rapidly since Covid-19 came on the scene in December 2019. With more companies adopting some style of remote working, it is no surprise that Smart Insights reported a 43% increase in the time someone spends on social networks daily.
Considering more than half the world’s population are on some form of social media, businesses are aggressively shifting focus primarily on their social media strategies to get their products and services, quite literally, seen.
This is why we decided to rank and compare the top 10 social media management tools to connect all the social media networks.
With the added variables of the unknown paired with the ongoing push to stay relevant, companies have to narrow down what they need in the world of social media, decide collectively what is important to increase their social ROI, and rely on the power that social media management tools can bring to their bottom line.
Social media marketers bear the responsibility of growing the brand, promoting blog posts, streamlining workflows, and curating content on the fly with the ability to collaborate with their teams.
In addition, social media managers create marketing campaigns that perform with automated social media content, and track their social media analytics in a way that helps them pivot where needed.
Marketing Agencies are managing many brands and need to centralize processes and automate tasks and increase productivity. Being able to collaborate with teams and clients is key.
Reputation management or reputation monitoring is also becoming one of the most important aspects of the online business environment. Web listening is a feature that companies will start to expect from social media tools.
Social listening is a standard across many platforms, but web listening takes a bit more investment if you want to accomplish this under one roof.
So how do you know which is the best social media management tool for your business, whether you are a professional entrepreneur, a social media manager, a small or a medium size business, a marketing agency, or an enterprise?
Not to mention, there is a lot of noise in the social media scheduler space. Most social media management tools are offering a comparable set of features, but how comprehensive are they?
While the list of standout features may go on and on, we bucket the main categories into:
- Publishing and Scheduling: Can you visualize your monthly calendar, automate posting, or customize across channels in the same window? Are multiple profiles included? Do you have unlimited scheduling?
- Unified Social Inbox: Can you engage with your audience in real time across social channels?
- Integrated RSS Feeds: Would you benefit from being able to publish your blogs or industry blogs automatically to your social channels?
- Social Monitoring: Can you monitor your brand’s reputation and listen to your audience by monitoring keywords and competitors measuring sentiment?
- Competitor Analysis: Can you track and compare your competitive advantage with social analytics and reporting?
- Campaign Tracking: Are you tracking your ads, posts, and website to optimize and pivot your marketing strategy? Can you target audiences?
- Custom Reporting: Do you need to build custom reports for your clients major social accounts?
Luckily for our readers, we’ve done the research and compiled the top 10 of the social media management tools that are integrated with the must have social media channels. We have created a scoring system for each of the notable features listed below in this comparison graphic. Compare at a glance and see how these standout companies marry with your needs and wants as you seek to partner with a social platform in the future. We recommend signing up for a LIVE demo of these solutions where possible and accepting the FREE trial if offered. Take note of any paywalls that may exist with hidden costs.
Here are the top 10 social media management tools for 2021:
- eclincher – Best for SMBs & Agencies
- Falcon.io – Best for Enterprise
- Sprout Social – Best for Agencies & Medium Sized Businesses
- Hootsuite – Best for SMBs & Enterprise
- Agorapulse – Best for SMBs & Agencies
- Loomly – Best for Solopreneurs & Small Businesses
- SocialPilot – Best for Small Agencies
- Sendible – Best for Agencies
- Buffer – Best for SMBs
- Later – Best for Solopreneurs on Instagram
Honorable Mention: Zoho Social’s Platform
Platforms: Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Instagram Stories, Twitter, Google My Business, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest with TikTok – Coming Soon
eclincher might just be the best kept secret in social media due to their grassroots ‘word of mouth’ content marketing efforts in the past. ec, as brand advocates tote, has been reviewed as “the swiss-army knife of social media”.
They are pushing out extremely more value to marketing agencies and larger business teams, than their competitors.
You might expect that customer service is a standard in general. But, in the SaaS world eclincher’s support team really takes the clients’ expectation of service seriously, and not just because they are 24/7.
You’ll capture some serious social media ROI using eclincher’s social media management tool. Centered around marketing automations, eclincher helps social media managers save time using a single dashboard with this digital marketing platform, automate mundane marketing tasks with bulk scheduling options, rss feeds, queues, etc.
Every feature or capability seems to have the goal of productivity in mind to the end user.
An all-in-one social media management tool and consistently expanding platform, eclincher is packed with all the value every social media team needs (and wants too).
Scalable from the professional solopreneur, SMBs (Small & Medium-Sized businesses), Enterprise, to Agencies with large teams who need that extra workflow and internal/external team collaboration.
The huge benefits you gain working with a well-rounded solution helps you quantify your return, increase productivity, save precious time, and gain back insight for what is working and what isn’t.
It stands to note their customer support is consistently and notably awarded best in class from sites like G2Crowd, Capterra, GetApp, and the like.
This top rated powerful social media management tool, or should we say a platform, has everything you need to execute your social media marketing strategy.
There are loads of value in the features and capabilities offered, such as a comprehensive content publisher, savvy drag and drop visual calendar, campaign tracking, competitor analysis, and omnichannel tailored social media post editing.
If Instagram scheduling is top of mind you’ll love the custom Instagram grid planning, and being able to schedule Instagram stories and carousels with push notification.
eclincher has an intuitive scheduler toting auto posting with smart queues, a very smart inbox or social CRM so you never miss a review, message, or engagement, integration of RSS feeds, suggested content plus curation, keywords and hashtags monitoring, social media analytics reporting including Google Analytics, URL shorteners, campaign tracking and more.
This social marketing tool really has it all to keep campaigns innovative and organized catering to multiple social media account(s).
Did we mention they already partner with a wide range of companies like Canva, wave.video, Zendesk, Bitly, Feedly, Unsplash and add more integrations constantly? Slack and TikTok for Business are coming in the 1st quarter of 2021.
If they don’t have a feature or integration you need, your odds are good they probably will soon.
Remarkably, two of the most amazing benefits of working with eclincher is their agile team atmosphere and their ability to be nimble with the ongoing addition to features benefiting new and current clients without costs pushed onto users.
You won’t have to lose capabilities with regard to visual marketing.
In other words, if the feature doesn’t exist, suggest it with their live 24/7 live chat offering and if it is scalable and beneficial for companies like you, they will implement that suggestion. How cool is that?
They have recently updated their UI in July 2019 to be more user friendly and users are raving! There are a lot of features to choose from, so make sure to get a personal or group demo.
Pricing starts from $59 per month up to $219 for more advanced plans. Pricing supports up to 40 social media profiles, but some clients have hundreds of profiles and require a more custom social media plan.
Customized add-ons are also available for larger teams so be sure to check out their paid plans. LIVE demos are available with their team and currently they offer a 14-day FREE trial with no credit card required.
(Chrome extension for browser extensions; app available for iOS and Android)
If you are a current client you may also benefit from their referral program.
Falcon.io. is a cloud-based social media marketing and customer experience management solution that features tools for social media listening, engagement, publishing content, measuring, and customer data management.
They pride themselves in being versatile for any type of marketer whether it’s for a solopreneur or a digital agency. Toting Auto-Queue posting and visual planning, their tool can be used for monthly planning across different social channels.
They have a Social Inbox feature in addition to social monitoring and listening. They do not have an Influencer Search feature, yet they are a fully encompassed tool that is likely to serve business of any size.
Falcon.io provides users with a content calendar that allows them to plan, create and schedule content in collaboration with marketing teams.
It also facilitates the creation of pages using the campaign builder that consists of pre-designed templates providing APIs that deliver metrics on social data, audience and content, for integration with existing client CRM, CMS and analytics systems.
This social media management software offers support through online guides, tutorials and via email and a ticket submission portal 24/5 on business days and custom hours on weekends.
Pricing starts at $129 a month and increases based on custom features.
Platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, & Pinterest
Sprout Social has positioned their scalable platform to large organizations and teams known favorably for monitoring, scheduling posts, analytics, and team management with approval workflows. Those interested in employee advocacy will also enjoy this social media management tool.
This simple yet powerful platform is user friendly and offers all of the basics that you’d expect in addition to any customized features upon requests. One such feature is the individual statistics for each post.
Sprout offers post approvals and administering permission settings, which caters to digital agencies in addition to medium sized businesses.
There is a social inbox tool that is great for communicating and engaging with your audience, in addition to a social monitoring and keyword search feature. Unfortunately, it does not have the Auto Post with queues feature or an influencer search feature.
Pricing begins at $99 per month up to $249.
Hootsuite was first on the social media marketing scene and has been around since 2008. Hootsuite is the most blogged about social media platform out there and you will find they exist on most listicles.
They are well known for content curation, organization, scheduling, monitoring, and RSS integration and have a notable reputation. We feel a lot of teams large and small start with Hootsuite and then scale to other services that might meet their needs better.
But, what we can genuinely appreciate is the sheer size of Hootsuite, their marketing prowess, their educational Hootsuite Academy that helps you learn social media marketing and allows you to pay for certifications to arm you with the skills you need to be successful.
Hootsuite social media management tool allows for bulk scheduling, meaning you can upload several posts at once in addition to client management support. They do not have an Auto Post feature, social inbox or influencer search.
However, it is highly well-known for being a fully integrated tool that has a great social listening feature. They also offer a 30day trial.
Pricing is from $29-$599.
Platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, & YouTube
Agorapulse, similar to the above fully integrated social media management platforms, contains all of the main features of scheduling, visual calendar, social inbox, analytics, and team collaboration.
Similar to eclincher, Agorapulse also provides a competitor analysis and permits boosted Facebook posts to really capture your audience. Unfortunately, they don’t have an influencer feature so you can’t really stalk your favorite industry leaders.
Regardless, Agorapulse has a cult following of niche users that find this social media management software to meet their needs. Don’t count them out!
Pricing begins at $79 per month up to $399 per month.
Platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google My Business, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, & TikTok
Loomly is a social media management tool for branding and content creation.
Compared to other social suites, Loomly isn’t a fully integrated solution as of yet. Due to its core focus on content creation, they unfortunately lack features larger businesses find valuable such as listening and monitoring.
Loomly does have a visual calendar and content suggestion feature to assist social media managers in their curating strategy. While they do not currently have a social inbox, they do provide social monitoring and client management features.
There isn’t an influencer search option, but we still think Loomly is a solution that might make great sense for some solopreneurs and small businesses.
Pricing is from $34-$332.
Platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google My Business, LinkedIn, YouTube, & Pinterest
SocialPilot is a fully integrated social media management tool geared towards digital agencies or medium sized businesses who manage multiple clients or multiple accounts.
If your team is mostly interested in creating workflows with permission settings, collaboration tools, and custom reporting for clientele, SocialPilot is worth a look. While SocialPilot does provide the basics, their tool also includes a full social inbox feature allowing them to engage with their audience in addition to auto posting.
They do not have an influencer search feature but they do provide a social monitoring and listening feature which is becoming an important hero feature required amongst most businesses as we shift focus to remote environments.
Pricing ranges from $30-$100 per month.
Platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google My Business, & Pinterest
Sendible is a social media management tool best targeting digital agencies looking for an end to end solution that includes a CRM.
Sendible has a Smart Queue feature similar to e-clincher’s Auto Post, allowing social media managers to repurpose content. Utilize their Social Inbox and social listening tools to monitor keywords, competitors, and mentions of your brand.
While there isn’t an influencer search, Sendible does have a CRM system that enables users to interact with influencers and communicate in real-time.
Pricing ranges from $29-$299 per month.
Platforms: Facebook, Instagram, Instagram Stories, Twitter, LinkedIn, & Pinterest
Buffer is a well rounded and easy to use social media tool offering publishing social media posts with one queue, engagement, analytics, and team features.
Buffer is considered an intuitive, streamlined social media management platform trusted by brands, businesses, agencies, and individuals to help drive meaningful engagement and results on social media channels.
While you can’t upload hundreds of posts and recycle them, it does integrate from an RSS feed that enables you to publish posts from blogs. Buffer connects to a product called Reply, granting users to a Social Inbox.
Buffer does not feature an influencer search and has a limited client management support system, but it is a very easy to use tool simplifying the content planning process. It also allows for user permissions and creating a user workflow.
Pricing ranges $15-$399 per month.
Platforms: Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook (limited), Twitter (limited)
Later’s social media management software is best used for a visual content calendar and scheduler.
Later originally started as a social media posting tool focused on Instagram as the main social channel. It offered content planning to optimize the aesthetic of the Instagram feed but has evolved into a visual calendar incorporating most social media channels. Their offering focuses mostly on visual planning. It does not have a social inbox or an RSS integration but it does provide an analytics feature to optimize your content planning.
If you have seen a Facebook ad for Later, you might be surprised they do allow you to add your Facebook pages to expand your posting schedule. However, the platform is limited for these Facebook and Twitter. If you are focused on Facebook Marketing or on publishing social media posts to multiple social channels, you might want to seek another social media platform since Later is highly focused on Instagram and Pinterest currently.
Pricing falls from $7.5-$41 per month.
A few final words…
The reality is that we are living in an impulse-driven society with all kinds of artificial intelligence at the helm of technology innovation. This is no different in the world of social media management services. Your own business needs will dictate which type of social media management platform best fits your requirements, budget, and your preference.
With various price points serving the market and a plethora of features offered amongst social media management tools, we recommend you choose a partner that will save you and your team valuable time automating social media marketing processes, collaboration workflows, and actionable insights.
Take a look again at the table above to see which platform is most suited for your business and supports all the social media channels you need.
Whether it’s a fully integrated end-to-end solution to boost your engagement and brand awareness, a lead-generation machine, or a content monthly planner for social media content and blogging, make a list to prioritize your business’s needs and see which option checks most of your requirements.