Social media can be a scary thing to navigate. Having and properly maintaining Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts is a bit overwhelming, especially if you aren’t sure when the best times to use these tools are. Or perhaps you own a small business and are having a hard time juggling multiple accounts. Luckily, this is 2013, and there’s a solution for everything. Below is a list of the best apps for managing social media so you can have even more apps to help deal with the apps you already have.
Hootsuite is probably the most well-known on the list, maybe because of the cute owl mascot or maybe because it’s free and works well. It includes an interface in which a user can view Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn all at a glance. It also allows you to set up messages to send at certain times of the day, so if you are worried about forgetting a friend’s birthday and won’t have access to the internet for the next five hours because you are climbing a mountain, you can set it and forget it. Just recently, Hootsuite added a custom analytics platform so you can see which tweets and status updates got the most attention and when your friends and followers are looking at your page. This comes with the free service so even people who don’t own a business can be unnaturally obsessed with their page numbers. The best feature is the clock that tells you how much time you’re saving by using Hootsuite, basically inviting you to spend even more time on social media to make up the difference.
Like Hootsuite, SocialOomph boasts the ability to schedule tweets for the rest of the day and then forget about them, so you can actually enjoy your family or binge watch Breaking Bad. This app has a paid option, but it isn’t necessary because you can get all the features you need from the free version. It also has a dashboard that combines all your social media accounts into one place so you only have to look at one site, which makes it easier to deny your addiction. You can even further that denial by using the “Purge your Twitter Tweets” option, which will delete all the tweets on your account and erase the year you thought Miley Cyrus was actually kind of talented.
Aside from the punny name and availability of an “awesome” plan, Spredfast is fairly standard when it comes to managing social media. This site focuses almost primarily on businesses, but does have a free option that includes management of one Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn account. The aforementioned “awesome” plan is $10 a month and can support 12 different accounts. Like Hootsuite, it provides a pretty advanced analytics tool to break down usage and offers a calendar that shows when the optimal tweeting times. You can then share these calendars with friends or most likely coworkers who also use Spredfast, so everyone can set their watches to trending. This service doesn’t really make much sense for an individual is cheap for a small business.
As the name implies, this site is only for use with a Twitter account, sorry Zuckerberg. Tweepi is the fastest and most brutal way to clean up a Twitter account. This is good for people who have no emotional contact to their followers and want a quick and dirty way to simplify things, or for managing bot accounts. The “flush” option shows a list of the people you follow that don’t follow you back and allows the option to get rid of all of them completely. Then, in case that wasn’t brutal enough, use the “force to unfollow” feature to get rid of any of your followers you deem undesirable and finally clean up that followers list. Once you have finished mercilessly reducing the number of people you interact with on Twitter, you can “reciprocate” and follow people who are following you just to round out your lists. Though Tweepi doesn’t share any analytical data or compile social media, it is a great way to feel proud of your feed.
This site is primarily for gathering data on your social media feeds. It won’t compile different social media accounts in one place but it will tell you when people are most likely to flip through your newest vacation photos. There is no free option with Crowdbooster, but the lowest plan will only run you $9 a month and allows up to 50,000 followers all together. A unique feature of the site is that it can send alerts when new people arrive on Twitter that might be interested in following you. It also allows a user to download data about an account so you can pass it around to coworkers or just enjoy it for yourself.
SocialBro doesn’t offer a free option, which doesn’t seem very brotherly. They aren’t trying to help out the little guy, but are instead catered toward large companies and businesses. SocialBro Pro, say that ten times fast, is $40 a month and allows 15 Twitter accounts to be connected to it. It offers pretty much the same features as the other sites on the list, but has a unique feature that lets you see where in the world people are responding to your Twitter and when. This not only makes it easier to work with time zones, it also makes it easier to tailor tweets for a certain demographic at a certain time.
Summify is your one stop shop for combining every kind of social media account imaginable. It doesn’t have any analytics reports or suggest when to tweet, but it does decide which are your most relevant updates and tweets and compiles them. Summify wades through all of the crap on social media and finds things that have been frequently liked and viewed and only posts those to your feed. You can access the app on your phone or internet or even have updates emailed to you. It’s a fast and easy way to get a top-down overview of the most important things being talked about. If you find yourself missing thousands of baby and cat pictures, you can always go back to each individual site and sift through when you have time.
This app is for the geekiest of information geeks. If offers a bunch of different graphs and visual tools to understand social media. The most unusual of which being its “sonar graph,” because dolphins–from which Bottlenose takes its namesake–use sonar to communicate. This seemingly useless graph shows what is trending on Twitter and hashtags that are connected to trending tweets. So if you’re really interested in politics, you can put that into the graph and see what’s trending in that subject for the day. This presents a simple overview of what’s trending and how your tweets fit in. It also has a graph that shows the time of day that certain subjects are discussed most frequently. Though graphs are useful, the coolest part of Bottlenose is the ability to spy on your competitors. Bottlenose collects data from competitors so you can identify the best time to pull a fast one and outdo their tweets. If that doesn’t say “good business sense” I don’t know what else does.
What do you think of our list of the best social media management apps? Is there a program not listed here that you prefer? Tell us in the comments.
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