If you are not managing your social media platforms with a social media management tool, that needs to change today.
Not only will using a social media management tool make your life substantially easier, it doesn’t need to go through rounds of budgeting approval. In fact, in 2014 alone, social media ad spend topped $8.5 billion, and that number is projected to reach nearly $14 billion by 2018.
The small-business owners newer to social media marketing that thought of throwing money at paid social might feel unnerving with the growing number of social networks, features, and possibilities.
There are many robust free tools out there to help you accomplish all of your social marketing goals in 2018. These social media tools will help you manage multiple social profiles in one place, schedule posts in advance, run contests, track analytics across platforms, and the list goes on.
Here are the 23 best free social media tools for small businesses:
Twibble provides a better way to easily publish content from any RSS feed to Twitter with beautiful imagery in each and every tweet. Twibble advanced scheduling system allows you to create custom tweet schedules. It allows people to subscribe and share your content automatically with your network. Twibble also offers filters, in case you only want to post articles containing certain words. You can set up multiple feeds and track clicks and performance as well, all for free.
If This Then That (IFTTT) is a real social media magician that lets you set a huge number of actions (called “recipes”) between your social media or content storage profiles. It can help you coordinate and automate your marketing efforts in a variety of fun, unique ways. IFTTT allows apps to communicate with each other through “recipes”. These recipes are simple conditional statements that can sync with your Facebook, Evernote, Twitter, LinkedIn and more to create some fun automated actions like texting the weather in the mornings and saving your tagged photos to Dropbox.
Twitterfeed is a service that allows you to add RSS feeds from your favorite blogs, to be shared automatically through your social media accounts each time there is a new update to them. You can change the post content to title only, the link (shortened by your preferred URL shortener), and include via @username of the blog owner in the Post Suffix. It’s a great way to curate content for your audience automatically, if you choose the right blogs that your audience enjoys, you will be able to give them the latest news from their favorite blogs, and they will appreciate it!
Canva is a DIY Design Tool that allows anyone to create great-looking visual content quickly and easily. The tool makes image creation super easy with their premade templates, drag-and-drop interface, custom image sizes for every social media channel, cool fonts, and more. Canva’s templates are amazing (everything from social media images to slide presentations).
If you are just starting out on Canva, consider doing their Design School Tutorials. They are super simple, short tutorials that you literally complete in Canva – it will have you creating professional looking visual content in no time.
Icebergs is a private space in the cloud for you and your team to collaborate and organize your projects, research and inspiration — Save content from the web (images, videos, text, websites), upload files and write notes all together in one single place. It is the perfect tool to manage and organize your projects and collaborate with your team like never before.
Price: Free – Up to 0.5 GB, up to 2 Icebergs
Evernote is one of the most effective productivity systems out there is the relatively simple task of recording how you spend your time. Use Evernote to track your productivity by stopping and making a note of what you’ve just been doing every 15 or 30 minutes.
Take down your favorite quotes and note comments and questions while doing your reading for the AoM Book Club or your other readings. Also, you can share your notebooks primarily for blog ideas and collaborate on projects with coworkers.
If you feel I saw the latest article on AoM while at work but don’t have the time to read it immediately. Don’t worry the Evernote web clipper helps to save all the articles and fun links you can read it later, even when you don’t have an internet connection. Here I list a few features.
- You can take and attach voice memos and audio to a note right from within the app.
- You can scan text in a photo using Optical Character Recognition technology.
- The ability to attach files (spreadsheets, images, and docs) to any note.
- You can set reminders for yourself for various tasks, goals, and projects from within the app.
- The ability to sync automatically between all devices, you can access your notes even when offline (limited in free version).
Price: Free, Premium version offers a few bonus features
Pie is a helpful tool for small businesses. It was a link sharing app that helped teammates collaborate together on content curation. It has since changed into a fully developed chat tool.
Pie creates a mini chat rooms based on specific topics and conversations for everything you want to discuss – from links, files, questions, images, to what’s for lunch – so every conversation stays on topic.
Collect the great content from online, and use feedback from your co-workers to decide what gets shared to your social accounts. You should make it as simple as a two-like minimum for getting the go-ahead to post. You can interact with Pie via Chrome extension, Mac app, and iOS app.
San Francisco-based Tiny Speck, which was founded by Stewart Butterfield. Slack is designed to take all those emails and files — and other content from Twitter, Dropbox and elsewhere — plunk them into its own platform, and make it all easily searchable. One of Slack’s core features is search. Slack indexes the contents of every file, either uploaded directly or through integration as with Dropbox or Google Drive. Users can create channels within the service for different tasks or topics, and search for files within those channels. Slack also can integrate with dozens of external services like Google+ Hangouts, Github, and Twitter to pull that activity and information into Slack.
Price: Free, paid version offering more search and storage features
HipChat is essentially a series of online chat rooms available only to members of your team. It gives the opportunity to communicate a whole variety of things. For example, when you’re online in HipChat everyone else knows that you’re “in the office.” While you’re deep in your tasks HipChat gives you options to put up an away or busy message to communicate that you’re not “available” therefore, you can concentrate without interruptions. HipChat rooms are completely searchable – you can easily find conversations about a specific topic months later.
Price: Free, paid version offering video chat, screensharing and much more
Buffer saves a lot of time by automatically handling all the scheduling of your posts. It allows you to schedule your social media posts with ease, building up queues of content for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+. Buffer has recently added additional topics, so you can always discover fresh new articles and quotes to post. Suggestions now include your favorite stories from marketing, lifehacking, design, business, and inspiration.
Price: Free, paid plans if you’re interested
HootSuite is the most popular social media management tool for people and businesses to collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn from one web-based dashboard. The platform for enterprises has become an essential tool for managing social media, measuring campaign results via the web or mobile devices and tracking conversations. Hootsuite offers for managing unlimited social profiles, advanced message scheduling, enhanced analytics, Google Analytics and Facebook insights integration.
Price: Free, pro plans if you’re interested
Latergram.me is an easy-to-use interface that lets you drag and drop photos to show up on Instagram and mark on the calendar when you want them published. It allows you to schedule your Instagram posts in advance from your computer. Then you only need to access the app from your phone and click one button to publish. If you schedule a post and something’s wrong you can cancel the post right from your phone.
ViralWoot is a super easy tool which allows you to connect your Pinterest account and earn seeds by sharing other pins, liking them or following users. You do have to be careful with a tool like this because a lot of pinning and liking that you will get as a result will be from people just trying to earn seeds. It means that you may not build up a relevant following. However, if you are struggling to get interaction and followers and you need something to kick start it this could be a good option for you. You can also buy seeds in Viralwoot if you want to build your followers very quickly.
With Gumroad you can sell a digital product, a preorder, or even a subscribtion and your Gumroad sales page can be easily shared to Twitter and Facebook or embedded on your website (an SSL certificate is required for embedding). Gumroad brag that a customer is never more than two clicks away from completing an order. Gumroad takes 5 percent, plus $0.25 per transaction and doesn’t charge anything additional for hosting, bandwidth, or refunds. All your payments for a month are added and deposited to your linked account at the end of every month. You get to keep all the data from your sales—email addresses included.
With Typeform, you can build and edit surveys with a drag and drop interface. Typeform surveys ask one question at a time; survey takers move through the survey chronologically via the smooth UI or keyboard shortcuts like press Enter to go to the next question. Complex Surveys can be built and can include hidden fields, logic jumps, and the ability to choose images, iconography, and rich media.
Typeform is responsive and you have the ability to deliver the survey via desktops, tablet, mobile, Facebook, blog, or even website. Results and usage metrics can be viewed across devices with reports that look as good as your typeforms. You can set the color scheme, typography, and background image with just a couple clicks. TypeForm provides all the relevant analysis and data that you might need from the survey results.
WooCommerce is designed by WooThemes which lets users install a plugin on their WordPress site in order to turn that site into a professional e-commerce storefront. The open-source platform provides lof of features including settings for configuring shipping rates, multiple payment gateway options, coupon support, email templates, a reports panel to track sales, and user-friendly experience, making it perfect for ecommerce startups to get a feel for online business.
Gifmaker is an online tool for creating a quick and easy GIF from existing photos on your computer. It allows users to extract all the frames inside an animated gif file and save them as individual images. If you want to take a frame in a funny animated gif with your favorite font style to a gif, just take photos with your digital camera or mobile phone, then touch up them with an image editor such as Adobe Photoshop, Pixlr, GIMP or other photo editing software and finally create a new animated gif from them with GifMaker.me.
Do you want to connect your social media activity to other areas of your business? SumAll can help you do that. You can simply connect to other platforms such as Facebook, Google Analytics, Twitter, Amazon Payments, Shopify and more. This helps you visualize how your activity on social media affects other areas of your business and your bottom line.
You can log into your account dashboard to see even more statistics and to edit the reports you get sent. Every day, you receive vital data to your inbox, if daily stats aren’t your thing, you can customize the range to weekly or monthly.
Price: Free, pro accounts for those interested in expert analysis, notifications, and more.
With Makeagif, you can create a GIF image from different types of content. It supports content such as images, YouTube videos, webcams, and video files on your computer. Plus MakeaGIF also offers users a free Chrome extension that allows you to generate GIFs directly from images and videos you find on the web.
IMGflip allows you to create animated GIFs from either videos or images. It gives you a bit more flexibility for creating a customized GIF from YouTube or Vimeo.
22. Social Rank
Social Rank identifies your top 10 followers in three specific areas: Most Engaged, Most Valuable and Best Followers. Your most valuable followers are the influential accounts, your engaged followers are those who interact with you most often (replies, retweets, and favorites), and your best followers are a combination of the two. Free accounts are allowed to run a report every month.
Tweetdeck owned by Twitter, which is one of the most popular tools for complete Twitter management. Tweetdeck allows you to tracking, organizing, and engagement with your followers through a customizable dashboard where you can quickly see at-a-glance the activity from different lists, hashtags, followers, and more.