The social media landscape is more complex, diverse and competitive than it used to be. It is populated by myriad businesses vying for the attention of consumers. As the acquisition of customers is a top priority for marketers, social media is as much about sharing and connecting as it is about advertising and profits. Looking for ways to ace the marketing game, businesses are increasingly using social media tools that enable them to build brand power.
As a managing partner at a digital marketing agency, I have had my fair share of testing social media tools, and I would love to guide you through the world of social media automation and help you save valuable time and resources that you could channel to other more urgent marketing initiatives.
Are you ready to dive in? Here are some of the tools I like to use:
• Hootsuite: This social media management platform is great for hands-on social media listening. It allows you to monitor mentions and keywords so you can determine how successful your campaigns are, or your followers' predispositions toward your brand, product or service. Another perk of this tool that I find particularly valuable is that you can skim through an aggregated list of your followers’ questions across the social media platforms you are active on and quickly post your replies via the platform. It really saves you a lot of time.
• Agorapulse: This social media management tool allows you to assign inbox messages to members of your team. Another useful thing about this tool is that you can take notes on users.
• Biteable: A video-making platform, Biteable makes it possible for even newbies to create video content for their social media profiles. I find it quite useful for creating infographics, explainer videos and video ads. You can choose a scene, edit the colors and add text to create unique, super-shareable video content in no time.
• BuzzSumo: This tool helps you research the keywords and topics that your target audience is most interested in. You can easily discover what formats, headlines and content work best for them. BuzzSumo can also reveal what type of content people are sharing in your niche. The only thing left for you to do is replicate the effort and deliver the content your audience needs.
Selecting And Implementing The Right Tools
These social media tools are just some of the options that can help you grow your brand and stand out in today’s crowded social landscape. With so many competitive software solutions to choose from, you may be wondering, "How can I decide which ones to use?"
My advice is to just list the things you wish to automate in your social media marketing process, and then match that list to the features of the tools available on the market. Of course, take into account your budget, and compromise if you must with some of the features at first.
Here are some of the features that I've found to be most important:
Good social media tools are easy to use, they save you time, they have multiple functionalities and they allow you to prioritize your interactions. From publishing content across multiple platforms and monitoring campaign performance, to identifying potential customers and driving engagement, good marketing tools enable you to accomplish almost every task and increase your social media ROI.
All too often, the problem with technology, and especially with task automation, is that it can move a brand away from its human "face." Imagine you start automatically following, liking and posting content on social media — you risk leaving an impression that you are a spammy bot instead of a real business.
Make sure you find a balance between your automation and manual labor. Don’t get lazy; do your due diligence and consider manually personalizing part of your social media communications to keep them looking real.
Enjoy The Fruits Of Your Labor
In the end, a tool that works well for one brand’s social media campaigns may not be good enough for another. Experiment with different social media tools and see which one really syncs with your internal processes and goals. Don’t go for what's trendy; assess each solution wisely, and make sure it covers your list of essential features.
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