Being a social media manager is hard. Not only do you have to create content, but you have to balance multiple platforms and find the best times to publish your posts. It’s painstaking to keep tabs on every account during every second of the day. With all these new responsibilities, it’s nearly impossible to juggle everything without help. That’s why so many social media teams use management tools. In fact, social media management platforms were the most popular tech acquisition in 2017. These tools store your posts in one place so you can reflect on the bigger picture. The features include analytics, a dashboard for all your pages, scheduling capabilities, and collaboration with other users. Social media management tools can even help you understand your return on investment (ROI) so you can prove to your client that your efforts are worthwhile. With multiple platforms available, it might be hard to choose one management tool that’s right for you. Here is a comparison of two of the most popular social media management tools, Sprout Social and Buffer Publish:
Founded in 2010, Sprout Social is a social media management tool that prioritizes the consumer. With several features that allow you to engage with your customers, Sprout focuses on the relationships you can build with your audience. Unlike Buffer Publish and other management tools, Sprout Social boasts a messages tool where you can sort your messages and reply to each. You can also use the Queue to backlog your content without selecting a date for each post. Knowing that there are often multiple people on a social media team, the platform allows you to assign and track tasks for several team members. For managing on the go, Sprout Social has its own app that you can keep on your mobile device. As opposed to Buffer, Spout only offers a free trial, not a free plan. The bottom tier Premium plan will cost you $99 per month. It might be a bit pricey for a smaller business, but you’re paying for features that not many social media management tools have.
Although it’s a newer management tool on the market, Buffer Publish has grown quickly in popularity. The tool provides you with a clean slate to oversee multiple profiles. The dashboard is simplistic and white and organized by social media platform, which is great if you’d like to see one page at a glance. Buffer Publish even offers an entirely free plan, although the features aren’t as extensive as other versions. Like Sprout Social, this tool gives managers the option to backlog drafts of content all at once. One downfall of Buffer Publish is that you’re not able to manage conversations. With the free version, you don’t have access to comprehensive analytics and competitor analyses that you would normally have in Sprout Social. Buffer Publish is a great choice if you’re on a tight budget and don’t need an excess of fancy features.