Social media tools can help you better understand your audience, grow brand visibility, and optimize your marketing strategy.
But with a sea of options, finding the best-fit social media tool can quickly become challenging.
In this post, we’ve done the legwork for you as we dig into how social media marketing platforms can help a business grow and tips for finding the ideal fit tool for your company.
What Are Social Media Marketing Tools
Social media tools are apps that help businesses manage, analyze, and optimize their social media presence.
They help in various ways, including letting you:
- Create a social media posting calendar
- Monitor your brand sentiment
- Automate engagement
You can use platform-specific tools such as photo editing tools for Instagram or more robust social media tools that support multiple platforms.
Importance Of Social Media Marketing Tools
Using social media marketing tools lets you drive a bucketload of benefits. For example, these tools help you:
- Build strong customer relationships
- Proactively maintain your brand reputation
- Get a deeper understanding of your audience
- Maintain a consistent presence across social media channels
- Streamline your multi-channel social media marketing workflow in one place
These benefits, in turn, give you an edge over your competitors as you develop a stronger understanding of the market and your target audience.
Not to mention, the data these tools give you helps optimize your social media strategy and marketing campaigns — improving your Return on Investment (ROI).
Comparison Of Free Vs. Paid Tools
Free social media marketing tools offer a great learning opportunity, particularly for those using these tools for the first time.
You can use them to review how easy and helpful a tool is without paying a premium.
However, most social media marketing platforms offer basic functionalities in their free plans. You’ll likely have limited to no access to customer support and won’t be able to scale your marketing efforts with a free plan.
Consider investing in paid tools once you’ve familiarized yourself with social media management tools.
Although less cost-effective than free platforms, these unlock advanced features such as AI optimization, unlimited scheduling options, and detailed audience insights that help you improve your social media marketing game.
Paid social media tools also offer proactive customer support and stronger security protocols — reducing your risk of data vulnerabilities.
Not to mention, you can use them to easily manage larger audiences and campaigns and integrate the software with other tools in your tech stack, fostering productivity.
Not sure when to move from free to paid social media software?
When you’re past the initial learning curve and have gotten a grip on using foundational features like scheduling posts, it might be time to invest. You’ll also want to invest when you are:
- Seeking in-depth data to make informed marketing decisions
- Looking to automate things and cut back manual work from your workflow
- Scaling your marketing by running larger, cross-team campaigns
Integrating Social Media Marketing Tools With Other Marketing Strategies
The beauty of using social media marketing tools is that not only do these refine your social strategy and campaigns, but they also contribute to improving your overall marketing.
For instance, by integrating your social media marketing software with your CRM, you can get a holistic view of how customers integrate with your social content. Your sales team can use these insights to nurture leads and drive more sales.
Similarly, by integrating your social media tool with your account-based marketing platform, you can run targeted campaigns and close more deals.
Moreover, you can share the data you gather about your audience’s interests and struggles with your content marketing team. In turn, they can use it to create better content for other marketing channels.
You can also promote your blog post content on your social channels to drive more people to your company website.
Social Calendar by CoSchedule makes this easy by creating social campaigns to promote blog posts. All you need to do is create a Social Template outlining your promotion plan. The tool then instantly adds messages to your social campaign.
The best part? A/B testing and experimentation with social media marketing tools let you polish your marketing further.
For example, test different content formats (live videos, interactive polls, etc.), posting times, and ad formats to identify what resonates with your audience.
Practical Tips For Maximizing The Use Of Social Media Marketing Tools
Social media marketing tools can deliver expectational value to your marketing.
The key, however, is in using these platforms at an advanced level. Here are some practical tips to get you started:
- Create customized dashboards. Tailor your reporting dashboards to show metrics crucial to tracking your business goals. In doing so, quickly access important data for better decision-making.
- Use advanced filters in your data analysis. Filter for geographical data, sentiment analysis, specific time frames, and more to find nuanced insights for learning your audience’s behavior.
- Use data from these tools for internal marketing. Use insights from your content performance, competitor strategy analysis, and audience behavior to make the case for marketing campaigns, including sales multithreading and user-generated content campaigns.
- Integrate with other tools for cross-functional collaboration. Instead of creating social media content in silo, integrate your tool with other marketing tools to collaborate with other teams. This lets you use social media for social selling, community building, and offering customer support while building brand awareness.
- Leverage your social media marketing tool for influencer partnerships. Grow your brand reach and credibility by finding and managing influencers using your social media marketing tool.
As you implement these advanced tips, be sure not to over-automate things since it can take the human element out of your strategy.
Also, make sure you aren’t merely collecting data but also analyzing and using it to make informed decisions. At the same time, share it with other teams that’ll find it useful, such as sales and content marketing teams.
Most importantly, ensure the social media strategy you implement with these tools aligns with your overarching marketing efforts. If it’s not, you’ll be executing disjointed campaigns that deliver subpar results.
How To Choose The Right Social Media Marketing Tool
User-friendly social media marketing tools offering proactive customer support and features that meet your requirements are the best.
As you research and shortlist the ideal social media software for your business, ask yourself the following:
What do we need help with? Answering this question helps you find a tool with a feature set that aligns with your requirements.
Do I need this tool for a team of one or a bigger team (or a possible team in the future)? This way, you can find a tool that supports cross-team collaboration.
Does the pricing align with my current and future budget? Select a tool that stays within your budget even as your team expands.
What are other users saying about this tool? Look for how your peers review the software’s ease of use, functionality, and customer support team.
What security measures does the tool take? This will help you find a tool that prioritizes data security. Review what measures the tool takes to safeguard sensitive information and how it complies with industry standards.
What integrations does the tool offer? Pick a tool that seamlessly integrates with other tools you use for facilitating data sharing and improving workflow efficiency.
Last but not least, always try a social media software first to review its usability before paying for it in full.
Remember: social media marketing tools give you a competitive edge.
When leveraged to their maximum potential, they can help you grow sales, maintain brand reputation, and build brand awareness.
Just ensure you select a tool that best meets your needs and follow the tips we’ve shared throughout this post.