11 Best Social Media Management Tools, Apps, and Software (2021)
More than 3.5 billion people use social media. And the number continues to increase every year.
With such widespread use of social media, businesses are rushing to engage their target audience on various social platforms and convert them into customers.
Social marketing helps businesses and online marketers connect and engage with their audience, build a social media presence, work with influencers, raise awareness about their products, and ultimately make more money online.
However, this is easier said than done.
Social media management is not only time-consuming but can also be stressful when trying to keep up with everything that’s going on with your numerous social media channels.
To make your decision easier, I ranked and reviewed some of the best social media management software to help you automate your work on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other social platforms.
These tools help you:
- Schedule your social posts in advance.
- Track social media engagement and clicks.
- Follow, unfollow, and engage with social media users.
- And much more.
Let’s get started.
Here are my picks for the best social media management software to help you kickstart your social media marketing this year.
Table of Contents
Launched in 2010 as ‘JustUnfollow,’ this social media management tool refurbished itself and became Crowdfire in 2015.
With over 20 million global users, including artists, freelancers, e-sellers, and bloggers, it is one of the largest social media management platforms on the market right now.
Crowdfire is a complete social media management tool with features ranging from content curation, scheduling, analytics to Social listening.
Best For: It works the best for individuals, small businesses and digital agencies who want to increase engagement, dive deep into their analytics and listen to what’s being said on topics related to them.
- Discover relevant content – You can discover videos and infographics based on your interests to find content your audience will love.
- Pre-schedule content – Pre-schedule all of your relevant content and publish at pre-determined, scheduled times.
- Social listening – Listen to everything that’s being said about your brand and perform competitor analysis.
- Get extensions – With Crowdfire, you can add various add-ons like Google Chrome extensions.
- Free usage – It offers one free account every for every social media site and a 14-day free trial to get its premium features.
- It only recommends videos or infographics posted by other members
- There is limited ability for blog promotion
- The focus is more on quantity than quality
It offers one account for every social media site for free and a 14-day free trial for the top plan. Other than that, it has three paid plans.
The ‘Plus’ program costs $7.48 per month, the ‘Premium’ plan is $37.48 per month, and the ‘VIP’ plan is $74.98 per month.
Overall, Crowdfire is a great social media management tool with broad functionality for those individuals and small businesses that want to increase their post count, improve engagement with followers, and perform social listening.
Rebrandly is a popular link management tool so that you can shorten your long URLs to share them more easily on social media and make social media posting seamless.
Their link manager lets you tag links, create customizable URLs, perform fast redirects, and expire links at certain times.
Best For: Rebrandly is a must-have for large brands that post often on multiple social channels and social media apps that need short, branded links.
- Traffic routing – Create deep links, route traffic, and create 301 redirects to have complete control over your social media links.
- Team collaboration – Have extra user seats for your team, multiple access levels single sign-on (SSO), and two-factor authentication (2FA).
- Link analytics – A custom URL and report builder tracks all of your link clicks and actions based on your social media links.
- Training and support – Rebrandly offers email support, a knowledge base, direct training, video tutorials, and account management.
- Doesn’t include all of the social media post and scheduling features like other tools on this list.
They offer four pricing plans and a custom enterprise pricing plan.
- The Free Plan offers unlimited redirects, 5,000 clicks, and 500 branded links per month.
- Their Starter Plan is $29/month and provides 25,000 clicks and 5,000 branded links.
- The Pro Plan is $69/month and offers 150,000 clicks and 15,000 branded links.
- The Premium Plan is $499/month and gives you 1,500,000 clicks and 150,000 branded links.
- They also offer an enterprise plan with custom pricing.
Founded in 2011, Agorapulse helps individuals and businesses easily manage social media. It effectively allows users to engage in meaningful conversations online.
As per Agorapulse’s website, over 17,000 social media managers use it daily to scale up their social media marketing efforts. It also provides a 28-day free trial.
- Flexible scheduling – Take advantage of the flexible scheduling tools to schedule, reschedule, queue, or upload your posts in bulk.
- Social Inbox – Easily find, filter, and manage specific mentions and essential messages.
- Instant reports – Unlimited reports help determine the ROI of engagement and content strategy.
- Collaboration features – Easy assignments of inbox items and draft posts keep social moving fast and smoothly.
- One of the most expensive mid-tier plans in the market. (We’re told a free plan is in the works.)
- Listening feature needs to be improved
- Low diversity in emoticons
- No option to search through inbox
It offers four pricing plans to suit the need of every business type.
- The Medium plan is $99 per month (10 social profiles, 2 users).
- The Large plan is priced at $199 per month (25 social profiles, 4 users).
- The X-Large plan is $299 per month (40 social profiles, 8 users).
- The Enterprise plan is priced at $499 per month (60 social profiles, 20 users).
All the plans offer a nearly 20% discount with annual payment. In addition, all annual plans include a subscription to the Social Media Manager School which otherwise costs $997/person.
If you know anything about digital marketing and social media strategy, then you’re probably already aware of Buffer. Released in 2010, Buffer is one of the best tools on the internet to help you manage your social media accounts.
It offers a range of services, including social listening, data analytics and insights into user posting frequency on a variety of platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. They also have a mobile app for iOS and Android for team collaboration on the go.
- Publish content – You can publish and share content at the click of a button on numerous social media sites like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
- Free image tool creation – With the help of ‘Pablo,’ an in-built image creation tool, you can create images instantly for various social media websites.
- Extension for Chrome – You can install its extension for Chrome, which allows you to share links, publish blogs, or post pictures from any location.
- Insightful analytics – With Buffer’s analytics tool, you can now measure your social media performance based on a variety of metrics. Furthermore, you can create reports, get recommendations, and extract actionable insights for better marketing.
- Instagram integration is not up to par
- No tool to selectively search for hashtags or searches
Buffer offers three pricing plans.
- The plans for ‘publishing’ start at $15 per month and go up to $99 per month.
- The plans for ‘reply’ start at $15 per month and go up to $35.
- The plans for ‘analyze’ start at $35 per month and go up to $50 per month.
All plans offer a 20% discount on annual payment.
Sendible is one of the best social media tools in the market.
It has a lot of amazing features that many of its counterparts lack. For instance, it can measure ROI from the very same dashboard that you use to manage your social media so that you don’t have to flip multiple times.
On top of that, it is fully integrated with all the popular social media networks. Trusted by more than 10,000 businesses, it also offers an attractive 30-day free trial.
- Preview social media posts – You can now see beforehand how your posts will look after posting them on social media sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.
- Plan your content calendar – It lets you schedule posts individually or in bulk, or queue them.
- Collaboration – Set up individual dashboards for clients to better segregate and organize work.
- 360-degree brand building – Now develop your brands inclusive of all KPIs with enhanced reputation building and monitoring.
- Inbox interface can be a bit confusing to handle
- Posting multiple images in a single Instagram post is difficult
- Limited analytics features
Sendible comes with four pricing plans.
- Starter is at $29 per month (12 services and 1 user).
- Traction is at $99 per month (48 services and 3 users).
- Growth is at $199 per month (105 services and 7 users).
- Large is at $299 per month (192 services and 12 users).
All the plans provide a 15% discount for annual payment.
Created in 2008 and headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, Hootsuite is another popular social media platform.
With more than 16 million global users, it offers a variety of social network integrations like Reddit, Tumblr, and Marketo, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and other popular sites.
It also comes with a 30-day free trial period.
Best For: Hootsuite is a great addition to a set of marketing tools for social media listening, managing customer service, monitoring multiple social media simultaneously, and easy scheduling of posts.
- A wide range of social media support – Using Hootsuite, you can use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram accounts without installing any software.
- Manage multiple accounts – Tailor-made to manage multiple accounts together.
- Scheduler with automatic posting – makes it very simple to auto-schedule different posts on social media.
- Robust analytics – Provides extensive and in-depth analytics reports.
- Track performance – You can pull data based on over 70 different metrics into customizable reports and make better data-backed decisions.
- Auto-scheduling may sometimes take some time to process due to software issues
- Some apps require extra fees to work
- Thumbnails and summary previews on Facebook are missing
- Expensive custom URL shorteners
- Facebook reach and engagement is low
Hootsuite offers three pricing plans:
- The Professional plan starts at $29 per month when billed annually. It includes 10 social profiles and 1 user.
- The Team plan starts at $129 per month when billed annually and includes 20 social profiles and 3 users.
- The Business plan starts at $599 per month when billed annually and includes up to 35 social media profiles and 5-10 users.
- The Enterprise plan is based on quotations, as per your need.
The first two plans have a 30-day free trial period. For the last one, you need to request a demo.
Check out my full review of Hootsuite vs. Buffer more a more detailed comparison.
7. Sprout Social.
Sprout Social is one of the most trusted social media management tools in the market. This social media management platform is built on the idea of fostering deep, meaningful relationships between individuals, communities, businesses, and brands.
Although it is priced a little higher than most of its counterparts, the value it provides more than makes up for the hefty price tag.
- User-friendly dashboard – One of the significant advantages of Sprout Social is its intuitive and user-friendly dashboard.
- Organized messaging area – Also called ‘Smart Inbox,’ this area displays all of the messages from all connected social media sites in a single platform.
- Message scheduling – It allows users to schedule messages. Moreover, with Sprout Social, you can queue up your posts for sending out at a pre-determined time schedule.
- Discovery – A unique feature, ‘Discovery,’ is an in-built platform that allows you to monitor a list of people with whom you have interacted and who’ve mentioned you in a tweet.
- 30-day free trial – the free trial allows you to test the compatibility of your business with a plan of your choice.
Social Sprout has three pricing plans.
- The Standard plan starts at $99 per month and provides 5 social profiles.
- The Professional plan starts at $149 per month and provides 10 social profiles.
- The Advanced plan starts at $249 per month, and also includes 10 social profiles.
All the plans come with a 30-day free trial.
With more than 100,000 businesses worldwide trusting it for their social media management, customer engagement, and detailed analytical insights, SocialPilot is one of the best software available in the market right now. It offers a lot of value at low, reasonable prices, making it a top choice all around the globe.
Best For: SocialPilot is designed to increase your social media marketing efforts and save time. It is aimed at social media professionals and small to medium agencies but is equally useful for individual entrepreneurs and small businesses.
- Priority email support – Customer support is one of the strongest points of SocialPilot. It is always there to help you out.
- Content suggestion – A unique feature; it also offers content suggestions so that you are never short of content to post. You can also couple this tool with graphic design software like Canva to create social post templates.
- Highly customizable – It can be explicitly customized to suit all your needs. For example, you can add an RSS Feed URL and let their tool automatically publish your custom posts.
- User-friendly dashboard – A single dashboard that pools all your needs and brings them on to a single platform for maximum efficiency.
- Video feature limited only to uploading
- The free trial is not available in all countries
Social Pilot has three pricing plans.
- The Agency plan is $100 per month ($83.33 per month if billed annually) and provides 100 social media accounts.
- The Small Team plan is $50 per month ($41.66 per month if billed annually).
- The Professional plan is $30 per month ($25 per month if billed annually).
All three plans have a 14-day free trial period. You can contact them is you want a customized plan to suit your specific requirements.
9. Meet Edgar.
Meet Edgar of the most popular social media management tools available in the market right now.
From scheduling posts to curating and repurposing content, this social media management platform provides you with a wide range of services. The best part is that it generates content for prolonged periods even when you are out of content so that you never have to worry about your customers getting busy elsewhere.
Best For: Managing multiple social media accounts at one go, despite you not having the time to devote to it. It’s great for businesses that require social media scheduling at regular intervals of time, preferably via automation.
- Auto-variations – It can write posts for you. To summarize, it automatically finds quote-worthy text, mined from articles and blogs, at the click of a button.
- Extensions – Offers extensions like Google Chrome, Safari, or Bookmarklet.
- Continuous posting – Unique feature that doesn’t let you run out of posts even when you don’t have content.
- Great support response – You’ll get a guaranteed response from the support team within 48 hours of raising a request.
- A/B Test Social Messaging – Allows you to run A/B tests and derive actionable insights and rethink your strategy.
- No integration with Pinterest
- A little expensive
Meet Edgar costs $29 per month for the first four months. From the fifth month on, the price increases to $49 per month.
It comes with 25 social media accounts and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
eClincher was primarily created to streamline social media management for businesses. The idea was to squeeze or ‘clinch’ the maximum benefits out of social media.
It offers a wide range of services, including publishing and scheduling posts, monitoring and listening to feeds, advanced analytics reporting, and so forth.
Best For: It’s beneficial for small and medium enterprises that do not want to delegate their social media management activities to third-party. It can also be helpful for vendors managing multiple accounts of various companies.
- Auto-scheduling – eClincher allows you to automatically schedule your posts and publish content as per a pre-determined schedule.
- Engagement – Apart from posting materials, it engages your customers by responding to comments, which leads to relationship-building.
- Well-rounded integration – It extensively integrates with all social media platforms like Facebook Pages, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram, and more.
- Monitoring mentions – This software is great at monitoring any mentions, hashtags, or keywords across multiple social media platforms.
- Chrome extension plugin – It allows plugins like Chrome that helps you to share quickly, schedule, or queue up posts without even opening the software app.
- There are some complaints about bugs in the software
- User interface not very intuitive
- Difficult to track dates of queued posts
eClincher comes with three pricing plans.
- The Basic plan is $59 per month (10 profiles, 1 team member).
- The Premier plan costs $119 per month (20 profiles, 3 team members).
- The Agency plan costs $219 per month (40 profiles, 6 team members).
All the plans come with a 14-day free trial.
Established in 2014 and based out of the US, CoSchedule is a top-rated social media management software, catering to more than 10,000 satisfied customers globally.
With features like a Chrome extension and built-in headline analyzer, you can organize and track all your content, integrate with various tools, and gain actionable insights in one click.
- Streamlined marketing – Add tasks on centralized calendars for ready reference of employees.
- Read-only view – Share your calendar in read-only mode so there are no unwanted edits.
- Platform integration – It integrates with tools like MailChimp, Zapier, Google analytics, and so forth.
- Use extensions – Chrome extension is available to cater to a wide range of needs.
- Co-schedule content – It allows you to schedule and share content marketing efforts across all platforms at the same time.
- The user interface is not very intuitive
- Extra payment to use the re-queue feature
There are three pricing plans, including:
- The Blog Calendar plan costs $19 per user per month (billed annually).
- The Marketing Calendar plan costs $39 per user per month (billed annually).
- For the Marketing Suite plan, you need to get a customized quote from the company.
All the plans come with a 14-day free trial.
MavSocial is another impressive and feature-rich social media management tool on this list. Its USP is its focus on visual appeal. Apart from usual features similar to that of other tools on this list, it also provides you with an in-built digital library to manage and edit your content. You also get a 7-day free trial.
Best For: Due to its focus on visual aesthetics, MavSocial is ideal for companies with a huge brand name. Since it offers millions of free images, it is perfect for SMEs that require seamless social media publishing.
- Track social media – Discover trending topics or track a campaign’s success.
- Filter content – Easily filter through tons of data with filters like exclusion, retweets, and more.
- View history – View all your engagement history, messages, and comments.
- Monitor and analyze – Track developments on social media with real-time data, and generate actionable insights for guided marketing strategy.
- Scheduling and automation – Use a superior automation characteristic to schedule and publish your content.
- The interface is not very user-friendly and intuitive
- There’s no basic, free version
- May contain bugs due to frequent changing of API
MavSocial comes with four pricing plans:
- The Advanced plan costs $16 per month (1 user, 10 profiles).
- The Pro plan is $65 per month (3 users, 30 profiles).
- The Business plan is $166 per month (5 users, 50 profiles).
- The Enterprise plan costs $416 per month (20 users, 70 profiles).
All the plans offer a 14-day free trial.
Note: other tools not yet reviewed for this list include Tailwind, Buzzsumo, HubSpot, and TweetDeck.
Social media management tools are designed to automate most of your social media management strategy. This includes scheduling posts, collaborating with your marketing team, creating marketing campaigns, and monitoring all of your accounts in one place.
Leveraging one of these SaaS tools is a great way to amplify your social media efforts and promote the content you produce.
These tools help you with all the following tasks:
- Reaching out to your core audience.
- Gleaning actionable insights to help you identify your strengths and weaknesses.
- Streamlining workflows to save time and effort.
- Scheduling and sharing your social media content on different channels.
- Engaging in social media monitoring and replying to comments and posts.
Social media offers an instant reach to nearly half of the global population, which is a big deal.
As quoted by David Alston, a repeat tech and marketing startup entrepreneur, ‘Social media is not a media. The key is to listen, engage, and build relationships’.
Before choosing the best piece of marketing software, you need to carefully consider what you hope to achieve with it, and which features would align the best with your business requirements.
For example, if you’re a social media influencer and want to make money on Instagram, Buffer could be an easy way to schedule more posts.
If you’re a small business, Crowdfire could be a great tool to grow your social media follower count.
Keeping all these things in mind, try to make the right choice for your business. All the tools mentioned in this list come with a free trial, so you can test out their features before making your final decision.
Have I missed any of your favorites on this list? Which of these tools are you planning to use? Let me know in the comment section below.