5 top social media scheduling apps

Social media taking up too much of your time?

As businesses, we all (should!) know efficient social media is vital for marketing your company well. But  it can be very time consuming.

Personally, I spend the first hour of every day on all of our social media channels scheduling the day’s content.

Then at lunch time and at the end of the day I check back on the channels and spend about 20 minutes each session replying to comments and thanking people for sharing our content.

It used to take me much longer, but I have embraced a battery of apps that have really helped cut down the time and improve the quality of my content.

Social media scheduling apps

There are some apps that can make all of your work more efficient, enabling you to schedule high quality content quickly.

I thought I’d share five of the best with you.

Hootsuite

Hootsuite screen grab Red Platypus

This is the social media scheduling app of choice that we use and we’ve found it very helpful. It’s possibly the most popular scheduling app and I like the fact that you can link it to your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.

It has an in-built analytics function which allows me to see how many people clicked my shared links and I can also link it to my Google Analytics.

Although I mainly use the app from my computer, when I’m on the move it’s very simple to use their free iPhone app to schedule content too.

Cost: Free or US$8.99 a month

Bitly

Bitly screen grab Red Platypus

People often associate Bitly with shortening links but it does a lot more than that. Along with scheduling your social media, you can also customise the your branded shortlinks for higher click-through-rates.

There’s also a cool function (which is mainly just for fun) that allows you to see how many people are consuming different media content around the US in real time.

Cost: The Bitly brand tools start at US$995 a month.

Buffer

Buffer screen grab Red Platypus

Buffer has many of the same functions that Hootsuite has and also allows you to connect to Google+.

Under its plan, it also lets you use up to 12 social media profiles, which I think is good value.

One useful feature is Buffer’s extension for many internet browsers, allowing you to install a button. This button allows you to quickly schedule anything you see when browsing online, if you think it’ll be interesting for your followers.

Cost: Free at first, and then US$10 a month.

SocialOomph

Social Oomph screen grab Red Platypus

SocialOomph is for Twitter scheduling and it also allows you to track your keywords to see which ones work. It lets you save your Tweet drafts and scheduled posts so you can reuse them later without re-typing them.

You can also add up to five Twitter accounts without any additional charges. For an added fee, you can set up automatic processes like following people who follow you and sending direct messages to new followers (Although personally I hate the latter! It’s much better to send personalised direct messages rather than bog standard ones).

Cost: The app is free but you can also upgrade to a ‘professional’ paid version that gives you useful tools to further improve your social media productivity.

TweetDeck

Tweetdeck screen grab Red Platypus

TweetDeck is now owned by Twitter but it’s still a useful Twitter scheduling tool. One of the advantages is that you can set up alerts to keep you updated on relevant information that’s posted on Twitter.

You can also filter your Twitter searches depending on how many people are reading the Tweets, who’s looking at them and what the content is related to.

One function I really like is how you can customise the Twitter feeds you want to publish on your website, so that you don’t have to feature any general conversations with followers on there – instead you just have your news Tweets posted for example.

Cost: For one user, it’s US$5.99 a month.

Would you add a social media scheduling app to the list? What do you use?

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