Social media marketing is now a necessity for any business that wants to succeed online.
With 53% (4.14 billion) of the world already on social media, businesses are rushing to build their social media presence as a way to market their products or services.
Social media offers many advantages. You can increase awareness about your brand, generate leads, and gain more conversions through your content and marketing campaigns.
According to Statista, the number of social media users is expected to reach 4.41 billion in 2025. So you have to be on social media to get yourself a chunk of the growing market. And you need the best social media tools to help you.
Why use social media management tools?
Staying on top of your social media strategy is time-consuming. But if you have the best social media tools for marketing, you can save precious time and energy.
Even the business ideas that we teach in our 4 Hour Agency course need the help of social media tools to boost marketing efforts and sales. They automate workflows, help you find better content, and track analytics. They also allow you to schedule posts in advance, so you will not do them every day.
What are the qualities of a great social media tool?
With tons of social media tools to choose from, finding the best for your business can be overwhelming. Here are specific qualities that you have to look for in a great social media management tool.
- Easy to use
- Saves you time
- Keeps you organized
- Increases brand awareness
- Supports a wide range of social networks
- Offers performance analytics
- Gives access to advanced features
- Cost-effective for the size of your business
- Experienced customer support
A great social media tool can help improve your social media presence. It gives you everything you need, from finding effective content to tracking the results of your campaigns.
Ready to learn which paid and free social media tools are best for your business?
Let’s dive right in!
The best social media tools for businesses in 2021
Buffer is a content creation tool you can use to schedule and post on your social media accounts at specific times. It lets you create a content calendar and avoid publishing your content manually.
One of the best social media tools for small businesses these days, Buffer provides detailed reports to give you insights on your social media performance. By having these analytics on hand, you will know which part of your social media marketing strategy is working and which needs some tweaking.
If you are looking for free social media tools, Buffer offers both free and paid plans. The free plan lets one user schedule a maximum of 10 posts per month on three social channels. This plan is good if you are just starting to build your social media presence.
However, if you are serious about promoting your brand on social media, the paid plans have lots to offer. The cheapest plan costs $15/month (Pro) for one user. It allows scheduling of 100 posts per month for eight social channels.
Other capabilities you can enjoy with the Pro plan are the following:
- Direct scheduling of posts
- Creation of a posting schedule
- Customizing posts for each social network
- Calendar view
- Custom video thumbnails
- Creating the first Instagram comment
- Instagram tagging
- Access to full history posts report
- Browser extension
- Two-factor authentication
- Integrations to over 60 third-party apps
- Mobile apps for iOS and Android devices
- Self-service knowledge base
- Social media and email support
- Access to the Buffer community
All plan tiers are free to use for two weeks. At the end of your free trial, you can either downgrade to the free plan or subscribe to the pro plan that you want.
Hootsuite is another one of those social media marketing tools that you can use for free. It is simple to use but very powerful. Hootsuite provides all-in-one social media scheduling, performance monitoring, and campaign results measurement.
Hootsuite is trusted by over 800 out of Fortune 1000 companies. It is compatible with over 35 social networks like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. This comprehensive platform allows monitoring of multiple accounts and keywords as well as scheduling of social media posts in bulk.
Hootsuite offers plans tailored to every business. If you are a one-man business, the Professional plan gives you all the essential tools you need for marketing. For $19/month, you can schedule as much content as you like to 10 social profiles.
With this plan, you can access the following features:
- Auto scheduling
- Publishing calendar
- Bulk scheduling
- Content apps
- Compliance integrations
- Access to free apps
- Monitor incoming messages
- Social inbox
- Report templates
A free 30-day trial is open for the Pro and Team plans. But if you like to start with a free version without time limitation, there’s a limited free plan that lets you schedule 30 posts for three social profiles.
All-in-one social media management tool Sprout Social is great for team collaborations. Entrepreneurs, agencies, growing businesses, and enterprise corporations who managed multiple social media accounts would find this very convenient.
Sprout Social has a listening tool like Hootsuite. Not only that, they share similarities in other features too. They both have social media scheduling, performance monitoring, and reporting. However, Sprout Social has more advanced tools to offer businesses.
A multi-level access feature allows coordination and delegation of tasks to team members. It ensures that all aspects of your social media activities are covered and done on time.
Sprout Social is one of a few social media tools for marketing that has built-in customer relationship management (CRM). This capability enables you to maintain a complete profile of your customers. You can use this data to build stronger relationships and serve your customers better.
Another great feature of Sprout Social is the Smart Inbox. The Smart Inbox collects all messages sent to your social accounts so you can read them in one spot. You can then mark, filter, or tag messages without logging in to any of your social media accounts.
Other Sprout Social features include:
- Supported integrations to various social platforms
- Automation tools
- Publishing tools
- Team collaboration tools
- Reporting and analytics
- Integrations to third-party tools
- Full-featured apps for Android and iOS
- Customer service and technical support
Sprout Social has fantastic features. Their tons of customers can vouch for it. This is why I included them in our list of the best social media management tools to use in 2021.
Pricing starts at $99 per user per month. You can get started on using Sprout Social by signing up for a free 30-day trial.
Content creation tool Loomly simplifies the work of agencies and social media managers. The calendar-focused social media tool improved the publishing workflow by offering dynamic post ideas. It keeps you abreast of events, trends, and hashtags so you can run promotions related to them.
Loomly suggests post ideas so you can create fresh content everytime. If you want inspiration for your social media content, just click the Ideas view. It will show you upcoming events, holidays, and other post ideas for your business.
Loomly is a social media scheduling tool for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and more. It also has built-in analytics and team collaboration features. If you need the best social media tools for agencies and small to medium businesses, pick Loomly.
Like Sprout Social, Loomly allows you to respond directly to messages, comments, and tags from your social media accounts. When you subscribe to Loomly, these features are available for you.
- Optimization tips
- Post and ad mockups
- Approval workflow
- Ads manager
- Customer support
The lowest plan costs $25/month and gives access to two users. With a 15-day free trial offer, you can test drive Loomly to see if this is the right tool for your business.
Socialbakers is a social media marketing tool that has buyer persona elements. It is one of the social media tools for marketing that offers followers data to help you make better decisions.
You can get insights for content improvement because it compares your performance with that of your competitors. If you intend to monetize your campaigns, you can use the data from the tool for cost-effective budgeting.
With Socialbakers, you can optimize social media management, monitor conversations on your social media accounts, and deliver excellent customer service. It supports networks like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and more.
Socialbakers is an AI-enabled social media marketing suite designed for businesses of all sizes. It helps you understand buyer personas, use advanced analytics, and find the ideal influencers for your business
Their pricing for ten users, ranges from $200 – $240 per month. While it is expensive compared to other social media tools for marketing, it is probably worth the investment. I recommend that you avail the free trial to know if the system is suitable for your current needs.
Socialbakers is one of the best social media tools for agencies, growing businesses, and enterprise corporations. But it is too expensive for a blogger, freelancer, consultant, or eCommerce business owner who has no employees.
If you are not ready to spend more money on the Socialbakers suite plan, make use of their free social media analytics tools instead. These include Instagram Tracker for Business, Social Media Benchmarking Tool, and more.
Now that you learned the best social media tools for businesses in 2021, the next step would be to pick the one that is right for you.
Before you choose any of the free social media tools or social media tools for marketing with a monthly plan on this guide, try out as many free trials as you need. The social media management tool that closely fits how you like to work would be the most ideal. You can always pay for add-ons later or upgrade to a higher plan, whichever works for you.
Need more tools for growing your business? Browse our blog for tips and ideas!