Social media has completely revolutionized the way businesses market themselves and boost their brand value — and it’s here to stay. Irrespective of what kind of business you operate or what your brand represents, social media helps you connect with your audience in significantly simpler ways than what was once possible. Though the game has changed, some rules still remain the same. Social media will hardly make an impact on your business unless you know how to leverage its potential. For this, it is essential that your business plants a firm foot in the social world. A strong social media presence translates into greater engagement, which in turn translates into greater brand visibility, ultimately resulting in an improved bottom line.
Consistent social media presence cannot be achieved, however, by just opening a Twitter or Facebook account. There are many layers to social media marketing, and one of the best ways to break through them is to implement social media tools. The use of such tools can help brands with everything from content curation to distribution and analytics. So here is a list of some of the best free social media tools that can help your brand develop a growing presence on social media.
1. DrumUp DrumUp's unique selling point is its advanced content curation feature. It uses data mining, natural language processing, and machine learning algorithms to identify relevant content for your Twitter and Facebook accounts. Not only does it find fresh, top-notch content, it even helps you manage it. By queuing content in advance and letting you post customized content, DrumUp's workflow offers a high level of flexibility. Another feature exclusive to DrumUp is that it automatically prioritizes the latest content, which means you get a chance to post new content before anyone else does. This also increases the chances of your content going viral.
2. Commun.it As a social media tool exclusive to Twitter, Commun.it is primarily aimed at relationship management. The tool helps you identify key people who are part of your Twitter community and provides your brand with an opportunity to engage with them consistently. The key people in your Twitter community are divided into three categories: influencers, supporters, and engaged members/prospects. Based on these categories, Commun.it helps you develop context-based engagement strategies. It helps you develop specific methods of engagement for each category, which further helps you leverage these categories toward building your brand.
3. Rapportive Rapportive is a unique social media tool that integrates the LinkedIn profiles of your Gmail contacts into the Gmail window. The tool provides you with details such as location, job title, interests and so on. You can even follow their posts or tweets on Facebook and Twitter. To put it simply, Rapportive helps you build a strong audience network. You can collect key information about your customers through their social media posts and profiles, which will further help you develop certain insights about your customers. At the end of the day, you can use this information to develop strategies that boost engagement among your target audience and ultimately enhance your brand's visibility.
4. Klout Klout helps you collect measurable data from all your social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. It then uses the data to tell you how your brand is doing on each of the social media platforms. The results are communicated using simple graphs through a detailed interface. You can also collect data on the prospective performance of your post or tweet. For instance, Klout can tell you how many times a particular post is likely to get shared or re-posted. An influencer section even provides data on the users whom you influence the most and also on the ones who influence you.
5. PowToon PowToon is a free cloud-based application and SaaS that helps brands create animated video presentations for social media platforms like YouTube and Facebook. You can choose from a wide variety of slide designs, characters, props, etc. Plus, the presentations are optimized for Linux, Mac and Windows, which makes its use highly convenient.
6. Canva Apart from the usual analytics, content curation, monitoring and so on, your brand's social media presence also depends a lot on the aesthetic appeal of your posts. Though you could come up with creative graphics or images with traditional design or image editing software, it's still always better to go with something that's been optimized for the purpose of social media marketing. This is where Canva comes in. Canva is an online image creating/editing software that caters specifically to social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram. You can design business cards, edit images, create presentations and do much more using the application. You can choose from a wide range of existing templates or customize your own designs. Canva helps you create visual content with ease, which can prove to be a huge plus in the context of social media marketing.
7. Followerwonk Followerwonk is a Twitter-focused social media tool that provides analytics with regard to optimizing your Twitter marketing strategy. It collects measurable data to analyze your followers and provides related information including their location and their standard tweeting habits. It also helps you identify key influencers in your industry and provides visualized data to measure your performance against your competitors’ performance.
8. Followgram Followgram is an exclusive tool meant for Instagram that helps brands gain more followers on the image-centered platform. It helps you connect your Instagram profile with a Facebook account in order to share images related to your brand, products and services. You can create image tags, use filters, create collages and do much more with this application.
Author Bio: Jessica Davis has a keen interest in social media and content marketing, and writes extensively about both. She represents Godot Media, a leading SEO and content marketing firm.