5 Social Media Scheduling Tools Every Small Business Needs

social media scheduling

Not all small businesses and entrepreneurs have the coin to drop on hiring a full time Social Media Manager. Something about running lean and cutting costs, I guess. Go figure!

So, for the rest of us, we need social media scheduling tools that can push our fantastically awesome content out to the masses. Here are 5 tools to help you spread the word, bird!

1. HootSuite

It’s my go-to social media scheduling tool for LinkedIn and Twitter, though it handles a lot more than that.

Here’s a full list:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Google+
  • Foursquare
  • MySpace
  • WordPress
  • TrendSpottr
  • Mixi
  • Instagram
  • MailChimp
  • Tumblr
  • Youtube
  • Reddit
  • Vimeo

I’ve used HootSuite for a few years now and it just keeps getting better. They recently added a “Suggested Content” tab in the publishing section. Now you can flip through curated content from around the web and schedule any of it with the click of a mouse.

I get a lot of my social traffic from LinkedIn because I actively post in and engage with a lot of LinkedIn Groups. HootSuite makes it incredibly easy for me to schedule each new blog post I write to as many groups as I want.

HootSuite social media scheduling

I’m a very visual person and I need to see the 30,000 ft. view. HootSuite has an awesome “Publisher” feature that allows me to see the social media scheduling I’ve done in a list view, a week view and most importantly a month view. That’s my idea of seeing the big picture!

One thing that’s nice is that you can get a FREE 30 day trial of HootSuite Pro to test drive it and decide if you like it or not.

2. CoSchedule

CoSchedule is one of my new favorite social media scheduling tools. It’s a drag-and-drop social marketing calendar that’s easier than any other I’ve seen.

It integrates with WordPress, which is totally awesome. You can save a ton of time and grow your traffic by scheduling social media promotion right from WordPress while you blog!

Another thing I love about CoSchedule is being able to see what your most shared content has been over time. This helps you quickly see what you should keep sharing to maximize your website traffic.

CoSchedule social media scheduling tools

 

As with many social media scheduling tools, you can get a FREE 14 day trial of CoSchedule to test drive it.

My favorite features of CoSchedule are:

  • Drag-And-Drop Marketing Calendar
  • Easy Social Media Scheduling
  • Easy Workflow Management For Your Marketing Team
  • Easily Re-Schedule Old Blog Content
  • Works Great With WordPress
  • Manage Google Docs Content
  • Manage Evernote Content
  • Convert Evernote & Google Docs Content To WordPress

[Update: I recently discovered SocialPilot, which is similar to CoSchedule and pretty affordable. Definitely worth a look!]

3. Buffer

Like other social media scheduling apps, you Buffer lets you create your own original posts and schedule them. But where Buffer totally kicks tail is as a content curation tool!

Maybe it’s just me, but when I post curated Tweets through Buffer, I get 3x more retweets, favorites and mentions than any other social media scheduling app in my kit bag.

To make things even better, the fine folks at Buffer recently released a companion app that almost turns posting curated content into a game. The app is simply called Daily by Buffer.

When you launch the Daily app, you’re prompted to choose one of your social media platforms. Then you’re given one post suggestion at a time. Then all you do is either swipe left to reject the suggestion or swipe right to throw it into your predetermined Buffer schedule.

Of course, I would recommend tapping the “View Full Article” option before posting. With the ease and convenience these social media scheduling sites offer, I’m still a big fan of reading what you post to your audience first. Even if you just skim it to make sure it’s what you want.

Finally, Buffer also offers a Pro (aka “paid”) version of their software with something called “Content Feeds”. This allows you to pull in content from any website you want to give you even more personally tailored social media post options.

4. DoShare

DoShare fills a very specific gap in the world of social media scheduling. It does what no other app does (well). It allows you to schedule posts from your personal Google Plus profile.

All the other popular social media schedulers only let you schedule posts to your Google Plus Pages, like those for a business or other organization.

Okay, but here’s the catch! DoShare works as a Google Chrome Extension. You know what that means? Yup. Your scheduled Google Plus posts only get sent IF your Chrome browser is OPEN!

No. It’s not the perfect solution. But it works. At least most of the time. I’ve found DoShare to be buggy. So just make sure you check and double check your posts before you walk away.

5. MailChimp

MailChimp is the undisputed heavy weight champion of email marketing software. While they aren’t designed to be a true social media scheduling tool, they do give you the option to automatically Tweet or Facebook post your email campaigns.

Aside from those limited social media posting options, I use MailChimp to share every blog post I write to my loyal email subscribers. The reporting capabilities I have are insane!

MailChimp social media scheduling

For each of my email campaigns, I get the following data:

  • Number of opens
  • WHO opened my email (Coolest thing EVER!)
  • Number of clicks
  • Opens by location
  • Bounce rate
  • Unsubscribes
  • List growth over time
  • Subscribes since last campaign
  • Even WHICH EMAIL PLATFORM subscribers are using to open my emails! (ex: iPhone, Android, Outlook, Yahoo, etc.)

What social media scheduling tools are you using? Let me know in the comments below.