What do marketers want from social media in 2019?
Based on what we saw in 2018, the answer is surprisingly simple: more ROI and less wasted time.
That’s where today’s suite of social media scheduling tools can save the day.
Social media scheduling tools are more than just a convenient shortcut to queue up posts. The right tools help your overall social media management process, improving your efficiency so you have more time to push out great content and develop connections with your followers in real time
Sounds like a win-win, right?
Different businesses have different priorities in terms of their schedulers. Maybe you’re laser-focused on analytics. Perhaps you have a massive team that needs to collaborate more efficiently.
Either way, marketers today are hungry for simple, straightforward solutions that they can roll out ASAP.
These 9 social media scheduling tools can boost your marketing workflow
Hey, don’t take our word for it.
Sprout customers – from small businesses to enterprise companies to agencies – rave about the ability to effortlessly plan, organize and deliver content and campaigns across social networks.
Sprout is an excellent tool that helps us better plan and organize all our social content. With the help of the calendar and scheduler tools, we’re able to save time by scheduling and publishing the same post across multiple profiles in just one simple step.Ana Laura Montaño González
For starters, jumping back and forth between networks is a huge time-sink. Consider how the bulk of brands out there are publishing content to multiple social platforms. With Sprout, you can publish your latest Facebook post, Instagram photo or Pinterest Pin simultaneously.
In addition to its industry-leading scheduling tools, interactive calendar and asset management library, Sprout also simplifies collaboration. User-level permissions provide specific access to marketing managers, writers and everyone in between to contribute to your publishing strategy.
And once your content is scheduled and published, Sprout makes it easy to measure success and refine your game plan going forward.
You can easily apply custom tags to messages to better organize and report, then use Sprout’s easy-to-use social media analytics to evaluate impressions, engagement, follower growth and much more.
From analyzing hashtags to identifying top-performing content, Sprout represents the ultimate optimization tool for brands looking to fine-tune their social presence in addition to scheduling content. You can even count on Sprout for social ad reporting to boost ROI from the paid content you’re scheduling.
I like to go into each platform and look at what posts performed really well and which ones didn’t. Directly from here, I’ll schedule out new posts with similar content or test different times—another great way to beef up our editorial calendar!Erin Supinka
Assistant Director of Digital Engagement in the Office of Communications
While Sprout gives you ultimate control to plan your publishing strategy as you see fit, it also makes it easy to automate the process to maximize results.
Sprout’s patented ViralPost® technology helps you hone in on the optimal posting times for your audience, replacing guesswork with guaranteed engagement.
Instagram is a strange beast when it comes to social media scheduling tools.
How so? Well, third-party solutions which publish directly to Instagram were once prohibited. Fast forward to present day where Instagram automation is possible via Sprout among other social media scheduling tools.
Later has the distinction of being an official partner of Instagram. In addition to real-time text notification posting that’s been the traditional workout for Instagram scheduling, the platform allows for true automated publishing on single-photo posts.
Later is an ideal option for brands specifically working with visual content and focusing heavily on growing their Instagram presence.
Additional features such as real-time post previews, hashtag curation and basic analytics help brands save time publishing to Instagram while also uncovering opportunities to optimize their posts. The tool’s drag-and-drop preview is likewise a nice touch for brands who are crazy about visual content.
Want to keep all of your scheduling in a single platform, though? Check out Sprout’s Instagram scheduling solutions as well!
The common thread between pretty much any social scheduling tool is the same.
CoSchedule emphasizes efficiency for marketing teams and individuals alike. Integrating with company blogs via WordPress, the platform allows brands to publish and push content to social media simultaneously.
Additionally, CoSchedule provides a comprehensive “Top Content Report” which documents social shares and engagement. This is a fantastic feature for content creators looking to figure out which pieces are resonating most with readers.
Unlike other social media scheduling tools, CoSchedule primarily focuses on content versus solely social performance. Features such as the “ReQueue” Bucket allow teams to recycle and schedule their best messages automatically without having to lift a finger. This results in more fresh content in your brand’s feed faster.
There’s no denying that one of the biggest challenges of social media scheduling is content curation.
Digging for fresh pieces of content can be both time-consuming and tiring. Meanwhile, you don’t want to solely post your own stuff over and over, right?
That’s where Feedly comes in.
Feedly’s platform automatically curates content to fill up your social media calendar. Instead of scrambling for news or relevant pieces to publish to your audience in-between your own posts, Feedly does the legwork for you.
Again, managing your social feeds shouldn’t eat up all of your free time. Tools like Feedly take the pressure off of marketers to constantly save and bookmark content for future sharing.
Oh, and Feedly integrates instantly with Sprout Social. Nice, right?
If you can’t tell by now, social media scheduling and content creation go hand in hand.
Every time you sit down to knock out a blog post, you probably already have your audience in the back of your mind.
You want to craft pieces that have potential to get shared around like crazy. You want to get as much mileage as you can via social sharing so that piece of content is seen by as many people as possible.
That means planning out your content, plain and simple.
Airtable brings the processes of content planning and social media scheduling together. The platform can be used among teams or individuals to not only plan out future pieces of content but how those posts will be promoted across various social sites.
Another nice bonus of Airtable is its asset manager. This feature affords users a sense of consistency across your campaigns and ads prior to hitting “publish.”
In short, Airtable allows you stay one step ahead by assessing what your social media posts will look like before your content even goes live. Never hurts to be prepared, does it?
Looking for a seriously simple solution that’s only focused on Twitter scheduling? Check out Tweetdeck.
Integrating with Twitter in an instant, Tweetdeck represents a straightforward scheduling tool that allows you to queue tweets across multiple accounts.
Set up your Tweet, pick a time and watch it go live. Nothing fancy, but effective nonetheless.
Despite its simplicity, Tweetdeck also boasts a comprehensive Twitter dashboard for users. You can see your live feed in addition to notifications, mentions and other activity all in one place.
Tweetdeck represents a totally free upgrade to your Twitter account. Even if you use another scheduling tool, you might consider toying around with the platform just for fun.
Planable boasts many features typical of today’s’ social media scheduling tools with an emphasis on teamwork and collaboration.
Most notable is Planable’s commenting and approval system for scheduled posts. Team members are able to go back and forth with comments to fine-tune scheduled content before it goes live. Users can then approve the posts internally or wait for client approval if working as part of an agency team.
Roles and permissions allow different departments to collaborate so that everyone is on the same page. This leads to fewer bottlenecks and greater transparency as a post moves from Point A to Point B.
8. Sked Social (formerly Schedugram)
Although Sked Social is no longer Schedugram due to its recent rebrand, their Instagram scheduling features are definitely ones worth noting.
Sked Social’s content queue allows users to prep photos, captions and hashtags for repeated use. Much like Later, the platform provides a real-time, drag-and-drop preview of your Instagram posts before they go live. This allows for quick and easy changes if you’re not happy with your feed’s aesthetics.
Built-in post templates and a variety of photo editing filters are nice creative touches to help your posts pop, too. The platform itself is highly intuitive for those working with visual content on Instagram.
9. Post Planner
Looking at the best times to post on social media, there’s a clear expectation for brands to push out a ton of content.
In addition to scheduling posts as normal, Post Planner assists with the process of content curation. Again, you can’t just blast your own content over and over if you want to grow your following.
Post Planner curates posts based on specific hashtags and keywords, assigning star-ratings to pieces based on how relevant they’d be to your audience.
The tool also picks the best times to post based on audience data. The planning section also highlights the different types of content you’re posting (article, video, photo, etc) and how each piece if performing. Like other social media scheduling tools, Post Planner allows users to repeat and recycle top-performing posts, too.
And that wraps up our list!
How are you taking advantage of social media scheduling tools?
Brands of all shapes and sizes are using social media scheduling tools to grow their followings, save time and push out more content.
And given the fast-paced nature of the web at large, having these tools on deck is crucial for keeping your business’ content from getting lost in the shuffle.
We want to hear from you, though! What features do you find to be most important for a social media scheduling tool? If you haven’t gotten started with social scheduling, what’s holding you back? Let us know in the comments below!