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Hootsuite vs Buffer vs TweetDeck – Determining Which Tool Will Best Suit Your Needs

Since social media has become a strong platform for marketing and advertising, social media management tools have become useful for both businesses and individuals. There are many options out there, but right now we will just focus on 3 of the most popular ones: Hootsuite, Buffer, and Tweetdeck. These social media management tools can all help you keep track of your social networks and monitor what people are saying about you. Vertical dashboards allow you to organize streams, mentions, messages, and hashtags so you can see everything that’s happening in real-time.

While Hootsuite, Buffer, and TweetDeck all have similar layouts and purpose, there are a few differences among them you should be aware of in order to choose the best one for you. First, we’ll talk about what each platform does, then what social platforms they manage, and what each is best suited for so you can get a good feel for which tool will work best for your needs.

Hootsuite

What it Does

Hootsuite is one of many tools that allows users to monitors multiple social media networks all in one place. It’s greatest asset: it lets a team manage your social media by letting you assign specific tasks/responsibilities to different people. This capability keeps mishaps from happening such as 5 different people responding to the same mention. And if any question ever arises, Hootsuite includes messaging for team members to communicate, especially helpful for remote teams. Also, if you have more than one account on one network, you can manage all of them without confusion. So if you have five separate accounts on Facebook, Hootsuite will organize all of them in your dashboard.

Networks it Manages

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Google+
  • Foursquare
  • Instagram
  • WordPress
  • Vimeo
  • Tumblr

Best Suited For

Large teams. Aside from price, Hootsuite works best for large teams that manage a lot of social media networks. However, it can be just as effective for an individual or a team of only a handful of members.

When looking at if Hootsuite is right for you, the answer depends on the type of business you have and your initial reason for having social media. Typically, Hootsuite is recommended for businesses who need to manage customer service, because it is useful for sending messages and replying to customers. Hootsuite also has the option to store drafted messages for standardized customer replies. Of course, just because you don’t need to manage customer service doesn’t mean you can’t use Hootsuite.

Cons

  • The analytics reports can be expensive
  • You have to pay to shorten URLs
  • When posted from a bulk scheduler, post images don’t appear on Facebook
  • Price can get expensive for teams

Buffer

What it Does

Buffer is a content publishing platform with basic capabilities. It’s free for individuals, although there are plans for small businesses to use. Buffer will let you schedule content, as well as connect multiple social networks and RSS feeds.

Networks it Manages

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Pinterest

Best Suited For

Individuals or small businesses who want a free social media tool. The free version of Buffer works well enough for basic publishing.

Cons

  • Analytics are very basic
  • Tweets can’t be randomized

TweetDeck

What it Does

TweetDeck does a similar thing to Hootsuite, except it’s free and won’t display multiple social networks. It’s all Twitter. TweetDeck will display multiple timelines that can be customized, allow you to schedule tweets, alert you to notifications, and auto-update from RSS feeds. Like Hootsuite, TweetDeck also has a team option that will let multiple people manage your Twitter accounts.

Networks it Manages

  • Twitter

Best Suited For

Small businesses or individuals. Back when it first started, TweetDeck managed multiple social networks while focusing heavily on Twitter. Today, that’s all it will focus on: Twitter. So if Twitter is your main focus, TweetDeck is for you.

Cons

  • No built-in analytics
  • No email or calendar integration
  • Reporting costs extra

The main thing to remember when looking at social network management tools is that you get what you pay for. Also, consider your purpose for needing a tool like this and how many members you will need to access the tool. Once you do pick a social media management tool, check out these tips for Dos and Don’ts of Automating Your Social Media.



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