I’m about to drop the truth bomb. Are you ready?! Social media is one of the most time-consuming activities we do on a daily basis. I know, no surprise there, but it’s so true! Having a business comes with a long to-do list that you, as a business owner, have to deal with all the time. Having that said, you value your time and want to be intentional about it, so you can use it in the best possible way.
Although, having good marketing and a consistent social media presence requires a lot of time (even though it sometimes might not seem like it) and it can be challenging to keep up with it! Writing posts, posting, adding the right hashtags, engagement, responding to DMs, recording stories/videos… Your audience is active at different times of the day and it’s impossible to be online 24/7, you have other things to do, too.
So what’s the solution to this, you ask? It’s all about automation. Automation equals lifesaver. Scheduling posts in advance will help you badge the tasks – you can do all the essential work around it once a week, and then the rest of the days, you will just do the engagement and add stories (which you can also have pre-made and ready to go!). Sounds like a dream, right? Fortunately (for all of us) it’s a reality, and I put together 5 most popular tools that will help you plan and schedule your content to ease your mind. Keep reading to find the one that will help YOU save time and energy.
Later is one of the most known scheduling tools that allow you to post on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, but it’s primarily focused on Instagram. It’s a visual scheduler that gives you all you need in a scheduler – visual planning of your grid, analytics, you can save your hashtags, images, plan your stories, and much more. The platform is very budget-friendly and there are many things that you can use to your advantage. Price differs depending on how many accounts you want to manage and features you want to have access to. The cheapest plan starts at $9/month, but it is definitely worth the price. The free plan allows you to schedule static content and access basic analytics but with the paid plan, you can also schedule videos or multi-posts.
The Media Library is one of the best features of this platform. It allows you to upload and organize your images and use tags to divide your content into categories. You can also add notes to images and it shows which photos have already been used and which haven’t. With a paid plan, you can also see conversations that you can use for responding to comments directly from the app.
Planoly is definitely one of the best scheduling tools for Instagram. It’s very easy to use, a budget-friendly and free version has a visual grid planner which is very helpful when planning the posts. It’s a drag-and-drop system and you can upload up to 30 images/month on a free version and get some basic analytics too. Perfect for someone who is starting but also for social media managers or bigger brands who decide to get a paid version.
The paid version gives you the option to add the first comment to auto-posts, schedule stories, and also go into comments. Analytics gives you a great overview of how your posts are doing, but also what your engagement is. Although one of my favorite features is that you can keep the photos in your visual grid planner without scheduling it, so you can still see the posts you want to add for the upcoming weeks.
Planoly can be used for other platforms like Pinterest, Twitter, or Facebook too and the prices starting from only $7/month.
Buffer has been around for over 10 years and it can be used with all the platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. You can create and schedule posts, it gives you suggested times for posting, and detailed analytics for your posts are there for you to review and measure how your content performs on each of your socials.
This platform enables you to schedule stories, visual planning for your social media campaigns, scheduling content for your FB groups/pages, and it even has an Instagram Shop grid option to link your products.
The free plan includes one user, three accounts, and 10 queued posts per profile. Paid plans starting from $15/month for the Pro plan, which includes one user, eight accounts, and 100 queued posts per profile.
This all-in-one scheduling platform is compatible with over 35 social networks, including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Pinterest. Hootsuite is a more advanced scheduling platform that comes with powerful analytics, automatic posting, and posts overview Planner where you can see all the queued posts that can be easily updated.
This platform can also monitor mentions, hashtags, new followers, engagement, and more. The free plan includes one user, 3 social platforms, and up to 30 scheduled posts/month. Although if you go with this platform, go with a Professional Plan that will cover all the needs and unlock more features for $39/month. It is definitely worth it.
If you are looking for a Pinterest scheduling platform, Tailwind is definitely your go-to tool! It works really well with Instagram too, but it mainly has all the features for your Pinterest account that you need and more! You can quickly schedule your pins, have them added to different boards, and it also gives you suggestions for trending content. Tailwind has a smart scheduler which helps you decide when is the most suitable time to post and maximize your engagement but it also features easy drag-and-drop functionality to upload and publish pins in bulks, and you have an option called shuffle queue to keep the variety of your posts and shuffle scheduled pins. This tool also has a great monitoring system to see which pins are performing well and other important analytics metrics like follower growth or pin virality.
The monthly price is $14.99 (+ additional $14.99 for the Instagram account) and you can also pay extra for more SmartLoop posts that your pins will re-circulate your already existing pins to get more traffic or join more than 5 Tailwind Tribes through which you can connect with other like-minded people and see the most relevant pins in your niche.
Having so many scheduling platforms to choose from can be overwhelming sometimes, so what I would recommend is to consider what you need! Depending on how many accounts you manage and what platform you’re mainly focusing on, choose the one that has the features you are looking for. If you can’t decide between a few different ones, pretty much all these platforms have a free trial that can help you try it and decide. I would say some of the main features to have would be automatic posting, first comment for Instagram, and good analytics that give insights that help to improve your performance.
Which social media tool do you use?