The world of social media is almost as infinite and mysterious as the internet itself. For that reason, you need ways to organise your communications and display your products and services through social networks. Data analysis, statistics, arranging posts and monitoring discussions can all be used to provide you with assistance in your job as a community manager. Here are the best applications for managing social networks.
With a very simple interface, Google Alerts sends you a notification every time your page is mentioned on the internet. All you have to do is put the name of your company in the "Search query" field, configure the options and enter the email address you would like the results sent to. The best part: it's free.
Related: Google Alerts
Talkwalker is an application that provides a wide variety of possibilities to measure the effect of campaigns being carried out on social networks. It also monitors public interaction, analyses the desires of consumers and provides comprehensive reports on activities occurring on not just your networks, but also across the market you are involved in. The site offers a free trial version, as well as a free alert system that competes with Google Alerts.
TweetBeep is the Twitter version of Google Alerts. This free application notifies you whenever your brand is mentioned on Twitter. Entering the "My Alerts" tab, you can choose your search and alert criteria.
If you write the name of your company in the SocialMention search bar, a list will appear of all the times it was mentioned on the internet. This application provides statistics that can help you decide whether each mention was positive, negative or neutral. Please note that this application is better suited for large companies, as many of the results provided may not reflect the situation of small businesses very well.
HootSuite is a tool that lets you view everything on the social networks connected to your brand. Famous for allowing you to program updates, this application is also used as a post scheduler by Community Managers, controlling multiple accounts across different platforms all at once and letting you know when the best time to interact with users is. It is important to note that if you use the trial version, every time you post a programmed message a little note mentioning Hootsuite will appear alongside.
Tweetdeck is Hootsuite's undisputed rival, and can handle a wide range of accounts across social networks through an easy to use control panel. This application is useful for organising and monitoring current interactions, as well as customising your notification system. It can be installed on both your computer and your smartphone.
Besides organising tasks, monitoring conversations, scheduling posts and creating reports about how your social networks are used, SproutSocial offers a technical support service to improve the user's experience. The site offers a trial version for 30 days, although you can purchase a basic version of the full product for $39 per month.
Toggl is a software whose main purpose is to track the amount of time it takes you to carry out your tasks. When you start any activity, click on the "Start" button, and when you finish, stop the clock. After calculating how long you take for each task, you can organise your time more efficiently and productively.
In the same way as Toggl, RescueTime helps you identify how you are you using (or wasting) your time. The application runs while you are working on the computer and gathers information about what you do and for how long. This tool builds your self-awareness by providing data on your daily working and web-browsing habits.
This software allows you to measure the interaction on your social networks across the internet. It also gives suggestions about which topics and types of content work best for your company. The bad news is that you will only be able to use it free of charge for 30 days. After that, you'll have to pay to use it.
Conventional wisdom has probably taught you that the world is driven by money. And you should keep that in mind when using social networks. Argyle Social is an application that uses an algorithm to help you work out how much your posts are worth. This way, you will clearly see how effective your communication strategies are.
Related: Argyle Social
This application helps you manage not only your Facebook and Twitter accounts, but it's also useful for managing and coordinating your blog posts. SocialOomph offers free and premium services, although you can make use of several aspects of the service without paying, such as programming your tweets, monitoring keywords, promoting your profiles and managing multiple accounts simultaneously.
Related: Social Oomph
This social media tool allows you to monitor and analyse many social network accounts at the same time. It is also useful for identifying consumer desires and discussions about a certain product. The service is only available through subscription.
Ideal for users crazy about metrics, Spredfast is a tool that lets you know if you are reaching the desired audience. The data is presented in graphical form, which can then be used to make comparisons between different strategies. You can use a trial version before purchasing a subscription.
Buffer is a tool which optimises the use of Twitter, by programming the display of tweets throughout the day. This way, Buffer solves one of Community Managers' greatest problems: information overload. Perhaps you have content that you want to share, but are afraid it will look like spam if it is all released in a short period. Buffer helps you disperse the tweets throughout the day, considering peak traffic hours. It offers two paid versions as well as a free one.