HootSuite has been a popular favorite for many bloggers and marketers. It was one of the few social media management apps that came to existence in the early 2000s and evolved into today’s go-to tool for scheduling posts to social networks.
Like most users, I was immediately drawn to Hootsuite because of the many social networks you can manage in one place. Also, I thought it was pretty cool to schedule posts ahead of time. For me, it was the future of publishing in social media.
What Hootsuite does best:
- It supports popular social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram as well as lesser-known channels like Mixi, Flickr, Tumblr, and Storify
- Has a free plan, but offers reasonably priced premium plans
- Allows team collaboration
- Has a stable browser-based app and apps for both iOS and Android
- Content curation is easy by using RSS feeds
- Basic analytics sent to your email
- Unlimited scheduling starting with the Professional plan ($19/month)
What Hootsuite can do better:
- A more organized stream
- Option to use other URL shorteners
- Better analytics
- A way to track and engage with fans and top followers
Today, there are many tools just like Hootsuite. While they all are inspired by Hootsuite’s core features, some of these apps go beyond scheduling posts and go as far as provide analytics and automated engagement. Judging by my time spent in trying out these newer apps, I think their creators looked at older apps like Hootsuite and figured out a way to make things better.
Whether you’re a solo blogger or part of a social media team who want to explore other social media possibilities beyond what Hootsuite offers, then check out the list below.
Best Alternatives to Hotsuite for Social Media management:
Just like Sendible, Agorapulse is more than just a publishing tool. It also covers competitor research and social listening. With its many features, it is apparent that it was made to be an all-around social media management tool for teams to stay engaged with followers at all times.
Here are some of Agorapulse’s best features:
- View, reply, or assign comments in a unified inbox
- Supports Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+ and YouTube
- Automated comment moderation
- Keyword/hashtag monitoring
- Free, unlimited reports
- Fan/follower profiling
- Visual calendar
Agorapulse vs Hootsuite
While Agorapulse may look like it beats Hootsuite on all fronts, it’s not entirely true. Hootsuite still remains to be a more efficient publishing tool if you want to upload a ton of content. It’s a better tool than Agorapulse with its bulk upload options and unlimited RSS feeds.
On all other aspects, however, Agorapulse is a few steps ahead. Similar to Sendible, it uses a unified inbox where you see all interactions with your social channels. It is easier to see unanswered comments or replies and take action. Compared to Hootsuite’s tab-based streams, Agorapulse’s dashboard is definitely clutter-free and easier to use.
With Hootsuite, there’s no feature that lets you monitor a competing social channel. If this is something you want to do, then Agorapulse is the best tool. This feature works primarily with Facebook, but you can also do it with Instagram and Twitter.
When scheduling a post for the future, Agorapulse provides an option to republish the content in a specific number of days that you specify, a feature not present in Hootsuite.
Agorapulse offers a free trial. You can get their Solo plan for $49/month.
SocialPilot combines publishing, analytics and engagement in a more affordable package, albeit with a few limitations. It’s definitely more powerful than Hootsuite, but not quite comparable to Sendible or Agorapulse.
Here’s what SocialPilot offers:
- One dashboard to manage all social channels
- Supports Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, and Tumblr
- Schedule posts in different time zones
- Automated RSS feeds
- Team collaboration
- Facebook branding
- Visual calendar
SocialPilot vs. Hootsuite
SocialPilot and Hootsuite both have similar features. Both offer features for scheduling future posts, visual calendars, basic analytics, RSS feeds support and team collaboration.
Here are SocialPilot’s main features:
- Manage posts in one central dashboard
- Supports Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest
- Custom Facebook branding
- Content suggestions
- RSS feed support
- Social account groups
- SocialPilot vs. Hootsuite
Feature-wise, anything you can do is Hootsuite, is doable on SocialPilot too. In fact, you can do more on SocialPilot. For instance, you can only schedule a post in Hootsuite for different social media accounts at one specific time and date. In SocialPilot, you can schedule a single content for multiple channels at different times.
SocialPilot has the unified dashboard approach when managing social media feeds just like Agorapulse and Sendible. What’s even better is you can group certain social channels together. This is helpful when managing more than one client and when you don’t want to make the mistake of posting to the wrong channel. With the Create Group function, you can further organize social channels according to a category that you set.
In addition to RSS feeds, you can search for content related to your topic/niche and post it to your channels, a feature unavailable on Hootsuite.
SocialPilot also offers other popular link shorteners like Google and bit.ly. Hootsuite’s shortener is limited to its ow.ly. SocialPilot offers a free account, but you can upgrade to the Basic plan for $10/month or Growth Hacker plan for $20/month.
Scheduling social media posts might be enough for some people, and if this is the case, this tool may be too much. Sendible is meant to manage multiple social media accounts for different clients. It’s not just a way to post consistently to social media, but also to know whether or not people engage with your content. It also has the ability to track and automate your replies.
Just looking at Sendible’s impressive dashboard will help you understand how it is more than just a post scheduler.
Here are its main features:
- A single stream for the most recent responses to your posts
- Supports Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube
- A way to monitor a keyword and filter them by location and other categories
- A separate report for different social media networks/accounts
- In addition to social media posts, you can publish a blog post and send emails to your subscribers
- Visual calendar
Sendible vs. Hootsuite
Sendible gives marketers more insight into their audience as compared to Hootsuite. With its advanced monitoring, analytics, and tracking features, there’s no doubt that any social media manager will find Sendible a more valuable tool.
When it comes to the user interface, these two apps take a different approach. While Hootsuite gives you different columns for each social media stream, Sendible gives you a unified inbox where you can see the most recent content from all social media accounts.
In Hootsuite, you need to have 4-5 streams per social channel that results in a cluttered dashboard when you add a lot of channels and streams. With Sendible, you can customize the social channels you want to include in your Inbox, which is where you’ll see all the updates. You can filter the results by social channel if you want to narrow it down, but you’ll still be looking at the same thing and not hopping from one stream to another.
Hootsuite provides up to 3 reports per month (under the Pro plan). If you want more reports, you need to add $50 per report. With Sendible, its inbuilt report tools are free, and you get in-depth analytics designed for each social channel including your best posts, audience demographics, and most engaged users. The only time you need to switch to a higher plan is if you want a customized report.
When it comes to pricing, Sendible costs substantially more than Hootsuite. Sendible’s most basic plan starts at $49/month, while Hootsuite costs just $19/month.
Buffer and Hootsuite are similar tools compared to the other ones on this list. They both started out as a way to schedule Twitter posts. Although both tools have evolved over the years, there seems to be more significant changes in Buffer than Hootsuite.
Here’s what Buffer offers:
- One comprehensive feed for each social channel
- Supports Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, and Pinterest
- Offers a free plan (1 social account per network, up to 10 scheduled posts each)
- Create a schedule queue for each social account
- Re-Buffer published posts
- See most popular posts
- Collaborate with team members (required Awesome or Business Plan)
- Curate content from RSS feeds
- Visual calendar
Buffer vs Hootsuite
Buffer’s dashboard is organized based on social channels, just like Hootsuite. But unlike Hootsuite, Buffer doesn’t show mentions, direct messages, or comments on the feed. It only shows upcoming scheduled posts under its Queue tab, and previously published posts under Analytics>Posts. In this area, you’re shown the number of clicks, likes or comments for certain posts, but you can’t see or take actions on the information.
Where Buffer shines is the way is, it allows you to set up publishing schedules for each social channel. Based on this schedule, you can then add content to your queue, and they will be published as per the created schedule. This beats having to repeatedly set a time and date for each content. You simply have to hit the Add to Queue button and you’re good to go. Hootsuite has a similar feature called AutoSchedule, but it’s limited to a single schedule that you can use for all social channels.
Unlike Agorapulse and Sendible, Buffer’s features are simpler and does not at all focus on interacting with fans and followers. It’s a way to schedule posts and re-publish those that do well. You can collaborate with others, but this feature is available only with a Business plan.
Buffer has a free plan, or you can upgrade to the Awesome plan for $10/month or the Business plan for $199/month.
With social media proving to be a driving force for all types of businesses, it is important to take your approach seriously. When you pick the right tools and build a solid plan, you can turn your social media followers into loyal customers. That is why it pays to study what social media services can give you and how you can use it to reach your personal or business goals.
If you’ve been using Hootsuite for a while now, you may not know all the new things you can do with a social media management tool. We hope this article gives you a bird eye view of these great Hootsuite alternatives that you might want to try in 2018.