Maybe this sounds familiar to you: I used to log in to each and every individual network to compose new posts, check what’s happening in my streams, follow up on conversations and follower requests, and basically perform any other little bit of social media management that was on my plate.

I switched to dashboards and tools, and my productivity has soared.

I’d love to share a bit about how I made these changes and the best social media management tools and strategies I’ve used for handling multiple social media accounts—whether you’re handling several company profiles or juggling your personal brand in multiple places.

I’d love to hear from you on what insights you’ve learned as well!

The 6 best social media tools

1. Buffer Publish – social media dashboard & scheduling

Social media management dashboard - Buffer

My biggest time-saver has been using a social media management dashboard where I can manage all my social media profiles from one central place. At Buffer, we’re aiming to build a simple, clean, and intuitive tool to help with just this.

Benefits:

  • You log in once to manage everything
  • You can perform multiple actions in the same spot—sharing, scheduling, and analyzing

Which networks it supports:

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+

Tools similar to Buffer:

Hootsuite, Sprout Social, HubSpot, Everypost (and 20 more social media management tools)

Once you’ve researched all your options, we’d love to help you schedule, publish and analyze your content across multiple accounts through Buffer Publish!

2. SumAll – social media analytics reporting

Social media management reporting - Sumall

Once you connect your multiple social networks to SumAll, it’ll start pulling data and insights from your accounts. SumAll will then send you a daily and/or weekly digest of your audience size, engagement, reach, and post activity.

Benefits:

  • Reports come to you—no additional clicking or hunting
  • Get ecommerce data such as orders, items sold, and total revenue, alongside your social media data

Which networks it supports:

Twitter, Instagram, Facebook Pages, LinkedIn Company Pages, and Shopify

Tools like SumAll:

quintlySocial Report, Socialbakers, and Buffer Analyze (coming soon!)

3. Buffer Reply – social media monitoring and engagement

Social media monitoring - Buffer Reply

Buffer Reply allows you to engage with your customers and audience on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram from one streamlined inbox. Going beyond public mentions and specific keywords, you can also reply to private Twitter and Facebook messages and Facebook Page reviews.

Benefits:

  • Monitor multiple social media mentions in one location
  • Quickly engage with the mentions you want

Which social media networks it supports:

Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

Tools like Buffer Reply:

TweetDeck, Hootsuite, and Brand24

4. Nuzzel – digests of posts from people you follow

Social media digest - Nuzzel

One helpful way to save time when managing multiple social accounts is to cut down on the number of times you must visit each network individually. One area of assistance here is pulling top social media posts out of social media and into your inbox.

Nuzzel connects with Twitter and Facebook to give you daily updates of top news from people you follow.

(You might be following a lot of people and don’t want to monitor all their posts. A trick is to create a fake Twitter account, follow only the people you want to monitor, and connect that account with Nuzzel.)

Benefits:

  • Never miss a top news or popular post
  • Monitor a group of chosen profiles (people, brands, etc.)

Which networks it supports:

Twitter and Facebook

Tools like Nuzzel:

Flipboard, Refind, and Stack

5. Buzzsumo – tracking social media shares for your content

Social share tracker - Buzzsumo

If you’re managing social media, you’ll want a tool that shows you how your content is spreading.

For a quick and simple way to check the share count of your site’s content, plug your main URL into Buzzsumo and see the results. Buzzsumo gives you the share count for each top article on your site, aggregating data from Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Benefits:

  • Enter one URL, get many results
  • See which articles do well across multiple channels without having to constantly monitor multiple social channels

Which networks it supports:

Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest

Tools like SocialCount:

PostReachShared Count, and Bitly

6. BuzzSumo Monitoring – notifications when you & your content go viral

Social share alert - Buzzsumo

Apart from tracking social shares, Buzzsumo’s monitoring tools have some great applications for managing multiple social media accounts as well.

Instead of visiting each social network to spot mentions, you can tell BuzzSumo to email you any time your name or company name appears in highly-shared blog posts.

You can also be alerted when your content exceeds a certain number of shares.

Benefits:

  • Easily keep up to date on the virality of your brand
  • Gauge the quality of your content as it appears on social media (without needing to even be on social media)

Which networks it supports:

Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest

Tools like BuzzSumo Monitoring:

Mention and Social Mention

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The 6 best social media management strategies

1. Add your social media profiles to a dashboard

The single biggest help for managing multiple social media accounts is the ability to access everything from one location.

Think of it like grocery shopping: You’ll save time if you can pick up bread, orange juice, ice cream, and napkins at one supermarket rather than stopping off at four different locations.

Multiple social media profiles in Buffer

Social media dashboards (like Buffer and others, mentioned above) are ideal for this. It’s one of the most popular time-saving social media tips out there.

2. Create unique posts for each social media platform

Every social media platform is different.

Your audience on each platform expects different types of content from you. You might want to post a video on Facebook, a GIF on Twitter, and an infographic on Pinterest.

The strategies for crafting the perfect caption are also different across the platforms. For example, hashtags work better on Instagram than Facebook; you can only use 140 characters for a tweet but 700 for a LinkedIn post.

With Buffer Publish, you can craft the perfect post for every social platform in one seamless experience.

Tailored Posts - Customize your social media posts

Share social media posts with different content and captions to each of your social media profiles from one single place. All at once.

3. Schedule posts ahead of time

Scheduling your content does a couple great things for you:

  1. It helps save you time by letting you batch your social media updates all at once and still share at multiple, best times throughout the day.
  2. It helps make sure that you maintain a consistent publishing schedule and always have good content coming up next.

The social media management tools listed above (Buffer, Hootsuite, Sprout Social, etc.) each allow for scheduling.

Scheduling with the Buffer queue

Buffer’s queue system allows you to set up a series of optimal times in advance and publish one piece of content from your queue at each scheduled slot, or to schedule at specific times regardless of the queue.

4. Engage with those who are engaging with your posts

Replying to people who engaged with your posts is a great social media strategy, made easier when you can access all these interactions from one place.

In Buffer Reply, you can see who has tweeted about your brand, commented on your posts, or messaged you privately, at a glance.

You can then jump into a conversation and quickly reply your follower.

Buffer Reply conversations

5. Compare your social media stats to a benchmark

A popular method of displaying stats on social media is to show them as week-over-week growth. This is super great in so many cases. Yet, sometimes it can be a bit misleading. What if you had a really spectacular week with a number of unique events and happenings? It might throw off a bit of your analysis in the weeks surrounding it.

Creating a benchmark is a bit of an easier way to measure performance week-over-week and post-over-post.

We’ve found post-over-post analysis to be especially helpful. For instance, on Twitter, we identify popular tweets as those that gain 200 or more clicks. So when it comes time to check the stats, we can see at a glance which ones met those standards (and reshare them accordingly).

If you’re interested in more, SimplyMeasured has a great overview of four different ways to find social media benchmarks:

  • Benchmarks of social leaders and influencers in your niche
  • Benchmarks from your own history and data
  • Benchmarks specific to your campaign and promotion goals
  • Benchmarks based on competitor numbers

For example, AgoraPulse can show you some of these benchmark stats for your Facebook Page, customized for your specific size of followers (e.g., you’ll see different numbers if your page has 1,000 fans versus 10,000 fans).

Agora Pulse dashboard

6. Automate as many tasks as you’re comfortable with

Automation—the process of setting up systems to work whether you’re around or not—can be super useful for managing multiple social profiles. Tools like Zapier and IFTTT allow you to sync up multiple apps so that when a certain activity happens, it kicks off a separate activity in another app.

Zapier published a list of 101 ways to automate social media. Here are a few of their suggestions:

Zapier social media automation

We’ve shared some fun social media IFTTT recipes before, too—things like saving tweeted links to Pocket and welcoming new members to Facebook groups.

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Summary

We’re quite fortunate to have so many awesome tools and apps to rely on for managing social media accounts. When I think of the time I used to spend on social, I see the hours that I’ve saved since just in following a couple small strategies:

  • Use a social media dashboard so I can log in at one place
  • Schedule posts ahead of time to save time and keep the content coming
  • Use a social monitoring tool to keep track of mentions and engage followers
  • Find simple stats that are meaningful and can be analyzed at a glance

Which social media management tips have been most useful for you? What are some of your most-used tools for managing multiple social media accounts? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

This post was originally written in 2014 and has been updated in October 2017.

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Written by Kevan Lee

Director of marketing at Buffer, the social media publishing tool for brands, agencies, and marketers. We’ve got a new podcast! ?

  • Great article with heaps of valuable guidelines, thank you! Knowing what reports you need and why is key. Stats and analytics not understood will create huge confusion

    • Thanks so much, Tilly! Great point! Curious, which reports have been valuable to you in your experience? 🙂

      • I always look for engagement stats on my mentions. It is an indicator that I do provide value and whether or not I am on the right track. To me it is all about quality and not quantity…

  • Great roundup type post. Thanks Kevan!

    I’m tearing my hair out (not really, I’m practically bald) over the use of Buffer vs. Hootsuite. And I’m afraid Hootsuite is losing due to being over-complicated.

    Sell me on the simplicity of Buffer and help me put both feet in one camp. 🙂
    FWIW, it’s me on FB and G+, and my two online biz ventures on FB, G+ & Twitter.

    • Hi there Brian! Thanks so much for the comment! It’s so great to hear you’re researching some solutions!

      I’ve not used Hootsuite much, though I know they have a super extensive list of great tools. We take a lot of inspiration from them! On our side, we’re focused on being the simplest social media management tool to help you work faster. A few of the ways we aim to do this are through a simple and clean interface (the dashboard) and through an intuitive way of scheduling content into a queue. Have you had a chance to test out our browser extension? That seems to be the #1 tip from Buffer users for saving tons of time. You can schedule a post to all of your social media accounts with the click of a button (or keyboard shortcut). More cool tips here, too, if you’re interested: https://blog.bufferapp.com/the-8-most-useful-features-for-a-powerful-social-media-presence

      We’ve got an amazing support team here, too! We’d love to help out with anything at all via email [email protected] or Twitter (@buffer). My biggest selling point for Buffer might just be having a conversation with one of my awesome teammates via email or Twitter. 🙂

      • @kevanlee:disqus Can you explain your last sentence? How do you have a “conversation… via email or Twitter” with Buffer involved? I mean, where does Buffer fit into that scenario?

        • Hey Brian, just hopping in for Kevan on this one! We try to provide super-speedy help for all our customers, and we’re also aways up for a chat, if you have ideas or thoughts to share or even a fun GIF. 😉 I think Kevan wanted to be sure you knew you would be able to plug into an active and friendly community with Buffer, if you so desire!

          • Hi Brian! Yep, Courtney’s right! I’m always so inspired by the way my team members do customer support. I think our desire for customer happiness is a big selling point! 🙂

      • SuYin Wong

        That’s true. Love buffer! But I would really love to have a social engagement/listening method through buffer. Right now, using buffer and hootsuite for it.

    • I love Buffer for scheduling, but for me it still leaves a need for a listening dashboard that’s better than Twitter.com. I love how much you can customize Hootsuite for that, and you can keep it as simple as you’d like. It’s probably considered weird that I like live in Hootsuite, but still schedule a majority of my posts through Buffer. 🙂

      • @brittanyberger:disqus – thanks for your input. I can see how both tools are useful in their own strengths.

        I take it you are a “paid” “pro” user of both Hootsuite and Buffer?
        I only ask, and I feel apps deserve paid support if they are that useful and awesome in your workflow.

        • Awesome conversation here! Thanks for the extra validation and nudge toward building out some listening tools inside Buffer!

          • That would be AMAZING. Interface-wise, and in terms of respect and admiration for the company, Buffer beats out everything else for me, but I still need to use other tools for listening. Hootsuite’s dashboard has gotten a lot better looking lately, though, I will say.

        • Yep, I’m a paying customer of both, although both have several pricing tiers and I’m on the lowest of each since they’re for personal use and I don’t need a ton of features.

          • That would be my level as well. I’m paying for Hootsuite now as a new user (trying it out again), and will probably pull the trigger for an Awesome account with Buffer soon.

  • Thank you!!! This is the exact How To article I’ve been hunting for to improve my daily routine with ease. You’ve sold me on diving deeper into Buffer…and I love the other suggestions as well. Much appreciated Kevan!

    • Thanks so much, Nicole! So glad to hear you’ll be taking a deeper dive with us. Let me know if I can help out in any way! 🙂

  • Alex Chernenko

    Why did you leave out Hootsuite? Article is very biased as you are promoting Buffer. I prefer Hootsuite over Buffer and see no reason why it should not be included in Best 6 Social Media Management tools.

    • Hi there Alex! Thank you for the comment! Indeed, Hootsuite is a really great service and can help out tons when it comes to managing multiple social profiles. That’s awesome to hear you get good use out of it. What are some of your favorite features? I’ve not had the extensive use with it that I’d like to, so I’m always keen on hearing how others have found it. 🙂

  • AgoraPulse

    Hey, Kevan! Thanks so much for mentioning Agorapulse in one of your blogs again. Love this list 🙂 My daily open tabs consist of Agorapulse for community management and of course Buffer & Feedly for sharing and scheduling great content – Jenny

    • Hi there Jenny! Thanks for the comment! Yes, I love the tools that AgoraPulse provides – super useful stuff! And thank you for sharing your browser habits with us. Very cool!

  • EstherK

    Great roundup – learned a lot, about tools I had never heard of. I especially loved the “Benefits/Which networks it supports/Tools like” sections, which provides a very helpful frame. One thing that could help further is to indicate whether they have free memberships or only paid services, and what those services cost. I can obviously click around and find out, but it’s like going to four different supermarkets. 🙂 Great post, though. 🙂

    • Hi there Esther! So glad you enjoyed the post! That’s a great bit of input about adding the pricing info here. I believe each of these is a free tool, the only one I’m not 100% on is BuzzSumo Alerts, which might be a paid feature above and beyond their free plan. Thanks for reading! 🙂

  • ELIA SANTIAGO

    Mr.Kevan this is a Super Post lots of Value i have Been using Buffer an its great set it an forget and still have time with family and Friends

    • Hi there Elia! Thanks so much for the comment!

  • Jade

    Hey guys, thanks for the Simply Measured shoutout!

    • Awesome! You bet, Jade! 🙂

  • Hey Kevan, some great tools and tips. I didn’t hear of Feedient before so I’m going to check this one out!

    • Hi there Ian! Thanks for the comment! I’d love to hear what you think of Feedient! 🙂

  • This is an awesome resource! Definitely bookmarking this and trying out some of these tools!

    • Thanks so much, Olivia! Really glad to hear there were some useful bits in here. 🙂

  • Meagan Wade

    I feel like you’ve missed out on a key platform here: TweetDeck. You can customize your dashboards the same way you can with HootSuite. I’ve actually eliminated my pro subscriptions for both Buffer and HootSuite because of this platform. Appreciate all the other tools though, will have to look into them.

    • Great one, Meagan! Thanks for adding it to the list here!

  • Valerie J Brown (Cheers)

    Thank you Guy Kawasaki and Kevan Lee very much for this post! I am learning from mistakes and just doing it and have so much stuff, really need to slow down and use this advice. Thanks again and much appreciated and don’t know whare half of my work is anymore! Can you do books from your work on socila media and is there one base social media which knows everything which we post? This is what I would like to know and have back up, but would like to know if we could get print outs of what we have published anywhere? Have good weekend!

    • Hi Valerie! Thanks so much for the comment. I’m not quite sure I’ve seen any printable social media services just yet. If I come across one, I’ll be sure to share!

  • Lee

    This is an amazingly helpful article. thanks so much Kevan.
    I love buffer for it’s simplicity of use over all others. Have just started my free trial with SumAll thanks to this article. I am always enjoying the buffer articles as they are true value and I always learn something 🙂

  • Appreciable post. This will help small, big, mid sized and well as individual social media account to manage their account effectively. Visit Spinabell.com to manage your twitter account. One of the most powerful social media management tools I’m using.

  • Kristina Gebert Kolb

    For staying organized and working on optimizing my productivity in creative workflow I’ve been using Arc 9. I also use it to manage all my creative projects, especially ones that require direct client interaction. It’s definitely the easiest platform to use because, it combines all the best features of traditional collaboration software like; basecamp, vimeo, and dropbox, into a single web application.

    I love that not only is it great for video (which is nearly impossible to find these days), it handles everything else with ease. You can upload almost any type of image, coding/development script, pdf, text, or file without having to convert them back and forth. I am still most impressed by the features available for sharing, which instantly turn projects into fully branded presentations. You can invite clients (via email) to view your work in customized private portals, with annotation tools that encourage both written and visual feedback.

    I’ve found it to be the perfect solution for many of my creative workflow obstacles, and I really think other creatives would benefit from it as much as I have.

    http://www.arc9.com

  • Manish Gupta

    Try FloTape (www.flotape.com) as well as GrabInBox. Both are free and have awesome features. Different timezone scheduling, post tracking as well as activity list are awesome features in FloTape.

  • Love this post. Lots of great info and well-written. I am going to post it on my Facebook page for my social media management business, http://www.hamptonscreativemedia.com within the next few days 🙂

  • Robyn Aestival Hodgkiss

    Great post, really helped me today. I didnt know any of these tools before today and was just about to pay for a £40 a month dashboard until i found buffer! Thanks a lot

  • Tools can be helpful for a years,
    Specially buffer & dashboard !!

    >>>> http://www.coupsteer.com<<<<&lt;

  • Deltelectronics

    Hello,
    I am new about Facebook, but I was recently challenged to write a It’s my intention to write a simple web application, using PHP, which can log in imto a Facebook Profile and then retrieve and manage informations; unfortunatelly I really have any idea how to start so I am asking you if you can suggest me some tutorial from where I can pick up suggestions…. Thank you very much in advance.

  • Sanjana Singh

    Thanks for sharing tools for social media management. but i am check one tool not in this list.. i am using http://sociainsight.com. this tool is very good management and social insights.

  • as2ute

    Very informative article, thank you. I’ve since joined Buffer and finding it extremely useful. Just as an aside; is there a program available that can pull-in and display articles from sites I favour/follow (a bit like rss) so I can see relevant news all in one place?

    Keep up the good work everybody!

  • Bilbo

    Great Post. Every thing is elaborated in detail.
    Best Regards
    Bilbo
    http://www.fincyte.com/5-useful-social-media-apps-to-manage-business-online/

  • Pretty sure Feedient is shutting down 🙁

  • Mark Smith

    Hi! Great roundup!! I learned a lot! I work in an advertising agency and I need good advertising management software

  • Sanaya Trivedi

    Your list of tools is good, hopefully they work. But off-course thank you for sharing your information with us. I would will more than happy if they will work. For better social marketing tactics we can take help from http://acompworld.com/ it will really help you. Please continue writing and sharing your expert help with us.

  • Thank you very much for this detailed article.

  • aakash sohani

    Really a very nice article…..
    Recently at BETAPAGE, I have read about SHORTCUTZ (http://betapage.co/startup/shortcutz ). It gives you one simple overview of all social profiles at one place. It can also be helpful.

  • AndriaSmith008

    Hi Kevan , This is an awesome article to go through with good and brief description on social media management and tools. Even I have number of accounts but did not realize that they can be so beneficial in my marketing campaigns. However my management tool, Sociota enables automatic postings and bulk scheduling. So once again thanks for building up my marketing
    strategies through this article.

  • Andria Smith

    Hi Kevan , This is an awesome article to go through with good and brief description on social media management and tools. Even I have number of accounts but did not realize that they can be so beneficial in my marketing campaigns. However my management tool, Sociota enables automatic postings and bulk scheduling. So once again thanks for building up my marketing
    strategies through this article

  • Aarti Mehta

    Some great tips and tools mentioned in the blog. However, I would like to add some of my thoughts which I think can add value to the post. Outsourcing social media management services is a good option for businesses. Outsourcing support is a popular strategy to adopt because of the quality it generates.Although you can do it yourself with your in-house team but it is better to assign the job to someone who is better at doing it. Delivering excellent customer support is not a piece of cake, but with help of experienced players like GizmoSupport the job seems much more simple and at the same time quality is maintained.

  • sharedcount

    Hi there, I noticed that you are linking to Sharedcount.com on your article https://blog.bufferapp.com/how-to-manage-multiple-social-media-accounts . As that service is being discontinued, perhaps it could be useful to replace the link for Sharescount.com, a new working alternative. Keep up the great work!

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    Social Media Account
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  • Roshan Singh
  • Mikhail Trofimov

    Hi Kevan, thank you for the post!
    We’re created a social media tracking tool called Reveal (https://revealbot.com/). It send’s social media performance stats and reports to Slack. Could you please check it out and share your feedback? We’d be happy to provide you a free access to our paid features. Thanks!

  • Nice roundup Kevan! We are starting to love Buzzsumo. We also use Buffer for posting and probably always will.

    We also use our own product, Ghost Browser, for listening and interacting. As many people have commented here, listening and interacting tools tend to be too busy and too complicated. So we kept Ghost Browser simple…it acts like a regular browser, except you can log in to any web site with multiple accounts, save a set of tabs as a Project and fire that Project up any time and you’ll be logged in. It’s Chromium based, so the learning curve is about 1 minute.

  • Anish Prasad Sah

    As an Internet Marketer, I must say, it’s so important to manage your social media account the right way. And if you fail to do so, you are probably losing your potential customer. I’ve used most of the above mentioned social media managing tools, and Buffer is my favorite.

    Then I discovered this new tool called Social Daddy. It’s a great tool with great features. I’ve done a full hands on review for this tool:

    http://earnwithanish.com/social-daddy-review/

    I hope this tool might make it easy to handle all social media accounts at one place.

  • Lily Hagy

    This article is very nice and very helpful. Social media management is urgently needed and important. Doing social media management is not only to manage shared content, but to optimize social media in order to increase the profits of the organization. My suggestion, use of social media management services offered by http://www.pingwin.nl/online-marketing-diensten/social-media-management/ for strategy and agenda of social media content should be regulated and tools of the pingwin.nl very helpful to the promotion process and analyze the results of shared content. Hopefully this can help 🙂

  • Tin

    Wow! Indeed very nice post. I have been on PHLANX.com and they really helped me a lot especially on engagement and collaboration with influencers. Engagement calculator is a free tool on Phlanx.com a great way to check Instagram Engagement. Even event opportunities through Collab Call out on Phlanx.com we can check! Have a great day all 🙂

  • Michael Hansen

    Is there a way to post to multiple event calendars all at once across social media? I want to update my Google+ events page and my Facebook events page but I have enough trouble keeping up with my Facebook events page. Any suggestions or am I out of luck on this one?

  • lisa tully

    This article is very nice… It is a good information.