Updated 9/20/2017: This post has been updated to include the most recent information about each of the products featured.
Hootsuite is one of the leaders in social media marketing software, coming in at No. 2 on Capterra’s Top 20 Most Popular Social Media Marketing Software list.
Hootsuite allows its customers to promote their brand through social media channels, generate quality leads, and increase social traffic to their websites, all within one platform.
Within just six years of being in business this Vancouver-based social media management startup passed the ten million user milestone.
Hootsuite users can connect their company’s Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and other social media accounts through the system in order to schedule posts, monitor brand mentions, reply to messages, and more.
Hootsuite’s pricing model includes a free plan for individual users, a $19.99/month plan for small marketing teams, as well as custom pricing on an unlimited access plan for enterprise companies.
Despite the fact that Hootsuite is among the most popular social media management tools on Capterra’s Top 20 list, and it has 4.5 out of five stars in user ratings, it may not be the right tool for everyone.
We did some investigating and found nine alternatives to Hootsuite, based on their popularity, features, and media mentions.
Buffer in use on various devices
Price: Free – $399 per month
This California startup is taking the social sphere by storm. In only seven years since Buffer was founded, it has gained over 2 million active users. Over 2,500 of those users are publishers and agencies including brands such as About.com, Fortune, and Business Insider.
With a fully distributed team working from multiple countries and continents, you can bet they’ll be fixing bugs and responding to all your questions from all around the world.
What sets Buffer apart:
- The ability to schedule posts to your Pinterest account for paid plans
- RSS feed integration for all paid plans
- Preset your posting times for each platform, profile, and day of the week in advance
- Share relevant web content with your audience in one click while browsing with the browser extension
- The Pablo extension allows users to easily overlay text on images
Capterra users give Buffer an overall rating of 4.5 out of five stars. Reviewers rave about the customer support and easy-to-use interface. My colleague Andrew recently compared Buffer, with Hootsuite, writing that Buffer is a “simpler and streamlined scheduling tool.”
Drawbacks include limited functionality with the free version, and a few users complain that posting correctly to Instagram takes a bit of work. Andrew points out that Buffer supports fewer platforms than Hootsuite. However, Buffer does integrate with social automation tools, including IFTTT and Zapier, which help you automate posting.
Have you used Buffer? Leave a review.
Screenshot of Sprout Social’s “Smart Inbox”
Price: $99 – $249 per month
If you’re looking for a cleaner dashboard than Hootsuite’s and some additional analytics with all your posts, Sprout Social might be right up your alley.
Sprout Social not only helps you draft, schedule, queue, and post messages in the social realm, but it also allows you to assign and manage tasks among team members and track and measure your social performance.
What sets Sprout Social apart:
- In-depth analytics connected with Google Analytics
- Brand monitoring
- Reporting capabilities at no additional cost
- Integrated social media image editor
PC Mag editors give Sprout Social an “excellent” rating, but they do point out that its social listening and influencer identification tools aren’t as feature-rich as true enterprise brand monitoring tools.
Capterra reviewers report that Sprout Social is highly usable and love how readable and robust the reporting is. Some users complain about pricing and about bugs and crashes, especially when using it on mobile.
Have you used Sprout Social? Leave a review.
Screenshot of Cision
In March 2015, global media intelligence software company Cision got a major social media monitoring and posting boost when it acquired Viralheat.
Now Cision users can schedule posts to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+, Tumblr, and Foursquare from within the tool. They can also attach images to posts with a drag-and-drop interface.
What sets Cision apart:
- Access to custom number of connected social accounts
- Ability to customize number of users
- Integrates with SugarCRM, Desk.com, Zendesk, Google Analytics, and Omniture
Capterra user reviews are decidedly mixed. Some love the customer service; some hate it. Some love the interface, while others hate the way things are laid out. More than one user complains about the pricing.
If you need a PR list-building tool, Cision has the advantage of having a pretty robust social media management tool built-in. But if you don’t need a PR list-building tool, you won’t want to pay for Cision just to use its social media management tools.
Have you used Cision? Leave a review.
Posting options in SocialOomph
Pricing: Free – $17.97 per month
Canadian-based productivity solution company, SocialOomph, allows users to schedule updates, find influencers to follow, and monitor social media activity. Originally a Twitter-focused solution, in 2009 SocialOomph expanded into additional networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn, RSS feeds, blogs, Plurk, and App.net for paid users.
What sets SocialOomph apart:
- Schedule and publish blog posts from unlimited sources
- Advanced direct message management to filter out spam
- Unlimited accounts—even with free version
- Offers a WYSIWYG editor for in-software editing
- Auto-responder functionality
Have you used SocialOomph? Leave a review.
Screenshot of a user’s TweetDeck
This completely free service allows users to manage an unlimited number of Twitter accounts. You can create a custom Twitter experience by organizing lists, searches, and activities.
TweetDeck allows you to find what you’re searching for through topics, events, and hashtags, and you can refine all your search results through filters at the top of each timeline.
What sets TweetDeck apart:
- Can be downloaded as desktop software
- No limit to the number of Twitter accounts used
- Option to set up audio and pop-up notifications
- Completely free
- Can be combined with Buffer
Insights dashboard in Sprinklr
According to posts on Quora, an average Sprinklr customer pays around $100,000 per year. Many pay more.
Simplify and automate cross-channel social media management with Sprinklr. Sprinklr is the first social enterprise public company out of New York. Users can post reviews to a website, and respond to complaints on their Facebook profiles or tweets directed toward the brand.
The cool thing about Sprinklr is that you pay per module. Meaning, if you do content marketing but not paid advertising, you can pay for one and not the other. Besides those two, additional module options include social media management and website management. Audience management offers information about your all your audiences in one place.
What sets Sprinklr apart:
- Social content includes Facebook apps, polls, quizzes, social ads, and web apps
- Content translation available for international reach in over 70 languages
- In-depth analysis with customized and exportable reports
- Goes beyond just posting content—monitor and listen to all your social channels
Capterra reviews are not numerous, but overall positive.
Have you used Sprinklr? Leave a review.
Creating a new post in SocialPilot
Pricing: $8.33 – $25 per month
California-based company SocialPilot helps users automate their social media postings across multiple accounts, allowing businesses to increase their brand awareness, reach, and customer engagement.
For companies selling products online, SocialPilot will actually help you automate product additions and updates on various sites. Also, SocialPilot users can automate mobile app promotions and connect to app stores.
What sets SocialPilot apart:
- Integrate your iOS App Store and Google Play Store accounts
- Flexible schedules for posting and campaigns
- Google Chrome plug-in with Bitly integration
- 300+ supported apps
Capterra users like the pricing, support, analytics, and user interface but complain about it not posting on Snapchat or YouTube (though most social media management platforms don’t) and only providing analytics for Facebook and Twitter.
Have you used SocialPilot? Leave a review.
Send Social Media’s message box, where users can choose the platforms where a new message will appear
Pricing: $59 – $1000 per month
Send Social Media allows users to bring together social media, email, and SMS technologies to help you monitor your brand and track results.
Some top features in Send Social Media include the ability to post to and connect with over 30+ social networks at once, schedule updates, send bulk and group messages, and engage with your followers.
You can also use Send Social Media for your email marketing campaigns by using one of their preset email templates. Then, you can personalize and schedule emails to best fit your needs.
If you’re looking for SMS features, Send Social Media allows you to send and receive SMS texts from anywhere in the world. You can even schedule messages for a predetermined time or on a recurring basis.
What sets Send Social Media apart:
- Ability to combine social media, email, and SMS capabilities in one single platform
- In-depth analytics and monitoring for additional social networks such as Yelp and Citysearch reviews
- Can also be used as a CRM
Capterra reviewers love how full-featured it is. There is one complaint around bugginess and a lack of concern on the part of customer support.
Have you used Send Social Media? Leave a review.
Social listening insights in Salesforce Marketing Cloud Social Studio
Pricing: $1,000 – $12,000 per month
One of the more expensive alternatives on our list, Salesforce Marketing Cloud is a premium product that goes far beyond just social media content publishing.
Not only can you connect and publish content through a wide-range of social networks, you can also utilize Salesforce Marketing Cloud across email, mobile, website experiences, and connected products.
What sets Salesforce Social Studio apart:
- Publish custom content on Facebook; advertise on Twitter
- Send customers a discount when they’re near your store through push notifications
- Build a single view of your customers and integrate with sales and service cloud apps
- Workflow rules to route tasks to different team members
For further details and comparisons, check out our full database of social media marketing software. With the ability to filter by features, number of users, and more, we can help you find the system that best fits your needs.
Are we missing something? If there’s an alternative to Hootsuite that you’re currently using and loving – please share with us in the comments below. Happy posting!
Looking for Social Media Monitoring software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Social Media Monitoring software solutions.