With companies using a growing number of social media channels to communicate with their stakeholders it is crucial that the content and tone of these communications is integrated and the results aggregated where possible. This blog will discuss how to best manage your social media in order to achieve the greatest results with the least investment (both monetary and time).

The best place to start for any company is to set up a Google Analytics account, which will help you trace visitors coming to the website from social media channels. In addition to Google Analytics employing an efficient social media management tool helps pull multiple social media channels into one, easy-to-follow dashboard.

There are many different tools available to tackle the issue of social media management, but this blog will deal primarily with the two we have the most experience with: HootSuite and Crowdbooster.

HootSuite accumulates your social media networks into customisable tabs, making it easy to monitor the stream of information within specific feeds. A basic account is free for 2 users and allows for up to 5 social networks to be added to the account. This tool is best for actively managed accounts and allows insights into your audience. Whilst HootSuite is rated highly across the board, Crowdbooster seems to offer further benefits still.

Crowdbooster, launched in August of this year, offers deeper insights into what the analytics actually mean, giving real-time feedback, thus improving the content, timing and engagement of communications. The system also identifies influencers, allowing you to discover new people to target and segment your followers on Twitter more efficiently. In addition, Crowdbooster works with bit.ly to aggregate data on click-throughs and links. A major benefit over HootSuite is that Crowdbooster keeps track of all your tweets, no matter where you tweet from. A basic account (AKA 'personal account') with Crowdbooster is also free, enabling up to 3 social networks to be added and giving 1 user access.

However, Crowdbooster is positioned slightly differently to other social media management tools. Moreover, HootSuite provides a dashboard overview of your social media activity, while Crowdbooster tells you what to do with it. Thus, we suggest using a combination of the two to complement the results in each and gain a more thorough overview of what measurable outcomes your social media can attain.

Are there any tools that you think are more effective?

Have you had a different experience with these social media management tools?