The key to making the most of social media is listening to what your audience has to say about you, analysing the data and, finally, reaching social media business intelligence; using all these insights to know your customers better and improve your marketing strategy.
If you are a social media rookie, this list of the Top 10 Free Social Media Monitoring Tools might come in handy. When looking for a tool, it’s a good idea to try a couple of them and choose the one that suits your needs best.
However, bear in mind that these tools are not an alternative to Enterprise-level tools, such as Brandwatch, which brought social media monitoring to a new level, offering a much higher variety of services and in-depth analysis. It all depends on your needs.
That being said, let’s take a look at some of the best free monitoring tools:
Hootsuite is one of the best free social media management tools available, and covers multiple social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, WordPress, Foursquare and Google+.
The weekly analytics reports and the excellent team management facility (delegating tasks, sending private messages) can be very useful when there’s more than one person handling the social media accounts.
TweetReach is the right tool for your business if you’re interested in monitoring how far your tweets travel, as TweetReach measures the actual impact and implications of social media discussions.
It is a good way of finding out who are your most influential followers, implicitly guiding you towards the right people you should be targeting when aiming to share and promote online content.
Klout is probably one of the most controversial social media analytics tools. There are those who hate it and claim that its scoring system is completely inaccurate, and that trying to interact with them is an impossible mission (curious thing as they provide interaction-measurement services).
On the other hand, some people find it useful, as it measures influence through engagement on Twitter and it is a good means of keeping an eye on what people think about your brand, and to see what influences them the most.
In this way, you can adjust your posts according to your target audience’s interests and increase your engagement rate.
Quite popular among social media enthusiasts, Social Mention monitors over one hundred social media sites. It is probably one of the best free listening tools on the market, as it analyses data in more depth and measures influence with 4 categories: Strength, Sentiment, Passion and Reach.
Twazzup is great for social media beginners looking for a Twitter monitoring tool. You just enter the name you want to track and you instantly get real-time updates, meaning the most active top influencers, top RTd photos and links, and most importantly, the top 10 keywords related to your search.
If aiming to get an overall view of a brand, Addictomatic can be very useful and as straightforward as Twazzup. The only difference is that Addictomatic focuses on a variety of platforms such as: Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, WordPress, Bing News, Delicious, Google, Ask.com, etc. It’s really useful for keeping an eye on recent industry developments and brand reputation.
HowSociable is a handy tool for measuring yours and your competitors’ social media presence.
A free account allows you to track 12 social sites, including Tumblr and WordPress. However, if you’re interested in 24 more, such as Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc. a pro account is required.
HowSociable’s approach is a bit different as it breaks down scores for different social media platforms, allowing you to see which social media platforms work best for you and which ones need further development.
This tool offers blog, Twitter and Facebook monitoring in 20 languages, as well as results graphs that you can play with. It allows you to choose the periods of time you are interested in monitoring.
It can be used for keeping an eye on your blogger activity, as they have around 200 million blogs in their database and they also provide the possibility of finding the latest trend terms related to your search.
TweetDeck covers the basic needs of any Twitter user, so is a good option for beginners. It’s a great tool for scheduling tweets and monitoring your interactions and messages, as well as tracking hashtags and managing multiple accounts. However, it lacks in regular updates and can be prone to bugs.
10) Reachli (formerly Pinerli)
As image and video is quickly becoming indispensable for many businesses, our last recommendation for you is Reachli; a tool that measures and optimises video and image content. It offers various features for measuring image and video effectiveness, and is particularly famous for its Pinterest analytics.
It should be clear if you’ve got this far that the listening tool space is a crowded one.
We’ve developed our own social media monitoring technology with larger, more sophisticated organisations in mind, but we hope this list for getting started is a useful foundation. If you are interested in seeing what more complex tools like Brandwatch can offer, the please do get in touch by requesting a demo below.