A quick Internet search will reveal that there are almost more social media tools than there are One Direction fans, and the number is growing each day. As a business owner, there is a pressing need to reach your target demographic by surfing the social media wave, but are your efforts oriented in the right direction? Not only must you contend with a vast number of competitors, but also with the ever decreasing attention spans of consumers. Is your content viral or a virus?

Here are 10 of our favorite social media tools that can help you make a difference:


Buffer can be used for scheduling and sharing your posts to LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, and Facebook throughout the day – at optimal times. It's a simple tool, and it includes detailed analytics that will tell you what is working when, why, and where. Its best feature is a browser extension that enables you to "buffer" and share photos, web pages, and even text excerpts.


In our opinion, the predominant URL shortener is the best one when it comes to analytics and tracking. When you need superior competitive analysis, bit.ly can provide it. Bit.ly URLs should be implemented when possible, and don't be afraid to liberally use their "+" feature at the end of the URL to see who has clicked on your link and how many times.


IFTTT stands for "if this then that". An extremely useful and free service that enables you to connect tools, apps, and other Internet connected devices with one another without having to learn code. Small tasks can be automated, and it's simple to use. In 2015, PC Mag named it Editor's Choice for Productivity Services.


Edgar is an intelligent content curation and scheduling tool that will make sure your social media updates don't go to waste. You create categories for your posts, devise your own posting schedule, and add social updates to your library. Edgar will take care of the posting for you. Because Edgar's library can grow indefinitely, you can share an unlimited number of content from other blogs, in addition to your own original content.


HootSuite is one of the most popular third party social media platforms on the market today – for good reason! This valuable analytics tool offers reports, metrics, and visual streams for many profiles of all the leading social media networks and online presences that a small to medium business might need to track. You can monitor what people are saying about your brand or business and respond instantaneously. Multiple streams from different networks, like Twitter, Facebook, and Google+, can be viewed simultaneously, and replies or updates can be posted directly. HootSuite has been around since 2008, and with its maturity comes an invaluable array of tools and capabilities.

Follower Wonk

Maintaining your business's Twitter account can certainly be challenging, but it is important to ensure that you are interacting with and following with important figures in your industry, while simultaneously trimming spam/inactive accounts. Enter Follower Wonk. Just a few of the features that this analytics tool has to offer include analyzing and searching your social graph, comparing it with similar accounts, and ranking your business's followers in order of importance – amongst many others. Follower Wonk has won much praise for its user friendly interface, visualization features, and comprehensive infographics. Follower Wonk offers a free, 30-day trial, so you can see if this handy tool will work for your business.

Sprout Social

For social media managers, Sprout Social is a dream come true. What makes it stand out from its competitors is its overall simplicity and its user friendly interface. Sprout Social serves as a one stop shop for Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Google+ accounts. It can also connect to Feedly, so that you can quickly share an article from your RSS feeds. The dashboard of Sprout Social is crafted around six, self-explanatory tabs: Reports, Discovery, Publishing, Feeds, Messages, and Home. The Home tab provides a quick summary of all of this information. With its capabilities and features, Sprout Social is a jewel in the world of chaos.


Although Google Reader has officially died, Feedly is now ready to step into the limelight. This RSS reader is free to use, and it serves as a browser bookmark for Safari, Firefox, and Google Chrome. News feeds are sent directly to your browser, and Feedly seamlessly syncs with both iOS and Android apps. In order to use Feedly, you must have a Google account. Highlighted stories feature links and thumbnail images that enable you to quickly mark a story as read or save it for later. Feedly has won much praise for its simplistic and streamlined interface and the easy way it allows users to discover new content.


Everyone reads blogs these days, and a recent study by Blogher discovered that 61% of consumers have made a purchase based upon recommendations made by a blog. Inkybee offers a suite of research and discovery tools that makes finding the most relevant market influencers simple. In addition to manual blog searches, Inkybee offers an ongoing blog discovery tool that continuously searches the web to find relevant blogs and new influencer opportunities. Blogger influence can be filtered and sorted based on different metrics. Inkybee also specializes in Twitter influencer analysis, which opens a whole new realm of possibilities for marketers.


Last, but not least, comes Cyfe. In order to be successful, it is imperative for marketers to know what is and is not working for their brand. This calls for you to have an arsenal of analytics tools at your disposal. Cyfe creates detailed reports that are related to AdWords, SEO, brand mentions, and Google Analytics. With its low prices, even small business owners can afford to use it. Cyfe also creates personalized dashboards where this data can be stored and reviewed. This do-it-all tool goes one step further and provides assistance with competitor and industry research that helps convert trends and data into profitable insights.

So what do you think? Is there a social media tool you think we should add to our list? Let us know and drop a line in the comments section below.