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Best Tools for Analytics in Social Media

Top Tools for Analytics in Social Media: For companies and individuals, analyzing information from social media is vital for marketing. Expert Rob Enderle reviews his favorite social media analytics tools and explains why each tool is valuable.

Online marketing has become a necessity in today’s competitive world. Most of the marketers use social media to promote their products, brands and services. It is very important to know how effective your business has become through these platforms because a single thing can make a big difference. That is why we have created the list of Best Social Media Analytics Tools for you so that you can choose the best tool for measuring your brand performance in social media.

What are social media analytics?

First, before we jump into some of the awesome social media analytics tools available, I wanted to quickly talk a little about how we define social media analytics.

At Buffer, we see social media analytics as the gathering of data from social media platforms to help inform us and guide our marketing strategy. By paying close attention to social media analytics, you can measure your performance against your social media goals.

Social media analytics tools are usually used to complement social media management tools. The latter lets you plan and schedule your social media content while the former enables you to measure the performance and informs your strategy.

Why you need social media analytics tools

Social media analytics tools help you create performance reports to share with your team, stakeholders, and boss — to figure out what’s working and what’s not. They should also provide the data you need to assess your social media marketing strategy on both macro and micro levels.

They can help you answer questions like:

  • Is it worth it for my business to keep posting on Pinterest?
  • What were our top posts on LinkedIn this year?
  • Should we post more on Instagram next month?
  • Which network drove the most brand awareness for our product launch?
  • What kind of posts do my followers like to comment on?
  • And many more.

 Hootsuite Analytics

Key benefits: Performance data from every social network in one place with easy-to-understand reports

Paid or free? Paid tool

Skill level: Beginner to intermediate

Best for: Business owners who run their own social media, social media managers at small-to-medium sized businesses, marketing teams

Most social media management platforms have built-in analytics tools. We hope you’ll forgive us for saying Hootsuite’s reporting capabilities are our favorite. But it’s the tool we know and love best.

viewing social media analytics on multiple networks in Hootsuite

Imagine Twitter analytics, Instagram analytics, Facebook analytics, Pinterest analytics, LinkedIn analytics all in one place. Hootsuite Analytics offers a complete picture of all your social media efforts, so you don’t have to check each platform individually.

It saves time by making it easy to compare results across networks.

Social posts metrics:

  • Clicks
  • Comments
  • Reach
  • Engagement rate
  • Impressions
  • Shares
  • Saves
  • Video views
  • Video reach
  • And more

Profile metrics:

  • Follower growth over time
  • Negative feedback rate
  • Profile visits
  • Reactions
  • Overall engagement rate
  • And more

Best time to post recommendations:

Ever spend a bunch of time writing and designing a social post only to have it fall completely flat? There could be a lot of reasons for that. But one of the most common reasons this happens is posting at the wrong time. A.k.a. Posting when your target audiences are not online or not interested in engaging with you.

This is why our Best Time to Publish tool is one of the most popular features of Hootsuite Analytics. It looks at your unique historical social media data and recommends the most optimal times to post based on three different goals:

  1. Engagement
  2. Impressions
  3. Link clicks
Best time to publish feature in Hootsuite Analytics

Most social media analytics tools will only recommend posting times based on engagement. Or they’ll use data from universal benchmarks, instead of your unique performance history.

Other cool things you can do with Hootsuite Analytics:

  • Customize report templates for only the metrics you care about
  • Get reports on your competitors
  • Track the productivity of your social team (response times, and resolution time for assigned posts, mentions, and comments)
  • Monitor mentions, comments, and tags related to your business to avoid PR disasters before they happen

Hootsuite Analytics is included in the Hootsuite professional plan, with you can try for free for 30 days.

Buffer Analyze

Buffer Analyze: Buffer’s Facebook and Instagram Analytics and Reporting Tool

Buffer Analyze is our social media analytics tool for online brands that want to make better decisions about their social media strategy and measure their results without feeling overwhelmed.

3 cool features:

  • Instagram Stories analytics
  • Posting strategy recommendations
  • Create professional reports in as few as two clicks

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 14 days
    • Overview and charts for key metrics
    • Posts and Stories analytics
    • Audience insights
    • Answers
    • Easy-to-use report builder

Pricing options: $35 and $50 per month

 UTM parameters

Key benefit: See how much web traffic and conversions your social media channels and campaigns generate (to be used with a web analytics platform like Google Analytics).

Paid or free: Free tool

Skill level: intermediate

Best for: all social media managers

Example of a UTM parameter for sharing a Hootsuite blog post

UTM parameters are not a standalone social media analytics tool, but they are essential in helping you set up Google Analytics (or another web analytics platform) to best measure social performance.

Put simply, UTM parameters are short pieces of code appended to the links you share on social media. They very precisely tell you how many people interact with your content and end up on your website.

In the screenshot above, the UTM parameter is everything that comes after the question mark.

UTM parameters aren’t essential if you’re only concerned about reporting on social media performance in terms of engagement, followers, etc. But if you want to take it to the next level, UTM parameters + Google Analytics will give you more precise data on which social media content and channels drive traffic and conversions.

Pro tip: You don’t need to know how to write code to include them on your social media posts. If you use a social media management platform like Hootsuite, you can automatically generate UTM parameters in seconds.

 Keyhole

Keyhole is a social media analytics tool that automatically collects social media data & creates reports for you. It excels at four key things:

  • Getting you inside the minds of your customers.
  • Simplifying your reporting — so you can easily share results with your team.
  • Showing you what attracts your consumers’ attention.
  • Saving you a huge amount of time — as you don’t have to crawl different social platforms looking for and reporting your social analytics.

These are critical features to look out for when making social media analytics software comparisons. 

As Neil Patel says, “This tool (Keyhole) does a lot of things others can’t. And as a bonus, it’s extremely user-friendly.”

The tool shows you when your users are most active, so you get to see your audience’s best engagement days and times. 

Keyhole Dashboard - Social Media Engagement

Using Keyhole, you can find, identify, track, and reach out to your influencers:

Keyhole Dashboard - Influencers

You can also conduct a detailed and in-depth sentiment analysis of social media posts over time:

Keyhole dashboard - sentiment analysis

With Keyhole, you get to see the number of impressions, reach, posts, and engagements that certain accounts or hashtags are getting. You are also able to identify key influencers who get the highest engagement rates and the number of followers in specific industries and reach out to them right from the tool.

And if you ever want to know the demographics of your hashtag users or account interactors or followers, Keyhole shows you those as well — including the percentage of positive and negative sentiments of your followers.

Also, Keyhole customers can publish and schedule unlimited posts each month from all the accounts included in their plan. Managing anywhere from 3 accounts to unlimited accounts depending on your needs.

Pricing: Custom pricing for businesses of all sizes.

 Agorapulse

AgoraPulse is one of the greatest social media analytics tools that helps you identify your best content and see what users need. And we all know that social media sucks time like a plague… But AgoraPulse is good medicine for it.

This tool is a huge timesaver for social media marketers. It helps you execute virtually all your social media tasks in one place.

agorapulse - sentiment analysis tools

Pro: You’ll be impressed by Agorapulse’s Twitter reporting functionality. The tool generates specific reports for your Tweets, mentions, retweets, and favorites as well as other engagement stats. This makes social listening pretty easy for you. 

You can also post or schedule content across all your profiles at once. Plus, the tool’s chrome plugin helps you do all this at once — saving you time.

Con: Agorapulse’s listening is only available for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. So, if you’re interested in tracking LinkedIn and Pinterest you’ll have to use another tool.

Pricing ranges from $99 – $199 per month.

Conclusion

Social media analytics tools can help you measure your campaign’s social ROI as well as track vital metrics like engagement, mentions and lead generation. It can also monitor the growth of your audience across multiple platforms to see how your social media marketing efforts are paying off.

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