30 Tools Social Media Professionals Can’t Live Without


Managing a social media campaign, or 23, can be a daunting task.  Juggling through accounts, scheduling updates and obtaining metric goals are the name of the game.  In an effort to make our own lives easier, we went out and asked several top social media professionals what tools they used on a daily basis that they absolutely could not live without.  To our surprise,  there were not that many tools, software or extensions that were recommended more than once.   In fact, there was only one clear cut winner and out of the top professionals we have published, only 4 agreed on this one extension. The name of the extension will probably surprise you, too.  After that we have have a seven way tie, yes a seven way tie, for 2nd place.

We did have one expectation, which also contributed to us asking this question in the first place: That there is still a massive need in the social media management space for clear cut, comprehensive social media tools.  Especially when focusing on adding targeted followers to your accounts.  We just didn’t think it was going to be this blatantly clear.


Before we tell you the number one social media management tool, we want to highlight a few unknowns.  Some great tools that work very well, but are simply too young to be widely used at this point.



BuzzStream  is an amazing tool for researching contact information of influencers within a given niche.  The tool pulls contact emails from the entire website, allows you to take notes, highlight quality of their social following/website, and track your progress as you reach out to those people.  It also features a Google Alerts like search function, link monitoring, and imports emails from associated addresses into their UI so you can manage influencer outreach.

One of the coolest features (and there are many cool features) is the out reach app.  Simply visit the influential website, click the Buzzmarker link on your tool bar, and fill out the information.

BuzzStream 1


After filling out that information, the contact is save into your BuzzStream account, where you can then go monitor the amount of emails you have sent, responses received, inbound links from their website to yours and more.

Check out this awesome user interface:

BuzzStream 2




BuzzStream 3

This webapp seriously makes influencer outreach and networking scalable.



BuzzSumo , which is, as far as we know, unrelated to BuzzStream is a very simple tool that allows the user to glean some very valuable information about what types of content are shared on what social media platforms most often.


First, select your content filter.  Second, select your time frame.  Third, enter in the keyword.


BuzzSumo 1


After you have selected the type of content you are trying to look at your list is very quickly populated.  Here you can see what content type is receiving the most shares on the reporting networks.




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The number one, most used and must use social media tool?



CircleCount is an extension for managing your G+ marketing and following.  There are, in my opinion, three facets.  First, you can see who the most active, engaging and influential people on G+ are very easily.  You can break it down by gender, region etc.  This helps in allowing you to go after the people who are worth your time and that are posting relevant content.
The second facet is similar to Facebook analytics.  It allows you to see your most popular post, most re shared, most commented etc.  You can see break downs of when your posts are being engaged with:


CircleCount 2


And you can also see a graph of your followers, percent increase by day, and how those users are finding you:

CircleCount 3

The third facet is excellent for knowing who is sharing and engaging with your content within your network.  This tool alone has aided us in reaching out to the people who are already stoked on our content on their own.   Now G+ does offer this functionality outside of CircleCount, but CircleCount makes it super easy to access:

CircleCount 1

If you are on Google+ you should really get this extension loaded up as of yesterday.  If you aren’t on Google+ you should really get on that network as of last year.  It is no ghost town.

Do it

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The entire list of the top 30 tools Social Media Professionals cannot live without  is below, but first, take a look at what each individual pro we contacted had to say:


Amanda Blain Profile Image

Amanda Blain

CEO Girlfriend Social



For Google+ I use several websites and tools.

Circle Count offers a bunch of tracking features that brands can be using for that all important ROI, you can search users by tags, location, and engagement levels. It also help you see your popular content on Google plus, where you end up via “the most followed accounts” and also helpful things like who has shared you in a circle and all the circles you have shared. Without these its hard to keep track of where new followers are coming from.


All My Plus is a fabulous resource that pulls all your public data and allows you to see how you are doing since the start of Google+ . You can see things like number of comments on your posts or number of comment on posts you reshare of others. Your most popular post, shared, commented, and plussed are also here.  It’s helpful to be able to offer stats like I have Comments: 211,231 , Reshares: 225,744, and +1’s: 874,727 in just over 2 years of being on plus… And people think its dead here? 🙂
Circloscope is a chrome extension that I use to manage followers. They have both a premium($10) and a free version. It allows you to uncircle people who haven’t public posted in awhile, or are not circling you back and a bunch of other sorting features by where they live or work. Because there is a limit to the amount of people you can follow on Google Plus this extension is  helpful for the necessary cleaning that will have to happen once you start using the site more or adding a few circles.

Check out Amanda’s website at: www.amandablain.com


Gil Datz Profile Image

Gil Datz

CEO Uzu Media


1. Sprout Social, but Hootsuite would be similar. We tried both, but prefer Sprout Social.  Both tools are very similar, but the UI is so much better for Sprout Social. It also helps so much with scheduling and keeping up easily with analytics. The add-ons make Hootsuite more powerful, but we found we weren’t using them.

2. Facebook Analytics – Also very helpful for scheduling, tracking and advertising.

3. IFTTT – Great to be able to keep up with some of the things that don’t happen as easily in the platforms and other softwares that are out there. Can give you alerts to your phone through  text to remind you to do things when mentions or posts hit your networks.

You can find more about Gil at http://www.uzu-media.com


Randy Hilarski Profile Image

Randy Hilarski

Owner of High Impact Media Group

High Impact Marketing Group is a full service media agency with offices in Panama.

I am not a big tool user. I do leverage sites like Empire Avenue and JustRetweet to put a spark in my posts. For Twitter I use TweetDeck. Of course I use the Edge AdExchange to also drive some traffic when I have a post that would be relevant to tons of people.

Find can find more about Randy at http://www.randyhilarski.com


Jamie Barrientos Profile Image

Jamie Barrientos

PR/Social Media Coordinator at Six Flags


Top three tools Unified SocialKlout for business and Facebook Analytics

Connect with Jamie here: http://about.me/jamiebarrientos




Paul Steinbrueck Profile Image

Paul Steinbrueck

CEO OurChurch


The only “tool” I would have a hard time living without is Hootsuite. I use it to monitor and respond to Twitter DMs, @replies, lists and hashtags. Plus I use it to schedule tweets.

Take a look at Paul’s website at http://www.ourchurch.com


Harold Gardner Profile Image

Harold Gardner

Vice President at GPS Solutions


I have to admit that I have tried most of them, and I am not in love with any. I use Unfollowers to handle the twitter management stuff. I have played with CircloScope to help handle G+, but I got some odd results. I don’t like the auto-push to every network stuff; because my content/style are different on each network. I mostly think the time savings of that is offset by irritating folks with either bad content or format. The jokes & photos that I use on FB don’t really translate well to twitter. The GIFS on G+ are much less impressive on FB or twitter.  I do use Avenue.io to help manage my EA portfolio.

Harold Gardner gives social media tips on his blog


Terri Nakamura Profile Image

Terri Nakamura

Owner at Nakamura Graphic Design


Sites like Social Bro, Twitter Counter, SocialOomph, and TweetAdder, some of which allow you to follow specific types of people who might likely follow back, and to auto-follow anyone who follows you. A problem with auto-following is, you can find yourself following some pretty yucky people.

Also, there are people who specifically target accounts and follow whomever they follow, again with the hope that people will follow back.

Hear more from Terri on her blog 


Lauren Cohrs Profile Image

Lauren Cohrs

Copywriter at drumBEAT


 In response to your question, Google Analytics wins in my book, hands down. This is especially useful when gauging the effectiveness of your activity on social media sites. Many times you will find that referrals from certain social media platforms greatly exceed those of another for your site (i.e. Most drumBEAT blogs have built stronger traction on G+ than Twitter).


Google Analytics captures data for observing a range of areas such as social, content, and mobile performance. For this reason, I find the tool extremely useful for ensuring that your website and content is doing the trick from social media referrals down to keywords.


However, if I could offer one piece of advice it would be that website owners must understand the importance of utilizing this data to enhance and refine their sites. Simply doing a checkup won’t get you too far. Tools like Google Analytics merely aid in divulging areas that need improvement. It is the website owner’s and marketing/web dev team’s duty to address the issues and take their site to new limits!


See what Lauren is up to over at www.drumbeatmarketing.com


lewis shields Profile Image

lewis shields

Head of Digital & Creative at Flagship Consulting


My top three tools for day to day social are Hootsuite, Google Analytics and Google Alerts.

Lewis Shields currently works at Flagship Consulting 


Christine DEGRAFF Profile Image

Christine DEGRAFF

Founder at Websketching Web Design


I have shifted focus almost completely to Google Plus at this point; therefore, the social media tools that I use the most are those that help me manage my circles, track my progress and better understand my social network. Here is my list of tools that I cannot do without:


I use Circloscope to build and manage my circles. I don’t play the follow/unfollow game, but I do use it to clear out profiles that are inactive and to create circles of people that are engaging with me and resharing my posts as well as to find new people to circle. I recently became a partner of Circloscope and will be relaunching in January. The new and improved release will include a free version for all users.


I use CircleCount to better understand Google+. This is a free tool  that provides you with analytics, statistics and other information so you can track your growth on Google+ for your profile, pages and communities. I also use the free Chrome extension so I can easily get stats by viewing a user’s hovercard, which I use to help determine whether or not to “dig deeper” and read their profile before circling.


I just recently began using NOD3x but can see the extreme value of learning to use this incredible free data mining tool to better analyze my social network. I am already tracking several projects to understand how they are being shared and to learn who the “connectors” are in my network as well as to find people to circle based on their interests.

Another tool that I only recently began using but already cannot do without is Steady Demand. This terrific tool provides you with analytics, insights, reports and alerts, as well as detailed analysis of the quality of your posts and which types of posts send the most social signals to your website.

Christine DeGraff is an entrepreneur w/15 yrs experience in web development, SEO and Internet marketing. Her Google+ profile is ranked among the Top 300 US women by CircleCount.com and her Klout/Kred scores put her in the Top 1%. Follow Christine on the web at www.ChristineDeGraff.com and on Google Plus at http://google.com/+ChristineDeGraff.


Kristina Allen Profile Image

Kristina Allen

Head of Social Marketing


One tool that I really like is AdEspresso. It’s a Facbeook advertising tool that helps you create, test and optimize your Facebook ads. I currently consult with them, but even before I started working with them I was using the platform for clients.

It’s great because Facebook ads allow you to get really granular with your targeting options but with AdEspresso you can easily a/b test almost any aspect of not just your ad copy/creative but also your targeting. AdEspresso also allows you to generate the most comprehensive ad reports I’ve ever seen for Facebook ads.

Another social media tool I really love is Sprout Social. I use it to manage social media accounts for all of my clients in my dashboard!


Michael Q Todd Profile Image

Michael Q Todd

Author & Blogger


SocialBro, ManageFlitter, OneQube and TweetAdder are good in their different ways

Find more about Michael Q Todd at http://www.michaelqtodd.com/


Alessandro Folghera Profile Image

Alessandro Folghera

Social Media & Web Marketing Strategist


Web apps:





Mobile Apps  to verify who is not following me back:
WhoUnfollow (pinterest)
Instafollow for Instagram
Followers Pro


See what Alessandro is up to at http://www.bizonweb.it


Walter Groth Profile Image

Walter Groth



 I don’t use “special” tools I would say. The number of my followers increased steadily, first slow, then much faster due to being shared as well in public circles. However, that wouldn’t help you if you don’t provide content of value … as quickly as you are circled, you are uncircled again. My “secret” if you so will is simply being me, being authentic, not repeating other peoples opinion, but rather say what I feel is the right thing to say. The foundation to all this is my lifelong experience in a number of fields. When you do this, there will be always people who like you and what you stand for, and others who don’t and that is fine.


Also, my blog helped quite a lot and is shared by a number of people to their audiences.


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11 thoughts on “30 Tools Social Media Professionals Can’t Live Without

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