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3 tools to schedule your social media posts

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal | Aug. 8, 2014
Take the struggle out of social with tools that help you plan your posts and juggle multiple accounts.

Klout can even help you decide what to share. Click "Create" in the left menu, and Klout gives you a curated list of trending content based on your interests. You can add and remove interests in the Content Filters section, and you can also filter through content by selecting and de-selecting different topics. Klout highlights recently-published content as being "Hot Off the Press," so you can jump in and be a conversation-starter.

Klout requires a little more investment than FutureTweets. It's a great choice, though, since it offers useful analytics-based tools, which take some of the guesswork out of your social media strategy. If you're working for both yourself and another business, though, you'll need to set up a separate Klout accounts--Klout only lets users add one of each network per account.

Social media managers swear by HootSuite for a reason: It's one of the most robust social media management tools around. HootSuite lets you schedule posts across multiple networks and also offers a quick "AutoSchedule" feature for people who are more concerned with having a constant stream of updates, rather than choosing the exact day and time.

HootSuite's main screen focuses on customized streams from your various social networks. A stream might be, for example, Twitter @mentions, Twitter Direct Messages, or Facebook News Feed Photos. The streams screen is also divided into tabs, so you can group similar streams together.

To post from HootSuite, simply start typing in the text box at the top of the screen. The text box will expand so you can choose which profile to post from. If there's one profile you use frequently, you can "pin" it, and it will be the default whenever you type an update.

HootSuite offers link shortening and the ability to add images, files, and locations, as well as options to target specific countries on Twitter. You can also choose privacy options when posting to Facebook or Google.

HootSuite lets you choose a day and time (you can pick minutes in increments of 5) and gives the option to have an email sent to you when the post publishes. All currently scheduled posts can be found in the Publisher menu, where you can edit, delete, or reschedule them before they go live. HootSuite's AutoSchedule feature automatically posts tweets between certain hours on certain days (customizable in the AutoSchedule menu) and spaces them out so you'll reach the largest number of followers. For example, you can set up AutoSchedule to post five posts per day on weekdays, between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

HootSuite is more complicated and takes longer to set up than the other services in this round-up, but it's worth the extra legwork. Free users can add up to three social networks to one HootSuite account, including LinkedIn, Google+ Pages, and Foursquare. HootSuite Pro starts at $8.99/month and lets you add up to 100 social network accounts/profiles and bulk schedule up to 350 updates at once by uploading a spreadsheet.


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