Social media has become an essential marketing channel for many businesses. But with so many different social media platforms out there, it can be hard to build and manage campaigns. You have to deal with your pages on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. Fortunately, tools like the Buffer app have been developed to help business manage their social media accounts and campaigns.
What Exactly Is Buffer?
Buffer is a social management platform for businesses. It allows you to schedule posts across all the major social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn). It is designed so that you can compress all your social media posting activity in one go and have it automatically post to specified times throughout the week. This makes it so that you don’t have to log into each platform and post manually.
Buffer App Feature List
Aside from its main functionality, the Buffer app has many additional features that will help you get more out of your social media marketing.
1. Custom Scheduling for Each Platform and Profile
Unlike other similar tools in the marketplace, the Buffer app allows you to build custom posting schedules for each platform and social media profile. That means that you can schedule custom posts for your Pinterest account, two different Twitter accounts, and even your Facebook account. This feature is essential for social media marketers that are on every major social media platform or manage multiple businesses/brands.
2. Optimal Scheduling Features
One of the things that many social media marketers have to figure out is the times to post to their accounts. You need to test different times and take a look at your numbers over time. Thankfully, the Buffer app has an optimal scheduling feature that provides you with the optimal posting times based on the last 5000 interactions for each of your social media profiles. There’s no need to set up analytics outside of the platform to figure out your optimal posting times.
3. Visual Scheduling Calendar
The Buffer app allows you to look at all your schedule posts on a visual calendar. You can schedule your posts months ahead in advance. If you need to go back and make edits, simply click on existing posts to make changes. This user interface allows you to really understand your entire social media strategy from a bird’s eye view and quickly build extensive campaigns to make your life easier.
4. Social Media Analytics
Like any other advertising or marketing channel, you need to know your numbers to optimize your campaigns. Therefore, Buffer has a built-in analytics tool that shows you all the engagement metrics to learn what’s working and what’s not. So, you’ll be able to see shares, retweets, likes, mentions, comments, plays and clicks for each individual post.
Buffer also provides advanced analytics that allows you to view your metrics by the date and compare different elements to see how post frequency affects engagement numbers. Furthermore, this kind of information will help guide future social media marketing campaigns.
5. Share Content on the Fly with the Buffer Extension
One of the most helpful tools that come with the Buffer app is the Buffer browser extension. If you come across an article, tweet, image or video that you want to share with your followers, you can simply open up the Buffer extension and share it right there on the spot. There’s no need to login to Buffer or any of your social media accounts. It will even let you pull up the title, upload an image/video file and shorten the URL in one go.
6. Buffer Integrates with Many Popular Apps
It’s very likely that you have many marketing and business related in your arsenal. Buffer will help you take these apps even further as they allow integration with more than 60 apps. Some of the popular ones in the list include IFTTT, Feedly, Pocket, Zapier, Tweetcaster, and Followerwonk.
Imagine using any one of your custom RSS feeds from your Feedly account and integrating that with Buffer to post the content to all of your social media accounts. Or using Scoop.it to curating content based on keyword searches and posting them with Buffer.
Pros and Cons of Buffer
While there are many benefits of signing up to the Buffer app service, there are also some cons you need to be aware of. Let’s start out with the positive.
- Allows you to easily curate and repurpose content with the Buffer browser extension and the Rebuffer feature that moves old posts back into your schedule.
- Helps further automate your social media activity with the RSS integration. Moreover, you can grab the RSS feeds of your favorite blogs and post their content on set intervals.
- The advanced analytics feature really offers in-depth information that other tools simply don’t offer.
- Social media analytics feature is only available for the small business package. It should be available in the basic package.
- You need to use separate social media tools to interact with your followers and manage conversations.
- There are no cheaper options for business owners that want to use the calendar, RSS, and analytics features but don’t need the larger post scheduling capacities.
Overall, Buffer will prove to an essential tool for every social media marketer and small business owner that’s on social media. The main functionality of the app is being able to schedule posts to your social media accounts. This will solve the main problem that most people have with social media marketing.
For example, it organizes your time on finding the perfect moments to post to and manage multiple accounts. Furthermore, the other features really do add a lot of value and help you make the right social media marketing decisions.
Buffer streamlines the social media process. Also, it allows you to be more efficient and effective with your campaigns. Finally, it frees up a lot of time so that you can focus on all the other aspects of your business. The Buffer app isn’t perfect.
However, the team has done a lot to make improvements over the past few years and are continuing to improve their service. Buffer has proven that their app really is the better way to share on social media.
Image sources: Buffer