Four Incredibly Useful Features of Sprout Social

Published: February 10, 2017  by 

 

 

In a world where everyone has their preference of social media management tools, it can be next to impossible for one tool to distance itself from the pack.  You’ve most likely fallen in love with the tool that you were introduced to first, right?  It’s what you learned on, what you’re comfortable with and, frankly, you don’t feel like change is necessary.

I bet you’re thinking “Surely there can’t be a better tool out there that can keep me organized across multiple platforms, put me in touch with my fans, and give me detailed reports down to the percentage of just how well my social media is working for my business?  You’re just trying to sell me something, you creep!”

I’ve used three different social media management platforms in the last three years, all of which get the job done.  However, there is only one that gets the job done smarter. Sprout Social does so many things in an intelligent, simple way that it’s hard not to feel like you’re learning something new about your business every time you use it. [Full Disclosure: I am a *Sprout Social All Star and Sprout Social power user.]

The fact that you can really dig deep and learn from a management platform is truly unique, and I’d like to share four reasons why you should start looking into making the switch as soon as possible (after you read this blog, of course).

1. Streamlined messages feed makes it easy to connect with fans and track progress

It’s so easy to get washed away in a flood of incoming Facebook messages, reviews, retweets, direct messages, and mentions.  What I love about Sprout is that it gives me all of that in one simple feed, easily marked by platform.  It marks the messages I’ve responded to as completed, which is a huge help, and even lets me see all of the interactions I’ve had with someone communicating with me on social media.  The key here is that everything in the messages tab is streamlined to make it as easy as possible to communicate.

2. Publishing tool makes Twitter manageable

I am a total Twitter aficionado, but I also understand that for some small businesses it can be a hassle to keep up with. Sprout Social’s publishing tool is perfect for the busier businessperson who has a limited amount of time each week to make sure they’re staying active on one of the busiest social media platforms.

Not only does it allow you to schedule tweets and Facebook posts up to six months in advance, it also shortens your links, which saves you an extra step.  If your boss or client wants to approve everything you post, there is a fantastic message approval workflow process that allows you to collaborate on which posts need approval, which ones were rejected, and even drafts for future content.

3. Excellent reporting across all platforms

Sprout Social Dashboard

Keeping up with exactly how your content is performing on a month-to-month basis is crucial and will not be going away anytime soon.  Luckily for you, Sprout is diligent.  You can track your engagement, impressions, top posts in a certain time period, how many link clicks you’ve received, and even audience demographics.  It can also show you how you’re performing in terms of average message response time, broken down by day of the week and even by the hour in the Engagement Report.

What’s even better is you can track keywords in Twitter Listening to help you see where to focus your campaigns.  The best part about the Reports feature is it can be as detailed or as simple as you want it to be — tailored precisely to the results you’re looking for and giving you the insight on where to go from there.

4. Smart search is the greatest thing ever

Sprout Social Search Keyword Search Feature screenshot

I can’t count how many times I’ve seen friends talk about food on Twitter and just waited to see which awesome local restaurant was going to jump at the opportunity to engage in the conversation.  Most of the time, I was left waiting.

That’s why a tool like Smart Search (in Sprout’s Discovery tab) is so valuable.  I can search for a keyword on Twitter within a certain mile radius of a city or town of my choosing.  Smart Search then saves that search and constantly updates it so I can go back to that keyword and continue to engage with people that use it.  This single tool is an engagement goldmine.  Other social management tools may offer this, but I’m not sure any of them make it this easy and entertaining.  If you’re looking for pure outreach, this could be a game-changer.

Bonus: Sprout Social’s favorite features

My love for Sprout Social spans far and wide.  True, this blog may read like a love letter, but it’s because I truly believe in this product and I’ve seen what it can do for businesses.  I reached out to a few of Sprout’s employees on Twitter to ask about their favorite Sprout Social tools and features, and got a variety of favorites.

A simple, affordable tool with tons of potential, tailored to the success metrics you want to see.  Ease of use makes it stand out as one of the best social media management tools heading into 2017.  If Sprout Social were a stock, I’d give it at a strong buy rating. Sleep on it at your business’s own risk.

Big thanks to Lina Lee, Stephan Hovanian, Christine Albrecht and the whole Sprout Social Social Media team for their input on Twitter! Sprout Social is a tool we at BigWing feel so fortunate to use as it helps us provide the absolute best for our clients.

*The Sprout Social All Star Program recognizes amazing users and brand champions. All Stars are thought leaders in social media and digital engagement. They have grown loyal communities of their own and are a strong asset to ours.