Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Hootsuite vs SocialPilot vs Agorapulse: Which One Is for You?

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Picking the right social media management tool is a big deal. You spend time and money on a tool, so you want it to be worth your while. You also want it to help you prove your worth to your organization or clients. So, if you’ve whittled your tool list to Hootsuite, SocialPilot, and Agorapulse and see that each one brings something different to the table, how do you decide which one to invest in?

This article will compare these three tools’ features, capabilities, price, and value to let you make an educated choice on which one to choose. You can also sign up for a free trial and get to know Agorapulse better that way, too.

agorapulse vs hootsuite vs socialpilot

Hootsuite vs SocialPilot vs Agorapulse: Features and Capabilities

Social Media Publishing

Schedule now, publish later. That’s the “set it and forget it” feature on social media management tools that social media managers can’t live without.

Hootsuite, SocialPilot, and Agorapulse all have rich features that make social media scheduling as easy as possible. These tools all include:

  • Draft and schedule feed posts
  • Draft and schedule Instagram Stories and Reels
  • Calendar view
  • Bulk scheduling
  • Canva integration

These three tools also let you publish across multiple social media platforms: Facebook, X (Twitter), Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, and TikTok. Agorapulse and SocialPilot also allow Google Business publishing, and Hootsuite lets users publish on the quasi-social channel once you’ve integrated a third-party app into their dashboard.

g2 comparison of publishing featuresg2 comparison of publishing features

However, there are stark differences among these tools in tracking social-to-web traffic, access to content libraries, and publishing features that evolve alongside the growth of native social media channels.

Tracking Social Clicks

Smart marketers use Google’s UTM parameters to determine which social network brings the most traffic to their Website or landing page.

Agorapulse offers UTM parameters (and presets for easy reuse) on all its paid plans. SocialPilot isn’t far behind, offering them on all but its cheapest plan. You must have the Team plan ($249/mo) to use UTM presets on Hootsuite.

utm parameters optionsutm parameters options

If Bitly is your go-to link shortener/link tracker, you can easily integrate your account with a paid SocialPilot or Agorapulse subscription.

Hootsuite treats Bitly like a velvet rope, offering it only to enterprise subscribers. The exclusion of Bitly access to most of its users is most likely an effort to have their proprietary link shortener/tracker Owly dominate the market.

Agorapulse offers its own branded shortener, pulse.ly, but doesn’t force you to abandon the Bitly ship if that’s what you’re used to.

(And while SocialPilot integrates with shorteners like Bitly, it doesn’t have a proprietary version to help users track click-throughs.)

Hootsuite vs SocialPilot vs AgorapulseHootsuite vs SocialPilot vs Agorapulse

Example of a SocialPilot publishing modal

Content Library Access

If your brand doesn’t share engaging images and videos with your social followers, you might as well blow all your marketing spend in the phone book.

Content libraries save social media teams from remembering if images for upcoming posts are on a spreadsheet, Google Drive, Canva, or a project management tool. With built-in content libraries, social media management tools provide easy access to vetted or regularly used social media images and videos.

Hootsuite once again restricts this important social media management feature to its Enterprise users. On the other hand, SocialPilot’s library is available on all but its cheapest paid plan.

Agorapulse treats access differently: Two of its plans have  a mini-library with limited storage, and starting with the Advanced plan, users get access to a full-fledged asset library.

agorapulse asset libraryagorapulse asset library

Agorapulse asset library. A place to store videos, images, and documents for easy sharing across social profiles.

Publishing Features that Marketers Need in 2024

As social media marketing tactics change, so should your social media management tool. Take “first commenting,” for example. These five seconds of work to leave a link or relevant hashtags pay off with extra reach and engagement.

SocialPilot and Agorapulse allow first comment scheduling on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

scheduling linkedin first comment scheduling linkedin first comment

Scheduling a LinkedIn first comment with Agorapulse

Hootsuite does not offer this feature, not even to its beloved Enterprise users.

Then, there are X threads. We’ve learned that 280 characters is simply not enough for some brands on this platform. Threads allow users to tuck longer prose into a master tweet.

Agorapulse is the only platform of the three that supports X threads publishing. It’s also the only tool to offer an Instagram grid view, a key feature to view how an Instagram feed post will match aesthetically with the posts surrounding it on an Instagram business profile.

agorapulse instagram grid previewagorapulse instagram grid preview

With the grid feature on Agorapulse, social media managers can see how scheduled posts will look among published posts on an Instagram profile.

Social Inbox

Social media is a two-way conversation. Sometimes.

Other times, when users get riled up (for better or for worse), it’s a five-or six-way conversation. And, boy, these conversations can be fast and furious.

Hootsuite, SocialPilot, and Agorapulse all have an inbox to reply to:

  • Comments on your Facebook page, Instagram business profile, LinkedIn page, and X posts
  • Direct/private messages on Facebook pages and Instagram business profiles
  • Story mentions on Instagram business profiles

But these three tools differ in the social networks they support and in how they make replying to conversations more efficient.

Supported Social Networks

SocialPilot gives an inbox to Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Google Business—only half of the social networks it supports with publishing.

Hootsuite captures inbox items for Facebook, Instagram, X, and LinkedIn.

Agorapulse provides inbox functionality for conversations across Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google Business, YouTube, TikTok, and as an add-on, X, making it easier for social media managers to respond to conversations in one location.

Features to Increase Efficiency

It’s helpful to have conversations across several social media accounts arrive on one platform.

But you know what’s better? Having features that make replying to these comments and messages quicker.

Saved replies are one time-saving feature. They allow you to create a bank of vetted, on-brand replies to common questions or comments in your inbox.

Do you often get asked about your free plan? Create a “free plan” saved reply, and the next time you’re asked about this plan, pull up the reply, and in two clicks, your answer is sent.

Conversation tagging (or labeling) is a lifeline for marketing teams of all sizes. Add internal-use-only labels like “price” or “new interface” to easily pull up conversations on those topics. These labels also help you uncover growing or dying market trends, especially if your tool offers label reports.

Inbox automation rules help you get to inbox zero faster. Set up rules to label, assign, or delete comments based on keywords. This automation will now work through your inbox while you Netflix and chill.

Agorapulse provides saved replies, conversation labeling, and inbox automation, starting with its Advanced plan. Hootsuite only gives these inbox features to … wait for it … yes, Enterprise plan users.

Sadly, SocialPilot does not offer saved replies, tagging conversations, or automated rules.

Analytics

Need to show your worth on social? Then, you need social media analytics to easily tie your social content to improving the bottom line.

As a marketer, you can also use analytics to make informed, data-driven decisions about your next campaign—or even the middle of one!

Hootsuite, SocialPilot, and Agorapulse help social teams highlight their business contributions and optimize campaigns through:

  • Downloadable PDF reports
  • Content performance stats, including reach and engagement
  • Audience growth stats
Hootsuite vs SocialPilot vs AgorapulseHootsuite vs SocialPilot vs Agorapulse

Example of Hootsuite report

 

Next-Level Social Media Reports

If your organization needs analytics beyond a PDF of engagement and reach, you should know the differences among these tools.

Team reporting shows how actively your organization responds to comments and messages. Many marketing directors follow this metric to determine team productivity.

While SocialPilot doesn’t provide team reporting, Agorapulse and Hootsuite do. However, the price points for team reports for these two tools differ wildly.

Agorapulse includes team performance (and other community management metrics) in its Pro Plan ($79/mo+). Hootsuite only offers team performance reports with its Enterprise plan.

If you want to attribute leads, conversion, traffic, and revenue to your social media content and community management, you need a Google Analytics integration in your social media management tool.

SocialPilot fails to offer this integration. Agorapulse provides a Google Analytics integration and Google Analytics report as part of the Advanced Plan’s Social ROI feature.

agorapulse google analytics reportagorapulse google analytics report

Sample of a Google Analytics report on Agorapulse

If you need Google Analytics stats on Hootsuite, you must pay for Advanced Analytics, an add-on available only when you purchase an Enterprise plan.

PDFs are great for a quick read on how your social is performing. But if you want a deeper look or a way to integrate your statistics with other marketing metrics on your team (Quarterly Reviews, anyone?), you’ll want your analytics data in a CSV file.

Agorapulse’s Power Reports, available in the Advanced Plan, permit users to download data as a CSV file. With Hootsuite, you need the Enterprise plan to get a CSV of your metrics.

(SocialPilot analytics aren’t available as a CSV.)

This scoop on real business metrics helps explain why Agorapulse shines for Reports and Dashboards for Social Media Analytics on G2.

hootsuite vs socialpilot vs agorapulse on g2hootsuite vs socialpilot vs agorapulse on g2

 

Social Listening

Social media listening is a hidden gem in social media marketing tools.

Listening consistently lets you discover customer conversations, sentiments, and trends in real time. These conversations provide insights not found elsewhere for crafting more effective and responsive marketing strategies. Listening is cheaper than a focus group and less time-consuming than sending a survey.

Unfortunately, SocialPilot doesn’t offer social media listening features.

Hootsuite offers listening through its “Insights, powered by Brandwatch” add-on, available on the Enterprise plan.

Agorapulse knows that listening is important but doesn’t restrict which users should and shouldn’t take advantage of public conversations.

All paid plans on Agorapulse give you the opportunity to monitor brand mentions, sentiment, competitive chatter, industry trends, and aggregate insights. Simply pay a monthly fee for the number of searches you need.

agorapulse listening search exampleagorapulse listening search example

This listening search on Agorapulse includes hashtags on Instagram, and brand mentions on the web and blogs.

 

Customer Support

Everyone needs customer support, even social media “gurus.”

Think of all the times that Facebook goes down, you’re thrown a social media management task that typically belongs to a colleague, or any other Social Media Emergency comes your way. All you need is a helpful human to help you get out of your hole.

Luckily, Agorapulse provides 24×7 support for its users. Its pricing page even provides transparent response times per plan.

SocialPilot takes off on the weekends. Its support team is available 24×5.

Hootsuite lists its support hours as 9-5 in most zones, M-F. So, at best, it ties SocialPilot at 24×5.

Of the three tools, Hootsuite has the most complaints about customer support. Hootsuite Trustpilot reviews reveal many customer complaints.

If social media never sleeps, why should customer support for your social media management tool?

TL;DR on Features and Capabilities

As you evaluate these tools’ wide range of features and capabilities, consider what tasks would be made easiest by a third-party social media tool. If all you need is a tool that provides publishing to a wide range of social media platforms and the integration of third-party apps for additional platforms, your best bet is Hootsuite.

If you’re looking for an affordable way to store social assets, SocialPilot is a sound choice.

However, if your social media strategy can benefit from the latest publishing features allowed by native APIs, an inbox built for efficient communication, and analytics built to show your ROI, Agorapulse is your go-to solution.

Hootsuite vs SocialPilot vs Agorapulse: Pricing

I can write a 5,000-word blog post about what these tools can do, but in the end, I know you’re hungry for how much these all cost. (SaaS sales reps, I feel your pain!) Let’s break down SocialPilot, Agorapulse, and Hootsuite pricing. But first, a peek at the free options to “try before you buy.”

No-cost options

SocialPilot offers a 14-day free trial to take for a spin. Hootsuite and Agorapulse both double down with a 30-day trial.

If you need to try these tools beyond the free trial period, you’re out of luck with SocialPilot and Hootsuite, as they don’t offer a free plan. Agorapulse’s free plan lets users manage up to three social media profiles.

When the freebies aren’t quite enough for you, it’s time to examine the pricing structures of these three tools. As a transition to forking over your hard-earned cash, let’s start with the smallest plans on Hootsuite, SocialPilot, and Agorapulse.

The entry-level paid plan for all three tools supports 10 profiles and 1 user. SocialPilot rises as the cheapest option at $30 per month. Next up is Agorapulse, which comes in at $69 each month. Hootsuite is the most expensive choice at $99 a month.

Need more options? Here’s the rundown on all the paid plans for Hootsuite, SocialPilot, and Agorapulse. Hootsuite doesn’t publicly publish the cost for its month-by-month plans, so we’ll compare all plans on their annual billing prices.

Hootsuite Annual Billing Prices

  • Professional: $99/mo for 10 profiles and 1 user
  • Team: $249/mo for 20 profiles and 3 users
  • Enterprise: Ah, the plan with all the social media management delights we’ve covered so far (inbox efficiencies, team workflows, etc.). The plan so good that Hootsuite doesn’t include its price on its pricing page.

While the plan is customizable based on the needs of large businesses and thus varies in price, it appears that the starting cost for 50+ profiles and 5+ users on Enterprise is at least $15,000 a year.

(That’s $1,250 per month.)

You can get a deeper analysis of Hootsuite pricing.

SocialPilot Annual Billing Prices

  • Professional: $30/mo for 10 profiles and 1 user
  • Small Team: $50/mo for 20 profiles and 2 users
  • Agency: $100/mo for 30 profiles and 5 users
  • Agency+: $200 for 50 profiles and unlimited users

Agorapulse Annual Billing Prices

  • Standard: $49/mo per user for 10 profiles
  • Professional: $79/mo per user for 10 profiles
  • Advanced: $119/mo per user for 10 profiles
  • Custom: As the name implies, the cost is based on the customer’s unique needs.

Contact us for a free demo of Agorapulse the best social media management toolContact us for a free demo of Agorapulse the best social media management tool

In Conclusion

When it comes to choosing the plan that works best for you, it’s about more than just numbers. You must balance what you see on the price tag with the features you need to do your best work on social media. In this competitive review of these three social media management tools, Agorapulse is the top choice for its versatility, advanced features, and round-the-clock support.

Why not try Agorapulse’s scheduling, analytics, and social listening features today and start managing your social media efficiently and easily?

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