Top 10 Affordable Tools for Small Business Owners #1 (drum roll, please) – Buffer

Social Media Marketing is an absolute necessity for small businesses that want to compete in today’s marketplace, and it’s not enough just to blog or post on Facebook.  The most successful marketing campaigns are multi-faceted, utilizing various social media outlets to get your message to your potential patrons.  To accomplish this, using the built-in “publicize” options of your blogging program is a good place to start, but what if you have something to say or share outside of your blog, or if you want your campaign to be more multi-dimensional? Don’t forget, your blog program doesn’t add hash tags and @ signs to help your Tweets stand out and get seen.  That’s where a social media dashboard – my pick is Buffer – can come in handy.

With Buffer, you can…

  • Spend just 1 hour a week building entire campaigns that you can schedule to be published over the course of that week
  • Get suggested content that’s easy to “adopt” when you’re stuck for ideas of what to write
  • Learn which posts performed best & had the greatest engagement

Perhaps best of all, they offer a pretty robust FREE account to get you started. You can connect 1 type of social account per network on this plan (i.e., 1 Facebook account, 1 Google+ account, 1 Instagram account, 1 LinkedIn account, and 1 Twitter account) and you can have up to 10 posts queued up for each of those accounts at any given time. Note that Pinterest is not available on the free plan. (I’m actually on the Awesome plan at $10/mo because I wanted the Pinterest features and to add multiple Facebook groups that I admin.)

Buffer has been a huge time (and sanity) saver for me and I recommend it often. One final comment, since this is one of the things I’m asked about most when I recommend Buffer to my clients: it lets you specify which of your Facebook pages you want to connect to your Buffer account (so you’re not posting to your personal Profile page unless you want to). So head on over to Buffer, set up your FREE account and make your social media tasks practically post themselves!

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