3 Free Tools Every Social Media Manager Needs

We love social media (we really do!). But because we do so much with social media, we realize it takes a lot of time and planning to run your accounts flawlessly. From curating content to designing graphics for posts, there is no shortage of work for a Social Media Manager (like me!). There’s also no shortage of digital tools that claim to make a Social Media Manager’s life easier. With so many different options, it can be tough to know what’s the best. I’ve used my fair share of online tools to help me in my job and from putting countless platforms to the test, I’ve found three I can’t live without.

1. Trello

Trello is like sticky notes on crack. If you love to visualize projects and timelines, Trello is the tool for you. Whether you set it up it like a KanBan board (like I do) or use it to organize campaigns across different social channels, Trello can help you collaborate with your team (yup, you can have multiple people on a single board) to classify content and make it an easier process to create, edit, and approve.

For me, Trello helps me track the tasks I have to do, what tasks are in progress and which are blocked. I also have a column for “today,” where I can move the cards I’ll (hopefully!) complete that day. Trello is super flexible and the possibilities are endless, so you can easily find what works best for you and your team.

2. TweetDeck

If you’re monitoring multiple Twitter accounts for your company, TweetDeck is the tool for you. When I first looked at TweetDeck I saw it as a flurry of activity I needed to monitor and I’m not going to lie, it freaked me out a bit. But once you get the hang of TweetDeck, you’ll come to love its nonstop, ever-changing craziness. TweetDeck allows you to add columns like your home feed, mentions, and messages so that you can see all the activity that’s going on across all your accounts simultaneously – that’s right, no more logging in and out of accounts constantly. My favorite part is that it lets you schedule Tweets to go out at a later date or time – no need to get up to Tweet early in the morning! 😉

3. Canva

There’s no doubt that social media requires designing content. If you’re like me, you won’t want to bother your designer for a measly Instagram image announcing what event you’ll be attending on the weekend when he has much more important things to work on; you’ll try to make a killer graphic yourself. Though I’m ashamed to admit it, there was once a time many moons ago where I would try anything to make a decent-looking graphic quickly, including trying to maneuver images and text over one another in Microsoft Word to create something that vaguely resembled a poster or an Instagram image. With Canva, that struggle is no longer. From Instagram stories to Facebook posts, Canva has it all. You can choose a template to customize or create your own from scratch. I use Canva to create event announcements, Instagram story graphics, and other visuals for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. It’s simple to use but it can look like you hired a professional designer to create a campaign for you. The best part is, it’s free!

Of course, digital tools aren’t what’s going to make or break your career – only your skills and knowledge can help you grow into the professional you want to be. That said, my job would be a lot more difficult without having some tools to help me along. Trello, TweetDeck, and Canva make my life easier, my tasks more manageable, and my content look much better.

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