2.23 billion people are actively checking Facebook every month.

500 million people are liking Instagram photos each month.

326 million people are hitting the retweet button on Twitter each month.

The point is: Social media has become a routine. It is now a “LinkedIn and lattes” morning instead of a “newspapers and doughnuts” kind of morning. The most valuable asset social media has given PR is the ability to instantly connect with a vast, and often times far away, audience. Every business, organization, or public figure should have a social media platform to maximize the amount of consumers they can reach.

The facts are there, but PR professionals find themselves wondering: “How do I effectively manage my client’s social media platforms?” Have no fear, we are sharing some of our favorite FREE social media management tools that help us retain our sanity.

  1. Planoly – This is an online site and mobile app that allows users to easily schedule their Instagram content. You simply upload the photo + caption that you want to post, and pick the time and day you want it to go live. It’s so simple! If you’re working with a certain Instagram color scheme, or “aesthetic,” Planoly has a grid layout so you can see how your photos will look on your feed before they are posted. The best part may be that it’s free! Check out Planoly here.
  2. Unsplash – Looking for creative and non-cheesy stock photos? Look no further than Unsplash. They have a wide variety of high definition images taken by photographers. There are images for every holiday, occasion, and activity you can dream of. All of the images are free to download and photographer credit is encouraged, but not required. This way, you don’t have to spend $5 on a latte when you want to post a coffee shop photo! It’ll be our little secret. Check out Unsplash here.
  3. TweetDeck – Similar to Planoly, TweetDeck allows Twitter users to schedule tweets to go live automatically whenever they so choose. It displays the character count, allows you to add links, and photos. It is the perfect tool to use at the beginning of the week to schedule out all your Twitter content. TweetDeck also acts as a dashboard for everything going on with your Twitter account. Your feed, messages, notifications, scheduled tweets, and a list of what is #trending. Check out TweetDeck here.

As a PR professional, we see social media as a means of publicity, promotion, and a promise to tell the truth. Hopefully these tools put an emphasis on the “management” part of being a social media manager.