Top 12 Sprout Social competitors for social media management softwareBy Solange Messier
No social media management platform is perfect, but it’s true that some brands seem to get more attention than others. So, when should you just go with the flow and pick the popular option and when should you sign up for one of Sprout Social’s competitors?
Social media is an important communication channel. Ensure you create content that connects with your audience by downloading our free “White-label social media checklist” now.
Our guide to social media marketing and key management software will look at what goes into make a comprehensive solution and why you should test out some alternative choices to experience the difference for yourself.
Table of Contents
- What is Sprout Social?
- Why do people choose Sprout Social?
- Why businesses are looking beyond Sprout Social
- Top 12 Sprout Social alternatives
- How to choose the right Sprout Social alternative for your business
- Frequently asked questions
What is Sprout Social?
Sprout Social is a social media management tool that brings together a ton of functionalities formerly scattered across countless apps and websites and puts them all on one centralized dashboard. In addition to creating, scheduling, and publishing posts, Sprout Social helps marketers:
- Monitor multiple social media profiles including pages on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, YouTube, and TikTok
- Create social content calendars
- Build a content library full of original and curated assets
- Stay on top of social listening, including brand mentions
- Generate AI-prompted responses
- Engage with consumers via comments and responses to reviews
- Build chatbots
- Track metrics and produce corresponding reports about profiles, competitors, content types, keywords, and hashtags
- Streamline communication between team members
- Improve customer service and help desk functionality
Why do people choose Sprout Social?
Marketers fare and wide are familiar with the many benefits of social media management. They also know the job can be time-consuming and stressful. Finding a social media management tool that saves time and money can feel almost miraculous. Often, marketers go straight for the tool at the top of Google’s SERPs, selecting Sprout Social over alternatives that might not have as much name recognition simply based on perceived reputation.
There’s also the fact that Sprout Social is a solid platform. It has its drawbacks (more on those in a moment), but there are also a lot of things Sprout Social’s makers can be proud of. But remember, no platform is one-size-fits-all. Just because people in your networking group or on Reddit mentioned Sprout Social as part of their marketing arsenal doesn’t mean it should automatically get your business.
Why businesses are looking beyond Sprout Social
Many agencies are looking for ways to expand their slate of offerings without straining their existing resources. Some marketers are exploring creative avenues like outsourcing social media services. Others are relying on social marketing tools to handle a lot of the heavy lifting day to day.
Exploring Sprout Social competitors can help startups and experienced marketers find a solution that fills the gaps left by these weaknesses in the Sprout Social model.
Sprout Social claims to offer a lot of bang for your buck, and that may well be true. But it doesn’t matter how great a value a service is if that service still doesn’t fit into your budget. The truth is that Sprout Social is expensive. The base rate is fairly hefty, and your bill can grow quickly if you need to give access to your entire team or add more than five social profiles.
Sprout Social’s most affordable plan was priced at $249/month for a single user and five social media profiles. Each additional user costs an extra $199/month. So, for agencies with a slew of users or those that need to manage numerous profiles, costs could easily soar sky high. Other platforms offer lower base rates and more profile coverage and/or users for the same price (or less).
Bigger learning curve (and sometimes bigger load times)
When you look at social media management tool comparisons, you’ll see that some platforms have far fewer features than Sprout Social offers. In truth, Sprout Social has a pretty impressive list of built-in options and add-ons designed to help you tackle a wide variety of social media tasks. But more isn’t always better.
With so many choices ready for the taking, it can take some time to understand all the resources and become adept at navigating the platform itself. Users report that Sprout Social sometimes lags a bit, too, likely because there’s so much going on behind the scenes. If the platform offers more than you need, you might be doing yourself a disservice by paying for options you’ll never even benefit from.
Difficulty translating posts between platforms
When you’re creating posts in Sprout Social, your formatting is determined by the platform you’re catering tool first. For instance, if you’re writing a post intended for Twitter, you’ll max out at Twitter’s 280-character limit even if you wanted to optimize that post for Instagram or LinkedIn or Facebook.
If you intend on using similar content for multiple platforms, it might be worth turning to a Sprout Social competitor that makes it easier to convert formatting without leaving your dashboard.
Limited functionality during the free trial phase
Some tools, like social listening, that are a vital part of comprehensive social media management packages are only available to paid Sprout Social users. You won’t be able to test the feature during our free trial, so there’s a chance you’ll pay for a full membership and only then realize you aren’t thrilled with everything that membership entails.
Top 12 Sprout Social alternatives
Before you commit to a Sprout Social membership, take a moment to browse some alternatives. You may be surprised how many options are available, many of which could potentially do a better job catering to your specific needs.
Like Sprout Social, Vendasta is an all-in-one social media platform that provides a slew of marketing solutions that can help local business scale quickly and effectively. From website design and scheduling to reputation management and help with local business listings, Vendasta’s impressive marketplace is full of products that can change the future of organizations of all sizes.
But Vendasta also offers a unique product that could quickly set you apart from the competition: white-label social media marketing. You can basically piggyback off Vendasta’s tried-and-true platform to multiply your clients’ revenue streams, increase efficiency, and boost ROI without taking on the responsibility for the products and hiring in-house employees to cover those skill sets. You sell digital products and services to your clients under your name, but Vendasta takes care of the follow through.
eClincher has a lot of overlap with Sprout Social, including a dashboard that facilitates creating, scheduling, and publishing social posts. You can also curate content, monitor activity across multiple channels, track advanced analytics, generate reports, and collaborate with other members of your marketing team, all from one central digital HQ.
But eClincher has at least one significant advantage over Sprout Social: pricing. As of May 2023, the Basic plan at eClincher is just $65/month for a single user and 10 profiles. The company also offers 24/7 live support and tons of free integrations.
Buffer also comes with a fair amount of name recognition as it’s been around for a while, just like Sprout Social. But unlike Sprout Social, Buffer has invested lots of energy in integrated analytics that allow users to deep dive into post performance.
It’s also a popular option for agencies with lots of team-related needs, as the platform supports more than 60 apps that could help you link up with other departments. There’s also the price factor. Buffer’s base plan is absolutely free, allowing small business and startups to access planning and publishing tools, build landing pages, and utilize the platform's proprietary AI assistant without paying out a single penny.
10 million users across 175 countries can’t be wrong, right? Hootsuite is a social media management giant for many reasons, but its edge over Sprout Social comes down to two things.
- It’s heavily focused on post creation and scheduling. It’s easy for even total beginners to sign in, create content, and plan for that content to hit multiple channels when the time is right. Hootsuite will even use analytics to tell you when you can publish posts to get the most traction.
- Price. Hootsuite offers users a free account they can use to manage up to three social profiles for a total of 30 scheduled posts per month. That’s plenty of opportunity to get your feet wet and decide whether Hootsuite is enough to cover your posting needs before you pony up for a Professional or Team account.
SocialPilot is very strong in the analytics and reporting department, making this Sprout Social alternative a strong choice for social media analysts and agencies particularly focused on collecting and leveraging data. There’s also a lot of room for collaboration here. You can assign tasks, review reports, and track client work in between bulk scheduling posts and tracking social traffic.
SocialPilot’s pricing structure seems to be aimed at agencies more interested in managing volume than accessing a laundry list of services. The basic Professional plan is just $30/month for 10 social media accounts managed by a single user.
In addition to facilitating post management and team collaboration, Agorapulse delivers valuable competitor analysis that can help you learn from the competition and figure out how to set your clients apart from the crowd.
Agorapulse boasts a unified social inbox that manages all incoming social media communication in one place. This makes it easy for smaller companies with limited bandwidth to ensure they never miss a message, comment, or review. Their support is also notable, with customers benefitting from 30-minute response times and reporting a 96 percent satisfaction rate.
Statusbrew calls itself an “engagement first tool.” While the platform offers a ton of social media functionality, including the ability to manage multiple profiles and publish posts with remarkable speed, it’s the unified inbox that’s the start feature.
Every social conversation generated by linked profiles hits one inbox, where they’re sorted, analyzed, and reassigned at will. This allows for quick response times and funnels data for social listening purposes. You can even apply filters to further streamline collaboration and get a handle on social engagement on even the busiest of days.
Later is a lean, focused platform that concentrates primarily on helping businesses and social media agencies create posts now and publish them, well, Later. Batch build content, schedule it across a spectrum of social media platforms, and the site will push your content live with the time is right.
Later may not come with head-to-toe bells and whistles, but it can fill the gap for organizations that just need help in one specific area. This is especially helpful for agencies that don’t want to invest in a platform like Sprout Social that could well be overkill.
Everything at Sprinklr Social revolves around customer experience, with the goal of “helping enterprises make customers happier.” That requires mining social platforms for lots of customer data. Sprinklr relies on AI-powered listening and real-time insights into current events and trends to empower users looking to connect with and engage their target demographic.
The U.S. Census Bureau turned to Sprinklr to get out the word about the 2020 population count. Government representatives used their Sprinklr dashboard and built-in AI chatbots to better understand and answer important questions posed by people across the United States.
Many of the functionalities offered by MavSocial can also be found via the Sprout Social platform. But MavSocial helps with content creation by offering users access to an on-demand photo service that charges their account automatically for images used in social posts.
Even cooler is the platform’s AI image recognition, which smart searches your digital assets (stored in a centralized digital library) and pulls and optimizes the appropriate logos, videos, audio clips, and other promotional images.
Highly visual people will likely appreciate Sendible’s highly intuitive calendar setup that makes it easy to see what you have going on each platform. In fact, a lot of what Sendible does is intuitive, including automatic lead generation, posts published at scheduled intervals, and contacts added via social media interaction.
Sendible will also scale right along with you. If you’re a startup now but have big plans for the future, you can launch small (with the social media management tool price tag to match) and grow as client needs and your vision demands.
MeetEdgar ticks a lot of boxes, but one of its biggest boasts is how it repurposes content, so you never run out of social media posts. The platform seeks out popular posts and automatically reshares, improving traffic and keeping your calendars full even when you lose track of your agenda.
How to choose the right Sprout Social alternative for your business
Put your top Sprout Social alternatives to the test by seeing how they measure up to your needs and wants.
Honor your budget
Your marketing budget is finite, and even the most high-functioning platform in the world isn’t useful enough to justify going into debt. Look for platforms that offer multiple pricing tiers, so you can start small and grow over time without shifting to a new solution.
Consider business-specific needs
Which channels do you plan on using? Will you have your own graphics department, or will you need some help finding relevant images and videos? Are you already familiar with tracking metrics or would it be helpful to have a platform that does that for you?
Make a list of the features that you must have, those that would be nice to have, and any that might fall in the “dream” category. Prioritize your platform choices accordingly.
Look for gaps in your in-house staff/skill sets
The best social media management software for your business could be an option that’s totally at odds with the best choice for another organization. Instead of picking the platform that does it all, pick the solution that completes your worker or talent wish list.
For example, you might have a content creation whiz and graphics expert on board, but you could use some help with scheduling. A simple yet agile interactive calendar may be all you need to move forward.
Frequently asked questions
Can Sprout Social’s competitors offer multi-language support?
Several of Sprout Social’s competitors offer support services in languages other than English. If multi-language support is important to you and your team, be sure to check with every platform you’re considering before you sign up for services.
How do Sprout Social’s competitors handle customer support?
Most social media management platforms offer a combination of email and chat support, with the majority of chatbots run using AI. If you prefer 24/7 live customer support, look for companies that prioritize personalized customer service in their tools over automated responses. There is also a lot of value to be found in comprehensive resource centers, like Vendasta’s expansive library of announcements, guides, and instructional videos.