Social Media Monitoring Tools

Zoho Social Research Review

Zoho social is a unique tool that allows businesses and companies to evolve and grow their social media presence by expanding their customer reach.

Things such as monitoring social media marketing revenue, managing multiple social media accounts on different platforms, keyword monitoring, and scheduling unlimited posts can be done using this service and all this is accomplished on a single dashboard.

Some of the social media platforms that Zoho supports are Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and google+. Using its predictive engine, businesses can dish out content when there is a huge chance of it being seen by potential customers. Using this type of tool, businesses can get real-time updated and can stay updated with any form of activity regarding their business on social media.

You can either choose from ready-made or custom made tools tailored to your requirements and adjust your marketing strategies accordingly to grow and spread your business’s reach. This type of digital solution is mainly geared towards medium to small-sized businesses by providing all the basic a small company needs to kick start their presence on social media.

While it may not match other tools such as Talkwalker, it is a bargain at 15 dollars per month because not all small businesses can go out of their way to spend hundreds of dollars on a social media management software.

Interface and management

Zoho social’s user interface is focused more on a user-friendly approach. It consists of a control panel made up of seven different abs that are located on the left side of the user interface and expand once you hover your mouse over it and contracts when you remove the pointer from it. the tabs are labeled as home, messages, posts, monitor, connections, collaborate, and reports.

However, the first thing that you see is the dashboard. The dashboard shows important information such as total audience, engagement, active audience, and the number of posts created. Each information metric has a plus sign next to it which shows the weekly change in the numbers. You can say that It is like a brand’s or company’s report card. This is a great way brand manager can keep track of their brand’s engagement on social media as it is compiled in one place and you don’t need to open separate tabs or pages to access such information.

The user interface has been ever-changing and evolving since Zoho came into being and it has got cleaner and easier to use due to. new updates are coming every month, if not week.

As you can see in the image above how everything is properly streamlined and has a clean user interface with little to no clutter. You can see on the right of the dashboard that there is a live engagement column that gets updated in real-time.

When you click on the messages tab, a drop-down menu appears which allows you to see your messages, the profile of the message senders, their likes and following, and you can easily reply right then and there without opening a separate window or tab. The posts tab is the place where you manage all your posts across all different social media platforms.  This can either be sorted by date, network, or post popularity. There is an availability of post sentiment analysis whether they are neutral, positive, or negative, however, Zoho lags behind other tools available on the market, but it is present and you can use it. to create a new post, you simply clock on the new post button and access the publishing window.

You can also switch between social media networks to accurately publish pots on the social media platform of your choice. There is also a calendar present and you can use it to schedule the publishing of your posts.

Another feature the UI has is something called Smart Q. Smart Q gives you suggestions about the time you should publish your posts. It suggests the time at which users are the most active on all social media platforms. This gives you a better chance of your posts to be seen by your audience. This feature is seen across many other content creation tools other than Zoho as well.

Instead of focusing on menus and themes like WordPress, Zoho is focused more on giving you the ability to find the right time to publish posts so it can be seen on social media by your audience. It has automated posts features that are usually found in software like plannable, loomly, and buffer publish. The people at oho are constantly experimenting with this style of smart automation and continue to work hard in introducing new techniques to help you find the right time for publishing posts on your business’s social media accounts.

Many features like direct posting to Instagram is a new feature introduced to Zoho recently. Now you don’t need to open up your Instagram app to publish posts. This was accomplished when Zoho became a partner with Instagram and the app was directly linked with Zoho. Another feature that Zoho recently introduced is a publishing calendar. Now you can see all your scheduled posts through a calendar view with this feature.

Social Monitoring And Analytics

The monitor tab is used in the Zoho Tool to monitor all social media listening. You can now easily create more than 10 social columns or streams just like you can is other apps such as Hootsuite and sprout social, however, the key difference between these apps and Zoho is that all of it is integrated with Zoho CRM. Due to this the tool is not only limited to adding Facebook columns, searching Twitter keywords, or Instagram likes, but you can also use a stream of another user or brand to gain a competitive edge over other brands.

This Zoho CRM integration is also useful when you open up the connections tab. You can use it to monitor user activity regarding your brand. It is like the big brother of the streaming column. There is also a filter present in this tab and you can see data according to network, user activity, and recency. This simple but effective integration of Zoho CRM has made influencer identification and management easier.

Another feature that Zoho has is integration with Google My Business. with a simple click of the mouse, you can also have Facebook lead ads present as well.

As you scroll down on the Zoho tool dashboard, you are also able to see the report card of every post you have done recently. When you click on a specific report card, you will be taken to another page which will show you a detailed analysis of your posts on every different network. Yes, the report card on the dashboard is just a preview. You can also export all this data in the form of a PDF document and send it out to your email address for later viewing in offline mode. However, the reports tab is the place where you are going to find the most detailed data about your posts. Reports are also present that shows a CRM report for a user that has a link to a CRM account. This report usually shows leads created and revenue laid out in a table format with the lead name, lead contact, day, and social network. When you click on a report from this tab, you will be given a URL address to the specific CRM account associated with that specific lead.

Great CRM Integration

With social media being a collaborative experience, Zoho has integrated everything into one platform  which allows colleagues to discuss trends, posts, and strategies in one digital space. The collaborate tab allows you to do with ease and comfort. Every other tab present on the Zoho dashboard has an ‘Add To CRM’ option present, but there is also a ‘Discuss’ option as well for comments and discussions.

Since it came into existence, Zoho has added updates to the collaborate tab. Things like notifications and leads have been added to it which allows users to get notified when a new brand member joins. It also has custom sharing options that allow you to share discussions with the members you have selected. Zoho social also has a mobile app that is present on both android and Ios applications stores. However, a the end of the day, Zoho is a social media management application, and there is nothing to be desired here other than the Smart Q functionality. Small businesses might find this analytics functionality to be too simple as they need a more in-depth analysis of time and what to post and when to post on social media

Pricing

Zoho has a free trial for people who want to try it before they buy it. the trail version however only gives you basic publishing functionality for a single brand and user and you cannot post on Instagram through it, which is only available on the paid version. The real features are offered in the 15 dollars per month plan. You can add two user-profiles and you get features like publishing, monitoring, collaboration, reporting, and scheduling features.

Small businesses can make do with this plan, however, medium-sized businesses will be better off with the 35 dollars per month plan. The 35 dollars per month plan gives you the ability to add three users, one brand, and premium features like custom and advanced reporting, 14 columns in the monitoring tab, and sentiment analytics. If you are a business that needs to add more brands, Zoho also offers agency plans that are worth 200 to 300 dollars which has to be paid annually and gives you the ability to add 10 and 20 brands respectively.

There is also the availability of the Zoho One plan. It gives you access to the Zoho platform for 1 dollar per day per employee. That is 30 dollars per month on average. This ability to have different plans for different budgets is one of the strongest selling points of the Zoho Social Media Tool.

Once you get registered to Zoho, you are asked to integrate all your social media networks associated with your brand on its interface. Zoho currently supports Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, and Google My Business. however, it lacks support for youtube, Tumblr, and Pinterest. Zoho is focused more on social networks that are associated with business and digital marketing. Everything else is very simple and easy. Once you give Zoho authorization for a particular social media network, it is added to the dashboard and you can go back and forth between your brands.

With flexible pricing options and a great and simple UI, Zoho is comparable to other competitors that offer the same services for more money.

The Bottom Line

Zoho is a great tool for social media managers, small to medium-sized businesses, and social media managing agencies. It versatile managements features paired with a simple interface and a lesser price tag than other option on the market, make it heaps better than its competitors.

However, the best thing that I liked about it was the Smart Q option. It will give you the ability to bring in more clients and target the audience that you want. It allows you to do timely posts at moments when users show the most activity. That way you have a better chance of your business getting the exposure you always wanted it to get. Plus, it also gives you the ability to integrate all your business social media accounts and brands into one space and eliminates the need to open different tabs and applications for every different social media platform.

The plan you choose solely depends on what you want to accomplish, what your budget is, and how many brands you want to enforce to your target audience. If you have multiple brands, then I would suggest you go all out and choose the most expensive plan they are offering to remove any sort of restrictions placed by Zoho on the tool for lesser plans. You might say there are other brands out there that do the same thing, however, they charge you huge sums of money to give your features that Zoho is Offering for such a reduced price. I would suggest you give it a try.

 

 

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Sana Khan

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