Dashboard Wars HootSuite vs Sprout Social

A interesting tale about function of design
White concrete building wall

What are Social Media Dashboards?

Social media is inescapable, even if you don’t want to use the websites in 2012 want you to connect via everything. In the landscape of web 2.0 websites having social media connections aren’t even a second thought just expected. Clever social media icons pepper footers and top bars of websites everywhere; and the expectation is you have the accounts to connect to and use them. Before 2008, having multiple accounts, or many pages started to make managing your social persona quite a time-consuming task. Thankfully we have two answers to help manage everything social, glean awesome insights into your online influence and all from an easy-to-manage, central “dashboard”.

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so·cial me·di·a dash·board ::

An “all-in-one” tool that sync’s a user’s social media accounts/information/metadata for easy management from a single, web-based control panel. Ranging from free to premium Social Media Dashboards allows individuals or teams of individuals to manage from a single up to an unlimited number of social media accounts all inside a single location.

A major contender in the social media dashboard scene, Hootsuite beautifully organizes your social media accounts into Tabs, inside each tab you can add a stream. These streams come from your connected social media accounts and it’s completely up to you how you want to customize the look and display of your dashboard.

Facebook Insights

Facbeook Insights Screen Shot

Monitor and measure your fans, likes, comments and page activity right from the dash. Drill down into your fans based on demographic, region, language, and post source. Optimize your messaging with per post insights, including reach, engaged users, “talking about this” and virality. Plus, historical comparisons allow you to see trends over time.

 Google Analytics

Google Analytics Screen Shot

Using Google Analytics and URL parameters, trace revenue and web conversions to your social outreach. Drill down into site traffic data including source, and region. View sparklines for page views, bounce rates and more.

Twitter Profile Stats

Twitter Profile Stats Screen Shot

Gain an overview of your Twitter account by tracking the number of followers, following, lists, mentions, and more. Do more with your monitoring by comparing keywords over time and Twitter sentiment.

Ow.ly Click Stats

Ow.ly Click Stats Screen Shot

Choose between individual and aggregated click stats for your shortened ow.ly URLs. Drill down by region and date, track referrers and popular links, and compare link summaries over time to help optimize your social media tactics.

Google+ Pages Analytics

Google+ Pages Screen Shot

Google+ Page Analytics is also integrated into HootSuite, providing teams with five analytic modules to directly measure results, such as daily growth, a number of users added to circles, +1 shares, and posts per day. * This analytics module available with HootSuite Enterprise

Organization Analytics

Organization Analytics Screen Shot

Create reports based on your Organization’s metrics such as posts assigned, sent, and resolved. Stats are available for individual user activity and aggregated for the entire team. * This analytics module available with HootSuite Enterprise

If you’re looking for a different approach then check out Sprout Social, with all the tools you need in one powerful package. Sprout Social emphasizes the four components of social media effectiveness; Monitoring, Engagement, Measurement and Growth. In addition to communication tools, Sprout Social offers contact management, competitive insight, lead generation, reporting, analytics and more – all in a package that’s intuitive and easy to use.

[toggle title=“Dashboard”] Social Media Dashboard - Sprout Social

  • Complete social progress at-a-glance
  • Engagement & Influence Scoring
  • View Top performing Posts
  • View follower demographics
  • Everything you need in one place

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[toggle title=“Monitoring”] Social Media Monitoring - Sprout Social

  • Track relevant keywords
  • Filter results by news, blogs, etc.
  • Competitor & industry tracking
  • Article & Blog monitoring
  • Never miss an important message

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[toggle title=“Analytics”] Social Media Analytics - Sprout Social

  • One click PDF & CSV reports
  • You choose what to report on
  • Group-level reporting
  • Track campaign effectiveness
  • Integrate Google Analytics

[/toggle]

[toggle title=“Publishing”] Social Media Publishing - Sprout Social

  • Send to multiple networks at once
  • Schedule messages
  • See optimal send times
  • Integrate RSS/Atom feeds
  • Track message performance

[/toggle]

[toggle title=“Discovery”] Social Media Discovery - Sprout Social

  • Find perfectly targeted customers
  • Monitor competitor activity
  • Search Twitter bios by keyword
  • Discover customers by interest
  • Increase targeted Twitter followers

[/toggle]

[toggle title=“Management”] Social Media Management & Team - Sprout Social

  • Create groups & add users
  • Control access for each user
  • Assign tasks to team members
  • Create notes on tasks
  • Get sent message stats

[/toggle]

[toggle title=“Mobile”] Social Media Mobile Apps - Sprout Social

  • Never miss another conversation
  • Assign tasks to team members
  • Cross-post updates from anywhere
  • Monitor your brand
  • Publish/schedule messages

[/toggle]

[toggle title=“HelpDesk”] Social Media Helpdesk - Sprout Social

  • Full Zendesk® Integration
  • Turn messages into support tickets
  • Track and resolve tickets
  • Respond to customers directly from within Sprout Social

[/toggle]

[toggle title=“CRM”] Social Media CRM - Sprout Social

  • Add notes to contacts
  • Add/edit contact information
  • Set reminders per contact
  • View contacts' social media presence
  • See all past history with contacts

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Conclusion

Both HootSuite and Sprout Social offer features that benefit anyone looking to master their influence and connectivity online. Personally, after using both platforms simultaneously I would have to say I’m leaning towards Sprout Social, but only ever so slightly. I love both for different reasons. I enjoy Hootsuite’s organization of streams on the homepage and the ability to customize my reporting outputs give kudos towards Hootsuite, but the reporting layout of Sprout’s metrics and their light-themed dashboard layout I just find more pleasurable to look at, and when you spend as much time as I do use the services it starts to make a difference. Also, Sprout Social’s “Discovery” features personally give it a leg up against all other competition. Knowing who isn’t following you but is influential in your network is a fantastic metric to help you connect better and achieve higher quality followers.

Winner:

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