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What is Social Media Automation?

Social media automation involves using software tools to perform repetitive tasks automatically, like posting content or producing reports, to increase engagement.

Ben Kazinik
By Ben Kazinik

Updated May 5, 2024.


Social media automation involves using software tools to perform repetitive tasks automatically, like posting content or producing reports, thereby increasing efficiency and consistency across your social media platforms. Automation can include scheduling posts, curating content, engaging with followers, and analyzing data, all without manual input for each action.

Automation allows businesses and social media managers to focus more on strategy and less on the day-to-day execution of social media activities.

What can you automate in social media marketing?

Social media marketing automation can streamline various aspects of your digital strategy, enhancing your online presence without requiring continuous manual effort. Here’s how automation can be applied effectively across different facets of your social strategy.

Scheduling posts

Scheduling posts is one of the most common and beneficial uses of social media automation. By using tools like Buffer, Hootsuite, or Sprout Social, you can plan and schedule posts weeks or months in advance. This ensures that your social media feeds remain active and engaging even when you are not online.

This also helps you maintain a consistent posting schedule, which is crucial for keeping your audience engaged. By analyzing when your audience is most active, you can schedule posts for peak times to maximize reach and interaction.

calendar full view coschedule marketing tool holiday season ecommerce
Source: CoSchedule

Moreover, social media automation tools often come with built-in calendars and scheduling recommendations, making it easier to visualize your content strategy over time and adjust it as needed. This helps maintain a balanced mix of content types, from promotional to educational and entertaining, catering to all aspects of your audience's interests.

Content creation

Content creation can be semi-automated to help streamline the development of engaging and relevant material for your social media channels. Automation tools can assist in curating content from various sources based on predefined keywords and topics, which can then be customized and scheduled.

For example, a marketing team can use social monitoring tools to gather the latest news and articles in their industry and share insights or summaries tailored to their audience’s preferences.

Source: SurferSEO

Another aspect of automated content creation is the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to generate content ideas based on trends and social engagement data. AI tools can analyze what types of content perform best for your brand and suggest similar topics or formats that are likely to resonate with your audience.

But be careful, you don't want to overdo it. You still need to edit every post you write with AI to make sure it matches your standards. AI is hit-and-miss these days.

You can also use AI to create the visuals for you. Tools like Dalle or Midjourney can create hundreds of images for you that are on-brand and sized to fit your various social media accounts.

Pro tip: got the right social media automation tool but don't have the manpower to manage it properly?

Data analysis

Data analysis is crucial for understanding the effectiveness of your social media strategy, and automation plays a key role in making this process more efficient. Automated tools can track performance metrics such as engagement rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates across different posts and platforms.

For example, an eCommerce business can use automation to track which products receive the most attention on social media and adjust their promotional strategies accordingly.

Source: VentureBeat

Further, these tools can provide comprehensive analytics reports that help you understand audience behavior and preferences. Use this data to refine targeting strategies, optimize post timings, and tailor content to meet the needs and interests of your audience more effectively.

Automated sentiment analysis is another advanced feature offered by some social media automation tools, which analyzes comments and mentions to gauge public sentiment toward your brand. This can be particularly useful for managing brand reputation and responding to customer concerns promptly.

Basic customer service

Automating basic customer service on social media can significantly enhance customer experience by providing instant responses to common queries. Chatbots and automated messaging services can handle a high volume of incoming questions or comments, ensuring that customers receive timely acknowledgments and basic support without delay.

For instance, a chatbot can be programmed to answer FAQs, provide information on product availability, or assist with order tracking. This immediate interaction helps in maintaining customer satisfaction and freeing up human resources to handle more complex issues.


Moreover, automation can be used to alert human agents when a situation requires personal attention, ensuring that issues are escalated appropriately and managed efficiently.

Pros of social media automation

In short, you can't really manage your social channels properly without automating some of the work. Here are the benefits of automation:

  • Efficiency: Automation saves time by handling routine social media tasks, allowing you to focus on strategy and creative content.
  • Consistency: Helps maintain a consistent social media presence, which is crucial for building brand trust and engagement.
  • Scalability: Makes it easier to manage multiple accounts and scale your social media efforts without a proportional increase in manpower or resources needed.

Examples of social media automation in action

  • Automated Welcome Messages: When new followers join, they receive a greeting and key information about the brand.
  • Birthday Discounts: Automatically sending birthday wishes and discount codes to followers on their birthdays.
  • Trend Alerts: Using tools to monitor and automatically post content related to trending topics or hashtags.

So how do you do all of this magic? By using a social media tool.

X Top social media automation tools

Here are the best tools to automate your social accounts and grow your online presence.


SocialPilot is a comprehensive social media marketing tool that helps marketers automate their social media management across platforms. It's particularly useful for small—to medium-sized businesses looking to streamline their social media operations without overspending.

The platform offers features that simplify post publishing, help analyze performance, and facilitate collaboration among team members.


Key features include:

  • Bulk Scheduling: Upload and schedule multiple posts at once for different social media platforms.
  • Social Media Calendar: Visualize your content strategy with an interactive calendar.
  • Analytics & Reporting: Get detailed insights into how your social media strategy is performing.
  • Content Curation: Discover and share content directly through the dashboard to all of your social media accounts.
  • Client Management: Easily manage clients' social media profiles without having to share login credentials.

Pricing: starts at $30/mo + 14-day free trial

SocialPilot is our most recommended social media automation tool because it's much more affordable than all the others unless all you need is Buffer's free plan.


Buffer is the most famous social media tool. It's been in the social media game the longest, it's been in the social media game and has been used by thousands of brands.

It has a super user-friendly interface that helps social media marketers plan, track, and amplify their social media marketing campaigns. Ideal for those looking to maintain a robust online presence, Buffer supports all major social platforms and offers tools tailored to boosting engagement and refining your brand's voice online.


Key features include:

  • Post Scheduling: Schedule posts ahead of time to ensure consistent content delivery.
  • Analytics: Track engagement metrics to refine strategies.
  • Pablo Image Editor: Create engaging images to accompany posts without leaving Buffer.
  • Profile Management: Manage multiple social media accounts in one place.
  • Team Collaboration: Allow team members to draft and review posts.

Pricing: free plan + starts at $6/mo for 1 social profile (with a 14-day free trial)


Agorapulse is a robust social media management tool designed for businesses and agencies that need to manage multiple accounts efficiently. It combines scheduling, responding, and reporting features in a single dashboard, facilitating a comprehensive approach to social media management.


Key features include:

  • Unified Social Inbox: Manage all social media interactions from one inbox.
  • Monitoring: Keep tabs on your brand mentions and relevant conversations.
  • Competitor Analysis: Compare your performance against competitors.
  • Content Scheduling: Plan and schedule your content across various social media channels and company profiles.
  • Detailed Reporting: Gain detailed insights with in-depth reports and see which posts create the biggest impact.

Pricing: starts at $69/mo for 10 social profiles


Sendible is tailored for agencies that manage social media for multiple clients, providing a streamlined platform to engage with audiences across all social networks and a white label experience if needed. Its integrative tools are designed to enhance the efficiency of social media strategies, from planning and execution to analytics and reporting.


Key features include:

  • Smart Queues: Automate the timing and frequency of posts.
  • Content Suggestions: Access curated content that you can share with your audience (whether that's the latest trends, blog posts, or evergreen content).
  • Engagement Tools: Monitor and respond to social media messages and comments.
  • Custom Reports: Create detailed, branded reports to share with clients or stakeholders.
  • Integration: Seamlessly integrates with various blogging and social media platforms.

Pricing: starts at $29/mo for 1 social media profile

Sprout Social

Sprout Social offers a rich suite of features that are ideal for enterprises that need advanced social media analysis and management tools. This platform excels in providing in-depth insights and fostering genuine engagement, making it a powerful tool for brands looking to deepen their social media impact.


Key features include:

  • Advanced Analytics: Deep dive into social media data and trends and find the optimal time to publish your posts.
  • Social Listening: Track what is being said about your brand across the social web.
  • Publishing Tools: Bulk schedule and publish content across multiple channels.
  • Social CRM: Maintain a complete profile of your customers, across multiple touchpoints in the funnel, to enhance engagement.
  • Employee Advocacy: Boost your brand’s reach with employee social media engagement.

Pricing: starts at $249/mo for up to 5 social profiles + 30-day free trial


Hootsuite is one of the most widely used social media management tools, known for its comprehensive capabilities that cater to businesses of all sizes. It allows users to execute all their social media campaigns from a single platform, from scheduling posts to analyzing traffic.


Key features include:

  • Bulk Scheduling: Schedule multiple posts at once across different platforms.
  • Social Media Monitoring: Keep track of keywords, Instagram hashtags, competitors, and industry trends.
  • Team Assignments: Assign tasks to team members directly from the dashboard.
  • App Integrations: Enhance functionality with over 150 apps and integrations.
  • Custom Analytics: Create custom reports to track what matters most to your business.

Pricing: $99/mo for 10 social media profiles + 30-day free trial


Tailwind is particularly beneficial for those focusing on visual content platforms like Pinterest and Instagram. It offers tools specifically designed for these platforms, helping businesses and marketers to streamline their workflow, from scheduling pins and posts to analyzing performance trends.


Key features include:

  • Smart Scheduling: Tailwind's scheduler picks the best times to post based on when your audience is most engaged.
  • Tailwind Tribes: Join communities within Tailwind to share content and gain greater visibility.
  • Analytics & Insights: Access detailed reports to measure performance and refine strategy.
  • Pin from Anywhere: Use browser extensions to easily pin content from any online source.
  • Instagram Hashtag Finder: Tailwind helps optimize your posts with suggestions for effective hashtags.

Pricing: free forever plan + starts at $24.99/mo


PromoRepublic is a social media marketing tool tailored for small businesses, B2B companies, agencies, and freelancers, offering content creation tools along with scheduling and analytics. Its easy-to-use interface and template-rich environment make it an ideal choice for those looking to enhance their social media presence efficiently.


Key features include:

  • Content Editor: Create and edit photos and visuals directly in the platform.
  • Post Ideas Library: Access thousands of ideas and ready-to-publish templates.
  • Automated Publishing: Schedule content across multiple social networks at the best times.
  • Performance Analytics: Track the effectiveness of your posts and campaigns.
  • Localized Content: Tailor content based on the geographical location of your audience.

Pricing: $59/mo + 14-day trial


Agorapulse is valued for its comprehensive suite of tools that manage all major aspects of social media marketing. From scheduling posts to monitoring social media traffic and engaging with the audience, Agorapulse provides a centralized dashboard that simplifies social media management.


Key features include:

  • Unified Social Inbox: Manage all social media interactions from one inbox including replies, comments, likes, and direct messages.
  • Monitoring: Keep tabs on your brand mentions and relevant conversations.
  • Competitor Analysis: Compare your performance against competitors.
  • Content Scheduling: Plan and schedule your content across various platforms.
  • Detailed Reporting: Gain detailed insights with in-depth reports.

Pricing: $69/mo + free for 30 days


Brand24 delivers real-time insights on online conversations about your brand, making it easier to manage public relations and online interactions. This social listening tool is particularly useful for immediate notification of mentions, enabling quick responses to customer feedback, queries, and potential crises.


Key features include:

  • Mention Alerts: Get instant alerts when your brand is mentioned online.
  • Sentiment Analysis: Gauge the tone of conversations to understand public perception.
  • Influence Score: Identify key influencers and measure their impact on your brand.
  • Custom Reports: Generate reports to monitor and analyze online activity and trends.
  • Data Exporting: Export data for deeper analysis or presentations.

Pricing: $99/mo to track up to 2k mentions


Loomly is a brand success platform that simplifies the way marketing teams create, manage, and analyze social media content. It's known for its intuitive interface and collaborative features, making it ideal for teams looking to streamline their social media processes.


Key features include:

  • Calendar Management: Visualize all your social media content with an intuitive calendar.
  • Post Optimization Tips: Loomly provides suggestions to improve your social media posts before publishing.
  • Real-time Collaboration: Team members can review and approve content seamlessly.
  • Advanced Analytics: Track your success with detailed insights into audience engagement.
  • Ads Manager: Create and manage social media ads directly within the platform.

Pricing: $42/mo for up to 10 social profiles


CoSchedule serves as a marketing calendar that helps you plan out your entire marketing schedule, including social media posts, content marketing, blog posts, events, and more. It's great for teams looking for an all-in-one organizer to keep marketing activities coherent and aligned.


Key features include:

  • Marketing Calendar: Centralize all your marketing projects in one place and maintain a consistent publishing schedule across all your social profiles.
  • Task Management: Assign tasks, set deadlines, and track progress.
  • Social Organizer: Automate your social media posting and optimize your publishing times.
  • Headline Analyzer: Improve your content headlines to increase engagement.
  • Email Marketing Integration: Manage your email campaigns alongside other marketing activities.

Pricing: pricing plans start at $19/mo


Later focuses primarily on visual content, making it a top choice for brands leveraging Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook (& Facebook Messenger), and Twitter. It helps plan and schedule your posts, with a strong emphasis on the visual layout and design of your social media feed.


Key features include:

  • Visual Content Calendar: Drag and drop photos to schedule visual content beautifully.
  • Create a shoppable Instagram link to drive online sales.
  • Hashtag Suggestions: Get recommendations for hashtags to increase reach + hashtag analytics.
  • Best Time to Post: Automatically calculates when your posts are likely to receive the most engagement.
  • Multi-Platform Scheduling: Schedule posts across multiple social platforms at once (without the need for another software).

Pricing: starts at $25/mo + 14-day free trial


Zapier enables automation across more than 2,000 web apps, including those used for social media management. It's perfect for integrating various applications and automating workflows in complex systems.


Key features include:

  • Workflow Automation: Create automated processes that eliminate the need for manual input. For example - you can automatically create customer tickets from every question you get on your social accounts.
  • App Integration: Connect apps to work cohesively without native integration. You can connect your CRM and your marketing reporting to your social media accounts.
  • Customizable Triggers: Design triggers that activate actions when certain conditions are met. For example, when a customer sends you a DM on Instagram that becomes a ticket or a message on Slack.

Pricing: starts at $19.99/mo plus has a free plan


IFTTT (If This Then That) is a web-based service that creates chains of simple conditional statements called applets. This service is useful for automating tasks across various applications and devices, not just in social media but in a broader technological landscape. It's a bit cheaper than Zapier and is suited for more basic automations.


Key features include:

  • Cross-Platform Automation: Connect and automate actions across over 600 apps.
  • Applets: Set up triggers that automatically prompt actions between apps.
  • Ease of Use: User-friendly interface for setting up conditional statements.
  • Versatility: Automate tasks ranging from smart home setup to social media management.
  • Integration: Seamlessly works with IoT devices, making it ideal for tech-savvy users.

Pricing: starts at $14.99/mo + forever free plan


ChatGPT is a must for any social media marketing effort. It can write some of the social posts, it can analyze popular content and create similar posts, both of which can see you a ton of valuable time every week. Business owners that aren't using AI are simply going to be left behind. If you get the paid version you can create your own GPTs and share it with the entire team.


Key features include:

  • Automate your content creation process: Create the bulk of your content using AI and just leave the minor editing to your social manager.
  • Content re-purposing: Use AI to write evergreen posts for sharing your blog posts and guides.
  • Social analytics & ideation: Use ChatGPT like an analytics tool by feeding it data from your customer interactions and having it create social media posts that will best answer their top concerns.

Pricing: free + $20/mo for the paid version

Each of these tools offers unique features that cater to different aspects of social media automation, from scheduling and content creation to analytics, social media publishing, and customer service.

By leveraging the right social media automation tools, businesses can significantly enhance their social media strategies, improve efficiency, and better engage with their audiences.