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All the information across all of our social channels is often called the “stream,” but the keeping track of nonstop updates (many of which have little relevance to the channels we’re managing) can feel like an overwhelming flood.

It’s why we at ChatterBlast make use of tools like Sprout Social; it allows us to cut through the deluge to get to what’s relevant without losing focus on our clients and their brands.

Sprout is a feature-rich, intuitive platform that keeps distractions at a minimum and prioritizes the important stuff (your interactions with customers and fans of your brand.) It’s beautifully designed, and doesn’t feel as clunky or boxy as other social management platforms. We love it for how easy it is to navigate for both experienced and novice users. Because if this, it makes a great solution for clients whether they are experienced using such social tools or aren’t sure (yet) what Twitter ‘does.’ Let’s examine further.

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Sprout has several key features that make managing your stable of social properties a straightforward process. The Smart Inbox collates all of your brand’s interactions, including mentions, messages and wall posts in one manageable stream. You can add keyword searches, both general and geo-targeted, to gauge what is being said TO your brand as well as ABOUT your brand.

For larger companies managing a high volume of interactions, Sprout offers a Teams feature that helps scale to whatever size your need. We recommend it for clients who are utilizing social media for some level of customer service, as often the social media manager is not the person best equipped to answer every question that comes in from online. Individual interactions can be assigned to different users with a click, allowing a team manager tomanage the workflow of anyone with access to the platform. Integration with ZenDesk and UserVoice let managers assign messages as support tickets to the right department from within the platform.

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The Publisher feature (pictured above) is a key element of the platform, allowing the creation and scheduling of posts across networks from the same dashboard. Sprout handles images and links easily, posting natively to Facebook and Twitter instead of using their own method (like the ow.ly link shortener in Hootsuite, for example.) This creates a better experience for users who are engaging with your social channels. For us, it helps ensure we are getting a great, customized message out on all of our channels without giving off the feeling that it’s just another copy-and-paste article with nothing special about it.

Other Sprout features include a beautiful reporting system for account data as well as post-level data for all social channels, a CRM for your high-priority users, and a set of beautiful apps for iPhone and Android devices.

Simplifying social efforts is one of the keys to making your channels a valuable business asset. We often hear clients talk about how much TIME it takes to manage social media properly; Sprout prioritizes interactions, mentions and targeted listening while keeping the distractions to a minimum.

About the Author

Lou Perseghin

A listener first, Lou is highly organized and focused on the processes and strategies that keep our accounts (and clients) happy. He is currently ChatterBlast’s Account Director, with assistance from his pit bull Daisy, who is often found snoozing in sunspots around the office.

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