What users are saying about

Sprout Social

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Top Rated
275 Ratings

Buffer

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Top Rated
180 Ratings

Sprout Social

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Top Rated
275 Ratings
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Score 8 out of 101

Buffer

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Top Rated
180 Ratings
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Score 8.5 out of 101

Add comparison

Likelihood to Recommend

Sprout Social

If you have a small social media team and need a way to quickly and easily monitor your owned social media channels, track conversations on your posts and engage with your fans or followers, Sprout works well. It also is an easy way for users to create high-level reports for higher-ups.
Jimmy Mack profile photo

Buffer

It is a lifesaver when it comes to managing different social media channels for various departments in one place. The approval process is exactly what we're looking for. Buffer is great for larger groups of people who would like to manage multiple social media channels. If you don't plan to post often, have a number of people who will post or only want to focus on one channel, this may not be necessary for you. If your main channel focus is Instagram, I don't think Buffer is the best place for that.
No photo available

Feature Rating Comparison

Listening/monitoring

Sprout Social
6.8
Buffer
Boolean keyword searches
Sprout Social
7.5
Buffer
Filtering out noise/spam
Sprout Social
7.2
Buffer
Sentiment analysis
Sprout Social
5.5
Buffer
Broad channel coverage
Sprout Social
6.9
Buffer

Publishing

Sprout Social
8.0
Buffer
8.2
Content planning and scheduling
Sprout Social
8.3
Buffer
9.2
Audience targeting
Sprout Social
7.9
Buffer
Content optimization
Sprout Social
7.6
Buffer
7.4
Workflow management
Sprout Social
8.2
Buffer
8.1

Engagement

Sprout Social
7.3
Buffer
Automated routing and prioritization
Sprout Social
6.3
Buffer
Customer interaction histories
Sprout Social
8.5
Buffer
Bulk actions
Sprout Social
7.1
Buffer

Marketing

Sprout Social
7.0
Buffer
Lead generation
Sprout Social
6.6
Buffer
Content marketing
Sprout Social
8.0
Buffer
Paid media management
Sprout Social
6.2
Buffer
Campaigns and promotions
Sprout Social
7.2
Buffer

Channel coverage/integration

Sprout Social
7.9
Buffer
Twitter
Sprout Social
9.1
Buffer
Facebook
Sprout Social
8.4
Buffer
LinkedIn
Sprout Social
7.4
Buffer
Google+
Sprout Social
7.1
Buffer
Instagram
Sprout Social
7.5
Buffer
Pinterest
Sprout Social
8.0
Buffer
YouTube
Sprout Social
8.0
Buffer

Reporting/analytics

Sprout Social
8.2
Buffer
8.0
Campaign success analytics
Sprout Social
8.0
Buffer
8.0
Real-time tracking
Sprout Social
8.9
Buffer
Competitor analysis
Sprout Social
7.7
Buffer

Account management

Sprout Social
7.8
Buffer
8.0
Role-based user permissions & privileges
Sprout Social
8.9
Buffer
7.7
Mobile access
Sprout Social
6.7
Buffer
8.3

Pros

  • SproutSocial allows you to see the entire month when you look at what's scheduled. You are able to see exactly what days already have content. This makes it easier to program and allows you to make sure you don't double-program.
  • The 'Reports' page is easy to read. Some analytics tools can be overwhelming or very confusing. SproutSocial makes it easy to see the analytics for each outlet that your organization controls. It's also easy to export all the data - this is especially helpful when printing off analytics for clients.
Mckenzie Masters profile photo
  • Simple to set up, add accounts, and get started. The barrier to entry for social media users/managers at all levels is fairly low, leading to greater adoption within the organization. I've had experience with other tools with many more bells and whistles but required a fair amount of training to take advantage of them. This boils things down to what we really need to keep our social media activity consistent.
  • Takes the guesswork out of scheduling. Figuring out when to share content, and how often, can take significant time. I like the Buffer queue feature that enables you to set a schedule once for each of your accounts, and then just drop new content in and not worry about whether there are holes in your calendar.
  • Adding content for multiple profiles at once. It's nice to be able to compose a message and quickly schedule it to go out on multiple profiles with a couple of clicks/minor adaptations. I use this feature regularly and it saves a lot of time vs. having to schedule for profiles individually.
Ben Rubenstein profile photo

Cons

  • You cannot schedule content for LinkedIn through SproutSocial. Some of our clients want to post to LinkedIn so it makes it harder. It would be easier to be able to use SproutSocial for everything.
  • Only one employee at a time can be logged into SproutSocial. This is very difficult when several employees need to program for different clients. If another employee signs on while someone else is in the program, the first person on will be kicked off without warning. This often causes whatever project the employee was working on to be lost.
Mckenzie Masters profile photo
  • Custom tracking. When sharing to multiple profiles, it's nice to be able to include different tracked links for each profile. By default, Buffer doesn't make this very easy - the standard campaign is just set to 'buffer', which can make traffic difficult to differentiate if you forget to create a unique link.
  • Media editing. Images and videos are simple to upload and edit, but I do wish there was some more customization available to ensure that you select the right size for a given network. I've also run into cases where an image I thought I'd uploaded wasn't actually shared along with the post.
  • Account management. We ran into an issue within our organization where we realized that not all our accounts were actually included within the Pro plan (vs. the free plan) because of it was required that our account administrator add the accounts. This may make sense in general, but was an issue for our organization with several distinct business units. Enabling more flexibility/permission levels for users would be nice.
  • Account disconnection. Buffer seems to 'lose' its connection to LinkedIn often, which may be more of a problem with the LinkedIn API than with the software, but it's a pain to have to re-verify the page and in some cases re-schedule updates.
Ben Rubenstein profile photo

Likelihood to Renew

Sprout Social6.2
Based on 61 answers
Overall, it's just a great product. It's made our lives simpler and we appreciate the good work that it allows us to do. We love efficiency and SproutSocial makes it easy to create and post awesome content for our clients. Our clients have raved about the analytics we are able to provide them through this site so we will continue to use it. There are still various aspects of Sprout that we haven't tapped into yet and we are still in the learning process. Overall, I would recommend it to those organizations who need to better manage their clients
Mckenzie Masters profile photo
Buffer9.1
Based on 11 answers
Ease of use, affordability, time saved and just love for the app and the team. It's not a miracle tool that will suddenly increase your company's value or leads, you still need to put in quality posts, thoughts and content but when used regularly and with thought, you'll be happy in the long run
Deanna Ayres profile photo

Usability

Sprout Social8.0
Based on 16 answers
Very slick. It's easy to get where you're going -- even discovering features when first using it was a breeze. The tabs across the top of the interface also make it simple to get from one place to another quickly. Extra points for solid mobile apps and its iPad app.
Bryden McGrath profile photo
Buffer10.0
Based on 1 answer
They make it incredibly simple to understand and do a great job of walking you through things along the way
Travis Balinas profile photo

Reliability and Availability

Sprout Social7.7
Based on 8 answers
I have never seen it in maintenance or downtime mode — I am always able to access this product.
Lizzie Maldonado profile photo
No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Performance

Sprout Social8.0
Based on 7 answers
It is quick to post, however you have to refresh the page every time you add a new scheduled item.
Sarah Zibanejadrad profile photo
No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Support

Sprout Social9.2
Based on 12 answers
The folks at Sprout are great. Answering the simplest questions right via Twitter or Facebook, the more complex issues i've had they respond back via email within a couple hours if not sooner. Extremely impressed with their customer support, they really know their product and aren't just trying to get you to upgrade to a higher tier
Lisa Kribs-LaPierre profile photo
Buffer10.0
Based on 1 answer
I've tweeted them questions before and they're always super quick to respond either through Twitter or email.
Travis Balinas profile photo

Online Training

Sprout Social7.3
Based on 3 answers
The trainers are very resourceful and are able to deliver the knowledge to all trainees. The simpleness of using Sprout Social, despite its amazing technical capabilities, is by itself a big encouragement boost
Valentin Vesa profile photo
No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Implementation

Sprout Social8.9
Based on 10 answers
Extremely easy to set up in-house.
Lizzie Maldonado profile photo
No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Alternatives Considered

  • The overall package
  • Price point
  • and great design and UI
Lisa Kribs-LaPierre profile photo
Nichole Smith profile photo

Return on Investment

  • Improved customer service for sure. It's definitely a good homebase for all channels, and keeps everything much more organized which means more efficiency.
  • A couple of my clients noticed immediate uptick in ROI, I credit this to our kickoff of their social media programs, of which Sprout is a huge tool to make it happen with. So yes, it has definitely reached many business objectives
Lisa Kribs-LaPierre profile photo
  • Saves time.
  • Helps stay organized on content.
  • Low investment for the time it saves.
Dawn Herring profile photo

Pricing Details

Sprout Social

General
Free Trial
Yes
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

Buffer

General
Free Trial
Yes
Free/Freemium Version
Yes
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details
Here are the prices of our various plans: Pro: $15/month Small Business: $99/month Medium Business: $199/month Large Business: $399/month Enterprise: Feel free to get in touch with us at onboarding@buffer.com. All plans can be paid on either a monthly or yearly basis. If you choose to pay yearly, you would receive a 15% discount, which works out to be approximately two months free per year.