Your Ultimate Guide to the Top Social Listening Tools of 2024

Learn More About HubSpot's Social Media Software
Kristen Baker
Kristen Baker

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As a marketer, effective communication with my target audience is the gold standard I hold myself to, and it requires just as much listening as it does telling. That’s why I love social listening tools. I can easily understand what my audience values and how existing and potential customers perceive our brand. 

man uses the best social listening tools for brands in 2024

I’ve found that with these insights, crafting a compelling content strategy and messaging that truly resonates with our consumers becomes much more straightforward. Today, I’ll share with you my top social listening tools for 2024 and help you find the solution that’s best for your brand.

Table of Contents

Learn More About HubSpot's Social Media Software

What is social listening?

Social listening refers to monitoring and analyzing your social media profiles for customer feedback; direct mentions of your brand; and any conversations with relevant keywords, topics, competitors, or industries. You can use social listening to uncover insights that help determine the best ways to improve your social media strategy, brand perception, positioning, and social presence.

Social Listening vs. Social Media Tracking

Social media tracking (also known as social media monitoring) is a short-term strategy that involves identifying and responding to mentions of your brand on social media. In contrast, social media listening is a long-term process of analyzing online conversations to proactively identify ways to improve your brand strategy.

Although I often hear these two terms used interchangeably, there’s a difference. Social monitoring is more reactive and has a heavier focus on what your audience says about your brand. Let’s say I run a candle-making business. If a customer posts on TikTok that the candle jar shattered in transit, I can send them a replacement to build goodwill.

Social listening, on the other hand, uses aggregated data to dig deeper into why people say what they do and what that means for your brand. If I see a lot of my customers posting positively about a line of candles made with organic beeswax, I can infer that sustainability matters to my audience.

If you’re interested in social monitoring, you can check out our list of the best free social media monitoring tools.

What are social listening tools?

Social listening tools help you monitor several social media platforms in one place by aggregating brand mentions, posts with relevant keywords, and direct feedback you receive through tags or direct messages (DMs).

To make your search easier, I’ve explored a wide variety of solutions — from free tools to comprehensive social media management platforms — and compiled a list of the best social listening tools of 2024.

Explore HubSpot’s Social Media Management Software today and discover the impact of social listening and social media automation. You’ll be glad you did.

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    Best All-in-One Social Media Listening

    & Management Tools

    1. HubSpot Social Media Management Software

    Price: Plans start at $890 per month

    social listening tools, hubspot dashboard

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    I use HubSpot’s Marketing Hub as a marketing manager on the HubSpot team. I’ve found that this all-in-one social media marketing software makes it easy to monitor interactions, conversations, and audiences across platforms. I also like that you can create streams that automatically alert your sales team when someone mentions a specific keyword online.

    With HubSpot Marketing, you get the tools you need to manage day-to-day interactions and engagement on social. You can then target specific audiences using context from the contacts database in your CRM. This can help you better understand what these groups think of your business.

    One of my favorite features of HubSpot’s social media tools is that you can post content and reply to your audience directly from HubSpot. You don’t need to log in to each social platform separately.

    What does that mean for you? You can manage your entire social strategy — from planning to sharing to analyzing — from one central location.

    Key Features

    • Save time with the AI-powered social post generator.
    • Schedule social posts in advance, cross-platform.
    • Integrate your social tool with your contacts database and CRM.
    • Use keyword streams to track conversations critical to your sales pipeline.
    • Report on your video strategy with YouTube reporting if you're an Enterprise user.
    • Manage social profiles on Facebook, Instagram, X, and LinkedIn from one tool.

    What I like: HubSpot lets you use tags to associate social posts with specific marketing campaigns for more effective big-picture insights.

    2. Sprout Social

    Price: Plans start at $249 a user per month

    social listening tools, Sprout Social’s custom reports page

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    Sprout Social is a comprehensive social media management platform that provides powerful solutions for social listening and analytics, customer care, and employee advocacy. You easily build queries that let you track customer posts related to topics of your choice. 

    Beyond that, I love how Sprout Social makes identifying trends easy. You can generate a word cloud to see which terms appear most when customers talk about your company. You’ll then know which insights to assess more carefully. 

    Key Features

    • Map out a content strategy and schedule posts with the Publishing tool.
    • Monitor and manage engagement across social networks in a unified inbox.
    • Integrate Sprout Social with your HubSpot software to collect accurate social reports all in one place.
    • Uncover trends in social conversations, learn about your audience, and gain actionable insights to inform your marketing strategy with the integrated social listening tool.

    What I like: Sprout Social includes competitor analysis and industry insights to help benchmark your brand’s performance.

    3. Brandwatch

    Price: Book a demo for pricing

    social listening tool, Brandwatch market analysis dashboard

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    Brandwatch is a digital marketing suite with consumer intelligence, social media management, and influencer management tools. Like the other all-in-one tools I’ve listed, Brandwatch allows for social media scheduling across various platforms and enables social listening by aggregating relevant interactions.

    One thing that stands out to me about Brandwatch is its continuous innovation. The platform often adds new features, such as using artificial intelligence (AI) to uncover brand insights, which helps users stay at the forefront of social listening. 

    Key Features

    • Store all visual content in the digital asset library.
    • Monitor messages from all social channels in one inbox.
    • Stay competitive with benchmarking tools, including share of voice analysis.
    • Aggregate brand mentions from 100+ million sources in the social listening tool.
    • Get a deeper analysis of user demographics and behavior with Focus Panels.

    What I like: Brandwatch offers multilingual coverage, making it an excellent option for marketing agencies with clients in different countries.

    4. Hootsuite

    Price: Plans start at $99 per month

    social listening tools, Hootsuite Streams page

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    Hootsuite is a social media management platform that provides a concise dashboard where you can view and respond to all messages, comments, and brand mentions across several different social media accounts. It also provides social listening tools that let you track brand mentions along with relevant keywords and hashtags.

    I particularly enjoy the Streams feature, which makes it easy to track activity across all of your accounts and keep an eye on relevant topics and trends.

    When it comes to social listening, I asked Kaitlin Milliken, a senior program manager at HubSpot, about her experience on the platform. 

    “I used Hootsuite in a previous role where I helped launch a new publication for business executives. We always watched to see which content people talked about and liked. That helped us decide if experimental posts — like quizzes or Q&As — were worth doing in the future,” Milliken says.

    Key Features

    • Easily monitor and respond to brand mentions directly in the platform.
    • Optimize your paid social campaigns with the Boost option.
    • Manage activity and measure success across social platforms, including
    • Facebook, Instagram, X, YouTube, LinkedIn, TikTok, and Pinterest.
    • Generate captions and post ideas with the AI tool.
    • Seamlessly integrate Hootsuite with HubSpot to streamline your marketing efforts, gain deeper insights into your audience, and drive targeted engagement.

    What I like: Hootsuite offers a wide selection of native integrations, making it useful for brands that already have a well-established tech stack.

    Best Social Media Listening Tools

    5. Meltwater

    Price: Book a demo for pricing

    social listening tool, Meltwater dashboard

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    Meltwater is a global media intelligence and social listening company. It provides a range of software solutions and services that help businesses monitor and analyze their online presence, track media coverage, and gather valuable insights from social media and other online sources.

    Meltwater's suite is one of the more comprehensive offerings on this list. It includes features like media monitoring, customer sentiment analysis, trend tracking, influencer identification, and competitive analysis.

    Meltwater gathers social listening data from a wide range of online channels, allowing businesses to gain a comprehensive understanding of their brand's reputation and industry trends.

    While I enjoy all of Meltwater’s tools, the AI Assistant is one of my favorite features. I use it to generate first drafts of press releases and media pitches, which can be adapted to different situations and save me tons of time.

    Key Features

    • Find key influencers mentioning your brand or industry.
    • Identify emerging trends and topics relevant to your brand or industry.
    • Monitor data from social media platforms, news sites, blogs, forums, and other online sources.
    • Analyze the sentiment behind social media posts, articles, and other online content to better understand public opinion.
    • Monitor your competitors' online activities to gain insights and benchmark your performance.
    • Customize real-time notifications to stay informed about important events, mentions, or trends, ensuring you can respond promptly when necessary.
    • Generate customized reports with key metrics, charts, and insights to measure the impact of your social media efforts.

    What I like: Meltwater’s Newswire integration makes it a great choice for combining social media and public relations (PR) management in one platform.

    6. Mentionlytics (Pro Plan)

    Price: Plans start at $399 per month

    social listening tool, Dashboard for Mentionlytics

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    Mentionlytics is an AI-powered social media listening tool that offers real-time monitoring and analysis of online conversations. It efficiently tracks brand mentions, keywords, and hashtags across all major social media platforms and the web.

    Mentionlytics uses comprehensive reporting to help make informed decisions and design proactive engagement strategies. Beyond that, its exceptionally personal customer service team ensures I get the most out of each feature.

    Key Features

    • Track mentions, keywords, and hashtags to easily identify where and when users mention your brand online.
    • Use sentiment analysis to understand whether online mentions of your brand are positive, negative, or neutral in 100+ languages.
    • Assess your brand’s online presence and compare it with competitors to understand your market share.
    • Improve your social media strategy based on real-time data analysis from Social Intelligent Advisor (SIA).
    • Tailor dashboard to display the specific metrics and information you find most valuable.

    What I like: Mentionlytics captures user mentions even if the person who posted doesn’t tag your brand, allowing you to catch more opportunities to improve the customer experience.

    7. Digimind

    Price: Customized according to needs

    social listening tools, Digimind’s brand reputation dashboard

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    Digimind is a leading global social listening platform and competitive intelligence software that transforms social and online data into actionable consumer and business insights. I find its brand reputation dashboard useful for effectively planning, executing, and analyzing a marketing strategy.

    That said, the tool collects a large amount of data and isn’t the easiest to filter out metrics, so I would recommend it to individuals who have more experience with analytics and data management.

    Key Features

    • Get insights from the past through the historical search feature.
    • Make sense of social data with intuitive dashboards and charts.
    • Uncover trending topics in social conversations and make informed strategic decisions through consumer insights from multiple sources.
    • Integrate Digimind Social with your current tech stack to collect accurate social reports all in one place.

    What I like: Digimind has one of the most user-friendly and intuitive experiences of all the tools on this list, making it easy to understand the social media analytics and insights it provides.

    8. Agorapulse (Advanced Plan)

    Price: Plans start at $149 a user per month 

    social listening tools, Agorapulse’s social media inbox

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    Agorapulse’s Professional plan allows you to have one unified inbox for all of your social media conversations, publish across several platforms, access brand monitoring insights, and generate analytics reports. That means you can see your mentions while you’re scheduling out your posts. You’ll never miss a customer post.

    While there is a free plan available, I wouldn’t recommend it, as it limits scheduling to 10 posts and only provides basic reporting.

    Key Features

    • Focus on what's important with YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Boolean search parameters.
    • Organize your content strategy by labeling items, such as key posts, competitor activity, and customer feedback, for easy retrieval and response.
    • Discover new feedback and customers with unlimited saved searches.
    • Manage Facebook and Instagram ad comments and receive stats as soon as you want them in chronological order.

    What I like: The Canva integration (available on the Professional plan and higher) makes it easy to create and schedule visually compelling posts in your brand’s style.

    9. Oktopost

    Price: Book a demo for pricing

    social listening tool Oktopost’s brand mentions dashboard

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    Oktopost is a social media management platform for business-to-business (B2B) marketers that monitors and measures all social media activities. Oktopost even tracks conversations about your brand from more than 75 million unique websites.

    Oktopost also makes it easy to see who’s discussing your brand positively. You can see which influencers and thought leaders already love what you do. You can then spot brand advocates that you can partner with.

    One of my favorite Oktopost features is the social employee advocacy application, which isn’t typically included in social media software. In one place, you can create posts for your employees to share, creating more brand awareness and even generating leads.  

    Key Features

    • Tie Oktopost to your B2B social media marketing goals.
    • Use PDF sharing and tracking to easily share engaging content with your audience.
    • Use advanced reporting to determine your social media return on investment (ROI).
    • Publish content to LinkedIn, Facebook, X, Instagram, YouTube, and even WeChat.
    • Integrate Oktopost with your HubSpot CRM to engage and converse with prospects, score leads based on engagement, enhance nurturing programs, update contact records, and inform sales of any negative sentiment coming from prospects on social.

    What I like: The Oktopost mobile app makes it easy to manage posts from your phone, especially on LinkedIn.

    Best Budget-Friendly Social Listening Tools 

    10. Buffer

    Price: Free plans are available

    social listening tool Buffer’s analytics dashboard

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    Buffer creates an omnichannel experience for your social media and community teams. I think the free plan is a great option for individual users or small businesses just getting started with social media, as it lets you connect up to three social media channels.  

    I also like that the tool makes it easy to find the conversations that matter most, join them right away, and delight your audience. That's because you can post content and engage directly in replies from one centralized dashboard through a team-shared inbox.

    Key Features

    • Plan effective social campaigns using the scheduling and publishing features.
      Integrate with Facebook, X, Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google Business Profile.
    • Use the story monitoring feature to record and analyze your stories on channels like Facebook and Instagram.
    • Monitor your team's performance by measuring engagement and audience behavior with the reports and analytics tools (paid plans only).

    What I like: The free version includes a landing page builder and an AI assistant to help you create social posts faster.

    11. Awario

    Price: Plans start at $49 per month

    social listening tool, Alerts page in Awario

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    Awario is a social listening tool focused on building brand awareness that tracks keywords in any language. In my experience, this solution is great for companies that want to grow their international customer base through social media engagement.

    The platform provides everything you need to not only monitor and respond to comments but also build meaningful relationships with your target audience on social platforms.

    Key Features

    • Pair the social listening software with your blogs, forums, and external websites using the API (Enterprise plan only).
    • Connect Awario with Facebook, X, Instagram, Reddit, and YouTube profiles.
      Identify influencers by seeing which creators have been mentioning your brand on different social platforms.
    • Keep an updated list of new leads your sales team can pursue.
    • Use the Leads feature to identify posts that ask for a product recommendation similar to yours or talk about issues they're having with products sold by your competitors.

    What I like: The optional Awario Leads feature helps you build a sales pipeline of social media users seeking out your products.

    12. Mention

    Price: Plans start at $49 per month

    social listening tool, Create new report page in Mention

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    Mention has the capacity to track over a billion content sources across 44 languages to monitor brand mentions all over the world. What I find even more impressive is that you can select what content you'd like to tune out, so you're only paying attention to trends that matter. Say goodbye to bots and hello to real customers!

    I also appreciate that the competitive analysis tool lets you compare your brand against two or more competitors — this way, you can ensure your content is always relevant, timely, and unique to your brand when compared to other industry leaders.

    Key Features

    • Effectively manage any social media uproar or crisis situation that comes your way with the Crisis Management feature.
    • Use the Team feature so employees can collaborate on social media management efforts and alert each other when they need help.
    • Use the social listening software to track your success with any compatible platform, including Facebook, Instagram, and X (some platforms require higher-priced plans).

    What I like: Mention offers a variety of report templates that are easy for analytics beginners, as well as custom options for more experienced users.

    Best Social Listening Tools for TikTok Monitoring

    13. Keyhole (Team Plan)

    Price: Plans start at $189 per month

    social listening tools, Keyhole’s hashtag tracking dashboard

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    Keyhole is a social listening tool that helps you track direct and indirect brand mentions across several platforms, including TikTok, Instagram, Facebook, X, and LinkedIn. With the Team plan, you can get thorough TikTok analytics, including competitive analysis and data-driven recommendations for hashtags, video effects, and post times optimized for engagement.

    Making the most of TikTok matters. A negative viral video can generate mountains of bad press. On the flip side, a great influencer partnership on the platform can help you earn business. Keyhole can help with both.

    Key Features

    • Get unique insights into your brand’s tracked hashtags.
    • Use posting recommendations to increase engagement with your brand’s videos.
    • Discover trends as they emerge with machine learning-powered trend analysis.
    • Use follower insights to get to know your target audience better across several platforms.
    • Record posts and mentions that include your hashtags in real time so you always have the most up-to-date information on your accounts.

    What I like: The real-time mention alerts help you capitalize on opportunities while they’re still buzzworthy.

    14. Iconosquare

    Price: Plans start at $59 per month

    social listening tools, Iconosquare dashboard

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    Iconosquare offers solutions for publishing, monitoring, and analyzing social media content and profiles. Advanced analytics and graphs measure success on TikTok, X, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram. I also find the option for automated reports quite useful for lean teams or marketers who wear many hats.

    As a marketer, I know that the comments section often contains valuable insights. That can come in the form of praise and hastily written online rants. Iconosquare gathers these comments for you all in one place so you don’t miss a thing. You can also moderate comments from the platform so you can hide negative mentions.

    The tool allows you to schedule content ahead, store content for future use, and preview your feed prior to posting or scheduling. Plus, you can get real-time engagement information with the tool’s social listening capabilities.

    Key Features

    • Cross-post social content to different profiles at the same time.
    • Schedule posts from your phone with the iPhone or Android app.
    • Monitor, manage, publish, and analyze social content on TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and X.
    • Track mentions of competitor brand names along with your own for easier benchmarking.
    • Use the Conversations feature to listen and engage with audience members on the platform.
    • Display performance for metrics of your choice, such as follower evolution, average engagement per post, reach, or impressions.

    What I like: Iconosquare can track over 100 different social media metrics, making it easy to customize reports based on what’s most impactful for your brand.

    Grow Your Brand With Social Listening Tools

    As a marketer, I’ve learned that when you truly know your audience and how they perceive your brand, you can build campaigns that resonate deeply and improve your brand positioning.

    I recommend that any digital marketer make use of social listening tools to get a window into the target audience’s mind and actionable insights that help capitalize on buzzworthy moments and customer sentiment. 

    Editor's note: This post was originally published in January 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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