eClincher has added new features. Read my updated review.
Recently, I was asked to try out the new social media tool from eClincher. I agreed, because I have yet to find the perfect tool for scheduling social media updates, and I’m always trying out new things in hopes something will make life easier (aren’t we all?). I’ve been at this for 7 years. In the past, I’ve used Hootsuite off and on, and have tested out similar tools with few warranting a move, one of those being Edgar. So, I’d like to think that I have a good amount of experience to speak from.
eClincher is a promising new tool similar to Hootsuite. It’s still in development, but open to use by the public. Users just need to realize when they sign up that there are features still in development, but that’s a good thing! eClincher currently works with Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google Analytics, YouTube, and Blogger, with Tumblr, WordPress, and VK coming soon. As with all social media tools, they are limited by what the developers of each platform allow them to do with the API. So, if you’re hoping that eClincher is your answer to finally being able to post to Instagram from your computer, you’ll be sad to know that they are in the same boat as everyone else and can’t provide that service, but do allow you to do everything you can do on Instagram’s website.
So, what can eClincher do? Here are its features and a few notes on each.
- A Post Composer and Scheduler. You can add shortened links, pictures, and even Canva projects right in the dashboard. The composer warns you if you’re reaching character limits. Then, schedule them to post once or repeat every day, week, or month at a specific time. All your posts will appear on a calendar where you can see daily summaries. There’s also an option to save draft posts, if you need to finish them later.
- Master Inbox. This is an interesting feature. Rather than viewing all your notifications on multiple streams, you see everything in one master inbox where you can mark them as completed. This is great when you want to make responding to your followers a priority (and when isn’t it?).
Engagement Feeds. View all the feeds for your connected social media accounts, as well as custom feeds you can setup right in eClincher. This is a great feature that I’ve seen implemented in older tools, but not much in newer options. You can create feeds based on users (competitors?), keywords, and hashtags. This helps you keep track of your target audience and their activity. A VERY useful tool. You can also import an RSS feed.
- Analytics. See basic stats for followers, likes, and Google Analytics in easy-to-read graphs in your dashboard. I hope that eClincher expands this feature, because this is definitely something that social media managers will find useful, but theirs is not quite up to par content-wise with what Hootsuite provides. If they do, I hope they keep it included in the monthly price, unlike Hootsuite who likes to charge for additional reports.
- Mobile Site. Not all social media tools have a mobile version, so this is a great perk for when you’re on the go. It does seem to need some tweaking as the icons were overlapping when I loaded it on my phone. No biggie, really. It still worked.
What really attracted me to eClincher was the monthly pricing. It’s very affordable providing 4 different levels to choose from. So, you aren’t paying for what you don’t need. Currently, an Individual Plan for 5 accounts it’s just $8/month. The next step up is $25/month for 15. There’s also a free 14-day trial to help you determine if it meets your needs. See all pricing.
The dashboard is very easy to use. Hootsuite, with its dark colors and many columns, always made me feel overwhelmed. eClincher breaks it up, so you aren’t bombarded visually. It’s also great to see that it allows you to schedule repeats; however, the repeats are not unlimited.
The partnership with Canva is a neat feature. I’ve been using them for a while now. It’s a useful service for people who need social graphics, but don’t have the software or skills to create from the bottom up.
I think the master inbox is great, because checking notifications across multiple sites can get confusing. Someone always falls through the cracks. Sometimes I can’t respond right when I see them.So, it’s nice to be able to mark them as completed and not have them just disappear because I viewed them (*cough*Google*cough*).
The biggest downfall of eClincher? No import feature (eClincher has added new features. Read my updated review.). I’m highly disappointed that it’s not one of the first items they developed. I have a LOT of updates I would need to transfer, because I have so many accounts and have worked hard to build up my database. eClincher would require me to enter each post manually. HOWEVER, I was advised that an import feature is being developed.
So, will I be changing from Edgar? Unfortunately, no. Everyone has their own needs when it comes to social media. As much as I like the extra features and pricing, I write a lot of “green” content that I like to repeat and Edgar gives me more flexibility and master controls for my scheduling. I can categorize all my posts and schedule them by category, which is very handy. eClincher does not have this option. But eClincher would be great for anyone looking for a friendly alternative to Hootsuite.
Please note: I did change to eClincher. Here’s why.