Who cares about social media listening in 2018? Well, just about everyone. A couple of years ago, businesses considered social media to be a fad. Now, with over 70% of small businesses using social media, the situation is completely different. Monitoring social media is a must these days, because, if done properly, it gives you powerful customer insights, lets you monitor your competitors and what their customers are saying, and helps you grow your business in many other ways. If you have a social presence on multiple platforms, it becomes near to impossible to deal with that amount of work manually. Using a social listening tool will save you a ton of time and cash, but choosing one that’s right for your business can be a challenge if you’re just starting out.

For this post, I’ve compared some of the popular social media monitoring tools, looked at their pricing, and outlined each tool’s strengths and weaknesses. Read on to find which apps will work best for your niche and budget.


Awario collects mentions about your brand, service, or any other keyword across social media, the Web, news, or blogs. It may also be used as a brand reputation management or a competitor analysis tool. You can go with it if you need to grow brand awareness, beat out competitors, or find influencers. You can also handle negative mentions of your brand right from the app. Awario live support team is ready to show you the ins and outs of the app, even if you don’t have a paid subscription plan.


  • The most affordable tool for the amount of data you get;
  • Awario has a lot of comprehensive web data due to using their own crawlers instead of third-party data providers;
  • There’s a Boolean search mode for creating advanced queries to get more precise results;
  • A module to let you find potential customers on social media is coming soon!


  • It usually takes some time to get the first web results;
  • Reports are not customizable.

Pricing 💰

Before buying a subscription, you have 14 days to try the app for free. The Starter Plan is $29 a month and it has 3 alerts. An alert is a place to specify keywords you want to get mentions of. Starter offers 30K monthly mentions.This is the overall number of results on all alerts. Pro costs $89 per month and carries 10 alerts with 100K mentions. Enterprise is $299 a month with 50 alerts and 500K monthly mentions. In case you choose an annual plan, you will get a 20% discount.

Best for

This platform meets the needs of individuals, small businesses and medium-sized companies.


Brand24 has a similar list of features to the previous tool. The correlation between the price and number of alerts in both apps is about the same, though their Max plan costs less and has more mentions than Awario’s Enterprise plan.


  • A mobile app. It may be handy to keep an eye on your mentions while on-the-go;
  • Each plan comes with a number of users you can give access to your mentions;
  • Brand24 has a Slack integration which notifies you about new mentions.


  • Live support is for Premium and Max users only;
  • Historical data of mentions is limited to 12 months in the best-case scenario;
  • The app is a bit expensive for personal usage;
  • You can’t engage with your mentions right from the app;
  • Brand24 imposes limits on the number of keywords.

Pricing 💰

If you go with the Plus plan, it will cost you $49 and you will have 50K mentions a month. Premium is $99 a month and it has 400K mentions. The Max plan costs $399 a month and can store up to a million mentions.

Best for

Brand24 will be useful for small- and medium-sized business.


Mention is yet another monitoring tool for social media. It’s best for brand monitoring, but you can also track industry leaders with it. Apart from social media, it keeps you on top of mentions from news, blogs, or web pages. Mention has powerful analytics and the default set of functions such as sentiment analysis, a Boolean query mode, and data export.


  • You can tag your mentions;
  • Like Brand24, Mention offers a Slack integration, which besides new mentions shows basic stats like daily number of new mentions, sentiment and the mentions’ influence rate;
  • You can create automated reports and they will be sent, say, every week to your email in a PDF file.


  • There are way fewer mentions and alerts for a bigger price, compared to the tools above;
  • A Boolean query mode is available in the Custom plan only;
  • Mention has limited historical data in Solo and Starter.

Pricing 💰💰

Before settling on a plan, start with 14 days without any charge. The Solo plan offers 3K mentions and costs $29 a month. Starter is $99 and it has 5K mentions. In case you need more — contact their support team to create a custom plan and they will figure out the price for you.

Best for

While Mention has plans for solo users and small business, they are primarily aimed at medium-sized companies and agencies.


Talkwalker is an online reputation management system. Talkwalker emphasizes the importance of analytics while doing social media listening. That’s why they offer real-time text and image analysis and automated reports. The free version includes the most important features but displays mentions for the last 7 days max. Anyway, it still gives you a chance to eavesdrop on social media.


  • Talkwalker offers gender/age demographics and other statistics;
  • You can use the freemium version of the app if you don’t need all those fancy stats;
  • It has a larger list of social sources compared to competitors;
  • Talkwalker tracks backlink opportunities.


  • Seems unaffordable for small business or individuals;
  • Basic and Corporate plans carry a small number of mentions;
  • You can’t add negative keywords to queries, so if your company’s name is a common word (e.g. Mention), you will get lots of irrelevant mentions.

Pricing 💰💰💰

Talkwalker offers a free account. The prices for the subscription plans are way higher than those of competitors. The Basic plan is $700 a month charged annually with 10K mentions a month. Corporate is $1500/month charged annually with 100K mentions. The price of the Enterprise plan is calculated on request.

Best for

This app suits the needs of big brands and agencies rather than small business or individuals.


Brandwatch provides various functions and in-depth analysis of mentions. Apart from social monitoring, the app helps you figure out the trending topics in your industry and therefore adjust your content strategy.


  • Powerful segmentation rules simplify the process of filtering out the data;
  • Brandwatch has a real-time data visualization platform which supports several integrations (Salesforce, Buzzsumo, Google Analytics, etc.);
  • The Audiences module helps find and understand influencers based on such factors as their demographics, location, professions, etc.


  • Brandwatch doesn’t offer a free trial;
  • By default, historical data is restricted, but you can unlock it for the extra price.

Pricing 💰💰💰💰

Brandwatch is an enterprise-level tool. The Pro account will cost you $800/month with 10K mentions. For the Enterprise price, you’ll need to contact their support team.

Best for

Like Talkwalker, it’s best for marketing agencies or digital companies requiring a large number of mentions.

Other tools to consider

The apps listed above are dedicated social media listening tools. But apart from tracking your brand, competitors, or industry keywords, there are numerous other things social listening can be useful for, either on its own or combined with other tactics. It can be handy for influencer marketing, content marketing, social media management, customer care, and beyond. Here’s a list of tools that use social media monitoring in creative ways.


Buzzsumo is a content research tool. It shows the metrics for each post and tells you what content performs best. Buzzsumo will tell you what day is the best to post, the best length for your posts, and what types of content work best.


Although you can find and filter social conversations with Hootsuite, it is not its killer-feature. This tool is best for handling your social feeds in one place and replying to users right from the feed. Hootsuite offers powerful analytics and the possibility to assign tasks to team members.


If This Then That is a platform for processes automation. It takes almost any two services and makes them work together. For example, you will be able to set up the automatic data backup, send person-specific conditional notifications, get email mentions from RSS channels and way more.

Before you go

The presence of social media in business is rapidly expanding. Therefore, the number of tools for monitoring social networks is constantly growing, making it more difficult to choose the right one. So to choose wisely, set clear goals for your campaigns, try some of the tools with a free trial, and go for the one that fits your needs best. Remember that the most important part of social listening is actual engagement with those mentions and thus bringing value to your customers.