Free Social Media Monitoring Tools - SubHub's Top Picks

Social media monitoring tools are fast becoming a vital part of any good marketer's toolkit, providing the ability to track when and where a name or brand has been mentioned across thousands (even millions) of websites, including the likes of Twitter and Facebook.

With the use of social media now widely adopted within the marketing mix, the number of social media monitoring tools that are now available has grown hugely in the last year. Some are great, while some are clunky. Some are free, while some are VERY expensive!

In these more austere times, the good news is that you can monitoring your brand effectively, without breaking the bank.

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To help give you a head start on your competitors, SubHub has selected the cream of the free social tracking tools currently available, for you to try out.

While there are many more tools available, these are the ones we feel are worthy of a tryout, based on our own in-house testing . . .

1) Google Alerts - daily or real-time Google alerts delivered via email for your chosen keywords. Free and simple. A must-have for any marketer!

2) BrandsEye - not exactly free, as it starts at $1/month, but a great tool for recording mentions of your name and brand, or that of your competitors.

3) Twitter Search - Twitter's search is great for tracking real-time conversations. Can be used via or through your Twitter desktop tool of choice.

4) Monitter - Allows you to track three keywords in real-time, by proximity to any location. Handy for checking local campaign effectiveness or how your brand compares in multiple locations.

5) Social Mention - another multi-platform visability checker, including alerts and a handy buzz widget for your website.

6) Addictomatic - this handy site allows you to instantly create a custom page with the latest buzz on any topic. Addictomatic monitors Twitter, Bing News, YouTube, Google Blog Search, Digg, Tweetmeme Links, Friendfeed, News, Flickr, Yahoo! Web Search and Truveo Video Search

7) HowSociable? - measure your brand's visability across the main social platforms, awarding you a 'visability score'. 32 metrics measured.

8) Postling - a very handy service for monitoring Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr and all the blogging platforms. It also allows you to post and schedule updates to your accounts. Analytics are available to paying customers.

I hope you find these tools effective in helping you to track your brand and keywords across the web.

Remember: While measuring the volume of engagement with your website is important, so too should be your understanding of what users are saying about your brand or products, across the social space.  In fact, it's vital to your overall business strategy!

Have any recommendations of your own for free tools? Please feel free to add them in the comments area below.

For more of our top picks, check out SubHub Recommends