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SparkToro

Starts at $150 a month
8.6

Features & Functionality

9.0/10

UI & Ease of use

9.0/10

Pricing & value for money

9.5/10

Integrations

7.0/10

Pros

  • Extensive data & insights on any audience type in any industry
  • Lots of filtering and sorting options
  • Multiple users in every plan - Perfect for teams & agencies
  • Hidden gems filtering option is a gold mine of fantastic data

Cons

  • No native integrations with other third-party tools and Zapier
  • English-only as of now

What is the most valuable asset right now for a marketer? 

Well, based on your channel of marketing it might vary, but if there is one universal asset any marketer would love to have, it is intelligence and data insights on their prospective audience.

It is so precious that big enterprise-level companies spend whole dedicated teams and millions of dollars into market research and audience profiling to get to their ideal customer profile. 

If the information is so valuable, why not every business tries to get it? Well, two main reasons.

One, it is an extremely difficult process and requires tons of time, research and money spent to get the desired data sets. Two, the data obtained after all the time and efforts spent can still lack the accuracy as there could be a lot of human error involved. 

This is exactly the problem SparkToro as a tool wants to solve. To make audience research simple, easy and cheap. 

It is co-founded by Rand Fishkin, who Founded Moz, a well-known tool for search engine optimization. Rand is someone I hugely respect and admire in the marketing world for the insights he shares, especially on search and SEO. 

Therefore, ever since he announced that he is working on a new project called SparkToro, I was excited and looking forward to it. He was kind enough to give me review access before the launch to try the tool and share my thoughts on it. 

So, without any further due, let's get into the review to find how good it is, pricing, support, etc. 

Dashboard and User interface

As soon as you signed up and get into the main dashboard, you are welcomed by a short 2-minute video by Rand on what exactly the product is and how it could be useful for your business. 

SparkToro dashboard

It is really beneficial to have this video in the onboarding process as Rand precisely explains in simple terms on what you get out of the tool. 

The overall UI is neat, intuitive and it is very easy to navigate across different elements of the dashboard. 

Audience Insights

There are five types of searches you can input to get the relevant data on your audience.

  • My audience frequently talks about,
  • My audience use these words in their profile,
  • My audience follows these social accounts,
  • My audience frequently visits the website,
  • My audience frequently uses the hashtag.

This is quite an extensive range of input criteria that will match the needs of any query you would want to make. 

sparktoro search input types

Once you select the type of input for your search, just type out the keyword of your interest. 

When you search a keyword, you get the results in the following categories and you can also view them all in one large list of overview,

  • Social accounts followed,
  • Websites visited & shared,
  • Podcasts followed & shared,
  • YouTube channels followed and subscribed to,
  • Audience insights including size, geography, most active networks, etc. 

The below graphic will show exactly how the tool works and what are the insights you can get.

SparkToro data analysis

As the graphic illustrates, you can try out multiple combinations to get as much as the specific information you want to know about your target audience. 

In my testing, I want to get maximum insights on an audience that is interested in SaaS, SaaS founders, SaaS investment, SaaS finding, SaaS reviews, etc.

When I ran a search of my audience frequently talks about SaaS founders, the SparkToro database gave about 15,415 results. 

You get an overview of the search results including audience size, how similar or shared experiences they have and how accurate the data is based on various sources. 

SaprkToro overview

Then, you can go into individual tabs for results on social, podcasts, websites and YouTube channels. 

I was quite amazed by the number of results it generated, particularly on Podcasts and YouTube channels. I never knew that so many amazing podcasts exist in the SaaS niche.

There are various filtering options available to refine the results based on your needs. By far, my favorite is the "Hidden Gems" in the category of social accounts.

It basically shows the list of social accounts that your audience is following that has very good engagement rates, but not very well-known or mainstream. 

SparkToro hidden gems

This data is a gold mine for any marketer, particularly if you want to do outreach in social media. 

Individual profiles can be selected and added to various lists that you can build for future reference. Alternatively, the data of selected profiles can be downloaded as a CSV file as well.

SparkToro lists

Audience Comparison

This is a feature to compare two types of audience profiles and see what they have in common and how different they are in the influencers they follow and other detailed statistics. 

I tried a comparison between "SaaS founders" and " SaaS Investors".

SparkToro Audience comparison

The results were quite interesting, particularly the difference in websites and podcasts they follow. 

Pricing

There are three plans ranging from $150 to $600 per month when paid monthly and the annual pricing gets you a discount of 25 percent.

SparkToro pricing

The difference in various plans is the number of searches you can do and the number of users that can access the tool depending on your team size. 

There is a free plan that lets you do 5 searches per month for a single user and a single list.

If you don't want a monthly subscription, there is a one-time use plan for $450 per week, that has a search limit of 10,000 searches and a single user. This is a very good option for someone who wants to use the tool for a specific marketing campaign. 

One good thing I noticed is that when you do the same search more than once, it gets counted as just one credit. 

Support

There is no live chat support at the moment, but you can get the queries answered via email. I assume live chat support might get added in the future. 

However, considering the simplicity of how SparkToro works, you might not need to communicate regarding any customer support issues. 

There are some additional free tools from SparkToro to find the quality of an influencer and their followers and trending content on Twitter.

SparkToro free tools

Best use cases of SparkToro

Influencer marketing

Perhaps, the best use case from the data you get from SparkToro. It gives you an incredible amount of data on influencers with just a few clicks to reach out to an influencer in any niche or any industry type. 

Media outreach

Reaching out for PR related and other media outreach to gather more visibility to your brand gets way easier with the data you get from SparkToro. 

Affiliate/Reseller partnership

If you are a SaaS or a software company, looking out for the right people to launch your affiliate or partnership program.

Data for advertising campaigns

You can make your advertising campaigns way more effective with the intelligence data you get out of SparkToro. The custom audience you build on Facebook will have some excellent inputs. 

Negatives?

As much as I like the tool, there are a few negatives.

First, is the lack of native integrations with other third-party tools or even Zapier. The only way to get the data is to download it. Native integrations with other cold emailing tools would be a huge time saver. 

Secondly, the tool currently supports only English. I am sure it will get expanded to other geographies and languages over time, but as of now, it is English-only. 

Conclusion

To wrap up was SparkToro as good as I expected it to be?

Well, it was even better than my high expectations. The data you get from SparkToro, it is almost impossible to get from any other SaaS tool. 

The only way to get it would be hours of manual research and surveys. It just saves an incredible amount of time and money. 

If some native integrations or at least Zapier are added, it would make SparkToro even better. 

SparkToro Review (2020) – The easiest way to get complex audience intelligence data?

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