Buffer, a social media manger, opened the Buffer API last week beyond its internal apps. According to co-founder, Leo Wildrich, the decision sprung from its single purpose as a company: "How can we make sharing links, videos and images to your social networks easier and more powerful?" Unlike its main competitors, Hootsuite and Sprout Social, Buffer "focus[es] on non-original content sharing, especially photos, videos and articles" states Tech Crunch. As Buffer launches its API, and attempts to make sharing easier, Wildrich stressed that Buffer aims "to build a new sharing standard...across the web."
Buffer's API has already accomplished some success with "15 integrations done and dozens more in the pipeline." Buffer further differentiates itself from competitors by focusing on all social media users; not simply offering a dashboard to companies wishing to manage social media. Its focus on non-original content ensures users can provide the best content when and where they want to share the content.
The Buffer API uses REST protocol and JSON data format for responses. Sharing content is simple. As Wildrich describes the process: "Drop [content] into your Buffer and that’s it, we take care of the rest." The content is then distributed where and when the developer wants it (e.g. scheduled or non-scheduled sharing across multiple social networks at the instruction of the developer."
Social media management is already a crowded market. The threat of a social media giant (e.g. Facebook) acquiring or overturning a successful social media manager always remains. However, with an open API, forward-thinkers like Buffer could establish a widespread user-base that could set itself apart from competitors and give it legs to stand strong on its own.