How To Use Hootsuite To Make Your Social Media Life Easier

by Anish Sah May 10, 2018
How to use Hootsuite

If you have landed on this article, you already know that social media, today, plays a vital role in the kind of personal or brand personality you cultivate. It is through these platforms—Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, among others—that your potential customers and clients find out about and form an impression of you.

Maintaining a constant presence in these platforms is essential. However, switching from one account to another and analyzing whether or not each platform is working in your favor is tough and tedious. Also, not everyone, especially if you are just starting out, can afford to hire a full-time social media manager to devise and implement a consistent social media strategy.

The importance of social media management platforms cannot be overstated, and neither can the various social media management platforms.

Tools like Hootsuite help you manage multiple social media platforms with ease. I am going to discuss how to use Hootsuite here in this blog because of the array of features it offers and its affordability. Hootsuite helps you create and portray a consistent image and share a coherent message with your target market across multiple platforms.

With the variety of features the platform offers, you might be wondering how to use Hootsuite for your brand’s social media management. This post is the first in a series of posts included in my comprehensive ‘How to use Hootsuite’ guide to help you learn everything you need to know about Hootsuite.


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Manage All Your Social Media

Here’s The Hootsuite Encyclopedia!!

What is Hootsuite?

First, let me explain in more detail what Hootsuite is and how Hootsuite helps with social media management.

Hootsuite was created in 2008 and has since been the most popular social media management tool. It was among the original SMM tools and is still a go-to tool for most companies’ social media platforms.

How to use Hootsuite

Hootsuite Dashboard

For our first part, let’s start with some questions I get frequently from people wondering how to use Hootsuite.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to use Hootsuite for social media management?

In the past decade, the role of social media has evolved from just networking with one’s friends and family to incorporate important business communications. Today, all kinds of businesses, big or small, use social media to find and connect with their customers and to provide personalized customer service. Digital platforms, through constant personalized communication with customers, also help brands foster lasting relationships.

Where does Hootsuite then come into the equation?

Simply put, Hootsuite helps sift through the chatter and helps you identify relevant online conversations.

Why and how to use Hootsuite?

Here are the many reasons you should be using Hootsuite to manage your social media platforms.

Hootsuite Tutorial

Hootsuite Features

You want to post a search engine optimized content on Twitter? With this tool, you can find out what posts are popular or relevant to your brand. That knowledge can help you plan your next content or your next post.

The tool allows you to collaborate with your team and manage interactions on Facebook. You can add your content writer or social media manager, for example, on the platform and they can oversee their respective roles directly from the platform.

You can monitor Instagram and get notifications every time someone mentions your brand in any of their posts.

You can also use Hootsuite to schedule your messages across all your social media accounts. Rather than switching between different social media platforms to schedule your messages, you can simply do so for all the digital platforms right from Hootsuite’s Dashboard.

On platforms like Twitter, the character limit can be a challenge sometimes. Combine that with long URLs, and you end up not being able to tweet exactly what you wanted to. With Hootsuite, you have the option of shrinking URLs, so you can dedicate more of the characters to writing a funny, relevant tweet.

That’s not all! You can also track the links to monitor where, or what social media platform, your traffic is coming from. You can then invest more of your time and resources to maximize traffic coming from that particular platform.

By providing relevant SMM analytics, Hootsuite helps manage your social media efforts and campaigns. You can monitor what social media platform is the most successful for your social media campaigns and where you should be directing your efforts for maximum results.

We’ll discuss some more benefits and how to use Hootsuite to maximize output for different social media platforms in even more detail as we go. For now, let’s have an overview of the Hootsuite tutorial.

Lesson 1: The Fundamentals Of Hootsuite

Lesson 2: How To Monitor Engagement On Hootsuite: The Basics

Lesson 3: How To Use Hootsuite To Schedule Messages

Lesson 4:  How To Use Hootsuite Plugin: Hootlet

Lesson 5: How To Use Hootsuite App Directory

Lesson 6: How To Use Hootsuite For Instagram

Lesson 7:  How to Use Hootsuite YouTube publishing

Lesson 8: How To Use Hootsuite For Social Media Campaigns

Lesson 9: How To Use Hootsuite App For Mobiles

Lesson 1: The Fundamentals Of Hootsuite

Step 1: Connect Your Social Media Accounts

Once you get Hootsuite, the first thing you need to do is link your social media accounts to the platform.

In the engagement view, just go to the ‘Stream’ option on the dashboard and click on the ‘Add Social Network’ link on the top left of the page.

How to use Hootsuite

Add Social Network

How to use Hootsuite

Or go to ‘Manage Social Networks’ button on your profile on the top right of the page. Within your account view, go to ‘Private Network’ and follow the recommended steps.

Step 2: How To Use Hootsuite To Publish A Message

Now, your Hootsuite account is ready to publish messages on your social media platforms. For that, use the compose box and write your message.

How hootsuite helps with social media

Compose Box

Apart from that, the compose box also gives you the options to shorten links, attach files and schedule your messages. You can then pick from your various social media accounts to publish the message on at once if you want.

Let’s say you want to shorten a link to a blog post you’ve written about money making apps. Here’s how you can do it.


How to use Hootsuite

Shrink Links

This is what the shortened link looks like:

How to use Hootsuite

An Owly link

If you want to view the full list of the posts you have scheduled, just click on the ‘Publisher’ icon in the navigation bar. Then press the ‘Scheduled’ button to view the full list of posts you have scheduled. There, you can also edit for delete the scheduled posts if you want.

Step 3: Monitor Activities On All Your Social Media Accounts

Wondering how to use Hootsuite to monitor your social media accounts? Here’s what you do.

Use the engagement view, which is the first page visible to you as soon as you log in to Hootsuite, to get a detailed overview of the activities on your social networks.

Hootsuite Tutorial

Add Tabs

Hootsuite allows you to create ‘tabs’ dedicated to different social media accounts where you can view at once everything that’s going on in your accounts. To create a tab, press the + icon on the right side of the bar.

You can create separate tabs for your Instagram account, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest. You name it! These tabs allow you to monitor activities on these platforms separately. Simply click on the tab you’ve set up for a particular account.

You can also switch between your accounts to get a broad view of whatever’s going on in all your social media channels, without having to log in and out of accounts constantly.

Lesson 2: How To Monitor Engagement On Hootsuite: The Basics

In this Hootsuite tutorial, I’ll explain how to use Hootsuite to find relevant social interactions and maximize opportunities for engagement with your audience and potential followers.

Step 1: Set Up For Listening And Engagement

Now that you know how to create tabs, you’ll be happy to know that you can also create ‘Streams’ within tabs. Each tab holds up to 10 streams. Explained below is how to use Hootsuite’s stream features.

How to use Hootsuite

Add Streams

Hootsuite streams allow you to monitor different aspects of any of your platforms separately. These streams will make your social media life easy. For instance, the ‘Posts to Page’ stream will let you have an overview of all the posts you have made on a platform and see the number of likes and comments each post has received.

Some other examples of streams are ‘Timeline’, ‘Scheduled Posts’, and ‘Messages from your followers’. You can interact with followers via your ‘Timeline’ stream or reply to messages directly from the ‘Messages’ stream. This is the most convenient way to stay top of social media interactions with your audience and engage with them 24/7. You can add up to 20 tabs in each of your Hootsuite accounts.

Step 2: How To Use Hootsuite To Find Relevant Conversations

Apart from the aforementioned social account streams, you can also set up a search stream.

To do so, search relevant keywords, phrases or locations in the search stream to find out what other people are posting or mentioning about that keyword.

For instance, you can enter make money online on your search stream to find popular posts that mention your search entry. To see posts that mention your search term exactly, just use quotation marks like “make money online” or #makemoneyonline in this instance.

There are other parameters that you change on your search stream. Click the arrow button on the search bar to limit your search results to your geographical area.

Modify your search terms by clicking on ‘Show examples’ to get even more relevant search terms. Then, you can click ‘Add Stream’ to create a search stream with that term.

Step 3: Now It’s All About Engagement

Within every industry, there are hundreds and thousands of posts being made each day. That means that more often than not relevant posts get lost in the clutter. Here’s how to use Hootsuite streams to efficiently and thoroughly engage with your audiences across all your social accounts.

Once you find relevant posts and conversations, be it on your Twitter, Facebook or Instagram account, you can engage with your audience or look-alikes by commenting on the posts relevant to your company.

It is also crucial that you respond to comments on your content to show your audience that you are interested in what they have to say. You can also posts and comments to boost visibility by simply clicking on the heart icons.

For instance, you are monitoring a list of industry influencers on Twitter and someone shares an important post. You can click the retweet button to retweet the post as is or you can quote the original tweet. The quote feature embeds the original tweet in a box within the retweet. That retweeted tweet won’t count as characters for your tweet.

Alternatively, you can also communicate directly with the influencer or with everyone participating in the comment thread. If a comment thread is too important to miss or lose, you can create a comment stream just for that thread.

If for some reason, you can’t do without hiding comments, for example in case of spammy or hateful comments, you can select hide from the drop-down menu.

How Hootsuite helps with social media

Hide spammy comments


Lesson 3: How To Use Hootsuite To Schedule Messages

Hootsuite gives you the freedom to schedule and to publish messages, and in this section of our Hootsuite tutorial, we’ll discuss just how you do that within the Hootsuite Dashboard. Let’s start with the basics.

I have touched upon how to use Hootsuite to compose messages in lesson 1, step 2. Apart from composing a post and shrinking links, you can also attach an image to your post using the ‘Drag and Drop’ feature. If you have a YouTube channel connected to your Hootsuite platform, you can also select videos from your channel to share with your followers.

Apart from that, you can also edit location and privacy and sharing options. Once your message is ready, you have the option to press ‘Send’ to publish the message immediately.

Or you can schedule the message if you want it to automatically publish at a future date. To schedule a message on Hootsuite, just click on the ‘Scheduling’ icon and select a date and time to publish. If you are not sure when you want to publish the message, Hootsuite will auto-schedule your post using its own algorithm.

How to use Hootsuite

Schedule messages

With the ‘Auto Schedule’ feature, you can also customize the frequency of your posts. For that, just click on the ‘Settings’ gear. You can then select the date and time you want your messages to be published. Apart from that, you can also set how many posts you want to make per day. Hootsuite also has a feature that sends you email confirmation every time your message is published.

Once you have composed a message, click on the ‘View Date in Publisher’ button to view all the other messages that have scheduled for that day. You can then click ‘Schedule’ to schedule your message for a future date.

If you want to make edits to or review your scheduled messages, you can do so from within the ‘Publisher’ area in the Hootsuite platform.

We’ll discuss in more detail how to use Hootsuite to compose and schedule messages on individual social media accounts within their own subheading later on in the article.

Lesson 4: How To Use Hootsuite Plugin: Hootlet

How To Share Content With Hootsuite’s Hootlet

We have discussed how to use Hootsuite to publish messages on your social media accounts. But that’s not the only way you can share content via the Hootsuite Platform. You can also do so with ‘Hootlet’.

What is Hootlet?

How to use Hootsuite


Hootlet is a plugin that makes it easy for you to share content that you come across on the web with the social accounts you have linked to Hootsuite. You have to get the plugin separately, and once you do, you will see an extension icon on the top right corner of your browser.

You find a content that is relevant to your audience and want to share it with them? Just click the Hootlet icon, and within the box that pops up, you can customize your post as we have mentioned before.

If a text within an article that you want to share is appealing, you can highlight the text. Right click and you get an option to ‘Share selected text via Hootlet’. It truly can’t get easier than that.

How To Use Hootsuite Plugin To Find Relevant Conversations

With ‘Hootlet’ and Google search engine you can find social messaging relevant to your brand. For that, enter a search term in Google and press the Hootlet tab on the right side of the search bar. The tab will show you the most recent social media posts mentioning your search term.

You can also discover social messaging from specific localities with Hootlet and apps such as Google Maps and Yelp. Just go to Google Maps and type in a location. That’ll give you an option to see the ‘Tweets Near Here’. Click that option and it’ll give you a list of all the tweets made in that neighbourhood. You can also adjust the proximity using the slider on top of the tab.

Lesson 5: How To Use Hootsuite App Directory

Apart from Hootlet, there is a whole collection of free and paid extensions available on Hootsuite. Together, they are referred to as the Hootsuite App Directory. You can add these apps to your Hootsuite Dashboard to enhance the platform’s use. The Hootsuite plugin allows you to integrate an app into an entire account rather than being limited to a stream.

Here’s how you can do that.

The Hootsuite App directory offers over a 100 free apps that you can install on your dashboard. To do so, go to the App directory on the dashboard.

How to use Hootsuite App Directory

Hootsuite App Directory

Find the app that you wish to install and click ‘Install App’.

How to use Hootsuite

Install an App

In some cases, the app might have been made available as a stream. So you have to add the app as a stream on your tabs by clicking on the ‘Add streams to a new tab’ or ‘Add streams to an existing tab’ buttons.

How to use Hootsuite App Directory

Add streams once an app is installed

Once you have added an app, just click finish and you can start using it within the Hootsuite Dashboard.

If, however, you want to remove the plugin, the platform lets you do so with ease. Do so by going to App settings-> App Plugins-> Remove.


Download PDF of this Guide For Free!!

[Make Money Online in 2018]

Manage All Your Social Media

Here’s The Hootsuite Encyclopedia!!

Lesson 6: How To Use Hootsuite For Instagram

To use Hootsuite for Instagram, you need to first add your Instagram account to Hootsuite.

How to use Hootsuite for Instagram

Add Instagram account on Hootsuite

Once you add your account and sign in, you’ll be asked to setup ‘Instagram publishing’. Click on ‘Setup publishing now’ to get started with composing and scheduling posts on Instagram via Hootsuite. But make sure you have converted your personal account into a business one to be able to schedule posts on Hootsuite.

Here’s how to use Hootsuite to schedule messages on Instagram. To schedule posts for Instagram, particularly for video posts, you need to install the latest version of Hootsuite app on your mobile device.

Go to the Settings on the Hootsuite mobile app and tap ‘Notification Settings.’ Then turn on notifications for the Instagram account. Once you schedule posts, you’ll get a notification each time a post is ready to publish.

Tap the notification to go directly to the post on the Instagram platform and automatically copy the caption on the post. You can also make some changes in photo filters, and your post is ready to publish. Pretty simple, right?

If you are wondering how to use Hootsuite for Facebook, the process is pretty straightforward and similar to what you would do with Instagram on the Hootsuite platform.

Lesson 7: How to Use Hootsuite YouTube publishing

First of all, like you did with Facebook and Instagram, link your YouTube account to Hootsuite. To compose messages on YouTube, select the ‘YouTube Video’ tab on the compose box. That gives you the option to browse and select a file to upload to YouTube.

How to use Hootsuite YouTube

Uploading on YouTube via Hootsuite

In the next box that pops up, add the title and description for your video, input relevant tags and add a suitable category for your video. You can also choose from the different privacy options: public, unlisted, private.

If you only want to make your video public later, pick the ‘private’ option. Then you can schedule the video to go public at a later date.

Bear in mind the following specifications:

  • The maximum length for YouTube videos that you can share via the Hootsuite platform is 15 minutes.
  • If, however, your account is verified, you can upload videos up to 11 hours long.
  • Hootsuite supports .mp4 format and the maximum size allowed is 1 GB.

Once you have composed a YouTube video post, the platform gives you an option to ‘Share via Hootsuite’, allowing you to upload the video immediately.

If you want to edit a scheduled post, you can do so easily by going to ‘Scheduled’ posts.

How to use Hootsuite for audience engagement on YouTube?

You can engage with the comments you get on your videos right from the Hootsuite platform. For that, you can simply add a ‘Published Comments’ stream to your dashboard. You can then respond to comments or hide and delete spammy or abusive comments on your YouTube videos from the Hootsuite dashboard.

If you want to monitor comments on a specific video, you can create a comment stream for that video only. Go to the ‘My Videos’ stream and go to the more button and click on the ‘Create Comment Stream’ button. You can add ‘Moderate’ stream to check incoming comments for inappropriateness—by approving, deleting or replying to comments—on your YouTube videos or your channel on the whole.

You can also search streams to find YouTube content that is the most relevant to your audience and amplify it across your social networks. Just go to ‘Add Stream’ and click on the ‘Search’ button and search for videos with relevant keywords. You’ll get a list of videos with your search term. You can then pick from that list and directly share it with your other social media accounts.

Lesson 8: How To Use Hootsuite For Social­­ Media Campaigns

If you have a business you are promoting on social media, you must know how important social media contests and campaigns can be. You must also be aware of how much of a hassle it can be sometimes to organize said contests. Using the Hootsuite platform allows you to launch a wide variety of campaigns on different social media platforms.

Hootsuite Tutorial

Hootsuite for social media campaigns

The platform lets you build successful campaigns with ease in a short amount of time and build your brand with user-generated content. The campaigns you create with Hootsuite can be integrated into your website. You can also add mobile-ready campaigns to your website or your Facebook Page.

Hootsuite campaigns are customizable and scalable. You can customize the contests and campaigns provided by the Hootsuite platform to match your brand. Because Hootsuite’s ‘Moderation’ features make it easier to manage inappropriate posts from your followers, you can also ask for user-generated content without worrying about spammy posts.

Social media campaigns and user-generated content helps you collect valuable information about your followers and prospective customers. With intuitive analytics, you can also understand participants’ demographics. That’s a great way to learn about your target market.

To ensure the success of your social media campaigns, Hootsuite also provides you with constant tech support and dedicated customer support. Furthermore, with the convenience provided by Hootsuite, you can run multiple social media campaigns simultaneously without you or the platform getting overwhelmed.

Lesson 9: How To Use Hootsuite App For Mobiles

To oversee and manage all your social media accounts on the move can be challenging. Installing a Hootsuite Mobile App allows you to use Hootsuite when you don’t have your laptop with you.

Hootsuite mobile app is available on both Android and iOS platforms. With the Hootsuite app, you can access your ‘Streams’, ‘Tabs’, ‘Publisher’, ‘Compose’ box, ‘Search’, and ‘Settings’. To publish a message, you can compose a message in the compose box and select a social network where you want to make the post. You’ll have all the options for publishing messages as you do on your desktop Hootsuite dashboard.

How to use Hootsuite

Hootsuite App

You can view the comments on your posts and quickly respond to them without having to wait to have access to your laptop. You can also reposition existing streams or create new ones on your app for your ease of access.

All the changes you make and streams you add with automatically sync with your desktop Dashboard.

Final Thoughts

If you have been struggling with social media management, let me tell you it doesn’t get easier than Hootsuite. Not only does the platform let you compose and schedule messages, you can also create and oversee multiple streams and tabs to find out the engagement for your posts, your followers demographics and social media conversations in your industry. These benefits make it crucial for you to learn how to use Hootsuite.

Furthermore, without having to switch back and forth between your social accounts, you can connect and engage with your audience, be it on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube, right from the Hootsuite dashboard. You can also plan and put into action attractive social media campaigns to further increase engagement.


Download PDF of this Guide For Free!!

[Make Money Online in 2018]

Manage All Your Social Media

Here’s The Hootsuite Encyclopedia!!

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Avatar for Anish Sah
Anish Sah

I am an Internet Marketing and SEO Learner, Social Media Analyst and a young Entrepreneur. In this blog, I share proven Internet Marketing and SEO techniques that I’ve learned over the years. I hope my success stories will help anyone start making money online, or scale up if they already are making money online. Be sure to subscribe to my newsletter to get updates on the latest techniques.

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