Hootsuite is a popular social media management system. It allows brands’ social media accounts to be managed from a universal dashboard. Hootsuite supports social network integration for Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, Foursquare, MySpace and WordPress. With in excess of 6 million users worldwide, Ryan Holmes, founder of Hootsuite, expects the service to be one of the leading social media management platforms in the world.
Why should you use Hootsuite?
If you are a social media manager at your own website/blog, or at a large company, then you better check out Hootsuite.com. Hootsuite gives you a single dashboard to do the following:
- Manage multiple social networks
- Schedule messages and tweets
- Track brand mentions
- Analyze social media traffic
- Manage Social media from your mobile
What does it cost?
Not everything on the Internet is free, but the price you pay for a service like Hootsuite is minuscule compared to the features you get. There are three plans on offer. Source: http://hootsuite.com/plans
This short tutorial will guide you on using Hootsuite, and on setting up your social networking profiles. We will be using the FREE version for demonstration purposes, and even though it has a cap on what you can do, it is great.
Sign up for the free Hootsuite at: https://hootsuite.com/signup?planId=1
Once the signup is successful, you will be taken to http://hootsuite.com/dashboard
The image above shows the Hootsuite dashboard; a universal view for you to manage your social media. Isn’t that cool? From the dashboard, you can set up a maximum of 5 social networks (limit on the Free Hootsuite) by clicking the Add Social Network button.
Using the tabs on the top, you can switch between monitoring different social networks. The large panels at the center of the dashboard allow you to view multiple data streams from your selected social network; like for Twitter, you can view Home Feed, Mentions, Direct Messages and Sent Tweets – all on a single screen.
By clicking on the vertical navigation bar on the left hand side, you can also use the Hootsuite Publisher to schedule messages. With the scheduler, you can have Hootsuite post your content while you’re asleep.
Hootsuite has a great analytics system (it gets better with the premium version). With the Analytics tab, you can let Hootsuite generate reports from various social networks. It even has templates for you to start off with, like proposal report, ow.ly click summary, Google Analytics and Facebook Insights.
If you take your brand management very seriously, then you might want to spend a few dollars to get some Hootsuite apps that enable you to have more control over your social media accounts. There is a range of free and premium apps that you can check out by visiting the App Directory section accessible via the Hootsuite vertical navigation bar.
If you are a serious social media fanatic, then you might want to incorporate Hootsuite as part of your social media strategy, as it helps you manage your social stuff all from a single dashboard. Try out the free version before shelling out a few bucks for the paid version.