Managing Twitter with HootSuite

In a previous post, we looked at TweetDeck as a management tool for social networks. Today we’re looking at HootSuite. Because I’m new to this application, I asked Val Waldeck to tell us about it. Thank you, Val. Over to you.

HootSuite is a super Management Tool for your social networks. You can add up to five social networks with a free account and then monitor them in real time all in one place. e.g. Twitter, Facebook Profile, Facebook Fan Pages, Linked In, etc. You are also able to respond directly to comments, status updates and tweets. A real time-saver.

How do you get a HootSuite account?

1. Sign up for HootSuite at www.hootsuite.com, enter your required information and click “Create Account”

2. Add Social Media profiles – 5 free allowed. Click the Launch Bar at the top lefthand corner of your screen. Go to “Settings”, select “Social Networks” and click “Add Social Network” button. Add your Twitter accounts, Facebook Profile and Fan Pages plus any other social networks you are linked to. “Allow” HootSuite to communicate with them and you are done. You only have to do this once.

3. Add your Social Networks as Columns (Streams). To start monitoring your networks, click the “+ Add Streams” button at the top of the page. This will create a column for Home Feed, Mentions, Search, etc. Use the toggle bar near the righthand corner of your screen and Shift right to left to adjust column widths so you can fit more in.

4. Access the HootSuite Launch Menu by clicking the Launch Bar on the upper lefthand corner of your screen. It looks like a little hut. Select “Streams”. This will open up your networks in different tabs.

5.Compose a Message by clicking inside the “Compose” field on the upper left of your screen and type a message. Add your URL to the “Add a Link” box and click “Shrink” to automatically shorten it. Then select a social network from the list on the right of the compose message box and click “Send Now”. You can send to all of them at the same time, or just one. Your choice.

6. Reply, Retweet, Direct Message. Hover your mouse over a tweet, and choose reply, retweet or direct message by clicking the buttons in the top right hand corner.

7. Twitter Search. At the top right corner is the “Twitter Search” field. Enter a search term and and enter.

8. Schedule messages for future delivery. After you type your message click the button with the calendar icon. A calendar will then pop down, enabling you to set the date and time. Next choose whatever social network profile you would like to send the message to. When finished, click the
Schedule button to confirm.

9. Save draft messages. Inside the Compose field, type the status update you want to save, then select the social media profile you want to save this under. Near the Send Now button, there is a floppy disc icon. Click it, and an accompanying message will say, Message saved as draft. To access your Drafts, click the arrow icon beside the flippy disc icon. Your drafted Status Update will then show in the text field, and be ready for use.

HootSuite sends you periodic reports of your activity. It is a great site and highly recommended. I use it every day.

Val Waldeck.
Reaching Our Generation One Book at a Time.