Using Hootsuite

Hootsuite is a great tool to use for scheduling posts!

I wrote an article a while back about adding a LinkedIn company page to your Hootsuite scheduler. You can take a look here.

Hootsuite keeps adding great options to make it a time-saver when posting to social media.  Their phone app isn’t as robust, but the desktop version is a wonderful tool.

If you want to add company pages to your stream you can view a video of how to do that in the link above, but here are a few still shots for your review:

1. Log into your account

2. Click on your image on the left side

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3. Click on your name

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4. Find your “My Social Networks”

5. Hover over and click to add a social network

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6. Pick the platform that you want to add.

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7. Connect your personal profile

8. Add the group, profile or page that you want to post in or follow.

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9. Once added, go to the streams and modify what appears in a stream!

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Only 10 LinkedIn Company pages or showcase pages are available.

The one challenge to Hootsuite is you cannot add your personal G+ feed, and if you have more than 10 company pages including the showcase pages, you may not be able to see the company page that you want to add. That is something that Hootsuite needs to fix.

 

 

 

 

Let me know if you have any other social media questions! I offer one-on-one consultations or small group classes. Take a look at all of my services here.

What is Hootsuite?

Last week my post about adding your LinkedIn company page to Hootsuite turned into a Do you Use Hootsuite? post in the groups to which I belong on LinkedIn.  One group member asked – Please explain the basics and advantages of “Hootsuite” to one that is not familiar with the concept.

Owly says “Hoot – suite”

I thought it might be useful to provide an explanation on my blog.

First let me say that there are other options, but I have found Hootsuite to suit my needs the best.

Hootsuite is a a social media management system for businesses and organizations to collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks from one secure, web-based dashboard. For free you can have up to 5 profiles in one browser window. For each profile you can have multiple streams from that profile – for example from your Twitter account you could include the Tweets of the people you follow, tweets that include a mention of your Twitter handle, and any direct messages to you.  For this purpose it is a great customer service tool.

There are some limitations with a few of the profiles options, but in general this is a good one-stop location to follow most of the platforms on which you would have a profile.  Hootsuite is pretty responsive to the requests from the users and new options become available periodically.

Another major benefit to Hootsuite is the ability to schedule posts.  This is useful if you will be on vacation, in a meeting, on a webinar or otherwise unavailable to post at a particular time.  There is even an auto-post feature that Hootsuite will post at the best time for your fan-base.

Drafts is another feature.  I have found this useful when I was trying to promote a particular program or limited time feature on a product.  To me this would be more beneficial in Twitter than some of the other platforms.  The repetitive nature allows you to say the same thing and perhaps only change a word (a fundraiser would be a good example to use this).

Hootsuite also offers a team option – this is a paid feature.  If you have a team of individuals who would be addressing customer service issues, you can forward a post that you see to that individual for that person to address.

Some of the platforms don’t give as much “credence” to the third party applications like Hootsuite, so your posts may not have the same visibility (in Facebook especially) as if you post directly to the platform, but they are still useful.   If you want to manage your social media yourself, but need to be about the business of your business, sometimes, using a tool like Hootsuite is the best use of your time.  Remember that even though you may schedule a post, you still need to keep an eye on your social media platforms to be able to respond to comments or messages that followers may post that you don’t “see” right away in Hootsuite.

Nothing is perfect, but we need to make use of the tools and products that help us to our best at the time.

Add your LinkedIn company page to Hootsuite

I happen to be a “pro” user in Hootsuite to enable me to manage my multiple client accounts (that means I pay a monthly fee to have more than the minimum profiles). One of my biggest recent challenges was the ability to post something to Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn company pages, I would have to log in to three separate accounts, post my post and go to the next account to post there even if it was the same post for multiple clients – like 4th .

Today I stumbled upon the fact that I can now add the LinkedIn company pages of which I am a manager to my Hootsuite account. YEAH!!!

This video shows how to create one stream for all of the channels you manage for your business.

Another feature that I would like to see is the addition of my personal Google+ page to my stream, and the ability to see the pages that my business fan pages follow in Facebook.  If you are a Hootsuite user, you can select this link and vote on features that you would like to see Hootsuite develop or review.

Useful Tools to Save you Time

Featured

As a social media professional, I am always seeking ways to make more efficient use of my time.  I belong to a couple of forums and groups that often discuss free tools or low-cost options.  I would like to share a compiled list here with you:

  • Hootsuite – one of my faves – up to 5 social media accounts for free, up to 20 for $5.99 per month
  • If This Then That - will help you do just that with about 11 social platforms – ex. if [Twitter mention] then [thank them] – will work with Facebook pages.
  • Buffer – share your posts at a later time on any Twitter account or Facebook personal pages
  • Dreamstime – free photos for use in your materials – they also have photos for purchase.
  • DIIGO – similar to Dropbox for websites you want to save for later – lets you bookmark in a cloud favorites by keyword.  You can even highlight things, place sticky notes on pages and share it with connections.
  • FanTools – the free side lets you set up one Twitter and one Facebook page, upgrades available for planning, coupons and deals.
  • YouSendIt – sending large files through email is no longer a problem, use YouSendIt.  You upload, the receiver downloads.  You must stay under a size limit for it to remain free.
  • Morgue File – more free photos. Has a connection with Dreamstime.
  • CutePDF – makes pdf files for any of your printable documents for programs that don’t already convert them.
  • Join.me – screen sharing
  • Skype – video calling and screen sharing, have a group video conversation for a monthly fee.
  • IWOWWE – video email and conferencing.
  • MailChimp – e-newsletter system free up to 2000 emails
  • FreshBooks – on-line accounting, up to 3 clients for free, up to 25 clients $19.95 mos.
  • BeFunky – photo effects editor
  • Zoho – CRM on-line tool.
  • Gimp – photo editing software – you download it.  You don’t need Photoshop with this one.
  • Inkscape – modify vector art similar to Illustrator.
  • ClipArt – open clip art library
  • AVG – anti virus
  • Adobe Browser Lab for website testing
  • WeTransfer – for sending files
  • PrimoPDF is also free PDF converter
  • Hamster – another Free video converter
  • MyPictr – Avatar creator – for profile pictures on social networks – not sure if its up to date but you can manually change the px size
  • DaFont – Free Fonts
  • OpenOffice – The Free and Open Productivity Suite
  • LastPass – Online Password storage.
  • Malwarebytes – Don’t run windows without it – not free
  • Nitro PDF Reader – recently added thanks to SME club thread
  • Toggl – Time tracking, great when you are billing by project
  • Avast! – Anti-virus, some free, but all the bells and whistles cost
  • Audacity – Sound recording and editing
  • TeamViewer – Screen sharing and more.
  • Jing – screen capture. pro version for a small upgrade is no longer available.  Will have to switch to Snag-it or Camtasia.
  • FileZilla – FTP management
  • CCleaner – keep your hard drive clean and optimized
  • Synergy – use one mouse and keyboard to connect multiple computers (from Zoho)
  • Any Video Converter – convert any video, aptly named
  • Dropbox – store and share files online
  • Google Docs, Calendar, mail, keyword tools, alerts, analytics, insights for search – access docs that you share, share with others, check your calendar, multiple email accounts from you desktop, phone, or laptop, find what keywords you need to use, set up alerts for anything you want to track from the web and blogs, add analytics to your website and track traffic to your site, .
  • Evernote -remember everything, anywhere
  • Readitlater – don’t have time to read that article now, save it to readitlater.
  • SimpleNote – similar to Evernote, jot yourself a note anytime, anywhere
  • KeePass – another password compiler
  • Free Conference Call – teleconferencing line available 24/7. Each call accommodates 96 callers on an unlimited number of 6 hour free conference calls.
  • SuveyMonkey - free survey tool
  • Evite – free party planning tool
  • Producteev – task management app, helping to organize office days. It’s cross-platform, desktop and mobile.
  • AnyMeeting – web conference meetings
  • Bit.ly – link shortener and tracking
  • Box.net – add files to this on-line application and link it to your LinkedIn profile
  • Scribd – post your pdf files and documents to share on your social networks if you don’t want to post them on your website.
  • Visual.ly – create your own infographic
  • Get Listed – enter your business name and zip code.  The tool finds the location sites on which you are or aren’t listed.
  • Timeline Image Tool – helps you build custom tab images without needing design software.

What have I missed?  What do you like best?  What wouldn’t you use?

 

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