You’ve all heard me talking a lot about social media marketing and a huge key to organizing yourself on social media is by using Hootsuite. Now Hootsuite is great for anyone, authors and large corporations alike, but today I’m only going to be talking about the tools you will use if you’re an author.
Sign Up for an Account
Hootsuite if free! I wouldn’t use it myself it if wasn’t free. You can pay for the business plan, which gives you more tools and allows you to connect more than three social media apps, but if you’re an author you’ll only need the free version. Create your account and start syncing your social media accounts. On my Hootsuite account, I have Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram linked up. Here’s what my dashboard looks like when I log into Hootsuite:
If you look at the top of the page, you’ll see tabs for your different accounts (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram):
Click around and explore. If you go on Twitter, you’ll see your Twitter feed, as well as Mentions. If you scoll over to the far right you’ll notice a box like this:
This allows you to you customize your dashboard. If accidentally remove anything on your dashboard, this is where you go to add it back. You can also edit your dashboard by clicking “Add Steam” at the top of the page under the tabs for your different social media accounts. One of my favorite things to do is follow hashtags on Twitter. To do this, just click “Search” from the “Add a Stream” menu and search whichever hashtag you’ll like to create a stream for. Once you do this you should see it pop up on your dashboard. Explore the “Add a Stream” menu! You can do many things: follow a location, retweets, people, likes. Just start clicking around.
So What is a Stream?
A stream is the vertical columns on your dashboard. They’re basically categories that you can create to organize what you want to look at. If you hover your mouse over your stream you’ll be able to scroll down and look through your feed. You’ll notice that in your stream you can do anything you would want to do on the regular social media app. For example, if I’m in my #amwriting stream I can re-tweet, reply and like.
Here’s a cool little trick! In Hootsuite you can re-tweet, quote re-tweet and edit. You access this by hitting the little drop-down button.
If you hit edit, you can actually schedule when the re-tweet will send out. If you click edit you’ll see a dialogue box open at the top of your page. To schedule the re-tweet hit the little calendar icon and your calendar will pop up which allows you to select your month, day and time. It’s as simple as that!
Since you know how to schedule a re-tweet, it will be really simple to learn how to schedule a post. Go back to the top of the page where the dialogue box had opened before. Start typing your message, add any photos, links, hashtags, @mentions or location tagging.
On the far left, you’ll see your social media accounts. You can choose to post just to one of the accounts, or all of them. You choose which is
which by clicking on the little pin next to the star. If the pin is aimed downward and highlighted, you’ll be posting to that account.
- paperclip– for attachments
- calendar– for scheduling
- pin– adding location
- globe– targeting (I never use this)
- lock– privacy setting
Your scheduled posts will pop up in your “Scheduled” stream. If you schedule something, you can always edit it. To view all your scheduled posts from all your social media accounts, go to the far left-hand menu. The chat icon is for your stream and the paper airplane icon is your publisher, which will have all your scheduled posts.
It’s important to know, that while you can “schedule” posts for Instagram, you aren’t technically scheduling posts. Instagram doesn’t allow you to schedule posts, even with the aid of outside apps (as far as I’m aware). When you use Hootsuite to schedule a post on Instagram, it actually just sends you a notification to your phone to post the photo to Instagram. This means you’ll have to get the Hootsuite app on your phone (which is free) and log into your Hootsuite account there to get notifications. When you get the notification on your phone, simply click on the notification, hit “Share” and it will open up Instagram. Hootsuite automatically brings the photo to Instagram and copies the description to your clipboard. Go through all the motions as you normally would on Instagram, paste in the description and hit “Share” and that’s it!
There’s a lot more to Hootsuite, but odds are, these are the only tools you will need! If this blog post helped you, let me know in the comments below! Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @Mandi_Lynn_