We come across a lot of social tools here at Paramore, and I mean a LOT of social tools. It isn’t rare to find us playing around with and testing multiple different social networks, analytics engines, and productivity tools all at the same time. So, it’s no wonder that we get asked all the time by colleagues and clients which systems we prefer for different situations. We get questions ranging from which apps to purchase to which email portals are most effective to which social dashboard we like best.
When asked, “Which social dashboard do you use to keep up with all your social activity?” Our answer for most of our clients is Hootsuite.
Paramore Uses Hootsuite
Here are a few reasons why we side with the owl:
Managing - One of the obvious necessities for a tool like Hootsuite is its ability to streamline how you track and manage your presences on multiple social networks. Even if you’re not an agency dealing with multiple accounts for multiple clients, HootSuite’s array of available social networks is enough to have it be an online focal point for you. As of this writing, it connects with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Ping.fm, Wordpress, MySpace, Foursquare and mixi. Not too shabby.
Not only that, if you’re a company with multiple people posting on the same accounts, HootSuite allows you to manage them all from one location. Decide who needs to be posting to which account and grant permissions as needed. The shared columns also allow you to see who has responded to what updates on which accounts. Nothing sneaks through the cracks. Why jump around all over the Internet trying to decipher what’s been said when you can easily control your entire social universe from the comfort of an online dashboard? Yeah, I can’t think of a reason either.
Segmentation - When you’re managing multiple social networks and accounts, it’s hard to beat HootSuite’s ability to create specific Tabs for different accounts and then customize the columns within those Tabs for a fuller experience within the networks. Columns can be customized with keyword tracking, search terms, mentions, lists, messages, etc., making it incredibly easy to see what is going on all across the account with one horizontally scrolling look.
Analytics - A lot of dashboards will offer some sort of analytics, but HootSuite’s can be as detailed or basic as you want/need. While there are both free and paid versions of the HootSuite dashboard, the Analytics section is where you can really drop some dough if you’re not careful. There are so many great modules to add and track that you can pull all the data you would ever need. Modules include information like Twitter Mentions by Influencers, Twitter Follower Growth, Ow.ly Aggregated Click Stats, Facebook Daily Likes, Facebook Daily Page Activity, Google Analytics Twitter to Web Conversion, Traffic Sources, you get the idea. Not only can you pull the data, but you can automate HootSuite to email your team reports daily, weekly, bi-monthly or monthly with your numbers. What more could you want?
Publisher - Timing is everything in social media. Just because you have a great idea for a tweet at 2 in the morning doesn’t mean that your audience will be receptive to a message sent out then. HootSuite has always provided the ability to schedule updates, but with their new-ish introduction of “Publisher,” things just got a whole lot easier. No longer do you have to wonder what has been scheduled for which account and when. Publisher will pull everything you and your team members have scheduled for every account into one easy-to-read list. Problem solved and crisis averted. You’re welcome.
Tools - Alongside all the stuff I’ve already mentioned, HootSuite also provides a plethora of tools to help streamline the social media process even further. These include a high-functioning mobile app that lets you update on the go and browser extensions that make clipping and posting things around the web incredibly simple. They also offer Hootlet, which can be added to your Bookmarks Bar and used as a “Quick Tweet” button if your browser of choice doesn’t support extensions and add-ons.
SEO - This one is kind of nerdy, but we all love getting some good ole SEO benefits for our sites from the actions we take in social, right? One thing that makes Hootsuite a great resource is the fact that they use Ow.ly link shorteners by default. The reason Ow.ly links are preferable is because they automatically 301 redirect visitors to your website, passing all of the SEO benefit to your site. This ultimately is what we want because no third-party source is getting credit during the redirect for the good stuff we are updating. In the simplest of terms, a 301 redirect makes it so that www.yourcoolsite.com is getting the search engine benefits instead of http://ow.ly/7an24rt.
Support - Even though the HootSuite team has made the dashboard easy to use, that doesn’t mean there won’t be problems every now and then. While problems may seem terrifying when you’re in the middle of them, remember to check out the HootSuite blog for tips and stop by their Help Desk to submit questions about issues when you find yourself having problems. They are very responsive and will work to get the problems fixed. And for those of you who just can’t get enough of the dashboard, they have Hootsuite University where you can get training on all things social and HootSuite.
Wow, that’s a lot of stuff about a single social dashboard, and I just gave you the highlights. Now go test it out for yourself. It’s free, but we always suggest upgrading to the Pro membership if you’re really serious about managing and analyzing your social campaigns.
And next time you find yourself about to ask which social dashboard we prefer to use for ourselves and our clients, remember that we always side with the owl. We think you will too, so give Hootsuite a try and start hooting already.
Have you used HootSuite before? Which social dashboards do you find yourself using the most?Share Article