Get started with social media management in Hootsuite - for franchisees

As the social manager of a franchise location or business branch in a multi-location organization, you’ll want to maintain an active and positive online social presence. With Hootsuite, you can create and schedule posts for all of your social accounts in one place, use pre-approved images and messaging from the corporate office, and monitor and engage with current and prospective customers.

For a short video course covering these concepts and more, watch Hootsuite for Franchisees: A Quick Start Guide.

For a general introduction to Hootsuite, watch An Overview of the Hootsuite Dashboard.

If you’re the administrator of a corporate organization or franchise, see Get started with Hootsuite - for franchise administrators.

Join Hootsuite and connect your social accounts

After a company administrator adds you to the Hootsuite account, you’ll receive an email from a corporate admin with details about Hootsuite, as well as a welcome email from Hootsuite. Make sure you have both of these emails handy, and then follow these steps.

  1. In the invitation email from Hootsuite, select Create your account.
  2. Create and enter a password for Hootsuite, and then select Create Account.
  3. In the email from your corporate admin, select the quick connection link.
  4. On the Hootsuite page that appears, start connecting your social accounts. One at a time, select each account that you want to connect and enter your login credentials.
  5. Select Continue, select your local team from the Teams list, select Continue again, and then select Continue to the Hootsuite dashboard.

If you have any problems connecting your accounts or getting started with Hootsuite, contact the corporate administrator for your business, who can resolve issues directly with Hootsuite if needed.

For a video walkthrough of these steps, see Connecting Your Hootsuite Account and Connecting Social Networks.

For more about adding social accounts, see Add a social account to Hootsuite.

Monitor and engage with social accounts using streams

Hootsuite streams are feeds that display the content from your connected social accounts and allow you to participate in conversations relevant to your industry. You can use streams to monitor activity across all of your accounts; engage with your audience; and monitor specific keywords, topics, hashtags, brand mentions, and competitors in one place.

After you've connected your social accounts to Hootsuite, you can go to Streams and select Add Stream to create a new stream. To organize or categorize your streams, add boards by selecting New board and choosing a stream type.

Create a few boards and streams and scroll through them to see what works best for you. You can easily create and delete streams, so don't be afraid to explore.

Here are some resources we recommend reading to get the most out of Streams:

Create, schedule, and publish content

You can create, schedule, and publish your social media content to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram from one place, and you can publish content to multiple social networks at a time.

To get started, go to Create new post, and then select an option.

Select your social accounts, and then create your post. In addition to text, you can include mentions or tags, links, images, videos, GIFs, emoji, and hashtags.

As you compose your post, you can preview how it will look on the right. When you're ready, you can publish it, save it as a draft, or schedule it for later.

Tip: Select the arrow next to Post Now to access additional publishing options.

For additional information, see:

View and manage your scheduled posts in a calendar

To view or manage your scheduled content, go to Publisher. You can create new posts, duplicate posts, and organize, edit, or delete existing posts right from the calendar.

  • Use the Planner view to review and manage your posts in a weekly calendar view. Select a time block in the calendar to create new content to publish at that selected time.
  • Use the Content view to see your past scheduled posts, view and manage your future scheduled and draft posts, set up RSS feeds, and upload messages in bulk.
  • Use the Promote view to allocate advertising spend to Facebook or LinkedIn Page posts. For more information on promoting your content, see Create and promote a post.

Find and use content in your content library

The content library in Hootsuite contains pre-approved post templates and images supplied by your corporate or organization administrator. This helps you stay on brand and saves you time when creating social posts. You can access your team’s content library when composing a new post or from within the content library itself.

Publish content library images

  1. Select Create new post.
  2. If you belong to more than one organization, ensure that the correct one is selected above your post.
  3. Select Open media library.
  4. If you have access to any content libraries within the organization selected, they appear in the media library by default.
  5. Open a content library and browse its stored images assets. Post templates (text and images) are not displayed here.
  6. Select an image to attach it to your post.

Publish an asset from within the content library

Access and browse your content libraries in the Publisher. Within the content library, you can view when each asset was added or last used, the number of times it’s been used, its tags, and if applicable, how long it will be available.

  1. Go to Publisher.
  2. Select the Content tab at the top of the calendar.
  3. Under Content Sources, select Content Library.
  4. Select a content library from the list. You can select Images or Messages in the top right to filter it by asset type. You can also sort assets by age or popularity, availability, or tag.
  5. Select an asset so it turns blue, and then select Compose at the top of the content library to populate the image or template message into the compose window. Templates that contain links will always contain the full link, so consider adding a shortener before publishing or scheduling the post.

For a video walkthrough, watch Using the Hootsuite Content Library.

Engage with your audience in Inbox

As a social manager of your business or franchise location, you’ll want to make sure you’re responding to messages effectively. Your Hootsuite account includes a message Inbox that automatically collects social conversations in one place, where you can manage, respond to, assign, and resolve messages. For example, you might use Inbox to respond to customer inquiries about your local business, or you might assign a message to the corporate office (the corporate office might also assign messages to you for location-specific conversations).

Message types you can manage in Inbox include:

  • Facebook Page private messages
  • Comments and replies on your public Facebook Page posts
  • Visitor posts to your Facebook Page, their comments, and replies
  • Twitter direct messages, mentions, and replies
  • Comments and replies on your LinkedIn Page and Showcase Page posts

For additional information about using Inbox, see:

For a video walkthrough, watch How to use Hootsuite Inbox.

Next steps

Here are some great ways to extend Hootsuite functionality and advance your Hootsuite knowledge.

Extend Hootsuite functionality with apps

Visit the Hootsuite app directory to select from a library of free and third-party apps developed to increase your productivity with Hootsuite.

Select My profile, and then select App directory to explore the app library.

For additional information, see:

Manage social media on the go with Hootsuite mobile

Download Hootsuite mobile apps for Android and iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch from your device's app store to manage your social media on the go. For more information, see Hootsuite Mobile Apps.

Advance your skills with Hootsuite Academy

Master new social media skills and expand your Hootsuite knowledge with free online courses. Visit Hootsuite Academy to explore our courses and certification options.

Read more