Get started with Hootsuite


You can use Hootsuite to publish and promote your best social content, grow your brand awareness, engage with your audience, and generate leads. With Hootsuite, you can manage multiple social accounts from a variety of social networks in one place.

Choose a plan

Hootsuite offers flexible pricing and several plan options to meet your needs. To choose the Hootsuite plan that best meets your needs, map out how many social accounts you want to manage, how many messages you post (on average), and whether you want to manage your social accounts on your own or share tasks with team members in your organization. Not only do different plans determine the number of social accounts you can manage and the number of people who can collaborate on managing those accounts, higher-level plans offer access to additional powerful features. For more details and explanations of plan types, see Overview of Hootsuite plan types.

Create an account

Once you pick a plan type on, you can sign up for a free 30-day trial or request a demo. Customers who choose a Professional or Team plan can choose between a monthly or an annual billing cycle. You won't be charged if you switch to a free plan before the 30-day trial expires. You'll receive an email reminder before the end of your trial so that you can confirm that you want to continue using the service on a paid subscription basis. For information on how to change your plan type, manage your billing cycle, or cancel your subscription, see Manage your Hootsuite plan and account.

Connect your social accounts

The first thing you need to do after you create your Hootsuite account is connect one or more social accounts to Hootsuite. Because Hootsuite allows you to work with multiple accounts in one place, you can save time logging in and managing activity for each account you add. The number of social accounts you can add depends on your plan type, but we recommend you add at least two or three social accounts. As an example, an Instagram account, your personal Twitter account, and a Facebook Page make up a total of three social accounts.

When you add a social account, you are prompted to set or accept the permissions needed for you to publish content and manage those accounts in Hootsuite. Hootsuite does not publish to your social accounts without your permission.

Hootsuite prompts you to connect your social accounts during set up. When you're ready to connect additional accounts, you can go to My profile , and then select Social networks and teams.

For detailed information and video walkthroughs, 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, or even competitors in one place. You can even create stream boards to categorize and organize your streams.

Add a stream and view stream types

Once you have your social accounts connected to Hootsuite, you can create a variety of streams to monitor activity across multiple accounts and engage with your audience. Each social network (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and more) supports different stream types.

Go to Streams and select Add Stream to create a new stream. Create a number of 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.

create and delete streams

You can choose from any of the following popular stream types to get started quickly:

  • My posts and mentions - Keep track of your activities and monitor your mentions, post engagement, and performance.
  • My industry - Follow key words and conversations. Watch what your competitors are sharing, find new leads, and engage with influencers.
  • Browse all streams - Explore all of the options you have for each social network. You can then select a social network and stream type.

Explore other things you can do with streams

Here are a few other things you can do with streams (open any link for more information):

Create, schedule, and publish your 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 one time.

  1. Go to Create new post, and then select an option.
    create new post options
  2. Select your social accounts and then create your post. In addition to text, you can include the following in your posts:
    • Mentions or tags for a user or page.
    • Links (you can even use shortened links and add link-tracking parameters to analyze link or content performance). 
    • Images, videos (including SRT files), and GIFs. Plus, you can edit and apply filters to your images.
    • Emojis!
    • Hashtags.
      new post
  3. As you compose your post, you can review it using the preview next to it. Once you are feeling good about it, you can choose from the following options:
    • Post now - Publish the post. You can also use the following expanded Post Now options:
      post now options
      • Save draft - Save the post as a draft and return to polish or review it at another time.
      • Post and reuse accounts - Publish your post, retain your social network choices, and begin a new post to those same social networks.
      • Post and duplicate - Publish your post but retain a copy of the original content and the social account selection to edit or schedule the post another time. A new post ID is created for your tracking needs. This makes composing multiple, similar posts much easier.
    • Schedule for later - Schedule a time and date for the post to publish. Scheduling your posts allows you to keep your social presence active and publish your posts at high audience-engagement times. You can even set options to automatically publish on a schedule!
      automatically publish on a schedule

For additional information, see Create and publish posts.

View and manage your scheduled posts in a calendar

If you want to view or manage your scheduled content, go to Publisher . You can create new posts and organize, edit, or delete existing posts right from the calendar. The following views are available:

  • 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 and view and manage all of your future scheduled and draft posts. You can also set up and view RSS feeds and set up and upload messages in bulk.
  • Use the Promote view to allocate advertising spend to your best Facebook or LinkedIn Page posts to promote your content. For more information on promoting your content, see Create a promoted post.

publisher options for planner, content, and promote

Next steps

Once you have your social media management in place, explore how you can do even more with Hootsuite. Here are some great ways to extend your Hootsuite functionality and advance your Hootsuite knowledge.

Extend your Hootsuite functionality with apps

Visit the Hootsuite app directory to select from a library of free and third-party apps developed to extend the functionality of Hootsuite.

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

profile, app directory

For additional information, see Install or uninstall apps from your dashboard.

Share content from anywhere on the web with the Hootlet extension

This free browser extension for Chrome lets you quickly and easily share content to your social networks from anywhere on the web. Visit to get the Hootlet extension. To learn more, see Share content with Hootlet.

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.