Engage with your customers, and the messages you receive across social channels, in one view. Hootsuite Inbox displays them in threaded conversations, with full context around each message. So you can respond efficiently, while focusing on strengthening your relationships. Inbox is available on desktop and mobile, so you won't miss a thing.
Inbox currently supports:
- 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
- Comments and replies on your LinkedIn Page and Showcase Page posts
Inbox is available to Professional, Team, Business, and Enterprise plans. Inbox assignments and filtering allow for easy collaboration between teams. Business and Enterprise customers can also tag Inbox messages. Enterprise customers can also create automated Inbox assignments, and measure message-handling efficiency with the team metrics in Hootsuite Analytics.
Inbox supports the Facebook Messenger handover protocol, to enable chatbot integration in your Messenger conversations. Learn more about enabling Messenger bots
In this article:
Before Facebook Page private messages or LinkedIn comments will populate in Inbox it may be necessary for a Page admin to reconnect each Page in the web dashboard. Direct messages received by your connected Twitter accounts will appear in Inbox right away.
Inbox is available to all organization members, but only those with social network permissions to reply to your social networks can use it. Approvals are not currently supported so members with Limited permissions cannot reply to Inbox messages. If a member has custom social network permissions, "View Private Stream" is required to see Inbox messages, and "Publish Message" and "Comment and Reply" are required to reply.
New Inbox activity triggers a visual notification so you can work in other areas of the dashboard without missing a message. A red dot appears on the Inbox icon in the left navigation menu of the dashboard.
Inbox notifications are enabled by default for all users. To turn them off, click Settings in the bottom-left corner of Inbox, uncheck the notifications, and then click Save.
The following activity triggers the red dot:
- A new thread (notifies everyone with permissions for the associated profile)
- A reply to a resolved thread (notifies everyone with permissions for the associated profile)
- A reply to an unassigned thread (notifies everyone with permissions for the associated profile)
- A reply to an assigned thread (notifies the assigned user or team)
Inbox assignments also trigger email notifications.
Engage with messages in Inbox
Access Inbox from the launch menu. Customers in multiple organizations can select one from the drop-down in the top-right corner.
Note that assignment and tagging actions in Assignments Manager and Streams are independent from those in Inbox.
Start by monitoring the Unassigned (or Incoming for Professional plans) queue. All new messages will appear here in chronological order with the newest at the top. Click the arrow at the top of the queue to reverse the sort order. Each message is labeled with the social network and profile that received it, as well as the time it was received.
Conversations in Inbox are maintained in threads unique to each user, so that prior interactions are visible for context with each new message. For LinkedIn and Facebook comments and replies, users will have a thread for each post they comment on, showing the conversation between your Page and that user below the ‘anchor post’.
Important: At this time, comments and replies on anchor posts that contain videos will not appear in Inbox.
Click on a message in the list to open the full conversation thread on the right.
Open the customer context panel by clicking the customer’s name at the top of the thread. Here you’ll find additional profile information about the customer, depending on the social network. Facebook and LinkedIn support name and avatar, while Twitter profiles also contain bio, location, and account information. If a LinkedIn user has their Profile visibility off LinkedIn disabled in their LinkedIn settings, they will display in Inbox as “Private User”.
Enterprise customers can add internal notes below a customer’s profile. Up to 2000 characters, you can log additional context about your brand's interactions with the customer. All members within the same organization can view profile notes. Only the note creator can edit a note, while the creator and all admins can delete notes.
Enterprise customers also have an Interaction tab within the customer panel. It contains a conversation log between you and the customer/profile for the past six months. Interaction history includes Twitter direct mentions, @mentions, and replies, and Facebook Page visitor posts, and public comments and replies on a Page.
Click Filters to view specific messages in your Inbox. You can apply any combination of the following filters:
- Social Network - view messages from specific social profiles only
- Message Type - view private or public messages
- Assigned To - view messages assigned to specific teams or team members
The Filter icon will remain blue while a filter is applied. Click Clear all filters to remove them.
Reply, moderate, or dismiss
Click on a message in the list to open the full conversation thread on the right. If the message is a continuation of a prior conversation, you'll be able to see which team members have replied to the user.
Enter a reply at the bottom of the thread, and then click Send.
LinkedIn and Facebook Page activity will display the anchor post being commented on, for context. To delete offensive or spam comments from your Page posts, click the 3 dots to the right of the comment, and then click Delete.
Public Facebook comments from profiles (not Pages) can be transitioned to a private conversation from within the thread by clicking Message.
There is a time limit of seven days in Inbox to respond to private Facebook messages. Each time the customer responds to you in Messenger, the 7-day time frame restarts. This is a policy from Facebook, designed to protect the customer experience. Not only does it encourage timely responses, but it limits the spam customers can receive from brands they’ve interacted with.
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, Facebook has temporarily extended this time frame to 21 days until July 15, 2020.
When a message has been replied to or doesn’t need to be actioned, click Dismiss , either in the top-right corner of the thread, or by hovering over the message in the list and clicking Dismiss there. This moves the thread into the Done queue, reducing clutter so you can focus on the next message that needs action.
To dismiss messages in bulk, check the box at the top of the list to select all messages, or hover over the avatar on the left of each message and check the boxes to select messages individually. Then click Dismiss in the top-right corner of Inbox.
Business and Enterprise customers can click Add Tags under each individual message to classify them, for analysis later within Analytics.
When a tag has been applied at least 10 times, Inbox will learn to associate the tag with message text, and recommend it as a suggested tag when you click Add Tags.
To have someone else respond to a message, or if you want to come back to it later, click Assign in the top-right corner of the thread. Assign it to yourself, a team, or another team member (Team, Business, and Enterprise plans). Quickly assign messages to yourself by hovering over them in the message list and clicking Assign to me right there. Inbox assignments will trigger email notifications to assignees based on their notification settings.
You can include contextual notes with assignments, with guidance on how to handle the message, or for looking back on during future interactions with the same customer. These notes are only visible within Inbox, and appear in the message thread.
Assigned messages move from Unassigned into one of the other two queues, Assigned (assigned to any teams you are a member of) and Assigned to Me (assigned specifically to you). If your organization has automated assignments running, messages will appear in these queues automatically instead of in the Unassigned queue.
When an assigned message has been replied to, click Resolve in the top-right corner of the thread. This moves the thread out of Assigned and into Done.
If a customer responds to a thread sitting in the Done queue, that thread will re-open and move from Done back into Unassigned/Incoming.
If a message was accidentally dismissed you can also click Reopen on a dismissed message in the Done queue to return it to Unassigned/Incoming.
Inbox for mobile
Try Inbox on the Hootsuite mobile app and monitor your organization’s messages on the go. All the same functionality is available, except for the ability to add tags to a message. Inbox activity will sync between the desktop dashboard and the mobile apps.
Important: Initial set up must be completed in the web dashboard first.
To view your mobile Inbox, tap the Inbox icon .
Note that messages are only kept in Inbox for 6 weeks, with the exception of LinkedIn, which are removed after 2 weeks of inactivity on a thread.
Facebook private messages older than 6 weeks can still be viewed in Streams.
In order to provide this service it is necessary to temporarily store Twitter direct messages between you and your customers. Twitter direct messages are encrypted and temporarily stored for up to 6 weeks.