Transition publishing workflows from the legacy composer to the new Composer (Legacy)


As of May 14, 2019, Hootsuite’s new Composer is the default publishing experience for all users. If you haven't tried it out yet, we’re confident you’ll love the improvements that we’ve made, but understand that change can be a challenge (see Create and publish posts). 

This guide explores how to use the legacy composer and new Composer side-by-side so you can know what to expect when you try the new Composer, and where to find all the functionality you need.

Both the legacy and new composers will continue to be available for the foreseeable future. We have not yet set a deprecation date for the legacy composer. When we are ready to remove the feature, we will communicate to customers with ample time to transition fully to the new Composer.

Access the Composer

Legacy composer: To access the legacy composer, hover over Create New Post create-post-icon.png and select Legacy composer from the drop-down. 

New Composer: To access the new Composer, either select Create New Post create-post-icon.png or hover over the icon and select Post from the drop-down. It opens from there into a full-screen publishing experience.

legacy composer in menu          Creat-post-dropdown.png

Create with the Composer

Legacy composer: Each element is attached to the post without you being able to see the final product until it gets published.

legacy composer

New composer: As you add to your post, a per-network post preview will update in real-time so you know exactly what your audience will see.

new composer

More details on how to create and publish posts

Select your social accounts

Legacy composer: Select or hover over the social account picker, and then select the social accounts you want to publish to. Select a team to select all accounts managed by that team.

New Composer: Select Select a social account, and then select the social accounts you want to publish to. Select a team to easily select all accounts managed by that team. If you're in multiple organizations, available social accounts are based on the organization selected at the top of the Composer. Accounts are searchable by handle name, social network, and team, and your own private profiles are clearly indicated.

legacy composer, social network picker          New composer, social account picker

Shrink links

Legacy composer: In the body of the post, paste the link into the Add a link field, and then click Shrink.

New Composer: Write the whole body of your post, including links, in the Text field. Then click Shorten with to shrink all included links with a single click. The full links will remain visible in the Text field, while the post preview on the right will display the shortened link(s).

Shrinking link in legacy composer           Shrinking link in the new composer

More details on how to shrink links and customize link previews

Add emojis

Legacy composer: Insert emojis by using the applicable keyboard commands to open your computer's emoji keyboard. Ctrl + command + space on Mac, and taskbar > touch keyboard > emoji keyboard on PC.

New Composer: While writing the body of your post in the Text field, click the smiley face in the bottom-left corner when you want to insert an emoji.

legacy composer, adding emojis        new composer, adding emojis


Legacy composer: Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook Page mentions are supported. Enter @ followed by the username, and then select the user or Page from the list.

New composer: Twitter, Instagram, Facebook Page, and LinkedIn Page mentions are supported. Enter @ followed by the username, and then select the user or Page from the list. Instagram mentions will remain in plain text, but will go live when the post is published.

legacy composer, mentioning a user or page       new composer, mentioning a user or page

More details on mentioning a user or Page

Geo-tag posts

Legacy composer: Select Add location to add your current location to tweets based on your browser settings.

New Composer: Add physical location data to tweets, Facebook Page posts, and Instagram Business posts. Scroll down and select Add to the right of Location and then add and select a location from the search results.

Legacy composer, adding location      New composer, adding location

Attach images

Legacy composer: Select Attach media  and then choose files to upload or drag-and-drop them from your desktop. You can also select Content library to access already uploaded files from any of your organizations. Thumbnails of your attached images will display below the text box.

New Composer: Select Select files to upload, drag-and-drop files from your desktop, or select Browse your media to access free images from Pixabay, GIPHY, or any installed media library apps. Select Close Media Library when your images are selected, and then drag-and-drop them within the list on the left to rearrange them in your post previews.

You can select Edit Image below each image to crop it for a specific social network, add filters or text, or make any other adjustments in the image editor. The new Composer also supports alternative text for images published to Twitter.

Legacy composer, attaching image       new composer, attaching image

More details on posting and editing images

Publish videos

Legacy composer: Video publishing is supported for Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and personal Instagram profiles. Select Attach media attach media icon, legacy composer, and then choose files to upload.

New Composer: Video publishing is supported for Twitter, Facebook Pages and groups, LinkedIn Pages, YouTube, and direct publishing to Instagram Business profiles. Under Media, select Select files to upload.

legacy composer, attaching video      new composer, attaching video

More details on publishing videos through Hootsuite

Target posts

Legacy composer: Business and Enterprise plan users can select Targeting options Target icon, legacy composer to select specific audience parameters for Facebook Page or LinkedIn Page posts.

New Composer: When a Facebook Page or LinkedIn Page is selected, all plan types can scroll down and select Add next to Audience Restrictions to select targeting options for the post, such as age, country, or region for Facebook, and industry, company size, location, or language for LinkedIn.

target-options-legacy.png         audience-restrictions-composer.png

More details on targeting posts

Add link tracking parameters

Legacy composer: Paste a link into the Add a link field, and then select Advanced . Select Select a Preset, and then add preset or Google Analytics parameters to the link. Insert your values, and then select Apply Parameters.

New Composer: Paste a link into the text field and then select Add tracking. Select Customize, and then select the Tracking field to add custom, Google Analytics, or Adobe Analytics tracking parameters to your links.

Values can be inserted manually, or auto-populate dynamically based on the social network, social account, or post ID. Admins of Team, Business, and Enterprise plans can create link settings presets so that all team members can add the same shortening and tracking with one click.

Adding parameters, legacy composer.          Adding parameters, new composer

More details on applying link parameters

Publish content library assets - Business and Enterprise

Now available in the new Composer: To create a post from a content library template, hover over Create New Post create new post icon and select Content library template from the drop-down. Browse your templates, and then select Open in Composer to pre-populate the template’s elements for you to customize within the Composer.

Content library images are located in the new Composer’s media library. When in the Composer, Select Open Media Library and browse pre-approved image assets on the right.

Selecting content library template         Content library in new composer

More details on publishing content library assets

Add tags to posts - Business and Enterprise

Legacy composer: Select Add tags to the message  and select from your organization’s tags to categorize the post.

New Composer: Scroll down and select Add next to Tags. Then select from your organization’s tags to categorize the post. Admins can also create new tags or access the tag library from here.

applying tags, legacy composer       Applying tags, new composer

More details

Assign campaigns to posts - Enterprise

Only available in the new Composer: Content campaigns span a specified timeframe, and contain defined link settings and tags that apply to each post they’re applied to. They ensure accurate and consistent tracking across all the posts published by your teams.

Select Select campaign at the top of the Composer to associate your post with a current or future campaign. The campaign’s link settings and tags will be automatically applied to your post.

Selecting campaign, new composer

More details on campaigns