Overview of Insights


Hootsuite Insights, powered by Brandwatch is a social listening solution that helps you monitor the online conversations that matter most to you.

You can use Insights to track conversations about your brand, and your competitors. You can create searches to gather and review all social mentions that match your queries. With mentions from a variety of sources, including social networks, blogs, and news sites, you can focus on important conversations and get valuable insights into your audience and industry trends.

Plans: Business and Enterprise (as an add-on package)

Access to Insights is assigned at the team level, and then at the individual team member level. If a team is enabled with Insights, no one in the team has Insights access until the admin gives Insights permissions to individual team members. Team admins have edit/write access to Insights, while default team members have read-only access.

Team members have access to Insights searches for the teams they belong to. If all members in your Insights plan need access to the same searches, you can create and add searches to a specific team.

To learn more, see:

Data and site coverage

Insights uses the Brandwatch Data Library, a shared collection of public data acquired by Brandwatch, to match mentions to user search queries. Brandwatch gathers the data using custom web crawlers, search APIs, data streams from third-party data providers, and direct relationships with specific sites.

Insights returns mentions from a wide variety of platforms, including the sites listed in the following table:

Platform Data source

Mentions are sourced from all tweets, and include the following metadata:

  • Retweets
  • Replies
  • Geolocation (when turned on by user)
  • Timestamp
  • Author name and handle

Mentions are sourced from owner posts of the account being tracked, audience posts on the owner’s wall, dark posts, as well as non-owned Facebook pages, and include the following metadata:

  • Likes
  • Comments
  • Shares
  • Author information

Facebook requires authentication tokens to access Facebook data. See Create Facebook and Instagram authentication tokens in Insights for more information.


Mentions are sourced from posts, comments, tags and mentions on owned accounts, posts on non-owned business accounts being tracked, and public Instagram posts (through hashtag tracking).

Facebook requires authentication tokens to access Instagram data. See Create Facebook and Instagram authentication tokens in Insights for more information.

You Tube

Mentions are sourced from comments under YouTube videos and video descriptions. Metadata includes author name and video title.

Tumblr Mentions are sourced from all Tumblr posts in near real-time, including text, photo and video mentions, and include timestamp, author handle and full text metadata.
Reddit Mentions are sourced from all active subreddits (and a large majority of historical top subreddits). Mentions of more recent Reddit posts and comments include the Reddit Score.
Forums Mentions are sourced from thousands of forums, including Yahoo Answers, Mumsnet, MyFitnessPal, Psychology Today, Stack Overflow, Goodreads, Investopedia, GlassDoor, and many others.

Mentions are sourced from millions of blog sites, including WordPress, Medium, Business Wire, Mashable, Techcrunch, Business Insider, Gizmodo, IMDB, LifeHacker, and more.

Hootsuite Insights also has full coverage of data from site comment sections powered by Disqus.

News sites Mentions are sourced from the majority of popular news sites, as well as many smaller local news sites.
Review sites

Mentions are sourced from a range of popular review sites and include:

  • Star ratings (where applicable)
  • Review title
  • Author name
  • Link to review (with deep links where available)

Mention classification

Insights provides additional information about each mention so that you can understand relevant online conversation on a deeper level.

Insights uses custom statistical classifiers (built in-house by Brandwatch) that predict sentiment and emotion based on a training set of millions of pieces of data, including words, phrases, emojis, and other patterns. In addition, Insights infers gender and location for each mention, where possible.


Insights performs sentiment analysis on every mention, using an AI-driven model based on a training sample of 500,000 mentions. Insights assigns a sentiment of positive, negative, or neutral to each mention. 

Team admins can manually change the sentiment assigned to a mention. See Filter and analyze your saved searches for more information. 


Insights performs emotion analysis on every mention, using an AI-driven model based on a training sample of approximately 2 million tweets, manually labeled with emotional categories.

Insights classifies mentions based on six emotions: anger, disgust, fear, joy, surprise, and sadness. If no emotion is detected, Insights does not assign an emotion to the mention.

Note: Insights only supports emotion classification for English mentions.


Location data is sometimes provided directly by the platform or by the author of the mention. When an author or mention has no explicit location, Insights attempts to infer a location based on the keywords in the author’s bio.


Insights infers gender for a mention using a statistical method based on the binary gender distribution of author names in census data and other public records.

Supported languages

Insights detects and returns mentions data in the following languages. Languages marked with an asterisk (*) are not supported for sentiment analysis. Emotion analysis is supported for English mentions only.

Arabic English Italian Romanian
Azerbaijani* Farsi Japanese Russian
Basque* Finnish* Kazakh* Serbian*
Bulgarian* French Korean Slovak*
Catalan* German Kurdish* Slovene*
Chinese Greek Lithuanian* Spanish
Croatian* Hebrew Malay Swedish
Czech Hindi* Norwegian Thai
Danish* Hungarian* Polish Turkish
Dutch Indonesian Portuguese Urdu*


Data visualization

Insights provides rich data visualization components to segment mentions that match a search query into different categories, such as demographics, emotion, and sentiment.

You can filter the mentions by a variety of attributes to zero in on particular audience traits. You can also view trends in volume over time, and discover the top sites and authors for mentions that match your search query. See Metrics in Insights for more information.