Easy Scheduling ~ AutoSchedule in the Dashboard

By Andy Au | 3 years ago | 271 Comments

AutoSchedule Header

Ask and ye shall receive! After many user requests, Hootlet’s AutoSchedule functionality has been extended to the dashboard. Now you can automatically queue messages for optimal times from within the dashboard. Spend more time finding content and less time thinking about scheduling.

Whether you’re sharing a webpage, an image, or your own witty musings, AutoSchedule determines the optimal posting times for your favorite social networks. Maximize reach without swamping your followers. Here’s what HootSuite CEO, Ryan Holmes had to say about AutoSchedule:

“It’s really quite simple – instead of our users manually selecting what time they want to schedule or post their social media messages using our Scheduling feature, they can opt to use our new AutoSchedule technology to optimize and automate the scheduling process. We want our users spending more time finding and sharing content and less time worrying about the best time of day to share it.”

Simplify Your Social

After composing your social media message, you have the option to manually schedule, AutoSchedule or send now. Here’s how to use AutoSchedule from the dashboard:

AutoSchedule Screenshot 1 Small

Step 1: After composing your message in the Compose Box, select the Schedule Icon. A drop down menu will then appear.

Step 2: Toggle the AutoSchedule switch to On and then click the AutoSchedule button.

Rest assured, like regular scheduled messages AutoSchedule messages can be viewed and rescheduled at any time. These messages will appear with a Clock Icon next to them in Publisher and can be rescheduled the same way as regular messages. After rescheduling, the Clock Icon will disappear confirming your new scheduled time.

AutoSchedule Screenshot 2 Small
Review, edit, and reschedule AutoSchedule messages from Publisher

Social Automation

According to Jeremiah Owyang of the Altimeter Group, automation is one of the next steps in social media’s evolution. As social media becomes more widely adopted, brands and enterprises will need tools that can scale to their social presence – focusing on the speed and volume of responses as well as effort and cost reduction.

While the thought of robots sending Tweets seems to take the social out of social media, AutoSchedule and other social automation features have a growing place in the world – similar to how ATMs make more sense than Bank Tellers for many occasions. But, as HootSuite VP Marketing Ben Watson warns, social media should never lose the human touch.

We’re Listening

Part of HootSuite’s growth and success is owed to the helpful suggestions and ideas we receive from our users. We strongly encourage you to share your thoughts with us. Like many of HootSuite’s features, we’ve added AutoSchedule based on your helpful feedback.

What’s your next idea? Let us know on our Feedback Channel.

Have any questions about AutoScheduling?

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328 comments
AbhishekSethi
AbhishekSethi

do i have to be the owner of a group i want to import? I just created a hootsuite account but i don't see the groups i am part of in groups list. There are only groups that i am the owner of

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

Hi AbhishekSethi,


Due to Facebook API restrictions, you do need to be the administrator of the group in order to add it to Hootsuite.


There is a recent change, and more information can be found here: http://ow.ly/PgTsj


I hope this helps.


Adrien | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

AbhishekSethi
AbhishekSethi

Does hootsuite post a scheduled message on all the selected groups at the same time? Or does it post at random intervals around the posting time? If in case a message is posted to all the selected groups at the same moment of time, then does facebook have a problem with that? I


Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

Hi AbhishekSethi,


AutoSchedule will determine the best time to post, and the message will go to all selected profiles.

This is the same as a manually scheduled message.


If you are having any issues posting on Facebook, please reach out to us at @Hootsuite_Help or hootsuite.com/help.


I hope this is helpful!


Regards,

Adrien | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

SusiWeaser
SusiWeaser

Does the algorithm take into account where in the world I am - my business is in the UK, so it's important the tweet goes out when my customers are awake, rather when there's high worldwide engagement. 

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@SusiWeaser Thanks for your reply.


There's a setting in Autoschedule to specify the time range so that you'll be able to target your audiences in UK.


Please head to Settings> Autoschedule to do this.


I hope this helps!


Mika | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@MandyHdezL


Thanks for your post! In the AutoSchedule settings, there's the section to select the time range.


The times will be dependent on the activity times on your selected social networks, and the time range in the AutoSchedule will be the same as your defaulted Time Zone.


I hope this clarifes.


Mika | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

DarrenMarlar
DarrenMarlar

Why does Hootsuite only allow five auto-scheduled messages at a time?  I manage numerous Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+ accounts and would like to schedule certain messages across all of them - but it only allows five.  WHY?!?!

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@DarrenMarlar Hello there,


Great question!  We've limited the number of social networks that be auto-scheduled to al once to stay in line with the automation ToS our partner social networks have.  This limitation helps curb automated mass messaging.  As an example, here is Twitter's automation rules and best practices: https://support.twitter.com/articles/76915


If you have more questions, please feel free to reach out to us on Twitter @Hootsuite_Help or via chat at hootsuite.com/help !


Taavi W. | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

Hi Tiffany!


Thanks for your question. The Autoscheduler will choose the optimal time to post the message, based on factors such as high engagement periods, the social network type, how many other posts you have scheduled, as well as a bit of magic from our own algorithm. 


I hope this is helpful!


Thanks again,


Megan | Senior Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

AbigailSchulz
AbigailSchulz

If I auto-schedule something will it only post once? How do I get a post to schedule every day for a week for example?

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@AbigailSchulz Hi Abigail,


Yes that's correct, an auto-scheduled message will only post once. This is the same for all scheduled posts. 


Unfortunately there is no way to "repost" messages, so if you're wanting a message to be posted twice, you'll need to copy and paste it and schedule it twice. 


If you're on the Pro Plan, you may want to consider using our bulk upload feature to save time while scheduling! Please see the article below for instructions:


https://help.hootsuite.com/entries/21723778-Manage-csv-Files-and-Schedule-in-Bulk


If you have any other questions at all, please don't hesitate to tweet us at @Hootsuite_Help or send us a Private Message on Facebook. 


Kind Regards,


Stefanie | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

FredericoAranha
FredericoAranha

Hi guys,


I am currently sending the same post to 20-30 groups on Facebook and LinkedIn simultaneously. What I need is a way to click autoschedule to every post I send to these groups and upload something like 100-200 posts at once.


I dont want to learn how to bulk upload. I dont care spending time inserting the 200 posts manually. All I want to know is the frequency in which autoschedule will post the messages into the groups.


Can you understand me? I am afraid that it will spam the groups. I need it to send the posts simultaneously but in different times. I want to upload 200 posts and want autoschedule to scramble them, not post them at the same group in a day, but like post in one group one post and in another group another post, but randomically.


I dont want, as a result of autoscheduling, having the same post on different groups in the same day. I want the posts to be in different groups in different days... otherwise autoschedule will be just postponing spam, not solving it.


Like this:


Post 1 

- Group 1 (4/12 3pm)

- Group 2 (5/12 4pm)

- Group 3 (6/12 6pm)


Post 2

- Group 1 (4/12 4pm)

- Group 2 (5/12 5pm)

- Group 3 (6/12 7pm)


Do you get it? Maybe I need a way to create rules to autoscheduling in a way it can work as I want it to work. Right now, I dont get it and if I dont get it how can I trust it?


Cheers,


Fred

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@FredericoAranha Hi Frederico,


Please note that when posting multiple duplicate messages to large numbers of accounts, Facebook will sometimes block these messages as Spam and break the connection between Hootsuite and Facebook. Unfortunately, Facebook doesn't disclose the exact limits that they have in place, meaning that it can be challenging to determine how many simultaneous posts can be made at one time. 


To get around this, please try selecting only a couple accounts (example, 5-10) to post to at once. When scheduling similar messages, we also recommend staggering the time slightly.


Further, it would be best for you to schedule these manually (rather than use the Autoschedule feature) to ensure that your messages get posted at the exact time you'd like them to be posted. 


I hope this helps! If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to tweet us at @Hootsuite_Help or send us a Private Message on Facebook. We would be happy to further assist. 


Kind Regards,


Stefanie | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help

Scrumdan
Scrumdan

how does the auto schedule work with bulk upload? Can I leave the date field blank on the bulk upload?

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@Scrumdan


Hey there! 


Thanks for your question! 


At this time, the bulk uploading feature and the auto scheduling feature are completely separate. When bulk uploading dates and times must be entered into the CSV file or the file will not upload.


If you have any other questions please reach out to us on Twitter, @Hootsuite_Help ! 


Best,


Egykidz
Egykidz

Is it possible to autoschedule the same message to be posted 3 times in the same day ??

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@Egykidz  Hey there!


Thank you for reaching out to the Hootsuite Team via our Blog. My name is Gary and I'd be happy to clarify. 


AutoSchedule doesn't at present schedule the same message to go out multiple times per day. This is because the majority of social networks that we integrate with don't encourage duplicate posts. Any message that is auto-scheduled, will only be posted once.


I hope this helps!


If we can assist further with any questions, please reach out to us on Twitter, @Hootsuite_help or via Private Message on our Facebook Page, https://www.facebook.com/hootsuite


Kind regards, 
Gary | @HootSuite_Help | HootSuite Help Desk - http://ow.ly/dBnBz

guest
guest

Is it possible to autoschedule for different days of the week? 

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@guest

Hey there! 


The auto scheduling feature will select the day and time of best fit based on the reception of your social audience. 


If you wish to select the specific day a message is posted you can manually schedule the specific message.


if you have any other questions feel free to reach out to us on Twitter @Hootsuite_Help.


Best,

Jocelyne | Customer Advocate | hootsuite.com/help


Rasasym135
Rasasym135

Is it possible to schedule the same post for different times in different social media channels? (with ~5 hour difference?). Thanks!

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@Rasasym135 Hi there!  Yes, you can definitely schedule a post to go out to different social media accounts within a specific timeframe.  The best way to do this would be to manually schedule the posts (so you can select the exact date/time). Steps here: https://help.hootsuite.com/entries/21594338#schedule  If you have more questions, please feel free to tweet us @Hootsuite_Help !

Jill_Champagne
Jill_Champagne

This is such an awesome feature - I was starting to spend WAY too much time managing social media and not enough on blogging. I'm thankful I took the time to set up Hootsuite this weekend!


Jill

TeriHatchMayo
TeriHatchMayo

Can I add more than one image to a scheduled post?


Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

Hi there,
Thank you for reaching out, my name is Ernesto from the Vancouver office and I'm more than happy to help you.
Yes you can add multiple images images. Please note this will create one post for each image at the moment.Please see link with more information on how to work with Auto scheduler. https://help.hootsuite.com/entries/21594338-Scheduling

Best Regards,
Ernesto | Customer Advocate | @Hootsuite_Help

TopazHockey
TopazHockey

Hey, I was wondering if there is a way to schedule post far into the future, and create stop and end points with dates (day, week, month), making the auto schedule feature much more efficient? maybe another version or, did I miss something? Thank you for taking the time to answer my question. Cheers

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@TopazHockey Hey there! 


Thanks for your question! 


At this time the Auto Scheduling Feature will schedule your messages for peak social engagement based on interactions with your Social Audience. As such, there is no way to put a limit on the time frame when the messages are sent.


If you are interested in scheduling into the future, we do offer a bulk uploading tool for our pro users which allows you to upload up to 350 messages at once. 


I hope to have offered some insight! 


Best,

Jocelyne | @Hootsuite_Help | Hootsuite Help Desk - http://ow.ly/dBnBz




JudoMath
JudoMath

Is there a way to have a different autoschedule for different social media feeds?  Like autoschedule twitter 10x per day and autoschedule facebook 3x per day?

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@JudoMath Hey there!


Thank you for reaching out to us via our blog! My name is Gary and I'd be happy to clarify. 


At this time the Auto-scheduler settings apply to all social networks uniformly. 


To setup something similar to this, I would recommend using the Bulk Scheduler: 


https://help.hootsuite.com/entries/21723778-Manage-csv-Files-and-Schedule-in-Bulk


The Bulk Scheduler will allow you to schedule up to 350 messages ahead of time for various social networks. 


I hope this helps as a workaround for your needs! If you have any questions, please reach out to us on Twitter, @Hootsuite_Help or Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/hootsuite


Kind regards, 


Gary | Customer Advocate | @Hootsuite_Help

scottcaldwell
scottcaldwell

Can we PLEASE get an update to the auto-schedule feature that allows you to set proximity to other tweets? 


I have my account set to no more than 3 tweets a day (I don't generate a ton of content). And I swear, despite always having an 8:30am tweet scheduled M-F, whenever I auto-schedule a second tweet (so tweet #2 of 3 for the WHOLE day), it always put it as 8:45, maybe 9. 


If I'm only putting out three tweets a day, I would very much like to have them spread out by more than 15-30mins. If I was posting 20-30 tweets a day, this might make sense, but either an algorithm update or a manual setting to prevent this from happening would be fantastic.

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@scottcaldwell Hi there,


Thank you for reaching out on our Blog post and my apologies for the frustration caused! 


Currently, the AutoScheduler takes the following into account: 

  1. High engagement time periods.
  2. Already scheduled content.
  3. Customized (user defined) settings; messages per day, time period and days applicable.

If you have a regular tweet going out at 8:30 am every day, this may be swaying your "high engagement" time in that direction. In this case, you can adjust your AutoSchedule Settings to not have AutoScheduled messages in the morning. Alternatively, if the exact time is very important to you, I would suggest manually selecting a time. 


I hope this information helps! Do not hesitate to reach out to the Support Owls @Hootsuite_Help on Twitter should you have any further questions!


Regards,

Whitney | @Hootsuite_Help | http://hootsuite.com/help

patantconsult
patantconsult

Very good point. Some people auto schedule with a view to benefiting from optimal tweet times. Others auto schedule to save time. In which case it would be a huge benefit to be able to auto set the interval between tweets, and the start and end time for tweeting each day. If hootsuite can do this, they can eliminate the competition.

scottcaldwell
scottcaldwell

@Hootsuite_Help_Desk @scottcaldwell That's my guess as far as the 8:30 swaying my engagement times. Obviously if that goes out every M-F at the same time, the likelihood that it is being retweeted or favorited around 8:45/9 is pretty high.


I recognize that in the short term, I could adjust my AutoSchedule window to not begin until say 10:00am, but as I think long term, if my tweet frequency increases, and I move from 3 to say 8 or 10, I would still like to be mindful of intervals. Having the function to specify "Minimum Tweet spacing of 30 minutes/1hr/etc." would be a Godsend.

cindytudam
cindytudam

@scottcaldwell @Hootsuite_Help_Desk hi Scott, the 8:45-9 AM is applicable for any timezone right e.g. Pacific, Central, Eastern, European, Asia time etc..People are more likely retweet/favorite at this hour regardless where they are. Or this is more for Americans. I live in Europe (CET), don't know the optimal time for it. 

BusinessKingUK
BusinessKingUK

@Hootsuite_Help_Desk @scottcaldwell I have to agree with Scott here. I am in the UK and have the same issues. Sometimes I will write 10 posts and set them all to autoschedule, but then when I look at my scheduled posts in the stream I can see 4 of them have been scheduled for within 10 minutes of eachother.


I think this is a huge issue with the autoscheduling feature and I can see how you have kind of dodged the question above. This definitely needs looking into and fixing, it's the only thing that is making me look elsewhere. 


Thanks,

Danny. 

www.danny-barnes.co.uk

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@BusinessKingUK Hi Danny,


Thanks for the feedback.


The AutoSchedule feature is designed to maximize the reach of your messages. As such, they will send when at time that will create the best engagement with your audience. Sometimes this does mean the messages will send within a short period of each other.


Should you wish to look into this further, please reach out to us at @hootsuite_help or through http://www.hootsuite.com/help. We are happy to help.


Thanks, Danny.


Best regards,

Christian | @Hootsuite_Help | http://hootsuite.com/help

shane gerrard
shane gerrard

Hi i need some serious help please, i have used hootsuite for quite some time now just posting a write up to all my groups on facebook on a daily basis and it has ran smoothly since i joined, but yesterday i noticed that when i click on the streams button its taking like 5 minutes to get to the page where i log into my facebook as the stream bar is scrolling through every group i have posted to they seem like tabs and i cant get rid of them as there are hundreds of them to take me to the page where i click on my groups that i want to send a message too. Eventually when i have ticked the groups i want to send too, the same process is happening again but worse as its scrolling through them twice before i can get to the scheduling page.....can i reset my dashboard? not my password

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@shane gerrard Hi Shane, would you be able to reach out to us on Twitter @Hootsuite_Help ? Or, please send us a Private Message on our Facebook Page! We'd love to create a ticket for you so that we can better assist.  In regards to resetting your Dashboard, Can you try to clear your dashboard cache? Settings>Preference>Clear Cached Messages.


Thanks!

Sharin | @Hootsuite_Help | http://hootsuite.com/help

indmancok
indmancok

Why cant i see the auto scheduler posting in the Publisher......... is there any problem with Chrome or Safari ??

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@Fun TV Web Hi there,


Thanks for reaching out to Hootsuite through our blog!


At this time, you have the ability to AutoSchedule any content you would normally post using the Compose Message Box. Just follow these steps here: http://ow.ly/BD5cf


I hope this helps! Please feel free to reach out to us over Twitter if you have any further questions. We are happy to help.


Best regards,

Christian | @Hootsuite_Help | http://hootsuite.com/help

TommyCharles
TommyCharles

Why does the auto-scheduler spread the posts out so much? It's September 1st, and its scheduling news messages for Sept. 6th. 


Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

Hi @TommyCharles,


Thanks for your question - happy to help!


It's important to know that the AutoSchedule will select times based on your Settings. Once the maximum number of posts per day is reaching, it will move forward to the next day to find the next optimal posting times.


You can change your AutoScheduler setting via these steps: https://help.hootsuite.com/entries/21594338-Scheduling#settings


If you have any further questions or would like assistance with the AutoScheduler, please reach out to us on Twitter @Hootsuite_Help and we'll be happy to look into specific instance with you.


Best,

Kathleen | @Hootsuite_Help | Hootsuite Help Desk - http://ow.ly/dBnBz

amaradangeli
amaradangeli

Okay, this might be a little confusing, but bear with me and I'll try to be clear...


I use 3 social media platforms: Twitter, Facebook and Google +.  I've been using Auto Schedule since I signed up with Hootsuite about a month ago.  I've noticed that, despite telling AutoScheduler I'd like a max  of __ posts a day (in my case, I've now changed to 6) I frequently get more than the specified number of posts per day (usually on Twitter) which means I'll a span of days at the end of my scheduled content that are posting only to 2 of my 3 platforms.  This is sort-of okay because at least that content has already been posted to the 3rd platform so no one is missing out on anything however, I'd prefer if things stayed a little more uniform.


I've also noticed that occasionally AutoScheduler will 2 tweets for the exact same time.  This often leads to one of the tweets being overlooked.  Why is this happening?


I appreciate your help, thanks in advance!

Hootsuite_Help_Desk
Hootsuite_Help_Desk moderator

@amaradangeli Hi there,


Thank you for reaching out to us with your question!


We would like to have a Support Owl further assist you via a more private channel. At your earliest convenience, please send us a tweet @Hootsuite_Help, or send us a Private Message on our main Facebook Page, and we would be happy to create a HelpDesk Ticket for you in order to further assist via email.


Warm regards,

Whitney | @Hootsuite_Help | http://hootsuite.com/help