How to Batch Schedule Tweets with Hootsuite

Tired of writing each tweet by hand? Instead of individually scheduling every tweet, you can write them in a group (batch) and then upload them all in one go. I use Hootsuite to do this, though there are other tools that let you do the same thing. Socialoomp is another I use, though the UI is a bit flaky.

Batch schedule tweets with Hootsuite

How to Batch Schedule Tweets with Hootsuite

The first thing you need to do is write the tweets.

In Hootsuite, you need to follow this format:

DD/MM/YYYY

HH:MM,

“MESSAGE”,

“URL”

Batch Scheduling Tweets – Setting up the Dates

Note that all dates/times are relative to currently selected time zone. You can setup the option under the Admin section in Hootsuite.

Batch Scheduling Tweets – Setting up the URLs

URLs must contain “http://”

Batch Scheduling Tweets – Sample Format for Batch Tweet

25/12/2011 12:00,”Enter your message here”,”https://www.ivanwalsh.com”

This tweet will go out on the 25th of December 2011 at mid-day, which is kind of handy as you’ll probably be at home on Xmas day.

Batch Scheduling Tweets – Other Rules

  • Schedule messages at least 10 minutes from upload time
  • Assign times that end in 0 or 5, e.g. 10:00 or 10:45
  • One messages per time slot
  • No duplicate messages

Using Excel to Create Batch Schedule Tweets File

If you use Excel, format the first column to conform to HootSuite’s date requirements.

To do this:

  • Click on the “Custom” tab in Format.
  • Save your Excel document as a .CSV file.

Batch Scheduling Tweets in Hootsuite

Batch schedule tweets with Hootsuite

  • Create the file with the .cvs extension
  • Open Hootsuite
  • Click in the Compose Message Box
  • Click the Calendar icon (i.e. To schedule a message)
  • Click the Schedule in Bulk option
  • Select your file and upload it
  • Select the Twitter account you want to use (otherwise it defaults to the first account)
  • Click Submit

If it doesn’t work, look at the next section for answers.

Common Errors With Batch Uploads in Hootsuite

You may encounter the following errors:

  • File format – make sure it’s .cvs
  • Make sure your text editor doesn’t strip out the formatting. I use TextEdit (Mac) and NotePad++ (PC)
  • Be careful when you save from Excel to .CSV that the formatting doesn’t get mangled.
  • Dates are the wrong way around. 07/05 can mean May 7th or the 5th of June. Check your settings in Hootsuite and use the same format.

Sample Batch File For Scheduling Tweets

Start with a short test, such as the following:

28/07/2011 11:30,”test – pls ignore”
28/07/2011 12:30,”Social Media writing skills – what do you want to know?”
28/07/2011 13:30,”Social Media writing skills – drafting ebook today”

and then create longer batch files depending on your needs.

Why Schedule Tweets?

I do this (mostly) when I want others to know that I’m:

Bulk schedule tweets with Hootsuite

  • Working on a new project that coming online soon, i.e. Create interest in advance
  • Writing a new ebook, such as Social Media Writing Skills, and I want questions from others to help write the material
  • Looking for answers for an on-going problem, e.g. Does social media justify the efforts

I also use to schedule shoutouts to others and Follow Fridays. Why wait til Thursday night to do it!

Conclusion

The key is to use a little common sense. See what you can batch and then do it. Make sure to engage with others in real-time as well to balance your twitter streams. And make sure to monitor the results. See if it works. Are you getting feedback? Do people respond to the tweets? Are more clicking through to your site?

Do you schedule any of your tweets?

Download these MS Office and Apple templates today

Acceptance Test Plan

Contingency Plan

Software Development Templates

Acquisition Plan

Conversion Plan

Software Requirements Specification

Action Plan

Cost Benefit Analysis

Software Testing

API Documentation

Database Design

Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)

Audience Analysis

Datasheet

Statement of Work

Availability Plan

Deployment Plan

System Administration Guide

Bill of Materials

Design Document

System Boundary

Business Case

Disaster Recovery Plan

System Design Document

Business Continuity

Disposition Plan

System Specifications

Business Plan

Documentation Plan

Technical Writing Templates

Business Process

Employee Handbook

Test Plan

Business Requirements

Error Message Guide

Training Plan

Business Rules

Expression of Interest

Transition Plan

Capacity Plan

Fact Sheet

Troubleshooting Guide

Case Study

Feasibility Study

Use Case

Change Management Plan

Functional Requirements

User Guide

Communication Plan

Grant Proposal

Verification and Validation Plan

Concept of Operations

Implementation Plan

White Papers

Concept Proposal

Installation Plan

Work Instructions

Configuration Management Plan

Interface Control Document

Software Development Templates

Acceptance Test Plan

Maintenance Plan

Software Requirements Specification

Acquisition Plan

Market Research

Software Testing

Action Plan

Marketing Plan

Standard Operating Procedures (SOP)

API Documentation

Needs Statement

Statement of Work

Audience Analysis

Operations Guide

System Administration Guide

Availability Plan

Policy Manual

System Boundary

Bill of Materials

Project Plan

System Design Document

Business Case

Proposal Manager Templates

System Specifications

Business Continuity

Proposal Template

Technical Writing Templates

Business Plan

Quality Assurance Plan

Test Plan

Business Process

Release Notes

Training Plan

Business Requirements

Request for Proposal

Transition Plan

Business Rules

Risk Management Plan

Troubleshooting Guide

Capacity Plan

Scope of Work

Use Case

Case Study

Security Plan

User Guide

Change Management Plan

Service Level Agreement (SLA)

Verification and Validation Plan

Communication Plan

Setup Guide

White Papers

Concept of Operations

Social Media Policy

Work Instructions

Concept Proposal

Contingency Plan

 

Configuration Management Plan

Conversion Plan