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The name may have sprung to the lips of many of your marketing and small-business-leading friends, but you aren’t quite sure what it is.

Let us explain why Hootsuite should be your new best friend.

Hootsuite is a social media management system that has been around since 2008. In short, it allows over 10 million users around the world (as of September 2014) to manage and schedule posts on numerous social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, MySpace and WordPress all through a web-based dashboard.

Used by companies such as Facebook themselves, Panasonic, Virgin and the Obama administration, Hootsuite has allowed marketing and social media managers the world over to aggregate their social networks on one dashboard… and one tab.

It’s never been easier to schedule a month’s worth of social media across your business’s social media platforms – and we all know how hard it is to find time to sit on social media every day, looking for relevant content to share. Hootsuite allows you to plan ahead and schedule in advance, down to the minute you want the post to be shared. You can even set up an auto-schedule feature which caps how many updates can be posted on a platform in a single day, picks the most optimal times to post, and bans your content from posting on weekends. For example, you can cap your Twitter feed to five tweets per day, so when you post six tweets in a row, your sixth tweet will automatically be scheduled for the following day, without you having to set the date each time.

You can also organise your dashboard by streams, allowing you to check out all the mentions a particular blog post gathered, or what is scheduled to go up the following week.

Let it be noted that you shouldn’t just rely on Hootsuite scheduling to drive your business’s social media content. You should still be diligent in replying to; commenting on and posting things while you’re on the go. Remember, time is of the essence with social media – by never posting anything spontaneously, you run the risk of missing viral trends, breaking news and the opportunity to put your two cents in about events happening in that moment.

You can even set up your personal accounts on Hootsuite – but be warned, the repercussions of accidentally tweeting something personal on the company account can be dire!