HootSuite explains revenue generation strategy

HootSuite CEO Ryan Holmes sat down with BIV this week and explained how the company plans to monetize its popular Twitter client.

HootSuite is attaching a “freemium” model to its namesake social media dashboard in July, which means users will still be able to use HootSuite freely but will pay for additional bronze, silver and gold standard services offered within it.

Holmes said: “HootSuite has big potential in terms of the amount of traffic it’s pushing.”

He explained that HootSuite, which manages one million social media accounts for about 400,000 unique users, would try to monetize the 3% to 5% of accounts that are most active.

Those accounts are generally owned by large brands from the media and retail space including Conde Nast, AOL, Banana Republic and Dell.

HootSuite is used by such clients to dig up analytics and to monitor and add to the larger conversations in the social networking spheres of Twitter and, more recently, Facebook and LinkedIn.

“Those people are thoroughly entrenched,” said Holmes. “The free users will either always stay free or they’ll at some point find some features that are worthwhile for them to upgrade to.”

HootSuite was spun out of Invoke Media last January after Blumberg Capital and Hearst Interactive Media raised $2 million in financing for the start-up.

HootSuite announced Wednesday it has launched localized versions of its social media dashboard in Japanese, Spanish, Portuguese and German along with streamlining translation to and from more than 50 other languages.

For more on Holmes and HootSuite, be sure to check out next week’s Business in Vancouver profile interview on shelves and online June 8.

cgc@biv.com