How to connect any Facebook Page to HootSuite (for monitoring purposes)

In HootSuite dashboard you can add Facebook Pages that you are an administrator. After you connect it you can add the Page’s “Wall Posts”, “Events”, “Schedule Messages” and “Private Messages”, but you can only add those streams for your specific page. What if you want to monitor what your competitors are posting in their Facebook Page without leaving HootSuite?

So far HootSuite only let’s you add up to 200 of your Facebook friends using filtered stream, but there are no options to do that with Pages. I found a workaround using HootSuite RSS Reader App to monitor any page you want from Facebook. Here are the steps:

1)    Visit the page you want to add to a HootSuite stream. For this tutorial we are going to use our eBay store Facebook page OnStairs Deals.

The URL of that page is https://www.facebook.com/OnStairsDeals. Each page has its own ID and you need to find it, but how do you do that?  Keep reading my friend.

2)    There are two ways to find a Facebook page ID:

    • (Easiest method) Visit http://findmyfacebookid.com/ and type the Facebook page url in the box. Use step 1 URL for testing purposes. Copy the ID number to a Word document.
  • For the other option you need to know the name of the Facebook page. In the case of this tutorial our Facebook page is called OnStairsDeals (the name of the page is after the .com/). After you have the name substitute username with the page name in this url:

http://graph.facebook.com/username

Example: http://graph.facebook.com/OnStairsDeals

Copy that url in you browser address bar and visit the page. You will see something like this:

Look for the line that says something like “id”: “1234567890″ (between “were_here_count” and “name”: )

For our tutorial page “OnStairs Deals” the id is 434385876620386

Copy the ID number to a Word document.

3) Copy the following URL code and paste it to the Word document you have the Facebook Page ID (don’t delete the id number):

http://www.facebook.com/feeds/page.php?format=atom10&id=##############

Substitute ############## with the Facebook page ID number you look for. In this tutorial example the url for OnStairs Deals will look like:

http://www.facebook.com/feeds/page.php?format=atom10&id=434385876620386

This is an RSS Atom feed. With this url you will be able to monitor the Facebook page you search for in HootSuite. Now open up your HootSuite dashboard and follow the next step.

4)    If you haven’t already install the “RSS Reader” app by going to “App Directory” (in your HootSuite dashboard). Create a RSS Reader stream by going to Add Stream > Apps > Click RSS Reader plus button.

After you have the RSS Reader stream click the settings button and copy paste the URL you created on the Word document to “Add RSS Feed” column.

After pasting click “Add Feed”. If you did everything correctly you should see the name of the Facebook page listed on the “Delete RSS Feeds”. Change the stream name if you like and click “Save Settings”.

With this neat little trick you can now monitor any Facebook page you like, all without leaving HootSuite dashboard. The only things that you will not be able to do with this method is:

  • Comment any of the page wall posts
  • See how many likes each post has and
  • See the link preview picture

All this minor setbacks apart you will still be able to share any of the pages post by clicking “Share Link on HootSuite” (located on top right corner of every RSS entry) and you can closely follow what your competition is writing about, all without leaving HootSuite dashboard.

If you have any questions on how to do this please post them below.