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Hootsuite Powers Brand Management With Widen

The Widen Collective® is Hootsuite’s central location for all brand assets. Giving a range of internal and external stakeholders controlled access to this content allows them to create a cohesive brand experience.

Products used

img_icon-01 Assets

Catalog, control, and distribute rich media assets from a central source of truth

Insights Insights

Track and measure assets and build site performance dashboards

Portals-curated-brand-experience Portals

Share curated subsets of assets with control and flexibility

Integrations Integrations

Drive marketing efficiency when you automatically connect your tools and data


Asset views on the Hootsuite
blog in the last 12 months


Downloads from the brand
portal in the last 12 months


Embed views in
the last 12 months


Leveraging integrations to support content marketing


Using Portals to streamline access to curated content


Maintaining brand consistency with the Collective



Hootsuite’s social media management software is used by more than 18 million customers and employees at over 80% of the Fortune 1000. With their global headquarters in Vancouver and offices across the world, their workflows span numerous teams, continents, and time zones. 

Their annual marketing strategy includes several campaigns that result in hundreds of creative assets. Before they implemented a digital asset management (DAM) system, this content was stored across various locations. Curtis Foreman, Senior Editor at Hootsuite, said, “When I started here at Hootsuite there was no DAM. There were files on Google Drive...videos on hard drives piled up in corners, there was stuff on flash drives, it was all over the place.” And there wasn’t a formal naming structure to aid in findability, either. “People would ask us for the logo,” he shared, “and you'd go looking for it, and it would be hootsuitelogofinalbrendav2.png.”

Locating the right file was so time-consuming, Curtis said, that “you would see people creating their own private collections of assets.” Because many of these files were dated or low-quality, their brand consistency was suffering. Curtis and his team knew they needed tools to help them organize, manage, and distribute their content. After researching DAM solutions, they determined  the Widen Collective best suited their brand management needs.


Central repository:
Manage all content from a single location

Streamlined workflows:
Eliminate bottlenecks and redundancies 

Brand consistency:
Create a cohesive customer experience through the coordinated use of brand-approved content


Easy access to curated content
Now that creative content is organized in one location, teams across Hootsuite know where to find the content they need. And with Portals they have further streamlined access to popular content. They have a portal for their media kit, content used for booths at events, assets used by their external agencies - and their most frequently used portal is for brand assets. 

Curtis shared, “We created a brand assets portal that we rolled out across the company for those people who maybe don't use assets as often but still are looking for a logo to use, or for an illustration, or a photograph. Everybody in the company has access to this portal, and it has been hugely popular.” And by empowering users to access marketing content on their own, Curtis’ team has more time for creative work.

Administrative controls
The Collective’s administrative tools allow Hootsuite to continually adjust who is able to access which assets. “Something that really differentiated Widen from the start was how full-featured and robust the admin tools are,” Curtis shared. “Because Hootsuite is such a fast-moving organization and things change a lot here it was really important for us to be able to keep responding to changes within the business and shift asset groups and permissions around and add new types of metadata and consolidate others. Just giving us the power to do all of that administration ourselves — you don’t have to be technical, you don’t have to bring in developers — that’s huge for us.”

Technology integrations
Connecting the Collective to other platforms in their marketing technology (martech) stack has allowed Hootsuite to bring velocity to workflows across teams and offices. They currently has integrations with Adobe suite, their content management system (CMS), and their own software. “The integration between Widen and Hootsuite lets people look into the DAM while they are using Hootsuite to post images to social media,” Curtis said. “They can scroll through their organization's images, find what they need, move them to a post, add it there, and know that it's the correct version, it's on-brand, it's ready to go.”

Reliable support
Hootsuite knows they can depend on the Widen team to support them as their use of the Collective matures and expands. “I love the support team,” Curtis said. “I would say there’s not a week that goes by that not I’m in a chat with the team about something. They are always quick and responsive. I’ve loved that — support provides huge value.”


Creative agility
The Collective helps Hoosuite’s creative team reduce manual and redundant tasks. One of their graphic designers, Eric Uhlich, shared, “There's nothing like seeing an illustration that's a flat jpg, and going, oh man, I need that element from it...Now we just go to the DAM and the original is there, the layers are there. It gives us access to all of that immediately, without having to find out the source of it, who made it, where it's from.”


“I would say the real central value that Widen brings to the Hootsuite brand is on making the universe of brand material so much smaller. People know where to go and they can have confidence that when they find an asset that it’s been created by the brand team, it’s on brand, and it’s released for use.”

Curtis Foreman,
Senior Editor at Hootsuite


Integrations create additional efficiencies by pushing content to other systems, like their CMS. When files like white papers or reports need a small change — such as a new illustration or copy edit — they previously had to send the updated version to the web team to post online. “What we do now,” Curtis shared, “is that our web CMS pulls those documents directly from DAM which...saves the amount of back-and-forth that we need to have with that team.” 

Data insights
The Insights app in the Collective helps Hootsuite understand how their users are engaging with the system. Curtis said, “We can see them in there grabbing these assets, so we know they are getting the right material from where they should be.” 

Curtis relies on feedback from his most active users to inform system optimization. “We also track internal adoption with people downloading assets and that’s been steadily increasing...and we have a shortlist of people to talk to make sure they are happy and getting what they need,” he shared. 

And the integration with the CMS allows them to track views and downloads on the gated materials on their website, such as white papers. “As soon as somebody goes through that gated form they’ll see the file directly pulled out of Widen, as opposed to one that’s coming from our CMS. So that’s been a really successful use case for us and one that we’re happy we rolled out,” Curtis shared.

Enhanced collaboration across global teams
The Collective allows Hootsuite teams to share content and resources no matter where they are. “We have a design team in London,” Eric explained, “And they are able to access all the same assets that we are, whenever they need them. They have the same access privileges and levels. So, when over there it’s evening and here it’s morning, or whatever it is, everyone’s working on the same files. It keeps things really, really straight forward.”

“It does enable our global business to coordinate and work,” Curtis added. “There is a lot of localization — we’ll typically launch any new content piece in at least five supported languages. Managing that in the DAM allows them to easily see when new assets are going in, localize those, add them to DAM and spin them up from there.” This enhanced collaboration allows teams to work more efficiently and ultimately improve the quality of their collective work. 

Brand enablement
“I would say the real central value that Widen brings to the Hootsuite brand is on making the universe of brand material so much smaller. People know where to go and they can have confidence that when they find an asset that it’s been created by the brand team, it’s on brand, and it’s released for use.”

And these empowered users are in every area of their organization. “We have our social team pulling images from the DAM, we have our web team, we have events and field marketing, we have sales teams using it. And then more broadly across the business we'll see everybody from legal to finance to corporate development.” All of these users are contributing to coordinated, cohesive brand stories. 

“I really have not much but great stuff to say about Widen honestly,” Curtis said. “It’s just a great platform. I enjoy using it, and people have taken the system that we’ve created and used it to make something beautiful and on-brand, and I think that’s one of the best measures of success of this system.”