This is the key to social media for the C-suite, according to Hootsuite

Hootsuite CEO Ryan Holmes said Friday he spends a full two hours on social media each day, but the average executive can afford to focus on the social channels most relevant to their customers.

"You don't have to do all of them. You have to figure out where your customers are and where they're spending their time. And you need to get connected with your customers," he told CNBC's "Squawk Box."

Hootsuite develops enterprise tools that curate social media feeds to make them easier to navigate. It counts about 850 Fortune 1,000 customers as clients, Holmes said.

Asked whether using social media can produce a tangible return on investment, Holmes likened the conversations occurring around social tools in corporate America to those that likely occurred around email and websites in the early '90s.

He said executives still find themselves in an age of exploration, and he acknowledged the experience can be challenging for those who want to stay on message but don't want to come across as scripted.

"Getting into social media is an experimentation for a lot of people. You need to play with it," he said.

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