Being able to pre-schedule posts on Facebook and Instagram has made my life a lot easier.
It means I don’t need to set alarms or reminders or be on standby to post at certain times.
A few years ago, when Hootsuite was still in its infancy and was one of the only Facebook Page post schedulers around, scheduling posts was a terrible idea.
You woud get somewhere between 50% and 60% less organic reach than what posting on the spot on Facebook would get you.
How Times Have Changed
Both Facebook and Instagram have become a lot more pay-to-play and have largely stranged organic reach.
As well as that, feeds are not shown in chronological order.
So there’s no major “best time to post” considerations at play.
If you have an engaged audience, the best time to post is actually just whatever time you can post consistently so your engaged audience knows to expect a post from you around that time.
So should you schedule your Instagram and Facebook posts?
Yep for the most part.
For normal feed posts, there’s no real downsides to it.
- It doesn’t seem to harm organic reach
- It saves you time and lets you focus on other things
- It lets you be more consistent with posting times
What posts shouldn’t you pre-schedule?
Honestly pretty much every feed post you can pre-schedule to some extent.
Just be mindful of when you schedule something, if anything in the news might impact how it’s perceived.
I still have vivid memories of the guy in Aurora, Colorado who committed a mass shooting during a screening of The Dark Knight Rises and the hashtag #Aurora was trending on Twitter. Around the same time a fashion brand was launching their ‘Aurora’ line and you can imagine when they were tweeting that in the middle of a mass shooting, how that was received!
So bear that in mind with your schedule.
And aside from that, your stories.
Keep them more spontaneous, spur of the moment.
They don’t take as much time to get the visuals, sort a caption and add hashtags so it’s great to do those in real-time.
Which Instagram Scheduler?
To use an Instagram scheduler, you need to have your Instagram set up as a business account.
And once you’ve done that, there are plenty to choose from:
are all great options.
The one I use and have used for years is called Onlypult.
It’s not an Instagram official partner but it is my favourite out of all of them – it’s the simplest to use, best value for multiple accounts and allows you to put your hashtags in the first comment which is a handy way of keeping your captions tidy.
Plus you can repost from other accounts and track their posts from directly within Onlypult.
But Later, Buffer and Tailwind all have better drag and drop options so you can keep an eye on your grid aesthetic and make sure that it’s still on point.
That’s probably the only downside.
Also with Onlypult, if you’re planning to use them, make sure you pay through their website and NOT through their app.
It’s the same features and same service (and you can login to your account from the app still) but it’s more expensive to pay through the app – which I’m guessing is down to App Store fees.
So there you go…
- Feel free to schedule all your feed posts
- Don’t schedule your stories
- Onlypult is my recommended Instagram scheduler.