How To Schedule Instagram Photos, Stories, And Lives In One Hour A Week
To learn more about influencer marketing and creating content for brands, checkout my Influencer Marketing 101 guide here.
Want to schedule a week's worth of Instagram posts in under an hour?
Whether you're a business, blogger or creative, the importance of an active presence on Instagram for your brand is enormous. But this does not come as a surprise. Instagram is a powerful visually captivating platform that when mixed with engaging content, can drive sales, prospects, and highly targeted subscribers your way. The best part about Instagram is that this can all happen automatically if you play your cards right by setting the right systems in place.
If you're in need of a streamlined system for scheduling your Instagram photos, look no further.
This is where batching comes in.
Batching is the process of completing similar tasks during a chunk of time. This leads to less distraction and increased productivity.
You can batch your content weekly, biweekly, or monthly. This depends on how you'd like to set up your blog and how often you want to spend your time scheduling your social media content. If you're just starting out, it can be helpful to batch on a weekly basis until you create a backlog of photos to batch on a monthly basis. I'm currently batching my Instagram content on a weekly basis.
Batching is for you if:
You're looking to reduce the amount of time you spend creating content for social media
Automation is important to you when it comes to your blog to improve efficiency and consistency
You'd like to spend less time on social media and more time doing what you enjoy the most in your biz
You'd like to curate a clean, cohesive, branded Instagram feed
Before we talk more about batching, there are a few systems I'd like to help you put in place, to make sure you are creating content that your audience craves.
Sign up for a Tailwind account
In this post, I share how I use Tailwind to organize, schedule, and post my Instagram photos on a regular schedule. I recommend signing up for a free trial of Tailwind or logging into your account before continuing to read this post.
Create and organize a folder for your Instagram photos and videos
With all of the downloads, videos, photos, and software that comes with running an online business, it can be easy to get unorganized. Make a simple folder for Instagram with folders that best fit your needs. I keep these four folders in my Instagram folder and have had success following through with organizing, editing, uploading, and posting more of my creative work on my Instagram account.
How to connect an Instagram business account to Facebook
If you haven't converted your Instagram account into a business account, now is a great time. Business accounts give you access to analytics and tools, which is great if you're interested in what content your audience loves, hates, and engages with.
Additionally, Tailwind has its own analytics dashboard full of insights. But I'll be honest with you, I try not to look into the numbers too much. Simply put, I take notice of the photos my audience likes the most and the ones they comment on the most.
I like to study what's similar between those posts and try applying them to future pieces to see how they perform. I then take that into consideration when creating new content for my channel.
That being said, don't forget that you control your creativity and can post whatever you want.
How to decide what to post on Instagram
How Many Times Should You Post On Instagram Every Week?
The first step to batching your Instagram posts is to make a decision on how active you'd like to be on Instagram. To figure out how many posts to batch for your account each week, take your daily post goal and multiply it by the number of days you'd like to post each week. The total number you calculate will be the required amount of posts you need to generate each week.
But you don't only have to stick to Instagram when batch creating content.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to the art of batching. You can batch create not only Instagram content, but your blog tags, content calendars, Facebook feed, email campaigns, Youtube scripts, graphics and just about anything.
Use Tailwind to organize and batch your Instagram photos, stories, and content
The process of batching is utterly simple, it may hurt (jk). Throughout any given week, I take photos on my iPhone.
Once a week, I sit down and follow this simple process:
Gather a group of photos you'd like to post for the following week and organize them in the order you'd like to schedule them.
Write compelling captions: Including engaging captions to accompany Instagram posts. Don't forget to include a CTA to comment, click, message, or share when relevant.
Research new, relevant, and emerging hashtags and challenges that I can participate in to grow my account.
Schedule my Instagram posts, captions, and hashtags in Tailwind.
When scheduling, consider the following:
Will this content still be relevant when I post it?
Should I tag where I am or relevant brands in this post?
Are my posts repetitive? Do I have a recognizable theme?
What can I do to make my photography better?
What can I do to make my content more creative?
Is my audience engaging with my posts? What are they drawn to?
What content converts best for you? Psst... Have you tried Instagram Live?
You'll be super surprised by how little time the whole process takes between researching and batching. If uninterrupted, this whole process takes an hour. This act seems so simple, but you'll find great pleasure it realizing your Instagram is scheduled out for the week, opening your time to take on other projects or engagements with your time.
Keep in mind, Tailwind will not automatically post your content. When the scheduled date and time comes for your photo to be shared with the Instaworld, a notification will remind you that it's time and will bring you to the Tailwind app.
The Tailwind app will automatically bring you to a screen that will allow you to open Instagram automatically. Next, you'll paste the copied caption and hashtags into the app, tag any relevant brands and accounts, and post.
My personal favorite part about Instagram is engaging in genuine conversation around topics I'm passionate about, which is also why you'll find me on Instagram Live almost daily sharing something that I'm knowledgable and passionate about.
Organizing my photos in Tailwind opens up a lot of time and energy for me to focus on other aspects of my business and lets me get back to the parts that I enjoy the most about Instagram.
Schedule your Instagram posts in from your phone or computer
After you're finished editing your photos, captions, and hashtags, upload them to your scheduling software of choice. Be sure to update your timezone within the app before scheduling to reflect where you're business is based. Additionally, some apps offer the capability to send you a push notification or email reminder when a post goes live. Whatever floats your boat.
How to use Instagram Analytics and how to decide when to post on Instagram
The image on the right shows a screenshot of my Instagram Analytics dashboard. If you notice, my audience gets rather active around 6 AM, early right? The reason they're active around 6 AM is that, on the east coast, where I originally started growing my account, my followers are awake, at work, and starting the day scrolling the gram as many of us do. From 9AM EST on, they become active Instagrammers.
Now when I batch my content, I choose to post only during peak hours, to make sure I'm getting the most reach and chance of engagement.
It is also important to keep in mind when your audience is most active. This won't always line up with your current time zone, especially if you travel often.
How I schedule and upload my Instagram photos with Tailwind
There are dozens of ways to queue your Instagram feed. My current favorite web and app is Tailwind for Instagram, you can try it for free here. Tailwind allows you to schedule your Instagram photos, captions, and hashtags with a minimalistic user face experience.
This is my favorite app because you can upload photos, write captions, and write hashtags all in one place. What's even better is, Tailwind will actually help you choose your hashtags based on popularity, competition, and niche! It's super easy, suggests a publishing schedule for you, and you can upload your content on a computer or phone and seamlessly push it to Instagram with just one click, which means you won't have to worry about violating their terms of service.
A few final Instagram tips:
The easiest way to organize your content while batching your Instagram post is Tailwind or an Excel sheet.
Once your content is scheduled for the week, you still have to push the content to Instagram. Also, once your content is scheduled and posted, your job just begins! Don't forget to nurture your Instagram community with likes, comments, and follows to make sure you're connecting with new people, expanding to new audiences, and growing your account.
Don't forget to use stories, Instagram live and all of the new features. Think of unique ways to incorporate stories and live videos in real time along with your scheduled content.
Although your Instagram photos are now scheduled and can be published with the push of a button, don’t forget to engage with your audience daily.
Never be afraid to go against your schedule and post a spontaneous photo or change a caption. Remember, it's your feed and your rules!
Next steps to get started
Download my Instagram batching guide.
Calculate how many posts you need to create each week.
Customize our batching organizational system to work best for your brand.
Decide when and how often you'll batch your Instagram posts.
Batch, schedule, and queue your Instagram photos in Tailwind.