October 14, 2015

One of the most common questions I get about using Instagram for marketing purposes is "How can I schedule posts on Instagram?" We are all so appreciative of the ability to schedule posts on other platforms, and the fact that Instagram doesn't allow this feature frustrates a lot of people.

Before I dive into this too much, let me point out that I will be introducing you to a few tools in the post that allow you to schedule posts on Instagram. Thankfully, Instagram has updated their API to allow approved partner companies to provide direct scheduling (in the past, you still had to approve the post via the Instagram app on your mobile device even if you had "scheduled" it via a dashboard tool).

That being said, there are a lot of tools out there that are not approved by Instagram and I highly recommend you be selective with the tools you choose to use as using the wrong ones may put your account at risk.

Yes, if you use any of the tools that violate Instagram's terms of use, your account (or the accounts you manage for someone else) are at risk of temporary suspension up to being permanently shut down.

Agorapulse

Agorapulse (affiliate link) has great support for Instagram, and they offer scheduling too! People have been falling in love with the robust tool that Agorapulse offers for social media management and they have done a lot to support Instagram effectively. It's not just for Instagram as it works with other major social media platforms as well.

If you manage multiple Instagram accounts or client accounts, the Agorapulse dashboard is a really useful tool to keep track of all your client accounts. It's also a really good tool for agency use to track what team members are doing and provides a great analytics report which makes it super valuable on top of the scheduling.

They also offer a really handy desktop publishing calendar that allows you to see all of your upcoming posts to better keep track of what you have coming up. And as another added benefit, Agorapulse lets you monitor keywords, geo-tags, comments, and even ad comments through the dashboard! This way you don't miss out on any important engagement from your audience.

This is a paid tool, but they offer a few plan options to find the plan that works best for you. You can find out more about the Agorapulse scheduling tool, and sign up for their free trial, on their website (affiliate link).

Tailwind

Another great dashboard tool is Tailwind. They've been around for a few years and were originally started as a scheduling tool for Pinterest. They built their platform on visual content based support, so Instagram integration was a logical growth for them.

In addition to being a scheduling tool, Tailwind also offers a hashtag recommendation tool and lots of analytics. You can enhance your post reach by optimizing your post scheduling for when your audience is most active on Instagram (all of which you can manage inside Tailwind).

Tailwind is a paid platform but you can get started with a free trial.

Later

Until Hootsuite joined the party, Later really had a handle on the market, with many of the big major companies globally using this tool to manage and schedule Instagram posts. Later was designed exclusively for Instagram posting and scheduling so they know what they're doing!

Later makes it easy to upload content from your computer or mobile device (including both iOS and Android). They also have a drag and drop features including the ability to drag and drop your post into a calendar for the exact time you want the post to go out to Instagram.

If you're a marketer or have multiple Instagram accounts, this tool (like the others) will allow you manage multiple Instagram accounts so that you can efficiently stay on top of your Instagram strategies. And, if you're a marketing team or agency, you can add team members so that everyone can actively stay on top of the posting schedule and content management. This makes it easy to assign who is responsible for authorizing posts, creating content, etc.

There is a FREE version of the tool which has some limitations but is a great way to get started or if you're the only managing your Instagram account. After that, there are a variety of paid levels depending on your needs. You can find out more about Later and sign up for their tool on their homepage.

Planoly

Planoly has long been a favorite for Instagram users as it allows you to visually organize your Instagram feed. You can plan out your content to design an Instagram feed in whatever orientation, alignment, colors, etc. that you want for your brand. This obviously includes scheduling so you can not only plan your post layout and delivery, but the scheduling of when those posts will go out.

Like all the other tools listed here, you can create unique captions for each post to be scheduled with the tool.

Additionally, Planoly is currently the only tool I'm aware of that allows you to schedule Instagram Stories posts! If this is a feature you use regularly, Planoly could be a very good solution for you.

Planoly does offer a free option with some limitations. After that, they have a variety of paid member levels to choose from that best suit your needs.

Hootsuite

I have long touted the value of using Hootsuite as a dashboard tool, though I now prefer Agorapulse over Hootsuite, but for Hootsuite lovers, this tool is also a reliable tool for Instagram scheduling. I previously wrote about how you could use Hootsuite to monitor and manage your Instagram account (before they added the latest features). In the summer of 2015, Hootsuite upped their game, making it so much more efficient to manage your Instagram account using their dashboard.

The Hootsuite platform, like the tools mentioned above, also allows you do a number of other Instagram management functions including:

  • Monitoring your Instagram feed (those you follow)
  • Monitoring your Instagram notifications
  • Allowing you to like, comment, or respond to others' Instagram content or comments your own posts
  • Monitor hashtags or mentions
  • Do all this for multiple Instagram accounts, all in one dashboard

This article and video from Hootsuite will better show you what you can do within Hootsuite.

You can use Hootsuite for FREE if you have 3 or less accounts linked to the dashboard. If you have more than that, you will want to upgrade to the Pro (paid) version. And if you'd like to get a free 30 day trial or sign up for Hootsuite, you can do so here: Hootsuite [affiliate link]

 

I should point out that these are scheduling tools that I endorse for scheduling posts on Instagram. And part of that reason is because all of them understand the value of community and are responsive to their audiences. They listen to feedback and are willing to help as they grow. You know that this is key for me and I find it hard to promote services and tools that don't offer this level of customer service.

So, if you're looking for a way to schedule posts on Instagram, please look seriously at all of these tools and determine which one will work best for you. And, on a personal note (to help a girl out), if you choose to use Agorapulse, I would genuinely be so grateful if you used my affiliate link to sign up 😉

Did you find this helpful? Please share:
    1. Yes, Yolanda, and thanks for sharing. I’m aware of Schedugram but have stopped recommending this tool. This tool does alleviate the need to reply to the reminder and post for yourself – which can be very handy. While it doesn’t violate the Instagram API (they post on your behalf via a mobile device), I have heard of some issues with people using this tool and it does require you to give out your account access information in order for them to post to your account. The three tools I’ve mentioned in this post don’t require you to share your login details or other information.

      1. Great article! But have to toss in another vote for Schedugram. I can set an alarm clock on my phone to remind me to post. Schedugram, unlike the one’s you’ve mentioned, truly let’s you schedule and forget it. Yes, you have to give them your login info so they can post on your behalf, but that’s really no different than what you’d do if you outsourced the task and paid some else to do it for you..

        1. Thanks Nick! I’m glad to hear Schedugram is working for you and that you are finding it helpful. As with any tool or app, we always need to be vigilant.

  1. Thanks so much for the article! I just signed up for Latergramme. I tried to check out Hootsuite via your affiliate link but it only gave you the Pro Version as a trial first. Since I’m just starting out, I’m really trying to keep costs in check (I’ll forget to cancel or downgrade the trial!). Really appreciate you doing the research on this 🙂

    1. Awesome!! Glad to hear this helped you Desiree.
      For Hootsuite, you can just go right to Hootsuite.com and sign up for free. You can set up to three accounts for free and keep your costs down 😉 But thank you for trying my affiliate link!

    1. All three tools allow you to craft your posts on a computer. The final upload, however, must be done via a mobile device for all three tools.

    1. Thank you for sharing, Asif. And, while I understand that Gramblr runs as an emulator for computers, Instagram’s API still prohibits the use of these types of tools. I’m not sure how Gramblr worked around this and I know many people use this tool without issue. However, I do NOT recommend it.

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