Have you ever looked at business owners who somehow get floods of comments on their Instagram photos and find the time to make their feed impeccably perfect?
You’re trying to do the same thing and mirror their efforts, but it just takes so much time. And you’re not seeing the results. Like, at all.
I mean, what gives? What do you have to do to get some photo love around here?
While it may seem like everyone is getting engagement but you, the key to high engagement is consistently creating high-quality content. But many of us don’t have the time…
Or so we thought.
The truth is Instagram content creation doesn’t have to turn into a headache.
It all comes down to time management. Whether you have a team of employees or contributors who can help or you’re a one-woman operation, you can start scheduling Instagram posts with ease with a few tweaks to your strategy and approach.
5 Time Management Tips for Instagram Scheduling
Use stock photos to save on time
Ain’t nobody got time for long, drawn out brand photoshoots that cost an arm and a leg to put together, not to mention all the props and backdrops you have to get. Instead of spending your time wrangling friends or coworkers together to take photos for your Instagram feed, why not implement photos that already exist?
Stock photos save you time, money, and a whole lot of effort. We are a little biased since stock photos are kinda the reason we’re around, but we’ve seen how beneficial they can be to online businesses of every industry.
Here are a few more resources if you want to dig more into using stock photos:
- Is It Okay to Use Stock Photos for My Business?
- How to Make Stock Photos Look Like Original Content on Instagram
Write your Instagram captions in batches
Once you’ve chosen your photos, it’s time to write a little story, summary, quote, or blurb to go with it. This is usually where most of us start to groan.
It’s not enough to have a dash of pretty on your feed. You have to back up each photo with a caption that’s either thought-provoking, helpful, entertaining, educational, or something in between.
One of the biggest reasons why people are not getting the amount of comments they’d like is because they aren’t being thoughtful with their captions. A few simple tweaks to your captions could make a world of a difference.
To start, try to make your caption longer than a single phrase. Some Instagrammers are able to get away with cheeky one liners, but most business owners need to give our followers more depth. Think of your caption as a very mini blog post and flex those creative muscles!
There are a few tips to make writing captions a breeze:
- Repurpose from old blog content. You already have created great content on your blog! Why not use your best performing posts and repurpose a few lines from it? No one is looking at your content with a magnifying glass so don’t worry. You’re in the clear!
- Write how you would talk to a friend. This is one of the best ways to unlock your inner flow. You can stop overthinking your caption when you pretend you’re writing it to your best friend.
Think of consistent categories. Instead of coming up with ideas out of the blue, you can create different themes for all of your content. We have themes like lifestyle, Instagram tips, style, and more. Get creative!
Use an Instagram scheduling tool
Now that you have your photos chosen and captions written out, you can start to schedule your Instagram posts in advance. This will be one of the biggest game changers for your business! You just need the right scheduling tool to help you out.
There are countless of options to choose from (like Planoly, Buffer, Later, Hootsuite, Meet Edgar, and more) but we are going to focus on the tools we like to use for Get Found Stock. Most of our members use them exclusively too.
We have used Planoly in the past because of their awesome drag-and-drop grid feature, but Later recently released a similar photo planning feature along with many others that convinced us to make the switch. Later also offers more analytics, like when the best time to post is and how your posts are performing against others, which we love tracking!
Both tools are great options! It definitely depends on what you want to use them for and how they will fit into your schedule. Do keep in mind that neither tool automatically posts to Instagram for you but rather sends a notification reminder to your phone to post. It still copies everything over and does the heavy lifting for you!
Plan content weeks (or even months) in advance
Nothing is worse than staying up past midnight trying to come up with an Instagram post for the next day. Creativity doesn’t work like that and your brain probably just wants to sleep.
Instead of waiting until the last minute to think on a content idea, plan out your content weeks in advance. Start by planning your next week’s content Monday through Friday.
Set a timer to see how long it takes you to reorder your grid, write your caption, choose your hashtags, and schedule your post. Don’t be discouraged by how long it takes you. Once you get into a flow, you’ll be more efficient over time.
Once you get good at planning content a week in advance, you can move up to planning it a month in advance. That may sound totally crazy but it’s doable! This can be especially helpful for business owners who like to plan their launch content before they release a new offering.
To make sure you create content around an actual marketing strategy, create and update an editorial calendar. It will help you stay on task and organized as you create content in batches.
If you don’t know where to start, we offer editorial calendars with 30+ content prompts in our membership community. Click here to see one in action.
Set aside time to interact with your followers
The whole “build it and they will come” strategy doesn’t work with social media. There’s so much noise already that you want to stand out from the crowd. A big way to do this is by replying to your photo comments and starting conversations with your followers.
Most business owners use social media as a platform to share about their latest news and use it as a monologue. But people don’t like when your Instagram feed is all about you. The best businesses treat social media like a dialogue by interacting with their community.
If you find yourself exhausted by constantly checking into social media, know that you aren’t alone. The best cure to this problem is setting aside a block of time each day to check into all of your social media feeds. Then you aren’t getting distracted by social media throughout the day when you want to focused on other projects.
Any time management tips we missed that have worked for you? Let us know in the comment section below. Thanks for sharing!