Much to the delight of social media managers, Instagram will now allow businesses to “schedule” their posts. Before this move, there were unofficial aids to do this– such as tools that would send out a push notification to reminding users to publish a post at a given time, for example. But, Instagram had no function to do this itself.
The closest it came was with added support for Drafts, which allowed social media managers and other users to prepare a post and then save it for later publication.
The move is part of a revamp of Instagram’s application programming interface (API) platform that also includes a plan to replace the older Instagram API Platform over the next two years, beginning in July of 2018.
However, the official support for post scheduling doesn’t currently extend to advertisements, nor is it directly available with the product itself.
The support is being added to Instagram’s API– meaning that social media software applications like Hootsuite, Sprout Social or SocialFlow now have access to the functionality, which they can then add to their own products. Instagram says the API is available to all Facebook’s Marketing Partners and Instagram Partners.
“The scheduling and publishing of Instagram content has been the number one request for our 16 million customers,” said Hootsuite CEO Ryan Holmes in a recent statement press release. “Now, they can manage large volumes of content, multiple team members and multiple Instagram accounts with ease and security. Hootsuite is excited to partner with Instagram to make this happen.”
However, this API update means—at least for now– that post scheduling is something only larger organizations will be able to do, as many smaller businesses don’t necessarily use a third-party software program for working with Instagram.