Instagram has made some changes to their API and today Instagram introduces scheduling posts. You can now officially schedule and publish on Instagram, but whats the catch? The catch is we can only use Facebook Marketing Partners or Instagram Partners to schedule and post. And you do have to have an Instagram business account, plus you have to log in with Facebook so several catches actually.
Businesses will also now be required to use Facebook Login when giving permission to third-party tools to utilize these features. For those who wish to continue using their existing API tools, they will still be able to do so but will be unable to access any of the new features as a result.
Schedule and publish on Instagram now
HootSuite is one of the biggest social media management platforms and they are partners at Instagram. HootSuite announced today before anyone else that they are able to schedule and publish on Instagram through their Hootsuite dashboard.
“Scheduling and publishing of Instagram content has been the number one request for our 16 million customers,” said Ryan Holmes, CEO of HootSuite “Now, they can manage large volumes of content, multiple team members, and multiple Instagram accounts with ease and security. Hootsuite is excited to launch our new integration with Instagram to help our customers achieve their business goals and succeed with social.”
Quote from a news release about the update on Hootsuite on GlobeNewswire
However, it’s still very exciting, for us social media marketers who were jumping for joy that we can schedule and publish on Instagram, we are easily pleased. We have been waiting for this for a long time, but there are some hurdles to overcome.
What is the catch
As we know Instagram is becoming more and more popular so more businesses are clambering to get on the visual social network. (If you are still asking Why do I need to be on Instagram read that post.) I was wondering what the cost is going to end up being, are you going to have to pay for a business account soon? And can we only use approved apps to do this? Then I realised that you probably have to pay for HootSuite to use this feature, so I popped over to find out. No, it seems you can include your Instagram in the 3 networks limit, but for more, you have to pay. Whether or not you can have 3 free Instagram accounts, I will have to find out. That might be a bit more tricky, being as you have to sign up with Facebook, so it might not be all roses for marketers.
We still have lots of questions that need answers.
What about Buffer
I personally love Buffer, for scheduling – I’ve asked them if they will be adding the ability to schedule and publish on Instagram, and I’ve not seen any comments from them. I assume they are not an Instagram Partner and still might not be able to schedule and post. You can schedule with them right now, and you get an alert to publish it from your phone. Which at first was a pain but it actually works pretty well.
UPDATE – Good News Buffer have said they are beta testing this feature before it rolls out to everyone, so watch this space. Buffer also said that they are exploring the Partner aspect right now. I was using my @techieminx account rather than my @michelledh account – just in case you were wondering.
However, on Hootsuite they said that the new features will roll out today for all Hootsuite customers who have an Instagram businesses profile.
How to an Instagram account to HootSuite
Through the HootSuite web dashboard:
Click on your Profile Icon in the launch menu
Click Add a Social Network.
Select Instagram and press Connect with Instagram.
Enter your password and authorize Hootsuite to access your account.
Pick the Tab you want to work with and select Add Stream. Choose Instagram from your list of connected social networks and select your Instagram profile.
Create Instagram streams for your own posts, scheduled posts, hashtags, users, locations, and more.
All that said, I couldn’t actually get it to work on HootSuite it said timestamp wrong…
I checked everywhere and it still came up with the error – I will revisit this tomorrow and update my findings.
If you are struggling with engagement, likes, followers and getting people to your website via Instagram then do let me know. We can fix that for you.