Instagram today made a much-anticipated and long-awaited change, allowing businesses to schedule posts. Simple, but effective, the feature has been wanted amongst business managers for some time. It is clearly another example of the Facebook-owned photo-focused network reaching out to enterprise.
Most business manager out there have probably been scheduling Instagram posts for some time. However, they have needed to use third-party tools to do that. For example, solutions that send out notifications to remind you to post at a pre-determined time.
This is the first time the ability to schedule posts has been baked into the native Instagram experience. Interestingly, the new feature does not support the scheduling of ads. Scheduling is added to the new Instagram Graph API. This allows software developers to add the functionality to their products.
The API is available to all Instagram Partners such as Instagram automation tools and Facebook Marketing Partners.
Hootsuite is a major partner that has already implemented the API into its software:
“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 statement. “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.”
Wider API Changes
The scheduling feature is just one component of a revamp of the Instagram API platform. The company says it will depreciate the older API Platform over the next two years (starting July 31, 2018). It will be replaced by a new Instagram Graph API, which comes with the following abilities:
- Content Publishing Beta [NEW] – Available to Facebook Marketing Partners and Instagram Partners only. Post an image to Feed with or without a caption.
- Business Discovery [NEW] – Discover and read the profile info and media of other business profiles.
- Mentions [NEW] – Read public media that a business has been photo tagged or @mentioned in. Post comments on a business' behalf on media it was tagged or mentioned in.
- Insights – Help businesses access and analyze valuable metrics about their own Instagram business profile. Enable them to understand and optimize the performance of their organic content on Instagram.
- Comment Moderation – Drive interactions at scale. Enable businesses to more efficiently interact with their audience through comments under their media on Instagram.
- Support for Non-Business Profiles [FUTURE]: Basic permissioning for non-business profiles will be supported in early 2019.
Tip of the day: Optimizing Instagram posting times is a great way to get your posts presented to a wider audience and to grow your follower base faster.