How Can I Schedule My Instagram and Facebook Feed For Clients?

Client management

Bella Foxwell

Bella Foxwell

Scheduling Instagram and Facebook For Clients

Social media is a vital ingredient in most marketing strategies. But you know how time consuming it can be to try and maintain a presence on multiple platforms.

Nov 3, 2021
Update on
December 2, 2021
07 MIN.
Table of Contents

Social media is a vital ingredient in most marketing strategies. But you know how time consuming it can be to try and maintain a presence on multiple platforms while also juggling many other priorities. 

That’s where social media scheduling comes in to save the day. Scheduling Facebook and Instagram content ahead of time helps streamline the incredibly time-consuming process of creating content and building a following. It enables businesses to stay present and consistent without spending all day online. Not only is this good for business - more time to spend on other, needle-moving tasks - but it’s also great for mental health. 

Keep reading to find out how you can schedule your Instagram and Facebook feeds for clients using Iconosquare, along with some scheduling do’s and don’ts to make the process as effective as possible.

Benefits of scheduling content

Before we walk through how to schedule your Instagram and Facebook content using Iconosquare, first let’s talk about three benefits of scheduling:

Time management

Planning, creating and publishing social media content for one platform - let alone multiple - takes a huge amount of time and energy. Having the ability to schedule content streamlines the process and frees you up to focus on other important day-to-day tasks. However, to be able to effectively schedule, you need to have a strategy in place. If you’re currently stuck in a cycle of ad-hoc posting (planning, creating, and publishing posts one at a time), this may be because you don’t have a plan. Get that in place before you think about scheduling (and definitely check out this piece about how to develop a strong content strategy!).

Consistency

The second benefit of scheduling content is that it helps you to stay consistent without having to physically be on Instagram or Facebook 24/7. Consistency is integral to successful social media marketing, but spending huge amounts of time online is draining at best. At worst, it’s damaging to our mental health. By scheduling Facebook and Instagram content at least two weeks in advance, you’ll be able to stay consistent without burning out.

Bigger reach

The final big benefit of scheduling is that it allows you to connect with audiences in other parts of the world and via different social media platforms. Only posting “in the moment” would miss the opportunity to reach people outside of business hours and in their time zones. With scheduling, that’s not a problem. And since scheduling allows you to organise content for multiple different platforms, you can stay engaged with all your followers across Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter. 

How to schedule Instagram posts step-by-step

Before you begin, you must have the Iconosquare app downloaded to your mobile device.

Step 1. Once you’re inside your Iconosquare dashboard, click ‘Publishing’ located in the sidebar on the right-hand side. Then click on ‘Scheduling’.

Here you can see the calendar view. You can change this to ‘Day’, ‘Week’, or ‘Month’. In the ‘Week’ view Iconosquare gives you recommended times to post based on the historical engagement of your previous posts. It also shows you what times the majority of your followers are most active. 

In the ‘Month’ view, Iconosquare includes National Days that you may want to create content around. However, if you want to add key events that matter to your organization - you can do that! Just click the icon in the top right corner of the dashboard and add your own important dates. These can be company-specific events and campaigns as well as any regional events not already included on the calendar. If you're not seeing any events, just make sure your filter has the ‘Show the Social Media Calendar’ option selected. 

Step 2. Once you’re ready to start scheduling your content, click the ‘New post’ blue button in the top right-hand side of the dashboard.

Step 3. You have 3 types of Instagram content to schedule: An in-feed photo or video, a carousel post, or a Story. Select the one you’d like to schedule. 

Step 4. The first stage of scheduling is uploading your media. You can drag and drop media directly from your computer or select them from your media library. Just make sure your content is in the right dimensions. In-feed photo/video and carousel posts - 1080 x 1080 or 1080 x 1350. Instagram Stories - 1080px by 1920px. You cannot currently schedule Reels.

Step 5. Now that you’ve uploaded your video/photo/Story, it’s time to write the caption, select the day and time you’d like the post to go live, add a location (if you’d like to) and add a first comment. The first comment feature is ideal for adding hashtags, which you can add in manually or copy and paste from your saved Hashtag lists. 

If this is a standard in-feed photo/video, you’ll see that there is the option to ‘Autopost’. If you have ‘Post validation’ turned on then Autposting won’t happen automatically - you’ll first need to confirm it’s okay to publish via your Iconosquare mobile app. If you have ‘Post validation’ turned off, you’ll be able to turn ‘Autoposting’ on and this will publish your scheduled content straight to Instagram without any additional checks. Keep reading to find out the pros and cons of Autoposting.

If you’d like to share the same post on another platform, you can toggle the ‘Crosspost’ feature on. However, I wouldn’t recommend that you share duplicate content across multiple platforms at the same time (as I explain in ‘Best practices for scheduling’ below).

If you’re working in a team, you can change the status of this post to ‘Waiting for approval’ and share the link with a colleague to review. There’s space to add notes too, which can be useful to provide additional context.

Step 6. At this stage you can either save this post as a draft, leave it as ‘Waiting for approval’ status or schedule the post. 

As you repeat this process you’ll see the calendar fill up with your scheduled posts. 

Step 7. If you’d like to see how your Instagram feed will look once your scheduled content goes live, click ‘Preview’ (next to Calendar). Here you can see visually how your grid will look and what post you have coming up next. If for any reason you’re unhappy with the look of the posts, you can click and drag the tiles, moving them into your preferred position. This will automatically switch around the previously scheduled days/times.

Step 8. Once a post is ready to be published - and if you have ‘Post validation’ turned on - you will receive a push notification on your mobile device. If you don’t, the post will be published automatically. Here’s what to do if you receive a push notification:

  1. Click on the notification and it will take you to the "Validate posts/Collaboration" screen
  2. Here, you will find all posts which require validation. No matter which social profile you have selected within the app, posts for all social profiles will be displayed here
  3. Click on each individual post, and select "Allow auto-posting for this post" and then "Confirm"

How to schedule Instagram posts step-by-step

The process for scheduling Facebook content is very similar to Instagram, with a few minor differences.

Step 1. Make sure you’ve selected your Facebook account in the top right-hand corner of the dashboard.

Step 2. Here you’ll see this month’s calendar, which you can change to a ‘Day’, ‘Week’, or ‘Month’ view. The ‘Week’ view will show you what times your Facebook fans are most active. The ‘Month’ view includes national days like ‘Read a Book Day’ and ‘Guacamole Day’ - great opportunities for relevant social media content. You have the option of adding your own events to the calendar by clicking the icon in the top right corner of the dashboard.

Step 3. Once you’re ready to start scheduling your Facebook content, click the ‘New post’ blue button in the top right-hand side of the dashboard. 

Step 4. You have 3 types of content to schedule: A simple status, images, or video. Select the one you’d like to schedule and upload your media or select it from your Media Library. 

Step 5. Now you can write your caption, insert a link, and select the day and time you’d like the post to go live.

Unlike Instagram content, Facebook posts will be automatically published so make sure you give them a once over after you’ve scheduled everything.

If you’d like to share the same post on another platform, you can toggle the ‘Crosspost’ feature on. However, I wouldn’t recommend that you share duplicate content across multiple platforms at the same time. 

If you’re working in a team, you can change the status of this post to ‘Waiting for approval’ and share the link with a colleague to review. There’s space to add notes too, which can be useful to provide additional context.

Step 6. At this stage you can either save this post as a draft, leave it as ‘Waiting for approval’ status or schedule the post. 

As you repeat this process you’ll see the calendar fill up with your scheduled posts. 

Time slots

A really cool Iconosquare feature that can be used when scheduling both Instagram and Facebook content is the time slots.

Click on this tab next to ‘Calendar’ and create time slots based on your preferred times for posting and/or the times you know your audience is most active. You might even find that Iconosquare has suggested your optimum posting times already. 

You can add as many time slots as you like, and choose whether they recur daily or weekly. Once you've added your time slots, go to the Calendar and drag and drop your assets from the Media Library into the blue box above where it will be saved as a draft in your next available time slot. You can then click into each draft post to add your caption, and complete the scheduling process.

What else is inside Iconosquare’s Scheduler?

Collaboration

In this area of the Iconosquare dashboard you’ll find the ‘Sharing link’ that you can share with colleagues you’d like to review your content.

When you share this link, any posts that you’ve marked as ‘Waiting for approval’ will be visible to your colleague. They’ll be able to add notes and/or approve the posts(s) and once they’re finished, you’ll be notified of their amends in the ‘Notifications’ area.

You can use the filter to select the social profile you’d like to see feedback for. Then, you can click on a post thumbnail to make any necessary changes before proceeding to schedule the post or submitting for approval again.

Media Library

If you want to be really organised, add all of the assets you’ve created for the next few weeks into the media library. This will help to make the process of scheduling even faster and easier.

Saved captions and lists

In this area of your dashboard you can save hashtags sets and captions. This will save you heaps of time trying to pull together optimized hashtag sets as you’re scheduling your content. 

All you have to do is select the type of content you want to save, give it a title - something easy and memorable - and then add the caption or hashtags.

When scheduling a post, you'll see the "Saved Captions" and "Hashtag Lists" options within the caption field, and the first comment field. Click on these links to access the captions and hashtag lists you've already set up, then click on the caption/hashtag list to add it to your caption or first comment - how easy is that?!

Automatic posting versus post validation 

When scheduling content for Instagram using Iconosquare, you have the option of turning on Post Validation. This article goes into much more detail about the feature, but in short: post validation keeps your Instagram account safe by ensuring that content doesn’t automatically publish without your final confirmation.

If you have this feature turned on, you’ll need to validate posts whether they’re scheduled by desktop or mobile. 

You might be wondering: should I have post validation turned off or on? What are the pros and cons of both?

For ultimate convenience, you can switch off post validation. Just make sure that as part of your content production process, you are reviewing all scheduled posts one last time before they go live. The last thing you want is hastily scheduled Instagram posts getting published without a final check. This is when mistakes (sometimes tiny, other times more serious) slip through the net.

If, however, you’d prefer a reminder when your scheduled posts are about to go live, keep post validation turned on. The major benefit of this? You can jump onto Instagram once the content has been published and engage with your audience. Instead of posts going out as a one-way broadcast, you can interact with your followers in real-time and show how much you appreciate their feedback. 

Best practices for scheduling

Have a strategy

Before you even think about scheduling, you need to ensure you have a content strategy in place. In other words, you know the type of content you’re sharing and - more importantly - why you’re sharing it. To help you figure this out, start with your primary goal. Is your goal for this month/quarter more awareness, more engagement, or more conversions? The more specific you can be, the more focused and impactful your content will be. Plus, once you’ve developed your strategy, you’ll know exactly how many posts to create each week, what they’ll look like, and what their core messages are. This makes scheduling infinitely easier.

Use your Insights

Iconosquare offers a huge variety of detailed insights to help you continually improve your Facebook and Instagram marketing efforts. You can track followers, reach, impressions, average engagement per post, and average engagement on reach per post to name just a few. It’s important to keep a close eye on these so you don’t fall into the trap of blindly scheduling months worth of content at a time without analysing what’s working and what’s not. Before you go into your next content planning, creating - and then scheduling - session, be sure to look over your content insights from the last month or two. This way, you’ll give your audience more of what they want.

Don’t repeat the same content across both channels

This point is really, really important. While it might seem tempting, don’t use exactly the same posts on Facebook and Instagram. Every social media platform has its nuances so be sure to tweak the posts accordingly. The idea can be the same, but small tweaks will be required to the presentation/the caption to ensure it's optimized per platform. And why is copying and pasting a no no you ask? Because it won’t give you the best chance of success and it can appear spammy to people that follow you across multiple accounts.

Take time to review

While scheduling is a huge time-saver, make sure you block time in your diary to review the content one final time before it publishes. There’s always a chance you’ve made typos or incorrectly tagged someone in a caption, so avoid this happening by giving your scheduled content a final sweep. 

The benefits of using Iconosquare to schedule content

Iconosquare offers some great features for business owners looking to schedule their Instagram and Facebook feeds for clients. These include first comment scheduling for Instagram - a great way to kick-start engagement on your content; preview with drag & drop scheduling - which ensures that new content matches the look and feel of your feed to help with branding and consistency; and time slots, which allows quick scheduling in the future. 

Disadvantages of scheduling (things to watch out for!)

Lack of engagement

With all the benefits that social media scheduling brings, it does put some distance between you and your followers. Unless you plan to log into Facebook and Instagram whenever a scheduled post goes live, you won’t get the chance to interact with people engaging with your content in real-time. To prevent your brand from becoming too impersonal and limiting your potential engagement, set aside time a few days a week to interact with your followers.

Potential for mistakes

If you follow the advice above and make time to review your content then this one shouldn’t be a problem. But life gets hectic sometimes, doesn’t it? And sometimes that 20 minute slot to do a final review on scheduled content goes out the window. If this happens, there is a chance your scheduled content will go live with grammatical errors or outdated information. 

Risk of seeming spammy

If you’re not taking time to engage with your audience, scheduled content can sometimes appear spammy. Particularly as it’s fairly obvious when a post has been scheduled versus posted in the moment. This problem can be alleviated with a consistent writing style and natural voice, optimizing content for the relevant platform, and not scheduling too much content too far in advance. Ideally, you’ll be scheduling 2-4 weeks of content at a time. 

Conclusion

Scheduling Instagram and Facebook content is a game-changer for busy social media freelancers juggling multiple clients and a variety of social media platforms. 

It allows you to stay present with your audience, maintain a consistent drumbeat of communication, and remind them of your value every single week. In an increasingly noisy and competitive online world, that’s never been so important. So what are you waiting for? Now is the best time to get ahead of your competitors and start scheduling your content.

Bella Foxwell

Bella Foxwell

Copywriter @Iconosquare

Hey! I'm Bella. Super curious about any new feature released on social media platforms. I do have a preference for Instagram, even though each platform has its specificity ;)

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