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Later app tutorial for Scheduling & Planning Instagram posts!

October 19, 2022

I’m so excited to share my absolute favorite app for planning and scheduling Instagram posts: Later! And, the best part is that it’s free! Today, I’ll be sharing a tutorial about how to use Later to schedule your posts. If you’re ready to get started, sign up here (Laterfor free and let’s start planning. 

Later App Tutorial for Scheduling and Publishing Posts

Using Later on Mobile

You can use Later on your phone or desktop, and it will sync together either way. That’s one of the best parts of this software. When you open the app, you’ll be in the media library. This is one of my favorite parts of Later. I can directly upload images from my phone into the app, which makes planning posts super easy. If you want to add images, hit the blue plus icon in the bottom right of your library. From there, you can select images from your camera roll whether they’re from a photo shoot or something you took yourself. (PS. If you need ideas about how to get more content photos of yourself, check out this post!)

Scheduling Your Posts

Once you’ve added images and you’re ready to schedule a post, simply tap on the photo in your library and select “create post” when the menu pops up. From there, you can decide if this will be a feed post or a Reel. We’ll talk about those Reels in a minute. Once you’ve selected a feed post, you can add your caption and hashtags. Under “more options”, you can add things like your first comment or location for auto-published posts. To auto publish your posts, you have to have a business account on Instagram, so just keep that in mind. As a reminder, I use a creator account on Instagram so that I can have access to more music and sounds for Reels. I also prefer to manually publish my posts and Reels, too. If you have your posts set to manual like I do, you’ll get notifications when it’s time to publish your posts. 

At the bottom of your post, you can select the time to post your photo, too. Once everything is ready to go, simply hit “ready to post” and it will notify you when it’s time to publish that post! If you select the “schedule” icon at the bottom, you can hop between a list and calendar view to see your scheduled posts. I love being able to see how much is already prepped for the month! If you select “preview” at the top of the screen, you can also see how your grid will look with the posts you have scheduled. This is honestly one of my favorite parts of Later! They include your Reels, too, which is super nice! If you want to change anything, hit “rearrange” in the upper right hand corner and you can move the posts around. Later automatically adjusts the publication date and time based on the adjustments you made which is SO cool. 

How to Schedule Reels in Later

Once you have a Reel, you can save it to your camera roll then upload it to Later the same way as you would a photo. Choose that Reel, then hit create post and select “Reel” from the post options. After that’s done, hit the plus icon and select an image for your cover photo. Because I’m not auto publishing the Reel, I want the cover photo with the Reel I’m scheduling. I rearrange the files so that the image is first so I can see how it would look in the feed. You can then add your caption (and if you’re autopublishing do your location and comments as needed). Select your date and time and hit save. Then schedule your post! 

That’s how easy it is to use Later on your mobile phone! It’s super easy and I love how convenient it can be to create things on my phone. Later also has a website where you can do the same things AND schedule Instagram Stories. At the moment, you cannot schedule Stories through the Later app – only on the website version. I personally use this feature so much. 

Scheduling Instagram Stories with Later

The online version is pretty similar to the app. You still have the media library and you can drop and drag your media to the calendar. When you drop it on the calendar, you can add your caption, scheduling date, and hashtags like on the app. You can also preview your feed using the button in the upper right hand corner. On the desktop version, you can view your calendar in a weekly or monthly view, which is super helpful too. In the same area, you’ll see the “stories” button when you can schedule your Instagram Stories. 

Here, you can drop and drag your photo or video to schedule for a Story. When it’s time to post, Later will save the image or video to your camera roll and copy whatever text you add to your clipboard. This makes it SUPER easy to remember to share Instagram Stories, especially during busy times like launches or campaigns I’m running. If you’re someone who does want to plan out your Stories, this feature is super helpful. Everything works pretty similarly to how you would schedule a post on your main feed, which is also nice. Later is also smart enough to keep this out of your preview, which is great. There’s no confusion about what’s a story and what’s a post when you’re viewing it! 

Labeling Your Media

On the Later website, you can actually add labels to your media. When you click on an image, you’ll see an option to “add” labels. I find this helpful so I know where my images are. Add labels that make sense so if you want to search for something specific (like a photo of me with Chai!), it’s easy to pull those options up for scheduling. Do whatever makes sense for you and your brand. I find creating labels for specific photo shoots is helpful for me. 

Analytics

Another great feature of the website version of Later is the analytics view. On the left hand side, you can view how your content is performing. On the free version, the analytics are limited but if you pay for any of their plans, you can see their analytics there!

If you have any questions about Later, please let us know. I love knowing how to help you. Later is literally my favorite app for planning my Instagram feed, Stories, and Reels. I can’t wait for you to check it out! 

 

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