You probably plan out everything else in your life, whether it’s your kids’ birthday parties to which dinner recipes you’ll cook to family vacations. So why wouldn’t you also plan what you post on Instagram?
Maybe you are, but you still might be wasting hours by working on your social media marketing in brief spurts whenever inspiration strikes. Sitting down and focusing by content batching all in one day can save tons of time. Here’s how you can use content batching to save hours planning your Instagram:
Content batching is creating an entire set of content in one sitting. This might mean creating content for the next two months or maybe just the next two weeks. It really depends on how often you post and how many other responsibilities you have.
If you’re a social media marketer with multiple clients, perhaps you’ll want to set aside one day to batch for Company A and another day for Company B, and so on. If you work for a single company and Instagram is on your list of responsibilities, take one day out to plan everything for Instagram instead of constantly going back and forth from your other duties.
It’s a lot to take on but once it’s done, it’s done and you can spend your attention on other things.
It may seem overwhelming and completely daunting to create all of your content at once, but you’ll actually be more productive and energized using this method. Avoiding the urge to multitask and constantly switch gears throughout the day will notably increase your focus.
According to author Chris Bailey in his book Hyperfocus, our work takes around 50 percent longer when we continuously switch between tasks compared to when doing one task from start to completion. If that’s not motivating enough to try and find a solution, I don’t know what is!
Content batching also guarantees a more cohesive feed. By planning Instagram content all at once, it ensures that everything flows; Versus waiting to post in the moment, at the risk of presenting something that’s feels last-minute (because it was) and a bit out of place.
Everyone’s process will be different but here are a few steps to get started with content batching.
Look at your calendar and note any upcoming holidays, special promotions, trending topics or product launches. You may want to research competitors and their strategies and search for influencers that may help promote your brand.
For example, in February, consider themes surrounding Valentine’s Day or surviving snow days using your product. Or maybe you’ll create content to help customers plan for Spring Break. Weekly ideas include the occasional Throwback Thursday or Motivation Monday.
When planning Instagram content, images are king. Whether you use stock photos, originals, or images you’d like to repost from Instagram, gather everything together to format and use throughout the month.
–Do one photoshoot at the end of each month to use the following month
–You can save photos right on Instagram to use later as reposts
–Edit all the photos you’ll use with the same filters, giving your feed a cohesive feel
As with photos, the same goes for captions. Come up with captions that speak to your brand before the fact. Using a Word Doc or Google Docs, have a running list of captions that include inspirational quotes, product announcements, or interesting facts.
Use an idea generator to help you get started. Then, whenever you’re batching content, you’ll never be at a loss for words. Plus, doing it this way helps you make more strategic captions as far as the business side is concerned.
Need some help creating good Instagram captions? Grab my free Instagram Captions that Captivate guide!
Now that you’ve got a batch of photos and a batch of captions, all you have to do is match them up. Be creative and have fun with it. All the content is there and it all has your brand’s voice in mind. This is the part where your marketing genius comes into play.
In this step, take the best of the best in what you’ve batched over time but don’t throw out any unused captions or photos. You never know when you may be able to roll them over into next month’s content.
Planning Instagram content certainly means searching for relevant hashtags, so batch those too. With hashtag research, it’s important to consider your brand and your audience. Gauge what works and what doesn’t and once you know what you’re looking for make a list of 30 or so that will almost always work.
From there, when you go to post the content, you’ll have a plethora of Instagram hashtag options. That way, if the inspiration strikes for a unique hashtag, then great! But if not, it’s no sweat.
For best results, you should use a mix of medium and low density hashtags. Need help researching popular hashtags? I break it down in my Ultimate Instagram Hashtag Guide.
The reason that content batching is such a great way to save hours of time planning Instagram content is because of scheduling services. If you’re in the business of content marketing with social media, surely, you’ve already got a favorite.
🤓 While it may seem counterintuitive, content batching is actually a no-brainer when you look at the facts.
🌴 You’ll be more productive, your Instagram will be cohesive and more business-driven, and chances are, it’ll make all your social media management so much easier.
😍 Want to become a guest contributor for Social Circle? We’re currently accepting guest contributors for this blog. If you’re a business coach or online marketer with practical ideas to grow an online business, we’d love to hear from you. Send an email to info[at]socialcircleinc.com for more details.