We’re just as excited as everyone else. As you may have heard, Instagram finally has given us the capability to schedule future posts.
Cue lights shining down and a choir of angels singing.
As Instagram’s biggest request over the years, it was only a matter of time until they enabled this feature. It’s only available for business profiles through scheduling platform like Hootsuite and Buffer. But we don’t think any everyday Instagrammers will be too upset about being left out.
As social media marketers, the ability to schedule all of our posts ahead of time alleviates a level of stress. We can create schedules, abide by them, and enjoy taking a Saturday nap without waking up in a panic to post a picture.
You get it, we’re excited.
In our excitement, reading countless articles on the update, we began to think about why Instagram was created in the first place.
Instagram Began with Instant Gratification
Instagram Co-Founder Kevin Systrom once said, “Our goal is to not just be a photo-sharing app, but to be the way you share your life when you’re on the go.”
Originally, the creators wanted users to be able to share what they see in real-time. They wanted it to act as a method of sharing information in the moment. Something similar to trends on Twitter.
This isn’t really happening anymore.
With businesses and brands using the platform more and more for promotion and advertising, we’ve changed Instagram. And that’s ok, we think.
Or at least that why we’re writing; to figure out what, if anything, is the downside of this think-ahead, schedule posts mentality.
We have some questions, so listen up…
Posting About the Past Is a Bit Misleading
Even before scheduling capabilities, Instagram is all out of order. Besides the fact that we no longer see our news feed in chronological order (which is a pain), feeds have become more of a visual cork board of favorite moments.
Our moral instincts worry for the girls who envy the social influencers posting flawless pictures every day. Little do they know that they are a compilation of three or four professional photo shoots that they are milking for months at a time.
It’s not a reflection of real life.
Our moral instincts feel a bit similar for business pages as well.
How can you gauge the authority or brand of a company if they’re using high-quality photos from events that happened four years ago? Can we judge a business on their ability to find real-time, engaging content? Does a pretty feed mean they’re a good business or just really good marketers?
We know the importance of using Instagram. But if we’ve redefined what it means to use Instagram, who’s to say we’re not doing consumers an injustice?
We’re Nervous We’re Getting Lazy
We’ve gone back and forth in our heads about this one.
As social media marketers, we spend our workweek juggling millions of different things. We’re required to be ten steps ahead and on top of all trends. We’re always on. And like any modern day workaholic, this means plugging in on our precious days off.
By being able to schedule everything, we might actually be able to enjoy our days off.
But here’s our dilemma:
On one hand, we don’t want to work ourselves to the bone. It’s unhealthy to work 24/7, and we don’t want the quality of our work to diminish because we’ve worn ourselves out.
Scheduling our posts for the weekend is a great solution. Instant engagement without any weekend work.
On the other hand, isn’t this what we signed up for? We became social media gurus because, surprise, we like social media. Social media never sleeps.
We’re not saying we should never sleep, but we’re nervous these capabilities will make us a tad less engaged. A lot of things happen on the weekends. If we’ve scheduled our posts already, they are out of sight, out of mind. There’s a chance that once the weekend hits, we won’t allow ourselves to keep an eye out for real-time, engaging material.
By planning ahead, are we setting ourselves up for disaster? How far removed from the social world can we allow ourselves to get when we’re not in the office? By scheduling on Friday, are we compromising the quality of our content for convenience? Will we get to a point where we turn a blind eye to great opportunities because we don’t want to adjust our plans? And to remain sane, is that ok?
We have a lot of thought-provoking questions, and we may never have absolute answers, but we want your input in our Instagram dilemma.