As a busy social media manager, you can’t spend all your time posting updates on the go. With measurement engagement rates, a social strategy to create, and your content calendar to maintain, it makes perfect sense to invest in group scheduling for social media – and save your time for other responsibilities.
Bonus: Download our free, customizable social media calendar template to easily plan and schedule all your content in advance.
What is group scheduling?
Group scheduling on social media is a practice of organizing and scheduling many posts in advance. (With Hootsuite, you can schedule up to 350 posts in a group!)
With group scheduling, you can:
- Save time and resources to focus on other areas of your role or business
- Simplify and strengthen the coordination of social media campaigns
- Plan time-sensitive content in advance
- Post when your audience is active and online (no more last-minute fundraising and instant postings)
Group scheduling facilitates daily publishing and removes worries about following social media calendars. Each day, you will know exactly how many posts will be published and when.
Let’s dive in and explore how to accurately distribute social media posts alongside Hootsuite.
How to schedule posts on social networks in 5 easy steps
First, you will have to sign up for a Hootsuite account or sign up if you already use the platform.
Visual students, watch the video below and learn how to schedule posts on social networks in groups with Hootsuite. Everyone else – keep reading.
Step 1: Download the Hootsuite bulk composer file
To bulk compile and schedule social media posts in Hootsuite, you’ll need to follow a few simple preparation steps, starting with preparing the CSV file of the bulk post for upload to Hootsuite:
- Launch your Hootsuite control panel. Click on the left Publisher.
- In the Publisher menu, click Contents.
- On the Content menu, click Bulk Composer to the left.
- Click on Download an example button on the right side of the screen.
- Open the downloaded CSV file in a program that supports .csv files, for example, Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel.
Pro type: We recommend that you import the CSV file into Google Spreadsheets. Other software may corrupt the date and time format required to properly transmit the mass release.
Step 2: Fill in the CSV file
We understood; opening a new CSV file looks daunting. But by following these step-by-step instructions, you will quickly schedule your posts on social media.
- U Column A, fill in the date and time you want to publish your post using one of the supported formats below:
- day / month / year hour: minute
- month / day / year hour: minute
- year / month / day hour: minute
- year / day / month hour: minute
- Remember that the clock must be on 24-hour format,, time must end with 5 or 0, the publishing time can only be set for at least 10 minutes from the moment you upload the file to Hootsuite, and your date format must be consistent throughout the group schedule file.
- U Column B, add a title for your post and remember to adhere to the character limit on social networks.
- Want to add pictures, emoji thumbnails, or videos to your group layout? You can add them after uploading the CSV file to Hootsuite.
- If you want to direct your audience from your social media post to a specific URL, add a link in Column C. You can choose to shorten them to Ow.ly links later.
- Save your file and go to the next step.
reminder: Hootsuite’s bulk composer tool allows you to schedule 350 posts at once. You can post all 350 on one social media platform or even have 50 posts on seven different platforms!
Step 3: Upload the CSV file to Hootsuite
You are ready to upload your CSV file to Hootsuite, which contains all the posts you want to schedule in groups.
- Go to the Hootsuite control panel and click Publisher,, Contents, then click Bulk Composer to the left.
- Click Select a file to upload, select the recently created .csv file and click Open up.
- Select the social media platforms for which you want to schedule your posts.
- Check the box next to Don’t shorten links if you want the full URL to appear in your social media post, or leave it unchecked if you want your link show as ov.ly.
Step 4: View and edit your posts
Hooray! You are now ready to review your group scheduled posts and visualize how they will present themselves to your audience.
- Click on each post to view a copy and add emoji thumbnails, photos, or videos.
Worried that you may have made a mistake in your schedule? The Hootsuite group planning tool will automatically flag errors and allow you to resolve issues. However, remember that you will not be able to schedule the collection of posts until you fix them.
Step 5: Group your posts in groups
- When you have finished reviewing and editing, click Schedule in the lower right corner.
- Scheduling can take a few seconds, and once Hootsuite has finished scheduling your bulk posts, review them by clicking View scheduled messages.
- Need to make a few more adjustments? Click on Planner to edit your scheduled posts individually.
And that is it! You quickly and easily collected scheduled posts for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms at one time.
5 best practices for mass scheduling on social media
One size does not suit everyone
Word count varies on each social platform, so make sure your bulk scheduled posts contain the correct number of characters. As of 2021, Twitter has a limit of 280 characters, Instagram has 2,200, and Facebook has a huge limit of 63,206 characters.
Do not send spam
Make your copy on social media unique to each post, even if you share the same link. Persistently sharing the same post with the same message can mark your account as spam and reduce your chances of success on social media.
Scheduling is not everything
The schedule should not be your entire social strategy. Save space on your feed for both real-time updates and responses. Ideally, your feed on social media should adhere to the rules of the third:
- ⅓ business promotion for reader conversion and profit making
- ⅓ Sharing ideas from influential people in your industry or similar jobs
- ⅓ Personal stories to help you build your brand
There are a million new things you can do on social media – customer care is hot, social commerce is booming, and TikTok can’t be ignored. Easy to get lost.👀
– Hootsuite (Owly version) (@hootsuite) November 12, 2021
Don’t forget to listen
Group scheduling is great for continuous broadcasting to your audience, but it’s also important to take the time to listen. You have to give i receive, then engage with your companions, respond to comments, respond to direct messages, and build relationships.
Do you want social listening to go a step further? Hootsuite Insights helps you analyze millions of audience conversations, so your finger is always on the pulse.
Consistent posting on social media is a key component of a successful social strategy – even the best practice guide for Facebook and Instagram says so.
Creating and adhering to a consistent publishing schedule will let your followers know when your content arrives on their feeds and will help build engagement. Group scheduling of social media posts allows you to stick to a regular schedule and ensures you always have content on your feed when your audience expects it.
Save time on managing your social presence and use Hootsuite to create, schedule and publish content in bulk. Try it for free today.
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