How to Schedule Carousel Posts Directly to Instagram with Vista Social

Updated on May 18, 2022

7 min to read

Marketing @ Vista Social

Published April 11, 2022

How to Schedule Carousel Posts Directly to Instagram with Vista Social
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The wait is over: Direct publishing for Instagram carousel posts is available with Vista Social! We are thrilled to be one of the first platforms that allows marketers to schedule carousel posts containing multiple images and videos directly to Instagram, with no mobile workarounds (i.e., inconvenient apps) or notification scheduling.

How to Schedule Carousel Posts on Instagram with Vista Social

You can automatically schedule up to 10 images OR videos (something not currently offered by other platforms) in your carousel post — and automatically publish them too!

With photo dumps (also known as carousel posts) taking over Instagram, this is the perfect time for innovative brands to hop on trends easily through modern integrations available on Vista Social.

Vista Social allows you to plan, schedule, publish, and analyze carousel posts for Instagram, all from one simple and modern social media management dashboard. 

Table of contents

Why Are Photo Dumps Trending on Instagram Right Now?

Welcome to the age of the “photo dump” — the latest trend on Instagram where you share photos and videos in a carousel post format. Instagram photo dumps have surged in popularity, with the hashtag amassing over 1.4M posts to date. Photo dumps stray away from the well-crafted post that is heavily filtered and edited to show a series of raw or unedited content. 

How to Schedule Carousel Posts on Instagram with Vista Social

“A photo dump is basically using the Instagram carousel posts to share a slideshow of memory,” explains Taylor Loren, a creator and social media strategist. “the photo dump is supposed to give off the alert or the vibe that it’s really casual when in reality it’s actually super curated.”

When the world was in quarantine, our social lives were put on pause, resulting in a short supply of content from our camera rolls. Hence, the photo dump was born.

Photo Dumps | Vista Social

The photo dump took over Instagram, but social media networks have been trending in a more authentic and causal direction across the board. 

The best part about photo dumps is that anyone can jump on this trend, including businesses! This allows brands to be more authentic and better connect with their audience by showing a more casual and intimate side of the business in a combination of images and videos in one post. 

Why Carousel Posts Beat Videos in Engagement on Instagram

Instagram has been pushing Reels and video content to stay competitive with YouTube and TikTok. Reels can be as long as 60-seconds, which you may think isn’t that long. But studies have shown that the average attention span is around 8-seconds, making a Reel 7.5x longer than what people are willing to pay attention to. 

With so much saturation on Instagram, if you capture your audience’s attention in that short window of time, you want to ensure that you get your message across. Videos don’t always “get to the point” as quickly as a carousel post can.

However, video in a carousel post, which can be short snippets and require less viewing time per individual video, are very effective. Carousel posts on Instagram allow you to upload up to 10 photos and videos and share them as a single post in Feed. One study found that carousel posts on Instagram receive 5.13% more engagement per post, than a single post that includes one image or video.

What’s even more appealing is that the Instagram algorithm picks up your audience swiping through your carousel posts, and consequently associates your account with more authority and likeability. 

Instagram is over a decade old. During this time, marketers, creators, and businesses have continuously experimented with the many media formats and placements available on the app. Research has found that engagement levels decrease after three cards; they increase again at eight. Carousel posts that contain the maximum limit of 10 cards receive the highest engagement level of 2.07%. 

Additional Carousel Post Stats for Marketers in 2022

3 Ways to use Carousel Posts on Instagram

1. Photo Dumps

Who says businesses can’t do photo dumps? This is the perfect way for brands to connect with their audience in an authentic way and build credibility for their business.

Being authentic is fundamental in building trust with your audience and growing your account organically. Rather than posting content that was curated by a graphic designer and approved in 3 meetings, share a series of raw or unedited media in a carousel post.

This low-effort collection of up to 10 slides can convey your brand story and drive real impact with your followers. Some ideas for businesses could be a series of photo’s and video’s of BTS of a new feature launch. This could show the snacks you had at the meeting for the launch, the view from outside the office, and the samples of marketing material.

You also could have fun with it and use a photo dump to spotlight a “day in the life” of one of your employees. It could show their office set up, their commute views, the playlist or podcast they listen to, a meme they came across, or their favourite coffee shop.

2. Promote a Product Line

Is your client or brand about to launch a new clothing line or furniture set? Carousel posts are a great way to spark inspiration that lets your audience browse through multiple products without leaving the app.

A similar concept to a collection ad without having to spend any money! This is a proven strategy, a study from Netshoes saw a 6.3% lift in conversions and 42% lower conversion cost. 

Example of a carousel post from Wayfair
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This type of strategy for carousel posts drive discovery and attention by pairing media with relevant products for a more engaging mobile experience. Promoting a product line in a carousel post is great for any eCommerce company with a variety of product visuals to show prospects.

3. Tell Your Brands Story

Brand storytelling is an integral part many well-crafted digital marketing strategies. This is an effective method to humanize your brand and simplify complex ideas to your audience. Not only does it make your brand more appealing to consumers, but it also makes them more likely to convert. Research suggests that businesses that use some form of storytelling can boost conversion rates. 

Telling your brand’s story in a carousel post can be anything from including a picture of the founding team, early product content, or an illustration of how you came up with the idea. 

How to Schedule Carousel Posts on Instagram

With Vista Social’s suite of modern social media management tools, you can plan and publish images and videos in a carousel post ahead of time. Here’s how to get started:

Watch: How to Direct Publish Carousel Posts to Instagram

How to Direct Publish Carousel Posts to Instagram: Step-by-Step Guide

Step #1: Set Up Your Carousel Post

  1. Log in to your Vista Social account.
  2. On the main menu (this will be on the left side of your screen), select Publish and click ‘Publish a single post.’ 
  3. Select the entity on the left side of your screen and ensure that the Instagram profile is selected.
  4. Tap the camera icon and import the media you’d like included in your carousel. You can upload content from your computer, choose from your existing media library, upload from a URL, or click ‘discover’ for stock-free photo options. 
Vista Social Uploading Media From Existing Library
Vista Social Selecting Media From Existing Library

Pro Tip: You can import your media in the order that you’d like it to be placed in the carousel post, or you can rearrange the order of the images by dragging the media and aiming it at the picture where you’d like it to be in the post. 

Step #2: Edit Your Images and Videos

Under each uploaded image, there will be an option to ‘edit the image’ or add ‘alt text.’

Vista Social Edit Your Image

Editing your image will allow you to crop, resize, or select a social media ratio for your image. You also can add filters, draw on, or add text or icons to each image.

Vista Social Alt Text on Images

Alt text is a short text description of a photo that’s read aloud by a screen-reading program. This text is an essential way for the visually impaired to get the clearest image of internet photos.

Step #3: Complete Your Carousel Post

Write a caption for your carousel post and include emojis, hashtags, links, and universal mentions. 

How to Schedule Carousel Posts on Instagram with Vista Social

Make sure your comments are enabled and leave the first comment under your post to spark engagement right from Vista Social’s publisher! Some social media managers use this options to post their hashtags without compromising the look of their caption. 

Vista Social Visual Instagram Feed Planner

Click the visual Instagram feed planner icon (it looks like a grid) to see how your feed will look in advance to ensure a consistent and on-brand aesthetic is established. 

Step #4: Get Ready to Publish

Once your carousel post is ready, choose one of the available options to publish your post:

  • Save draft: This is a great option if you plan to return and continue working on the carousel post.
  • Add to queue: This is typically used for larger teams or agencies for a client or manager to quality assure a post before it gets published.
  • Schedule: Select a future date or time you’d like the post published. This option also allows you to assign the post to a team member for them to review before it gets published.
  • Publish now: This will publish your post as soon as your click the button.

Wrapping Up!

Carousel posts are an excellent way for brands to connect with their community, increase engagement, and gain visibility on Instagram.

Photo dumps are making authenticity and raw content the latest Instagram aesthetic. So, whether you’re showing casual Fridays at the office, a new feature you’re working on, or the office pup — you’ll be sure to win over the hearts of your followers! 

Ready to get started? Plan, preview, and schedule your carousel posts directly to Instagram with Vista Social – sign up today.

About the Author

Marketing @ Vista Social

Brittany Garlin serves as the Head of Marketing at Vista Social, the leading social media suite that's pushing the boundaries of innovation. Steering the platform to achieve an impressive milestone of over 2 million connected social profiles, Brittany's expertise has been acknowledged in a recent appearance on the Social Pros podcast, where she discussed making marketing to marketers more human-centered. With a knack for strategic disruption, Brittany also redefines what it means to be a woman in the tech sector. Her thought leadership is frequently highlighted in prestigious outlets like Forbes and HubSpot.

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