Social media, particularly Facebook, plays a critical role in the ongoing success of the modern veterinary practice. Yet many practice owners find the task of regularly posting status updates and other content overwhelming and difficult to fit into an already jam-packed schedule. Good news! Facebook now allows you to schedule posts to be published at a later date and time that is specified by you. This means that you can manage your practice’s Facebook page whenever it’s most convenient for you, and you can still reach your audience at the key times that produce optimum results.
How to Schedule Posts on Your Veterinary Facebook Page
#1 – Start by simply creating your post as you normally would. You can add text, tag people and include pictures, videos or links as well.
#2 – In the lower left-hand corner of your post, you will notice a small clock symbol. Click on this symbol and you can then enter the year, month, day and time that you’d like your post to publish.
Note: You may schedule your posts up to 6 months in advance. You will see all months in the dropdown, but Facebook will not accept any dates that are further than 6 months into the future. Also, the time increments you may schedule posts in are 00-, 10-, 20-, 30-, 40-, and 50- minutes into the hour.
#3 – Once you have scheduled the date and time you desire, click the blue “schedule” button. That’s it!
How to Locate and Edit Scheduled Posts
If, at any time, you’d like to see what posts you’ve got scheduled or make changes, simply go to your admin panel at the top of your page (if the admin panel is not readily visible, click on the red admin panel button in the upper right-hand corner of your page). Click “Edit Page” and then “Activity Log”. You will then be able to see all of your scheduled posts.
The only thing you can edit from here is the time. If you need to change the text or other content of the post, you must cancel it completely and reschedule a new one. To edit the time or to cancel the post altogether, hover your mouse over the small blue arrow in the upper right-hand corner of the post and choose the action you need from the dropdown menu.
- Not every type of interaction can be scheduled. While you can schedule text, photos, videos, links and tags, Facebook does not allow you to schedule photo albums, events, questions, offers or milestones.
- You can backdate your posts. In addition to scheduling posts for your veterinary Facebook page in advance, you can also backdate certain items. Some people choose to use this feature to fill in their timeline and make it appear more robust. If you have a significant event that occurred in the past that you’d like to add, however, it’s probably a better idea to post it as a milestone. Backdated posts go out to your followers’ news feeds immediately but show up in the appropriate spot within your timeline.
- Scheduled posts don’t get tweeted. If you’ve added the functionality to have all of your Facebook posts also automatically post on Twitter, it’s important to note that posts that have been scheduled in the future do not automatically update on Twitter. For scheduling tweets, you will have to use another tool, like Hootsuite.
- Scheduled posts are not identified as such. Your followers will have no idea that your posts were entered and scheduled a week ago, so don’t let that deter you from using this tool for your veterinary Facebook page. Posts will simply show up in the feed as if they were just posted live.
Why Schedule Posts?
Aside from the obvious benefit of saving you time while trying to manage all of the day to day duties of a busy veterinary practice, scheduling your Facebook posts can also improve client engagement. The key to success in veterinary social media is consistency. Scheduling posts allows you to be more active and post more frequently on Facebook, without having to spend hours a day managing your page. Just remember to always circle back and check on your scheduled posts to see if any comments have been left so you can respond accordingly.
Remember – the more active you are on your veterinary Facebook page, the more engaged your followers will become and the more exposure your practice will receive. Scheduling allows you the flexibility to keep your page consistently updated, improving your overall results.
If you’re curious about how your veterinary Facebook page is performing or want to see the results of your scheduled posts, check out our article about Facebook Insights to learn how you can properly measure and track these results. The more you understand about your practice’s social media presence, the better you can hone your efforts for maximum practice growth.