Want to reap the benefits of Instagram hashtags without crowding your caption? The ability to schedule your first comment on Instagram has been one of our most requested features from the Later community, so we’re thrilled to officially launch it today!
Now you can craft, schedule and automatically post the first comment on your Instagram Auto Publish posts — available on all Later paid plans!
While adding hashtags to your posts is one of the best ways to boost your engagement and get your posts in front of your target audience, too many hashtags in your captions can look untidy (or worse, spammy!).
Instead, posting your hashtags in the first comment is a great way to make your caption the star of the show, without compromising any of the engagement you can get with hashtags.
With your hashtags locked in and scheduled into your first comment, you’re guaranteed to improve your reach as your hashtags get to work as soon as your post is live.
No scrambling at the last minute to find hashtags that work — have it all planned out in Later beforehand!
But the first comment on Instagram isn’t limited to adding hashtags — you can add whatever text you like.
Whether you want to kick start a conversation, ask questions to your audience or even reveal a competition winner in your first comment, Later’s got you covered!
How to Add a First Comment on Instagram with Later
Ready to jump in? Here’s how to schedule a first comment with Later:
Open up the post scheduler in Later. You can do this from anywhere — Later on desktop, iOS, or Android.
You’ll see a text box called “First Comment.” Enter your hashtags or any text you’d rather have in the first comment.
Schedule your post as usual (including adding your Linkin.bio link!) and the first comment is scheduled along with it.
NOTE: First Comment is only available for Auto Publish posts.
Sit back and watch that engagement roll in when the post is published!
You can also find any replies or new comments on your posts right in the Conversations tab in the Later dashboard.
And don’t worry about scheduling to other platforms like Facebook or Twitter. You can schedule posts to multiple profiles at once (as usual), but the first comment will only be scheduled for Instagram. No need to schedule a separate post just for Instagram!
Note: Instagram allows a maximum of 30 hashtags across your post caption and first comment. Don’t worry — we’ll keep count and let you know when you’re reaching the limit.
How to Optimize Your First Comment on Instagram in Later
Using the same 30 hashtags in your posts may get you some reach and engagement at first, but you might start to notice a plateau.
That’s why we recommend mixing it up. Our Premium plan gives you a tool called Hashtag Suggestions. Give us a hashtag you’ve had success with, and we’ll show you other, related hashtags you can experiment with.
Once you have a list of go-to hashtags, make sure to save them as a caption in Later. That way, you can paste them into the first comment in just a couple of clicks. Saved Captions are available on all Later plans!
TIP: Think about categorizing and saving your hashtags with Saved Captions — maybe you need some hashtags that are related to your industry like #socialmediatips, along with some location-based hashtags of where your offices or team is located, like #VancouverBC!
With different hashtag categories, you can easily mix-and-match your best hashtags and always schedule a fully optimized post!
Maximize Your Engagement (& Look Great Doing it!)
We gave a handful of Later users early access to scheduling first comment on Instagram, and their results are in:
“I used to have to send a notification to my phone every morning so that I could copy and paste my hashtags from my caption into my first comment. Now, I can let my posts autopublish and streamline my mornings! I love not having to deal with posting on Instagram and allowing Later to do it for me!” – Jen Costa, @foxandharephoto
“Later’s hashtag tools are so simple. Adding a first comment barely adds a step to my process but it’s so invaluable. It helps improve the look and feel of my posts and drives reach at the same time.” – Chloe Pederson, @ranchandcoast
Now you can say goodbye to the reminders and having to manually paste your captions into Instagram — Late can manage all that for you!
Ready to try it yourself? Publishing the first comment on Instagram is available on all Later paid plans. Sign into your account now and take it for a test drive!
If you’re not on a paid plan yet, now might just be the time to upgrade.