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How to Use Later: Get Started With This Tutorial

Learn how to use Later to reach all your social media goals quicker than ever!

Welcome to Later

Social media management doesn't need to be complicated. Whether you're a social media beginner or seasoned pro, Later's collection of tools will supercharge your social strategy and help you reach your goals faster.

Ready to start but unsure where to begin? You've come to the right place! In this guide, you'll learn:

  • How to connect your social profiles to Later
  • How to set up your Link in Bio
  • How to upload and manage media items
  • How to create, schedule, and publish your first post
  • How to start measuring your success with Analytics

Make Connections

The first step to scheduling and publishing through Later is connecting your social profiles. To connect your Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or Twitter account to your Later account, follow these three steps:

  1. Select the + on the empty profile icon within your Social Set
  2. Follow the prompts and log in to your social profile
  3. Authorize Later to access your account
A gif showing how to connect and authorize a TikTok account in Later

Amazing! You've just completed the first step in setting up your Later account. Now, just repeat these steps to connect any other social profiles you'd like to manage through Later.

Tip: While you don't need an Instagram or TikTok Business Account to use Later, we highly recommend using one to take advantage of features like Auto Publish, Analytics, and more.

All of your connected social profiles will belong to a Social Set and all Social Sets belong to an Access Group. Social Sets and Access Groups are handy for managing multiple brands and clients.

To learn more about Social Sets and Access Groups, check out this short video (or keep scrolling to continue setting up your account):

Now it's time to set up your Link in Bio. Later's Link in Bio is a mini-web page built right into your social profile. This is a great opportunity to seamlessly direct your audience to your online store, newsletter, blog, or more!

To enable Link in Bio:

  1. Select Link in Bio from the side menu
  2. Choose a username for your Link in Bio page (this will form your Link in Bio URL)
  3. Select Create Your Page

When you land on the Link in Bio management page, you'll have options to:

  • Connect your Instagram and TikTok profiles and make your content clickable
  • Customize the overall aesthetic of your page to match your brand
  • Drive traffic anywhere you want online with buttons and links to your social channels
  • Use featured media and banners to highlight your most important link
  • Add a Mailchimp account to collect your audience's email addresses

To learn more about Link in Bio, check out our guide:

Upload & Manage Media

Now that you've connected your social profiles and set up your Link in Bio, you're ready to start building your Media Library.

Your Media Library stores all of the photos and videos used to create your posts. The library syncs across all of your connected devices, so you can upload and schedule from both Later for Desktop and the Later mobile app.

There are two ways to access your Media Library within Later for Desktop:

  1. Through the side library via the Calendar page, or
  2. Through the side menu by selecting Media, then Manage Your Media

To access the Media Library within the Later mobile app, just tap the Media tab.

Uploading Media to Your Media Library

There are three ways to upload photos and videos to your Media Library in Later for Desktop:

  1. Drag and drop media items from your computer onto either the Media Library or Calendar page
  2. Select the Upload Media button above your side library and choose the files to upload from your computer
  3. Select the Dropbox or Google Drive integration buttons above your side library and choose the files to upload

Want to add a media file straight from your phone? No problem! Within the Later mobile app's Media tab, select the + button and either upload from your phone's library, or take a new photo or video.

And there you go—so simple!

Note: There is no limit to the number of photos or videos you can upload to your Media Library. Uploaded photos and videos do not count toward your plan's post limit until they are scheduled.

Managing Your Media

Organizing your Media Library from the very beginning will make your life easier down the road. From categorizing content to keeping important info (like photo credits or approval status) on hand, the following three tools help keep you sorted:

Notes and labels are added to an image of a surfer within a users Later Media Library
  • Media Notes: Save time preparing future posts and efficiently communicate with your team by adding Media Notes. When scheduling, Media Notes will automatically be added as post captions, making this a great place to add any credits or draft captions in advance.
  • Labels: Labeling media by your content pillars or keywords (like source, campaign, color scheme, etc.) will make your items easier to filter and search. They can also be used to communicate which images are approved for posting, and which are not.
  • Starred Media: For items you want to find quickly within your library, hit the Star icon. When you select the Star icon above your side library, only the starred media will appear.

And there you have it—a well organized and fully functional media library!

Schedule & Publish Your Posts

Way to go! You've finished setting yourself up and are ready to schedule your first post.

There are two ways to schedule and publish your posts in Later: automatically or through push notifications via the Later mobile app.

TikTok, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn posts will always be published automatically via Auto Publish. Instagram Business Accounts will also have the option to Auto Publish posts.

When you set a post to Auto Publish, your content will automatically be published to your chosen platform at the scheduled date and time—no further action from you required!

Note: Switching to an Instagram Business account is easy (and free!) to do. Check out the following Help Center articles to learn more.

Enabling Auto Publish

To Auto Publish posts on Instagram, you'll first need to enable the feature. Before we do this, take a moment to confirm that:

  • You're using an Instagram Business Account
  • You've disabled any pop-up blockers on your browser

Setting up Auto Publish for your Instagram account, you'll also require:

To enable Auto Publish in Later for Desktop:

  1. Head to your Account Settings page and select Social Sets & Access Groups
  2. Select Edit next to the Access Group containing your Instagram profile
  3. Select Enable next to your profile

A pop-up will appear asking you to log into Facebook. Follow the prompts and grant all permissions to Later (not granting all permissions will result in connectivity issues).

Tip: You can also enable Auto Publish for Instagram Business Accounts through the Later mobile app. Just head to the Social Sets section of your Account Settings, select Instagram, and hit Auto Publish Settings.

Notification Publishing

Notification Publishing can be used for any TikTok post, and must be used for all Personal or Creator Instagram accounts.

When you publish via Notification Publishing, a push notification will be sent to your mobile device at your post's scheduled date and time. To publish your post, follow the steps outlined in the Help Center:

Tip: To never miss a notification when it's time to publish, make sure that you download the Later mobile app to the device you'll be publishing from.

Alright, now that you understand the difference between Later's two publishing methods and have enabled Auto Publish for your Instagram, let's go ahead and schedule your first post!

Publishing Your First Post

Scheduling and publishing posts in Later is a breeze. First, drag any media item from the side library onto the Calendar. This will open the Post Builder:

A diagram outlining how to use key features in the Instagram Post Builder
  • Publishing Method: This is where you will determine whether you'd like to publish your post automatically or through push notification.
  • Publishing Date & Time: Select the down arrow to open the dropdown calendar and choose the exact day and time you'd like to publish your post.
  • Caption: Enter your caption and hashtags here. Check out this Later blog post to learn how to write the ultimate caption.
  • Editing Tools: Later offers a variety of in-app tools to further customize your content with filters and text. You can also resize your image or video according to the posting platform.
  • More Options: The options available under this section will differ depending on your plan and the social platform you are posting to. For example, when posting to Instagram, you'll have the option to tag people, products, and locations or add a first comment or Link in Bio link, whereas when posting to Pinterest, you'll have the option to add a website link.

To summarize, to schedule a post in Later for Desktop:

  • Select the social profiles you would like to post to
  • Choose a media item from the side library and drag it to the Calendar
  • Add a caption and hashtags
  • Set a date and time
  • Determine your publishing method
  • Select Schedule

Way to go— you've successfully scheduled your first post! You're now well on your way to simplifying your social media management and reaching your business goals.

Tip: On the go? You can schedule and publish posts right from your phone with the Later mobile app. Just select the Create Post button under the Schedule tab, choose your social profile and media item, then build your post. Choose to schedule it for later, or publish right then and there.

Save Time Scheduling with Later

Now that you're a scheduling pro, you can start using Later to make your life even easier.

Let's say you have a big sale coming up and want to promote the details across your social channels. With Later, you can simultaneously cross-schedule the same post across all your social profiles in just a few simple steps.

By cross-scheduling the same content across multiple social platforms, you'll not only save time, but also maintain brand consistency and reach new audiences. Check out this video to learn more:

Later also makes it easy to bulk schedule posts with its Quick Schedule feature. Quick Scheduling allows you to schedule a week or more of posts in just a few clicks. Learn how at the Help Center:

An Introduction to Later Analytics

Measuring the impact of your posts is an important aspect of social media management. Learning more about your audience, and what content resonates with them, will help you develop a successful social strategy.

Just like with scheduling, Later makes measuring the success of your social strategy streamlined and simple across all your social channels.

Later Analytics are available for Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Pinterest, and Twitter accounts. To access your analytics for each of these profiles:

  1. Select Analytics from the side menu
  2. Open the dropdown menu at the top of your screen
  3. Choose the social profile you'd like to analyze

Later's Analytics can be divided into three main categories:

  1. Discovery: These metrics measure the number of unique users who saw your content (reach) and the number of times your content was viewed (impressions). This can help you understand your overall exposure.
  2. Action: Likes, comments, saves, and plays all reveal how engaged your audience is with your content.
  3. Conversion: How successfully are you directing users from your social profile to external websites like an online store, YouTube channel, or newsletter sign up? Post clicks, button clicks, and post revenue can tell you.

The metrics within these categories can then be combined to give you more complex insights, such as Engagement Rate and Click-through Percentage, which calculate overall engagement and conversion respectively.

Below are some of the questions that Later Analytics can help you answer:

  • What time of day should I post to drive the most engagement?
  • Do my followers prefer Reels to feed posts?
  • What kind of content is resonating most with my community?
  • How much has my audience grown in the last month?

The data available to you will depend on your plan and social profile. Take some time to explore the Analytics page. The information will become more fulsome and offer more insight the more content you post. Be sure to check back in regularly to adjust your social strategy as needed.

Want to learn more about Later's Analytics and how they can be used to achieve your goals? Check out Learn With Later's All About Analytics course and start developing a social strategy backed by science.

Next Steps

Now that you've mastered the basics, supercharge your social strategy with these helpful resources:

  • Become Later Product Pro Certified (opens a new tab)

    Boost your social media skills and Later knowledge with this free interactive course. By the end, you'll confidently use Later to reach your social goals sooner.


    Become Later Product Pro Certified thumbnail
  • How to Use Later to Manage Your Social Media Accounts (opens a new tab)

    This Later app tutorial dives deep into Later's features, giving you a comprehensive walkthrough of the apps ins and outs.


    How to Use Later to Manage Your Social Media Accounts thumbnail
  • Save Time Working with Clients and Team Members in Later

    Learn how to work with others to save time when you are planning posts, sharing a content calendar, and analyzing analytics.


    Save Time Working with Clients and Team Members in Later thumbnail

Plan, schedule, and automatically publish your social media posts with Later.