Instagram Automation and How It Can Help Your Brand Flourish

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Heidi Lang

Instagram 101 | Nov 30, 2023

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Automation is becoming a huge thing in every industry today. Machines, bots, and algorithms are starting to replace human labor — at least for repetitive tasks. In fact, CNBC reports that automation tools are expected to take over many jobs in the next few years. Slowly but surely, automation is also making its way to your favorite social media platforms, like Instagram. Yup, Instagram automation is taking over. Let’s talk more about it today.

While automation might sound scary and intimidating, it actually offers plenty of benefits for Instagram brands and business owners. When used properly, it can help customer service, creating detailed reports, and even building a content calendar much easier.

But it’s not always rainbows and butterflies with IG automation. There are also specific automation features and tasks that can get you in trouble with Instagram. If you’re not careful with how you use automation, you could end up banned from the app. Yikes!

In this guide, we’ll talk about the good automation brings to Instagram and the things you should be wary of. Keep reading to learn all about automation on your favorite social media platform.

A robot automating the job of making coffee for a man.

Using an Instagram Automation Bot: Is It Always a Bad Thing?

In today’s world, where everyone is cynical of AI, the word “automation” can get a bad rap. Many people associate it with the inauthentic creation of work or online spam. But is automation always a bad thing? The simple answer is no. For everyday tasks that are repetitive and time-consuming, it can actually be immensely helpful.

But first, what is automation, specifically on Instagram? When you automate on IG, it means you’re enlisting the help of a third-party tool to carry out certain tasks. Instead of manually doing them on your phone or laptop, the automation service does them for you.

Basically, you use an Instagram automation bot to act a certain way by setting specific parameters. This can save you a lot of time and energy, especially if you own a small Instagram business. By relying on automation for your daily tasks, you can focus on other marketing efforts to bring in potential customers.

So, no — as many people might assume, automation isn’t always a bad thing. As long as you use the best automation services available online, you’re actually setting your Instagram business up for success.

You can avail of automation services from plenty of renowned, trustworthy websites and apps online. These tools are then integrated with your Instagram account to help you manage and perform your everyday tasks.

Note that many of them will come at a hefty price. Consider it an investment for how much time you’ll save by automating long, time-consuming tasks. Trust us when we say they’re very much worth the price tag!

A cute robot looking up and slightly smiling.

What Benefits Do You Reap When You Use an Instagram Automation Tool?

When you use an Instagram automation tool, you are basically using automated systems to do social media management for you. You simply set everything up through a dashboard on your phone or laptop. Then, you sit back, relax, and wait for the system to perform tasks without your help automatically.

There are plenty of benefits you can reap from taking advantage of high-quality automation services online. The biggest benefit is the fact that you can save so much time. Instead of doing tedious tasks yourself day in and day out, automation tools can do them for you. That way, you can focus on more important matters for your business.

It also allows you to run your business more efficiently. Instead of taking hours to reply to comments on a new post, automation services get it done in seconds. Plus, these tools are less prone to human error, keeping your performance consistently high.

Another awesome bonus of using automation for your Instagram page is that you can save on your business’ resources. Even if using automation services costs money, they can make your operations a lot more cost-effective in the long run.

For example, since you can automate scheduling posts and writing comments, you don’t need to hire a social media manager. That can save you big bucks since you no longer have to employ someone for those tasks.

Automation also allows your brand to be reachable 24/7. That means when potential customers reach out online, there will always be a response. This is important for urgent direct messages from concerned customers (more on that later!).

Not only does automation give you all these benefits. It also gives you an edge over your competitors. It allows you to connect with your target audience while saving you time and energy.

A business owner hitting her alarm clock’s snooze button to go back to sleep after automating online tasks.

Automate Instagram Posts To Schedule Posts Efficiently

Let’s talk about all the ways you can automate tasks on Instagram to run your business more smoothly. We’re kicking it off with one of the most helpful features of automation for IG — scheduling posts.

When you automate Instagram posts, you cut out the tedious task of uploading content at a specific time. That means you don’t have to pause your work to publish an announcement on Stories at exactly 5 PM. Instead, you simply organize your posts in advance on the automation tool’s dashboard. Then, you wait for the tool to post it for you according to your parameters.

Here’s how it usually works. First, you create your content, whether it’s a set of photos or an Instagram Reel you filmed in advance.

Then, go to the automation tool’s website and set up the schedules for your posts. Choose the date and time you want the tool to upload them automatically. Plug in your captions, hashtags, and other pertinent post elements. After all that, just wait for the tool to do its job when your scheduled time rolls around.

Premium automation services might even offer tools to help you with content planning. They can find the optimal timing for your post uploads depending on your target audience and followers. They can also help you organize your content calendar straight from their dashboard.

This type of automation is super helpful if you plan on posting multiple times a day. You don’t have to set alarms every couple of hours just to upload content at the exact time you want. Instead of being distracted all day and going on your phone to post photos, the tool does it for you.

A planner where a brand owner can plan their content calendar before automating uploads.

Automate Instagram Comments To Send Quick Replies on Your Posts

When you automate Instagram comments, you ensure that people get responses from you immediately after they comment on your posts. This allows you to interact with your target audience fast, which helps build a good relationship with them. But how does comment automation work on Instagram?

There are two elements you need to understand when you automate comments on Instagram.

The first is keyword recognition. Your automation software might ask for trigger words to look for in comments made by other people on your post. These can include phrases like “product availability” or “how much?” Think of standard questions you usually get from customers and use those as trigger words.

The second element is your predefined responses. These are the responses you craft and type out as an answer to comments that include the trigger words. They can be answers to FAQs or general acknowledgments for followers showing excitement about your brand in the comments.

When the automation bot detects your keywords in someone’s comment, they’ll immediately shoot out your predefined responses. That means you don’t even have to be awake or online to reply to eagerly waiting potential customers. Your automation service can do it for you.

Comment automation isn’t limited to replying to people’s comments on your brand’s posts. You can do it on other users’ posts as well.

For example, let’s say you have a user-generated content hashtag that your follower use when their post features your products. You can use that branded hashtag as a trigger word in your automation setup. Whenever someone uploads content and uses that hashtag, your automation tool will immediately comment to acknowledge it. Needless to say, this is awesome for relationship-building and interacting with your audience efficiently.

Someone reading Instagram comments as they come rolling in shortly after a brand post was uploaded.

Use Instagram DM Automation To Appease Concerned Customers Online

Another way to engage with your audience fast when they need you is through Instagram DM automation. It works pretty much the same way as comment automation. You set up trigger keywords that the automation software looks for in people’s direct messages to your page. Then, it automatically sends a predefined message response that you set.

DMs are a lot more sensitive than your run-of-the-mill comments on Instagram. Unhappy or irate customers will likely message you with serious concerns about your brand instead of commenting about it. And we’re willing to bet they will want a response as soon as possible. Setting up automatic DM responses is a terrific way to deliver customer service fast.

But every complaint is different, depending on the situation. You can’t just rely on automation to fix every problem for you. So, what do you do?

The best way to go about it is to send a predefined message telling customers that you’ve received their message. Then, assure them you will get back to them as soon as possible with an update on their concern. It at least gives them the peace of mind that they got a response from you even if they don’t yet have the time to hone in on fixing their issue.

Of course, automation for direct messages shouldn’t stop at responding to complaints. You can also set message templates for common questions from potential customers. Your automation software might even allow you to send a welcome message whenever someone follows your page. That’s a fantastic way to build a relationship with new followers!

Automation Tools Can Help Generate Detailed Reports About Your Performance

Your chosen automation service can sift through your Instagram page’s data, analyze it, and create analytics reports for you quickly. These detailed reports can tell you how your brand is faring online and show you your key performance metrics.

Automation can also pick apart what you might be doing wrong with your content. You can then use those insights to improve your content plan moving forward in the hopes of performing better online.

What’s fantastic about these automated analytics reports is that you can command a cadence to them. You can set your automation service to send these reports weekly, monthly, and annually. That way, you see how your content, audience engagement, and overall business page are improving with every report.

You can also customize what you want to see in these reports. Choose key metrics that matter to you to see those stats right away in each report.

Do you need to know the basics? Automate the report format to show reach and engagement on the front page every time. Do you value your Reels’ performance more than anything else on the platform? Customize your automated report to make sure you learn more about video posts and how many views you get. It’s all up to you and what you want to glean from your analytics reports.

A Word of Warning: Try Not To Automate Instagram Likes

Many kinds of automation are legitimate and harmless on Instagram, like the ones we mentioned so far in this guide. However, there are also bad types of automation that go against Instagram’s terms of service. This includes buying fake likes from sketchy websites.

We get it — everyone wants more likes on their Instagram content. But when you automate Instagram likes, you don’t receive genuine engagement from people who actually like your content. Most of these likes are inauthentic and are from bots and fake accounts.

When people catch on and notice that you’re automating your likes, your brand image may suffer. You might be seen as less trustworthy and fake, creating bad public sentiment for your business. It’s not worth the risk, even for thousands of likes. So, keep your engagements genuine. Never buy or automate likes for your posts.

 A woman hitting the “like” button on an Instagram post.

What Happens if Instagram Detected Automated Behavior That Is Inauthentic?

Let’s say you completely ignored our advice, and Instagram detected inauthentic automated behavior from your account. Maybe you bought fake Instagram likes or a few followers or comments from a random website online. What happens then? What is Instagram’s punishment for those who go against its terms of service?

Instagram takes unethical automation seriously. If you use tools to generate inauthentic activity on your page, they immediately take action.

Getting a shadowban is one of the most popular consequences of inauthentic activity on the platform. When Instagram puts you on a shadowban, the algorithm limits the visibility of your content on people’s feeds. That means potential customers won’t see the content you worked hard on. It can also result in slower growth in followers and reduced engagement in your content. This could lead to losses for the business if you don’t fix the issue right away.

Shadowbans aren’t the only consequence of using unethical automation tools to get your way on Instagram. Depending on the gravity of your inauthentic activity, you could also face temporary suspensions and removal of your content. If you don’t take action and change your ways, you could even end up banned from Instagram.

Having any of these consequences happen to you can harm your business. So, take it from us — don’t dabble in unethical automation, like automating likes and fake followers. Stick to using automation for honest, respectable, operations-based reasons only.

A business owner disappointedly looking at her laptop screen after getting shadowbanned for unethical IG automation.

Is There a Way to Ethically Automate Instagram Growth?

We’ve made it quite clear that buying fake likes, comments, and followers is a red flag on the platform. So, is there any way to automate Instagram growth ethically? Is there some loophole that allows you to automatically get new followers without getting shadowbanned or flagged by the app?

Technically, using any of the automation tools discussed in this guide can boost your page’s growth on Instagram.

Your account spends more time on the platform by efficiently scheduling posts and answering direct messages and comments. That means you’re interacting with more people and improving your brand image. As a result, you might see an uptick in your follower count just by using automation for your page.

But the way automation gets you more followers doesn’t stop there. There are also plenty of reliable automated growth tools available online to help you gain a more solid following. One of these tools is Path Social.

Working with our growth tool is relatively straightforward. All you have to do is tell us the specific demographics of your target audience. Then, we organically promote your content to make sure your niche audience sees it. From there, you get high reach, engagement, and new followers (and potential customers!) flocking to your page.

Automating using a trusted growth tool like Path Social is a far cry from buying cheap Instagram followers online. Instead of getting low-quality followers and running the risk of getting shadowbanned, we promise 100% real followers only. You’ll never have to worry about bots bringing down your engagement rate or setting off an alarm in Instagram’s algorithm.

A drawing of a line chart showing steady growth over time.

Seek Out the Best Instagram Automation Tools To Grow Your IG Page

Now you know the good, the bad, and the ugly of automating tasks on Instagram. So, it goes without saying that you must always seek out the best automation tools for your page. Availing of low-quality automation services can lead to trouble, from lousy, unsatisfactory results to getting flagged and shadowbanned on Instagram.

So, how do you ensure you’re signing up for the best tools for automating tasks on Instagram? Here are some of our top tips:

  • Do thorough research and compare the offerings of every service you find. Ensure you go with the one offering the best automation features among all their competitors.
  • Ensure that these services comply with Instagram’s terms of service so you don’t risk getting banned.
  • Select a service with a website or dashboard that is easy to navigate. If you need help using the platform, it might waste time setting up automated tasks.
  • Only go for automation tools with customer support and high security. That way, you can always contact them for urgent questions and never stress about fraud and scam services.

Always look for top-tier tools for automating direct messages, comments, and posts on Instagram. And when it comes to growth, remember that Path Social is one of the best Instagram automation tools.

Path Social’s proprietary growth tool helps you reach your target audience fast. As a result, you’ll see new followers and even tons of engagement on your posts in no time. Start expanding your community and gaining followers with our help today!