This post will walk you through how I plan and organize my Bookstagram content!
I'm very much a planning kind of girl, both in my real life and in my Bookstagram. As such, I will plan out my content as little as a week in advance, but more usually, an entire month in advance. This keeps me organized, maximizes my time during the week, and honestly is just fun to me.
Planning my content in advance allows me to post regularly, every single day, without having to stress too much.
So let's dive right in!
To start my planning process, each month, I scroll through Instagram, looking for monthly photo challenges. These photo challenges are hosted by either one or more bookstagrammers and have photo prompts for every day of the month. I find these posts by searching in hashtags mainly, but also by scrolling through my feed and just saving them as I come across them. For example, for May, I browsed through: #MayPhotoChallenge and #MayBookPhotoChallenge, but I also found some in my main feed from people I follow who were hosting challenges.
In those tags, I looked through until I found two or three monthly challenges that I either liked the aesthetic of (#DarkLibrariansRead, for example) or the challenge content or host (#OnTheseBlackSands, for example). From there, I grab my monthly planner and start filling it in with prompts that I like from all of the monthly challenges I've saved.
Most of these challenges do not require you to post for every single day of the challenge. As such, I tend to pick and choose from 2-3 challenges to fill out my calendar.
Once I've picked out which prompts I want to do for the month, I will go through and add any rep posts, book tours, or cover reveals that I've committed to doing for the month. Sometimes these can coincide with the prompts I have planned, and sometimes they don't. For example, I am a rep for Novel Candle Co, and part of that means I commit to posting 4 posts a month featuring the products. As such, when I'm going through my planner, if there are prompts that lend themselves to candles, like "Wick Wednesday" or something similar, I will schedule my rep posts to match up.
There are no rules here! This is just to help plan content in advance.
Then, once all of my commitments and prompts are planned out, I'll start planning on a more specific level and start planning what books or products I will feature for each prompt and what type of photo I will take.
This is the part that takes the longest. I try to set aside a day towards the end of the month to do this for all posts for the upcoming month. However, sometimes it just doesn't work out! In that case, I try to take a couple hours on the weekend to at least plan my posts for the upcoming week.
When I have my posts planned out, then I will sit down and start actually taking the photos. This is hands down, the most time consuming part of the process. I could, and will, do a whole post on just doing this part of the process, so I'll do a short version for now.
I tend to take photos 1-2 weeks in advance. I've tried taking all of them for the month in advance, but I find it doesn't allow for last minute changes the way I would like.
So I grab all my post planning pages for the time period I'll be taking pictures for. Then, I read through them all and figure out which books, products, and props I'll need. I gather everything up and go sit in the floor and start taking pictures!
Like I said, I'll go into much more detail about the actual photo taking process in another post. So stay tuned for that one!
Once I get all my photos taken, all the posts planned out and everything, I will upload the posts into my Instagram drafts. I'll type the captions out, add the hashtags, tag locations and accounts, and get it completely ready to post and then save it as a draft. This helps me post faster, because all I have to do is go into the drafts and click the share button!
It is a lot of upfront work, but I find it helps me throughout the week, when I'm typically busier. Planning like this helps me keep posting regularly, because if I have a crazy busy day, I don't have to stress about taking a photo or writing a caption, I just have to click a button.
I've been on Bookstagram for almost a year now, and I've planned like this pretty much the entire time. Up until a few weeks ago, I did all of this planning by hand, either in my phone notes app or on a random piece of paper.
This just wasn't working for me. I needed something more formalized, but also just something prettier. So I made these planner printables, which are available in my shop now! They come in 5 colors, but if you see a color you want that I don't offer, please reach out either via email or Instagram and I would be happy to make you these sheets in any color you want!
This planner pack includes other printables than just the two featured in this post. I'll go through these in more detail in a future post!
Chat with me about your planning process! Do you plan your content in advance or just wing it? Let's chat!
Thanks for reading! I truly appreciate all of your support!