Innovation Birmingham Campus-based Turn Partners Ltd has launched its latest product – Hopper – the world’s first fully automated scheduling tool for Instagram. Within the first two weeks, social media agencies, brands and individuals have scheduled posts to over 18 million unique followers each day.
Hopper is the first tool that enables its users to schedule an Instagram post for a specific date and time, in the way that popular applications such as Hootsuite and Buffer enable posts to be scheduled across Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. The user friendly platform has the same extensive range of picture editing tools that are available within the Instagram app, as well as enabling pictures to be uploaded from multiple sources, such as Dropbox, Google Drive and a user’s own files.
Turn Partners has spent over six months developing the scheduling technology that enables pictures to be posted at any chosen time and date from a desktop device. Hopper also saves each post in an archive list, with details of how many likes each post has generated.
Mike Bandar, co-founder of Turn Partners, said: “Instagram now has more users than Twitter. It has become an invaluable platform for brands to communicate with a mass audience and engender brand loyalty and sales. Until the launch of Hopper, all Instagram posts had to be made from a smart phone, or tablet in real time. If a brand wanted to post a picture out to its followers on a Sunday evening, there was no option to schedule it in advance.
“With the UK representing only a fraction of Instagram’s user base, we have launched Hopper globally, with the pricing currently set in US Dollars. Through an SEO strategy and targeted marketing, we have already secured over 100 customers to sign-up to either rolling monthly or annual Hopper accounts. While we have won business from a number of UK social media agencies and brands, the majority of our customer base is located in the USA.”
Paul O’Brien, Director of Fresh Face Media said: “Hopper enables us to manage 11 separate client Instagram accounts with ease and efficiency. We previously avoided offering Instagram management, as the overhead was too high, but now it is one of our fastest growth areas.”
Hopper offers three standard packages, with bespoke options available to agencies. The Basic package is priced at $19 per month to schedule posts for one Instagram account with up to 3,000 followers. The Pro package is $37 per month for one Instagram account that can have an unlimited number of followers. The Power package is $90 per month to schedule posts for seven Instagram accounts, each with an unlimited number of followers.
Hopper is one of the tech start-ups currently enrolled on Innovation Birmingham’s Entrepreneurs for the Future programme, which assigns an Entrepreneur in Residence to work with each start-up for a six to nine month duration. Additional benefits include free office space, meeting rooms, wifi, telecoms, access to finance, visiting expert sessions and a wide range of networking events and peer group sessions. 115 tech start-ups have been incubated by the Entrepreneurs for the Future programme since November 2009, with over £7.8 million raised in initial investment rounds.
Pictured above: Mike Bandar (left) and James Vardy, co-founders of Turn Partners Ltd