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Need to schedule posts on Google+? Google is not going to make it easy for you. Google+ doesn’t let you schedule posts as Twitter and Facebook do.
For a long time, Google didn’t provide an API that allowed third-party apps to post to Google+ at all. Google now does provide an API that enables third-party apps to post to Google+, but only to Google+ pages. If you want to schedule posts to your personal Google+ stream, you’ll have to rely on an unofficial solution.
There’s no built-in way to schedule posts on Google+, even for Pages, so we’re left with third-party apps. These services will help you schedule your Google+ content, whether Google wants you to or not.
Do Share – Schedule Personal Google+ Posts
If you want to schedule posts to a Google+ Page, skip this section. This is an unsupported, unofficial solution and it isn’t ideal. However, it’s the only good way to schedule Google+ posts to a personal profile’s stream.
Do Share is a Google Chrome extension which allows you to write Google+ posts and schedule them for specific times. When the chosen time arrives, Do Share will automatically publish the post to Google+.
There’s one big catch here. As a Chrome plug-in, Do Share runs entirely on your local computer. In other words, it will only publish the scheduled post if your computer is on and Chrome is running. If you’re using Do Share, you’ll want leave your computer on, ensuring it won’t go into sleep or hibernate mode, and leave Chrome running all the time.
Do Share doesn’t use officially supported methods to post to Google+. It has very mixed reviews on the Chrome Web Store, with some people reporting that it doesn’t function properly. However, we’ve tested it and it does appear to function. It may function inconsistently, have bugs, or stop working at any point in time. If you do use Do Share, you should check your Google+ stream occasionally to ensure it’s actually working properly.
Buffer – Schedule Google+ Page Posts
Buffer is an auto-posting service that’s widely used to schedule posts to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and even App.net. In addition to these services, Buffer has recently added support for Google+ Pages. This support uses Google’s official API, so Buffer should work very well for people who need to schedule updates to Google+ Pages.
Just create a Buffer account — or log into one, if you already have one — and connect your Google+ Page to Buffer as you’d connect any other type of social media account. You’ll then be able to schedule posts from the Buffer website, with the Buffer browser extension, or anywhere else you can schedule Buffer posts from. Google+ support is available to everyone, even users of Buffer’s free accounts.
HootSuite – Schedule Google+ Page Posts
HootSuite is a full-featured social media management solution that can do everything from analyzing traffic to tracking mentions of your brand on social networks. It also has built-in message-scheduling features. Like Buffer, HootSuite can now schedule messages to Google+ Pages using the same official Google API. Google+ Page support is available for all account types, including free accounts.
If you’re not sure whether to use Buffer or HootSuite, you may want to give them both a try and see which has the right interface and mix of features for you.
The SMS Trick
Some people have also reported success with using SMS to schedule Google+ posts. It’s possible to create Google+ posts via SMS messages in many countries, so people have attempted to automate this. There’s even an IFTTT recipe that takes an RSS feed and monitors it, sending SMS messages to Google+ via Google Voice.
We haven’t tried this ourselves. It’s a clever hack, but it’s also precarious and involves stringing together many different services. If you have a Google+ Page, you’re much better off going with a service that uses the official API like Buffer or HootSuite. If you have a personal profile, Do Share will definitely be easier to setup.
If Do Share isn’t working or you want to automate the process of posting Google+ posts to your personal stream, it’s possible the SMS method may work for you. But this trick is a dirty hack that’s not too easy to set up.
Google clearly sees post-scheduling as something only important for brands and companies curating a Google+ Page, not for average people to use on their own personal profiles. Google may also be worried that adding an API that allows third-party services to post to Google+ could result in spam.
Until Google changes its mind, we’re left with using third-party apps, some more official than others. Do you know any other ways to schedule Google+ posts? Have you used any of the services mentioned above? Leave a comment to let us know which service you prefer and why!