I’ve been slightly addicted to Instagram for a while now. But beyond lovingly stalking some of my favorite travel, motivation, and food accounts, the photo-sharing app has helped me attract new clients, land speaking engagements, find story ideas and partner with other small businesses to boost my brand’s visibility. Simply put, there’s money to be made on Instagram. So, who’s here for it?
Now listen y’all before you go running off to choose your best filter for the ‘Gram,” take note, consistency, clarity, and hashtags rule. Hands down, Instagram is a great way to showcase the personality of your brand through pictures, but you’ll need a strategy along with the right tools to help you connect with your target audience—otherwise, you’re just talking to yourself. Below, check out 4 apps to help you rock your brand on Instagram.
Analyze your audience, research hashtag impact, monitor your conversations and improve your performance with Iconosquare –Iconosquare is an Instagram analytics tools. When it comes to marketing your brand on social media, your analytics can tell you a lot about your audience: What kinds of post are resonating with your followers? When is the best time to reach your followers? Which filters trigger the most likes and comments? Who are your favorite Instagrammers? You can also track and manage contest through the Iconosquare’s campaign feature. After you sign up for the 30-day free trial, you can sign up for the basic plan for $2.40/month.
Additionally, hashtags are your BFFs on the Gram. To find the best hashtags related to your industry, I love Hashtagify.me. You can also use the search field within the Instagram application to find related hashtags. And if you need to figure out which hashtags top influencers in your industry are using, check out Twittonomy.
Design eye-catching social media posts with Canva – With a gazillion clean and crisp templates for everything from social media posts to ads and presentations, it’s a quick and super easy way to create marketing materials. The basic options are free, but if you’re looking to create branded templates such as letterhead, pitch decks, and presentations, and collaborate with your team there’s Canva for work, which is 12.95/month. There’s also a free 30-day trial available.
Create quick and easy web templates with Creative Market – Whether you’re looking to create a logo, mockup, Instagram template, or keynote presentation, Creative Market is a one-stop shop for most of us who just want to plug and play. I purchased a simple template from Creative Market to promote my eBook, Wake-up, Slay, Repeat: 7 Step Guide To Quitting Your Job and Creating a Life on Your Own Terms (yes, it’s a shameless plug :-)). Most templates are ready to use, but take note some may require Photoshop. Prices vary and templates are sold by independent creatives.
Schedule your post with Later (formerly Latergramme)– Friendly reminder, I’m all for finding ways to automate, delegate and delete routine business functions. But I’ll be the first to admit, when it comes to social media marketing, consistency ain’t easy but it’s critical for growing your brand and attracting a loyal audience. Apps like Later can help you schedule and manage your post and avoid the hassle of trying to juggle business operations, marketing, sales, etc. The app is available on your desktop so you can plan your Instagram post in advance. The only downside to Later is that it can’t post automatically. The app sends an alert to your mobile phone and you’ll have to process the photo and select the filters through the IG app.