Before I had left my job to take my side-hustle full time, I had created an instagram following of thousands of engaged and amazing girlbosses who loved and supported my business, bought my products, and shared my posts with their friends.
I felt so lucky that a tool that I love spending time on, could actually lead me to customers, and clients who helped me leave my job with a cushy amount in my savings, so I felt secure leaving my 9-5 to run my passion-fueled business full-time.Using the right Instagram tools to curate my feed, create impactful original content, and analyze the effect I was having on my followers helped me fine-tune my strategy and make the most of my time while I was trying to balance a job, a business and my life.If you can create stunning, exciting and on-brand content for your account everyday, you’re sure to keep your current followers happy, attract new ones, and keep your feed lit AF.
Here are some of the top instagram tools to help you absolutely kill it on social media:
Design Your Instagram Tools
Even when I didn’t know what kind of business I wanted to create, I knew that I LOVE making things pretty, so Instagram is the perfect platform for me. There are hundreds of tools that let you edit, and enhance your pictures to make them look gorgeous
I make my photos even more gorgeous with tools like
Afterlight or VSCO cam. These tools let me add filters and overlays that make my photos stand out among thousands of posts.
Use these tools to help you define your aesthetic, and create a consistent and unique feed.
If you have an Instagram feed where you post quotes and inspo, try an app like
Wordswag to help you create quotes with fonts and background colors that fit your aesthetic. Planning Your Instagram Tools
When I was trying to manage a busy job and my business, I found that if I didn’t think about what I wanted to post beforehand, I wouldn’t be able to post great content. I realized that planning my posts beforehand was the best way to keep my feed consistent and gorgeous.
A great way to save time during the week, and help you post consistently is to set aside time to plan your posts at the beginning of the week. You want to have a good mix of inspirational, educational and promotional content. This is hard to come up with if you’re rushing to work, balancing your phone, purse and latte, trying not to spill on your new Mansur.
Planoly is an Instagram tool that allows you to plan out all of your posts at once and visually see what your feed will look like so you can have a gorgeous Instagram account. It even allows you to save and group your favorite hashtags so you’re not rummaging through your notes app to find your list of tags. Get Posting Ideas
Trending dates like #nationalchampagneday, #nationaldonutday, attract thousands of views if you can be strategic and create your posts before the rush.
At the beginning of the week, I look at my
social media holidays calendar to see what trending dates are coming up. It helps me create unique and branded content for the relevant hashtags that are coming up- whether its a #nationaldate, a celeb birthday, or a big event like NYFW or Coachella.
Staying on top of trending hashtags helps your content to get reposted, and quickly grow the exposure of your account.
To do this, create an image that is relevant to a current trend with your logo on it. People searching the hashtag for this trend will repost the content to their own feed so they can participate in the trending day!
A perfect example is #nationalicecreamday. Did you search for a #nationalicecreamday image so you could repost it to your own feed?
What if thousands of people were resharing your post, with your logo on it to their own accounts? Instant exposure to thousands more people.
When someone else reposts your content, it’s free promotion for you. This only works if you can plan and prepare content ahead of time, so try and stay organized with a
social media trending dates calendar.
If you sell a product in your business, running a contest or a loop giveaway can be a great way to get attention, if done correctly. Run a contest using tools like
Gleam to give away one of your popular products and pick your winner with an tool like Random Picker. Hashtag Research
You may be surprised to find out that the best place to
pick popular hashtags for instagram is actually within the instagram app.
You can do research on which tags are the best for you by searching for relevant hashtags in the app, and seeing what other people in your niche are using.
Related: Check out this article that breaks down hashtag research strategy for you.
If you’re struggling to come up with more hashtags, you can check out tools like
Hashtagify.me to help you discover more tags. Analytics For Instagram Tools
I love checking my analytics to see how my business and social media is performing. I use my stats to discover what content is performing the best, and helps me to uncover why people respond to something.
By analyzing my feed reports, and the feeds of my clients who I help with their social media strategies, I can help them implement ideas that I’ve seen help them quadruple growth in a matter of months. Yes, reporting may seem time consuming, but avoiding checking your stats can make you waste a lot more time in the long run; posting content that doesn’t connect with your client or sell your product.
Iconosquare is the pioneer of IG analytics. They can help you perform in-depth analysis of your profile to help you ensure that you’re making the most out of every post. Their app is not free, but the amount of information you get on what you can post, the best times to post, your best performing content and much more will help you make the right choices with your feed curation.
Unum app also provides a bunch of analytics to help you find the best times to post, view your most popular posts, and view your best performing hashtags. Sharing To Other Platforms
The easiest way to get people who love you follow you on instagram?
Find the people who already love you on other platforms and usher them to your instagram account.
You can promote your instagram feed on:
Your Blog– Use tools like the instagram widget to send people to instagram
Twitter– Post your instagram pictures to your twitter account and tell people to follow you on instagram for exclusive content. You can even pin a post to the top of your twitter feed with a call to action, asking people to follow you on instagram.
Periscope– If you’re providing awesome content with live streams, you can cross promote using Periscope and let people learn more about your life on instagram
Facebook– You can sync your instagram account to facebook, or promote your latest IG pics on facebook. Grow Your Engagement
Grow your engagement by leaving sincere comments on other people’s posts, and generating a buzz on your own feed. Participate in
facebook groups that have engagement threads where you can post your instagram and have people in the community like and share your content.
Most importantly, the best instagram tool you have is YOU and your imagination. Infuse your own personality into your instagram feed. There are enough people out there doing the exact same thing. Think about what makes you different (even a little weird) and show off that #bossbabe personality inside you. Your new squad is going to love it.