I am writing a lot about Instagram these days. As a matter of fact, whether we like it or not, Instagram is the most popular and sought after social media. Brands look at your Instagram first so you better up your Instagram game if you want to stand out. The thing is, lately, it is very aspirational feeds that are getting attention and growing. Now, the problem is that traveling a lot requires a lot of money that most of us don’t have. As for creating amazing photos by editing a bunch together, well, you got to have those skills, and again, not so many of us have them.
So… I have done my research and come up with a solution.
Since I changed my approach to Instagram and started a new account, I have managed to grow quite steadily. Three weeks running it and I have tried a few things, that I can now report on.
And just so you know and can breath, NO, you do not need to travel the earth nor develop crazy photoshop skills. I’ve got five apps that will help you up your Instagram game!
First one first. If you type into Google “How to grow on Instagram”, timing is one of the first advice you get. You need to experiment, post at different times of the day, check out when your followers are most active to see when you’d get the best engagement. Remember, the higher the engagement, the higher you rank in hashtags, the higher your chances to show in the explore feed and thus to get more followers. So I tried this app called WhenToPost, which gives me the three best times of the day (or night) to post at for each day of the week. This app really helped me find the best times to post. I could clearly see a difference in engagement when posting at a time the app suggested or posting any other time. The app is free to download and gives you access to your three best times. You can make in-app purchase if you want more details on your Instagram timing.
Not that I follow a theme or anything (although now sort of), but I like to have a preview of what my feed will look like. Just so that the photos and their respective colors go well together. I know that a few apps out there offer the option to plan your feed in advance but none offers scheduling for free. Planoly does. What I love about Planoly is that it has a lot of features. You can create a hashtag directory in there. When scheduling, you can just select the hashtag list you want (that you’d have created before). You can geo tag locations and tag brands in the app in advance of posting. Furthermore, best of the best, you can schedule posts for both your feed and stories! The app is free to download and you can upload 30 posts a month for free. If you go above, you’d need to pay a monthly fee of £7.99. If you post once a day, I guess I can stay on the free plan. I use it with WhenToPost as my best time to post very often are early morning UK time which is middle of the night US time. The app also offers some stats of your most performing posts of the week, month or year. Planoly has made my life much easier!
Editing on Photoshop takes a lot of time. Whether you try to blur out the background, change the color of an outfit or just change the lighting. It does help to change photos and make them great. As far as the colors and lighting are concerned, you can use some other apps like Snapseed. But if you just want to add some interesting details to your photos, you can just use Adobe Sketch. I have used it quite a lot lately and it is really easy to use. I am still experimenting with the app but, if you follow me on my new Instagram, you can see that I’ve been doodling star contours, brushing over photos, adding lines and shapes. You can see what did here and there for examples. It is super simple but sometimes it is a very small thing that can change a photo and make it stand out.
This is my absolute favorite editing app at the moment. PicsArt is further advanced than any of the other apps I have used in the past. It allows you to do a lot of things. A lot of features are for free, while others come with a fee. So far, I have mostly used the app to add details to photos such as flowers, butterflies other small things. Within the app, you can change the size of a photo, add effects, embellish, edit and add stickers. It is the sticker function I use most. The app lets you the option to cut or remove some bits of new images or stickers to help incorporate them in the original photo. You can see examples of the first photos I edited with PicsArt here and there. As I now know how to use the app better, my edits are bolder. You’ll see this on my Instagram feed in the coming days. It’s been quite fun playing around with the app and create imagery that is a bit more creative that what I used to do.
I think everybody knows Unfold by now. It is not so much for your feed, much more for your stories. The app is free to download and many templates are free to use. If you want fancier templates, you can buy them for £1.99, which will give you limitless use. You can download the templates again if you change phone. The app remembers you buying previously. Although stories are meant to be more spontaneous and raw, I think using Unfold makes them look really nice. My fav templates to use are JN1 and RP1.
What applications do you use for Instagram? How did you up your Instagram game? Are you trying to do things differently on Instagram? Have you heard of or used any of those apps?
Thanks a lot for stopping by. Hope you liked this post.
See you soon,
I love Instagram and these tips are really great to step up your game. I’ve been trying to figure out how to make my pictures more attention worthy, and these tips will help.
I absolutely love using Planoly! I use it myself to schedule my content
I hadn’t heard of these before. I will be checking them out for sure. I am trying to get better at posting on Instagram.
I don’t use any of these but have heard good things about a couple. I need to download them and give them a go.
Thank you! I was just looking for something like this for my instagram, app to improve its aesthetics
Deffo gonna download Planoly! Beats waking up at 7.30am just to get a post up haha
It absolutely does!
oh these are amazing!!! I know planoly but didn’t know the other four. Thanks a lot.
When To Post sounds awesome, and definitely like something I need because I’m not sure at all when I’d be getting the most engagement.
Julia // The Sunday Mode
Wow! I never realised that there were so many more Instagram apps. I have heard of Planoly and Snapseed but not the other four apps that you mentioned. For someone who does not have an Instagram account, I am learning so much.
I didn’t know about these apps. This is quite informative for me.
I can’t believe I’ve never heard of some of these apps! I really want to up my Instagram game so I’m going to have a play around with some of these!
The Crown Wings | UK Travel & Lifestyle Blog
I am your follower and I have to agree that your post in IG is amazing and I always love the colors and the backdrops. I didn’t know that we have to experience with the timing too. Cool tips to learn from a pro like you. I want my pictures good too.
This will really enhance your Instagram profile. I am sure these are will boost up your likes and attention. I am going to use all of them.
I will try each of them! My instagram definitely needs a boost!
I’ve not heard of ANY of these apps, so I’m psyched to try them out. Thanks!
I haven’t tried 3 things from this list. I will have to check them out, definitely need to grow up Instagram Game.
I really like these ideas! I am always down to try some new things out on the Gram!
I haven’t heard of many of these apps. I use Preview. It sounds quite similar to Planoly. I like that it allows me to see how my feed will look. That way I can try and have some sort of mild theme going on.
Planoly is the only one I have used before but I will check all these other apps out as they sound great.
These are editingg apps I’ve never heard of. I have an instagram account for my food blog, I’ll have to download these.
This app has changed my entire Instagame. Because the #1 thing I recommend to grow your Instagram is plan. ahead. Think about it for a hot sec:you want a lot of followers that s a big audience. Would you walk on stage in an auditorium full of people without knowing what you were going to say or do? Heck no. Because what you say or do in that moment influences the opinion of every single person that sees you on stage, and they ll make a snap judgment in that moment whether or not they like you. Simple as that. If you re using Instagram as a tool of influence or a place to connect with brands and do some biz (versus using Instagram as a platform to simply connect with friends and share memories in that way), you ve gotta make it a well-branded, cohesive experience for all. When it comes to creating an Instagram theme, you re really creating your BRAND online. Branding is *NOT* simply your logo, social media profiles, and color palette (and don t let anyone tell you otherwise)! A graphic designer is no 6 t nece ffa ssarily a branding expert. BRAND is a whole experience, and it includes the emotions that someone feels the second they click on your Instagram profile. Are they feeling instantly inspired and uplifted? Moody? Contemplative? Girly? VSCO has a Library feature that is my BFF in planning ahead for Instagram, because it allows you to put photos in a feed similar to Instagram s profile grid to see what works best alongside what. This has been a gamechanger for me, because I lovelovelove being able to see a bird s eye view of what s to come. Not only can you ensure that colors work cohesively throughout your profile, but you can check balance, space, and overall content. Do you have three posts in a row that are very busy and up-close, then two that are farther away with more white space? Maybe you ll want to add more balance in there to give your audience a more cohesive experience
O my this post was so helpful Corinne! I never heard of When to post but this will work wonders for me! I’m downloading it right now. Thanks for sharing ?
Natonya | https://justnatonya.wordpress.com
Thank you so much!! I’m just making the decision that I want to up my insta game (just got a new camera) and some of these sound like they can be real game changers with just a few taps. Loved this!
I know I don’t use Instagram as I should… there’s just so much out there it’s hard to know where to start! I’ve learned a bit with this post and will get with the program ; )
Thank you for sharing this. I so agree with what you said about IG. I’m into Planoly. Very useful. I love how you create your own things using apps and technology! Very creative Corinne!
Thank you for this post, I’m currently trying to build my Instagram and thinking about which times of day are best to post. I currently enjoy using storyart and VSCO for my Instagram.
Abby | http://www.exactlyabby.co.uk
I’m not very good with Instagram and had no idea there were so many apps that could be used to up my IG game! Thank you for the info, I’ll definitely be checking these out! xxx
These are awesome! Will definitely be downloading these!!
Glad it helps 🙂