4 Apps To Raise Your Insta-Game
In 2014, my approach to Instagram was achingly simple.
I would see something, take a photo, apply a disgraceful filter and its equally woeful border, and hit publish.
Three years on and a lot has changed on Insta, for better and for worse, and now the way that I prepare a post has changed too. Today I'm talking you through four (technically five) apps that I use regularly, just in case you fancy trying them too.
Are you ready? Let's dive in...
My editing app of choice, I've been using VSCO for years and love it so. Chances are you have heard of VSCO already, so I'll be brief: it has the most stunning filters I've found, is straightforward to use and you can now copy the edits from one image and paste them onto another. If you're interested in a post on how I edit my photos using VSCO please let me know, as I would love to show you!
Two planning apps, two very similar experiences. I started out with Mosaico and use it exclusively for my personal Instagram account. It's beautiful, easy to use and allows you to upload images you are thinking of sharing to your gallery, where you can move and change them until you are happy with their appearance in grid form. You can then pre-plan captions, create and save hashtag clouds to add easily to your post and then set a notification to remind you to share it. (As yet there aren't any apps that automatically share posts for you, Hootsuite style.)
There is however a catch with Mosaico – it's not free. There's a startup fee of £5.99, and if you want to add a second account there is a monthly cost too. When I first downloaded it, I hadn't heard of any alternatives, but when looking for an app to use collaboratively with a team for a client's Insta account, I came across Unum.
Unlike Mosaico, Unum is free to download, and there aren't any extra costs until you use up the allowed number of grids that the app comes with... for me, however, there are more than enough! It's really, really similar to Mosaico, but has no startup charge and syncs across devices flawlessly, perfect for teams running the same Instagram account. I've found it a tiny bit glitchier than Mosaico (I can't automatically copy captions on my phone, for example) but it's well worth looking into if you're after a free app to experiment with.
Stuck for hashtags to use? Focalmark has your back. Simply choose the type of image you're sharing, where it was shot and what you took it with, and hit "Generate" to receive 30 hashtags to copy and paste on your next post. You can choose which of the filters you want to use; I, for example, rarely use the camera filter to search hashtags, so leave it blank most of the time. I don't use this one exclusively as mixing hashtags on Insta is really important for exposure, but it's a great free app for when I'm feeling stuck.
One that I'm forever meaning to experiment with more is Canva. Sleek in its design, this is a great option for creating graphics for your Instagram story. There is a great number of surprisingly high quality visuals that can be easily altered, adding your own images and text to create something personal to you. The second I'm finished with this post I'll be off for a cheeky play myself!
And there you have it – the four apps I'm loving most for my Insta game! If you fancy a follow you can find me here – and do let me know if you fancy a post on how I edit a photo for Insta!