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    7 must have apps to take your Instagram Game to the Next level

    7 must have apps to take your Instagram Game to the Next level

    Everyone wants their business to be “Insta-worthy” and have their posts flooded with likes right? We totally get it!  But when it comes down to creating your social media marketing strategy, you will want to arm yourself with a few of these must have apps that will keep you on top of your Instagram Game! The new Instagram is currently the world’s greatest visual-sharing app, turning everyday Humans into budding artists and photographers, expressing their creativity one filter at a time.  We lovingly refer to the Insta-Takeover as the facebook apocalypse (we still love you FB) however...

    Don’t get too hyped up though because behind every great social media campaign, comes a great strategy (and great social media marketing agency #shamelessplug)!

    Using Instagram can feel a little daunting with all the constant updates, but we can cover you there. You just want to be innovative and creative in coming up with new ideas to entice Instagram users to engage with your brand and we’ll take care of the rest!

    Here, we are going to show you 7 must-have apps that will step your Instagram game up a few notches and have you LOOK and PLAY the INSTA-Part. Here is the rundown of the best apps for Instagram:


    Sendible is your one-stop social media management app. It goes above and beyond other management tools that only allow users to simply schedule posts and have them published directly on Instagram and other social media networks.

    Sendible allows users to schedule posts, reply to followers’ comments and messages via social media inbox, build analytics reports, and coordinate or collaborate with team members. This makes Sendible ideal not just for individuals and business owner, but also for agencies.

    If you’re always on the go, posting and scheduling posts via Sendible won’t be a hassle. Sendible has their very own mobile app. Simply tap the compose box, choose the instagram account you want to update, type in your message, schedule the post, and voila! You’ll have your Instagram account updated.

    Hype Type

    If all of your posts are feeling bland then you’re bound to get doomed. You need an app that will work like magic to all of the photos you wish to post. Hype Type is a majestic tool that can liven up your posts in order to produce quality videos and photos. You can even add typographic styles and create awesome graphics for Instagram stories. By that, you can easily engage with your audience and embark your success.

    Word Swag


    Let out your swag by transforming all your business posts into something impeccable and trendy. If you’re struggling in coming up with right images to represent your brand and products in Instagram, fret not for Word Swag could totally help you out. This app is geared towards those who don’t have any background about complex photo editing but still want to produce eye-catching graphics.


    Filters are what make every photo stand out. Filters bring life and magic to images making them appear surreal yet realistic. Snapseed is a photo editing app that offers a plethora of different filters to choose from. You would surely find filters that would suit your brand. In addition, you could play around with other options that and see what filter resonates or appeals to your audience the most.  Yes, sticking to what you’re used to is great but it won’t hurt to make some changes especially if it is for the better.



    As a business person, you’d rather spend time on things that would make your business thrive. Instagram management could be time consuming. Hence it is a must to have an app that could help you schedule posts to free up some of your time. Hootsuite allows you to publish directly to Instagram unlike any other publisher. Also, if you’re following and keeping track of your competitors in Instagram, Hootsuite could track their strategy and show them right in your dashboard. Sounds cool right? Hootsuite keeps your social streams in one place, you don’t to scramble across various platform to keep track of your social media activities.


    If you’re dedicated into the idea of extending your business in Instagram, Iconosquare is a must-have app. Iconosquare could help you manage your account and can provide you with in-depth and accurate analytics about your marketing status in Instagram. You can also use their feature about hashtags too! It could help you gain more visibility and have the chance of going viral.


    Hashtags aren’t only for twitter. You could also use them on Instagram and gain more visibility. Hashtags are responsible for making words and phrases make a lot of buzz on all social media platforms, including Instagram. Hashtagify could provide you hashtags that could give you the maximum amount of visibility. 

    There you have it! Take your Instagram game to the next level. Download these apps and use them to your advantage and let us know how it goes by tagging @directsalesmarketer on your IG! You might just end up as THAT Instagram marketing rock star!

    Is Facebook Dead?

    Is Facebook Dead?

    I would imagine that at Facebook's funeral, the eulogy would go something like this:


    Dearly Beloved,

    We are gathered here today in honor of our dear friend, Facebook. Lovingly referred to in text as FB, many knew him to be a complicated character, yet one who brought us such tremendous amounts of joy, sarcasm, viral puppy videos, and hours and hours of entertaining...and sometimes infuriating...scroll-stopping fun.

    FB's life was tragically cut short at a very young age. I can’t quite say that I'm saddened to say it’s ended, because he  did have a good run. I remember when we first met in 2005. I was afraid to tell him my real name...


    HOLD UP!!!

    A Facebook funeral? Really? Hardly...but let’s take a look back to see exactly what is going on with FB.

    In 2005, I thought MySpace was where it was at! Best music ever on my profile... totally pimped out to reflect my personality, my style... Although I’m not quite sure I’d consider what I wore then very stylish now...but I digress…

    Then someone asked me: “Are you on THE Facebook?”

    “No! What’s that?” I replied? 

    Facebook had crept its way into my university’s walls, and it was being used as a social platform to make some student program and department announcements. I was kind of forced to sign up, never knowing the BEAST that FB would turn into, or that I would ever actually hand it over my credit card and say TAKE MY MONEY and MAKE ME MONEY!

    Facebook had a really good run, a REALLY good run.

    But things are changing. Facebook is dead, or dying, in some ways. While I am pretty sure if Facebook were a cat... it’s only on its second, or maybe third life…

    For the online entrepreneur, Facebook is truly a “Pay to Play model." And while I am a firm believer of the saying, “You gotta spend money to make money,” Facebook is currently favoring BIG spenders, and it’s affecting the entrepreneur with a smaller budget.



    In part, I know the big players got to where they’re at because they viewed investing heavily in their business was a worthy cause...and so it paid off. Most people in the direct sales and network marketing world love the idea of advertising on Facebook because it's such a small startup investment.

    So, If you find yourself in the second category, still unsure or not quite ready to invest hundreds or maybe even thousands every month on Facebook (all the cool kids are doing it, trust me!) ...

    Allow me to introduce you to Facebook’s adopted child…

    Yep... you guessed it....Instagram (lovingly referred to as IG).

    Facebook acquired in 2012 for a cool billion (Although, not such a big expense when you consider that they bought WhatsApp just two years later for $19 Billion. Instagram was a steal!

    As hard as this may be to hear for those of us who have spent SO much time and effort on FB, it’s safe to say that FB is taking some hard hits right now, but if Facebook is dead, it's either living vicariously through or being reincarnated as Instagram. We’re watching a fast and steady trend of people moving over to IG!

    So, is Facebook Dead? 

    Not necessarily, but I would highly recommend you take an interest in having a solid presence on Instagram.

    In short, when you start an Instagram vs. Facebook debate in the world of online marketing, you’ll get mixed reviews.

    Knowing that FB has the ability to laser target your audience, with data on us that might make some people’s skin crawl.. and that Facebook’s adopted child has access to that same ability... (like father like son) ...makes me as a business owner highly consider IG as my next big thing.

    Just in case you’re not convinced, I came equipped with some stats for ya:

    Want the undivided attention of your audience? Instagram does one thing and one thing only: Show people your content!

    Whether it be your IG Stories, what you put on your grid or the ability to find #EXACTLYwhatyourelookingfor, there’s very little wiggle room for distractions on this powerhouse platform. It’s mode is engage, engage, engage: Look, Like, Comment, Tag. It’s every business owners dream!

    You could argue that Facebook boasts more people than Instagram, but Facebook can get pretty distracting. Just think about your notifications. Are you seeing anything like this:

    • Private messages
    • Posts to groups
    • Notifications for anything you’ve ever commented on
    • Randomly being added to groups

    With all that noise, Facebook is truly a double-edged sword. It’s so valuable in so many ways, but another con is that…

    Facebook Ads can get pretty expensive

    If we’re being honest, it takes hundreds of dollars to advertise on Facebook for what you can promote on Instagram for FREE or much cheaper (we do like the pay to play model because it gets RESULTS).


    Watching the trends and collecting the data, looks like as a business owner, you have two options right now 

    1. you can either pay for engagement on Facebook or
    2. Start pumping out some content on IG for free, spend some time engaging with peeps on there and maybe throw some cash on it for a little extra boost

    Which seems more enticing to you?

    #Instagram hasn’t sold own its algorithmic "soul"

    I remember when Facebook was FREE in the sense that everyone saw what you posted and it was easy to engage.

    Imagine if you were in business then?!

    That’s where Instagram is at -- where the opportunity is largely at -- right now. Check out our article on how to leverage one of IG’s best free advertising tools here: How to Use Instagram TV to Explode in Popularity! 

    You’re actually a little late to the party if your target market is on IG and you don’t have a solid presence there.

    I can guarantee you that IG WILL follow in its father's footstep and increase THEIR pay to play model, making it more and more challenging to reach your audience and come up with the ad spend to get in their feed.

    If you want to keep yourself ahead of the curve, make sure you’re making Insta-efforts, so you can see Insta-results and be prepared before the IG Apocalypse hits (that sh*t is gonna be scarier than zombies!)

    Those three facts right there make it a no-brainer for a business owner to start putting some serious effort and time into learning the Instagram game.

    Unsure whether you're Team Instagram or Team Facebook? (Ideally, both.)

    Are you also struggling and overwhelmed figuring out how to attract new customers, or what kinds of campaigns and ads you should be running?

    We can help! Direct Sales Marketer is a sales lead generating juggernaut, and we're here to help you connect with more customers and spread the word about your business in a way that’s organic, powerful, and true-to-you. 

    For free guides, and live webinars with CEOs and social media experts, head on over to our own Facebook page!



    How to Use Instagram TV to Explode in Popularity (Part 1)

    How to Use Instagram TV to Explode in Popularity (Part 1)



    Instagram TV is brand new on the scene, and everybody's talking about it!

    Obviously, that makes the platform prime digital real estate — but you're probably wondering how to use Instagram TV in the first place.

    What is Instagram TV?

    Instagram TV, or "IGTV," is the newest extension of Instagram. You can access it either through the main Instagram app (you may have already noticed the little orange TV icon at the upper right of your screen), or by downloading a new standalone app called "IGTV." Right now, the IG team is still in the experimental stages of rolling out the app, and this whole new side of Instagram.

    So, what is Instagram itself trying to do? Well, it appears that Instagram wants more long-form video content, in order to rival YouTube.

    Right now, Facebook is the most popular social media site, with over 2 billion active users. YouTube is edging up close, with 1.9 billion...and then Instagram is in 3rd place, with 1 billion users.

    (By the way, if you're thinking of getting a YouTube channel to grow your business, or you already have one but want some of our special hacks for getting more views and longer watch times, check out this article.)



    You pickin’ up what we're throwin’ down...? A BILLION USERS!

    To understand how to use Instagram TV to spark some new leads and generate more sales for your business, you should also know this not-so-secret secret about IGTV:

    It's pretty apparent that IGTV is Instagram's attempt to move in on YouTube's territory, because people enjoy watching longer videos from their favorite creators.

    So how can YOU utilize this trend to your advantage?  Let’s take a look…

    What Kind of Content Works Best for IGTV?

    While you should be yourself, which means you may not be doing fast-paced comedy skits or color-saturated DIY decor, you need to know that IGTV relies on quickly getting your viewer interested with exciting visual and conceptual hooks.

    Again, this is similar to how YouTube operates; the videos that get the most traction are the ones that get the viewer interested in the first 15 seconds. The first 15 seconds of your video are the most critical point because they're when a viewer is most likely to get bored and skip if you don't really wow them or rattle them, says Tubular Insights.

    If you can make it out of that 15-second danger zone, you're in the clear.

    That's a YouTube rule, but majority of IGTV's demographic is even younger, and even more used to quick, flashy content.

     From time-lapse videos that speed through cooking or crafting; to rapid-fire jokes to make people laugh, we are definitely in an age where people are a little less patient. This means you'll want to get good at editing your videos, too.

    You may be wondering, “How do I edit my videos? Do I need a video editing app or software?”

    The answer is, probably, yes.

    IGTV doesn’t give you any way to edit your videos (cut and trim excess footage, put multiple clips together, add an intro or music, etc.)

    That stinks, right?...NOPE! It’s actually kind of a good thing, because it means your competition may not care to put the effort into using outside software/apps to edit their videos...and so, if you do take the initiative to trim out the fat and add some cool tunes...your videos will stand out and above from the crowd!

    After all, the average person is only willing to give you a chance that's a few seconds long, and that's make or break time.

    New platforms of this magnitude only come around once in a blue moon. And now is your chance to get in on the ground floor...but only if you really hunker down and learn how to use Instagram TV!

    A Quick Tour, and How to Get Featured

    Again, IGTV is very similar to YouTube, in that you follow your favorite creators.

    There's a category called "Following," and clicking on that fires up a playlist of videos from, well, who you're following on IG. There are also "Popular" and "For You" categories.

    And that's where things get even more interesting!

    See, to use Instagram TV to grow your brand, you obviously want to appear in these two categories for as many users as possible...but nobody knows quite how to optimize their IGTV videos yet, because IGTV is so new, nobody REALLY knows how its algorithms work.

    So all we have for now are points of tried-and-true wisdom, based on how YouTube brand promotion works.

    But there are some key differences in how you promote with IGTV versus YouTube, because the two platforms have completely different UIs. (That stands for User Interfaces  or the way the app design looks, and how the app is laid out).

    They also have completely different best SEO practices. (Think, YouTube keywords vs. Instagram hashtags).

    If you'd like a more INCLUSIVE GUIDE to what you should be doing at every step — making, optimizing, and cross-promoting your IGTV video — you'll want to read our UPCOMING PARTS of this tutorial.

    We'll dive even deeper into how to use Instagram TV, and leverage this new platform just before it takes off...before everyone else figures out how to use it!

    1. Write the Perfect Video Description

    2. Totally Kill it with Hashtags

    3. Make a GREAT Video Thumbnail

    4. Be Compelling/Funny/Persuasive in the First 15 Seconds

    5. Create a Traffic Loop Between Your IGTV Channel, Your Other Social Media, and Your Website

    6. Get AHEAD of Other Creators by Understanding How IGTV is DIFFERENT from YouTube

    So, stay posted for Part 2 and beyond of this tutorial!