For Photographers: Top 8-Apps I Use To Run My Business

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Let’s be honest:

Instagram and social media as a whole has complete done a 360 in the last couple of years!

With the introduction of Instagram stories and our phones becoming more and more like mini portable computers, I have found myself relying on a series of apps that really make my daily use SO MUCH EASIER. And I wanted to share eight of the top apps I use on my phone to run my business. Let’s get to it shall we?


Instagram

Okay, as frustrating as that algorithm can be, let’s all agree that InstaStories and IGTV is pretty bomb.com. Also there is just something so visually appealing about those perfectly curated 9-squares. So here are some of my top app’s I’ve found to make my IG experience just THAT much better

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UNUM: I am such a visual person (wow a photographer a visual person, who’d have thought lol) but because I am a visual person having a daily planner for my IG feed has been a GAME CHANGER! There are multiple platforms and I’ve tried several. UNUM has been the best fit for myself personally. As well as being able to plan out my feed, add captions and hashtags, the app also gives me great stats on my Instagram account such as best times to post, best hashtags to post and the ability to see what posts have been doing the best. The other great option is Planoly.

UNFOLD: Let’s talk about the best app to come out to up the IG story game tenfold! If you’ve not already downloaded this app…you need to do this stat. And just invest in all of the packets while you at it. Unfold has cleaned up my IG story game and really made it so much easer to put ad’s and announcements together. Where I once was using InDesign and Illustrator to make my IG story content which took FOREVER and heaven forbid if I got the dimensions wrong, not takes less than a couple of minutes to make my IG story content look amazing.

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WORD SWAG: One of my FAVORITE courses I ever took in college was typography. Beautiful font faces make everything better! I mean you have seen bad billboards or newspaper ads and you KNOW if they had a better font face their message would be so much more elevated. And the same goes for your IG stories! I love to put my images into Unfold and then throw it quickly into Word Swag to polish everything up. I use it on a daily bases, even if it’s just for my personal IG story posts because it makes everything always look polished and put together. Consider Word Swag the cherry onto of your IG story sundae.

PHOTOS:

I will be the first to admit that I don’t always want to cart my DLSR around to take quick IG Story photos, or hey I’m at a café and they’ve just made the most beautiful lattè art I’ve seen and I want to just take a quick photo but I don’t have my beloved Nikon on me. I’ve got a cure for that. Here are my top apps for taking and editing photos straight from my iPhone without ever picking up my DSLR or opening up my laptop.

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MOMENT: This is one of the newer apps to my daily use but I’ve found myself relying on this app several times (especially in the mom-tographer realm.) I’m not sure what voodoo magic this app contains but open it up instead of your regular camera on your phone and be introduced to a magical land. This app allows you to take RAWS, control your ISO, shutter speed and so much more making you iPhone photos just THAT MUCH MORE!

VSCO: This was literally the first app I ever downloaded when I became a photographer and I’ve just invested into everything this app has to offer because it’s just that good. And where I know 90% of you will already have this app on your phone, I couldn’t write this blog post without mention it. VSCO is the best bar none filter/preset/photo editing app out there. I’ve used Color Story and a few others and always find myself coming back to VSCO because of the depth and richness that the app provides for all my images.

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Lightroom Mobil: I run my business via the whole Adobe Cloud Suite as I design all of my printed goods, website and edit all of my photos (yes, I don’t outsource anything in my business.) And, over 2018 I learned the magical ways of Lightroom Mobil. It took me a bit to get use to it, but I loved being able to use my custom presets right on my phone, it was a HUGE game changer to keep my photos, even quick mobil ones, consistent in how they are edited. Plus, now that I’ve mastered the WI-FI on my Nikon, it’s great to be able to upload photos straight from my DSLR onto my phone and throw them into Lightroom without ever opening my laptop.

BUISNESS:

Now there is a lot that goes into my business to make it run, but there are two apps that stand above the rest that really make a daily difference.

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Quickbooks: This app has literally changed my life. Hands down! This app captures all of my driving and milage and makes it SUPER simple at the end of the day to pick and choose which trips were for business and which were for personal use. Meaning that when tax season comes around it connects straight to TurboTax and that’s a BIG DEAL! Just two years ago I was swimming is gas receipts and driving logs trying to remember and calculate all of my driving I was doing for my business. There’s a bunch of perks to owning quickbooks and because I’m SO PASSIONATE about programs that make a real difference in our lives, if you click here and get 50% off your first year using Quickbooks.

Pinterest: Yes this app is more then where to go to figure out what your going to make for dinner tonight. I’ve set up my business account on the app so that when I’m in the bathroom (let’s be real we all do it!) or when I’m waiting in line at the grocery store I can browse and pin things that I think would be helpful to my clients or even myself for upcoming shoots. By doing this, I have doubles my Pinterest viewings in 3-months. Also having your business Pinterest attached to your phone, means you can make quick Pinterest add’s in a heart beat. And anything that makes my life a little easier, I’m all on board

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And those are my top eight apps I use to run my business. Are there other apps that make running your business easier? Was this helpful? Let me know in the comments.

With Grace+Guts,
-H

For Photographers: Bridal Packet

During this off season I knew I wanted to take advantage of the “down time” to give a lot of my attention and focus to things that had been put on the back burner while wedding season was in full swing.
One of those things was creating a branded bridal packet for all of my brides and grooms that book me. My love language is small gestures and gifts and so I thought what better way then to put together a little something to brighten my couples mailboxes as well as helpful while planning their unique and special day.

Inside I ended up including a copy of my favorite bridal magazine, Wedventure, a mock timeline and a card with my preferred vendors that I designed, my booking guide and my business card. I then found these hand stitched folders made with the most sumptuous black paper to hold all the paper goods together. And then finished it off with these adorable “better together” pennants that I had to have (my office wall is a living testament to my love for vintage pennants, so it’s a little piece of me I get to share with my clients.)

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