So I’m writing this from a place of deep sympathy. I feel so bad for you. Your friend, that follower, that account won’t tell you what they use to make that graphic on Instagram or Facebook. Just how Jim from The Office moved his seat all the way down in the hilarious GIF above is how they treat you. I know. I know. You’ve been bullied.
*hands tissue* Don’t worry. Gigi is here with the list that you need to know. I’ll be updating you if anything new comes out but for now, let’s get into this list. From now on, you won’t be an outsider. You’ll be an insider. You’ll feel like you just dropped 20 hot bars during a rap battle after posting your graphic. You’ll be the next Biggie on the social media block.
(These are not ranked in any particular order)
- Over (Graphic App): I love this app because it has the ability to have layers. So imagine one thing stacked on another. So I can put a layer of text on top of an image and I can put another graphic on top of that. The crazy thing is that you can export them as transparent layers. My church needed a quick t-shirt graphic. I made the canvas size 3000 x 3000 pixels and designed it using the fonts (I did purchase a few from their premium kits) and exported it. Sent it to the t-shirt printer. (Similar Apps: Studio Design, PicLab, )
- WordSwag (Graphic App): This app has changed the game for so many brands. It’s a typography creator. Basically you plug in your text and it lays it out different ways so that it’s not your boring usual post. The update now offers gold foil (for the glam ladies) and other textures. The gold foil is being overused in my opinion. However, I suggest balancing it out by using a similar app called Typorama. Please, purchase the “remove watermark” option. It makes me cringe when I see the watermarks. (Similar Apps: Typorama (duh), Kwote, InstaQuote (not a generator))
- Canva (Graphic App & Online Software): This online program has helped so many businesses create graphics on the go. You can create e-book covers, social media banners, documents, brochures, and more. It’s a FREE online program. Their premium plan (Canva for Work) does have some benefits but you have to weigh the pros and cons. I’m not going to go through the details because you have Google and you can simply visit Canva to look up the fine print. I’m not your fairy godmother. Just a US citizen doing their duty to fill you in my friend. Now, they released their app version for the iPhone (they had one out for iPad for a while) and in my opinion it’s crap. It definitely needs some more fixing and tweaks. Canva works best right now for the desktop and iPad. You can only do so much on the iPhone app. There really isn’t a similar app to this platform. It’s that amazing and it’s really helped all brands of all sizes become their own graphic designer for free. At the same time, there are many limitations. It’s a free platform though. You can’t get it all for free. (Similar Apps: Adobe Spark (Adobe also offers video creation!))
- Legend (Video App): Use this to put text on top of an image and turns it into a video. Comes with various layouts. It’s a generator as well. You just type in the text and go from there. (Similar App: Ripl)
- VidLab (Video App): This app used to be my favorite. Smh. You have the ability to pull short clips from YouTube (under 4 minutes). However, this app hasn’t been updated to fit Instagram’s new time limit (1 minute). So you can only make videos for 15 seconds -__- What am I supposed to do with 15 seconds? Smh. However, I still use this app to make quick vids. Plus I bought all the premium perks so I’m trying to get my $2.99 worth. Best believe!!!! (What I’ve moved to: Quik (bought by GoPro)-Quik is amazing and now that it’s been bought by Quick, I’m excited to see how this app grows. It’s a generator as well and you can add pictures or just video. Quik also comes with music to use for your videos/picture slideshow so that’s a lifesaver in so many ways. Plus, you can always use your own music if you’d like) (Similar Apps: Use Quik!!!! Also, there’s iMovie)
- ProCam4 (Video App): This is an app to record video in a very defined way. It has so many options to take your iPhone to another level as a small professional camera. (Video Editor/My Other Apps: Videoshop, Cameo, Videorama, Pixelmator)
- MailChimp Snap (Email Marketing App): Why am I including this? Because you can pull your Instagram post & caption and send it to your email list via MailChimp (you can also use photos from your camera roll). Why is this amazing? So let’s say you do super long encouraging posts on Instagram and you know that a good number of your followers may miss it PLUS you want to reuse your content. Use MailChimp snap. They give you a few templates to use and it’s off to send! I once was in a church service and had to send an email blast for a young adult event. I was out of town. I pulled out my phone. Made a quick graphic on WordSwag. Opened up MailChimp Snap and added the image and typed up a quick blurb and sent it off. (Similar Apps: MailChimp-to see stats, add subscribers, and more)
- Buffer (Social Media Mangement App): I use the online version and then use the app to post. Now this baby automatically posts to Facebook and Twitter for you but not Instagram. They just recently added Instagram and so I use it to schedule my posts. I also like it because I can add them into my online account and then go to my phone and the caption is already there. There are other programs that do this but I’m a huge fan of Buffer sooooo…yeah. (Similar: Later, Publish)
- Planoly (Social Media Management App): I’ve been using this for the past 2 months now for my Instagram. I think it was kind of pointless in purchasing it so I’ll be cancelling my account after this month. However, I wanted to test it out. It basically shows your Instagram layout just how it would look on IG before you post. So I can preplan my whole Instagram layout 2 weeks in advance if I want to and I’ll know exactly how it will look. So this is really cool if you’re into making your Instagram timeline into a work of art. However, once I figured out that I was doing picture and then quote and repeating that, I don’t really need to plan that out. Lol.
- UploadnRoll (Snapchat App): So there are times I want to promote stuff on my Snapchat and it’s stuff in my camera roll. I use UploadnRoll to post stuff onto my Snapchat. There are still glitches. It logs me out out of my actual Snapchat because you have to log in via UploadnRoll. However, it comes in handy a few times.
- Dropbox (Storage App): Use this to store social media posts in folders. You never know when you want to reuse content. You can also use Google Drive but Dropbox is my preference.
- Repost (Social Media App): So I get tired of screenshotting things and then reposting. So I just use the repost app. I paid for the watermark removal. I hate seeing watermarks. Just a personal pet peeve. It’s kind of like people seeing your underwear. Nobody wants to see that Leroy!
- Photo Editing: Here is just a list of ones I use…Camera+ (love this one), Enlight, Vsco, Fused). Now, there is an app called FaceTune that many makeup gurus and just crazy people use to edit their face. Baby, this thing takes away fine lines, adds lip color, will shed pounds by slight photoshop, and more. Use with caution. Don’t try to catfish that man babygirl. For collages, I use LiPix Pro.
- RecoLive (Video App): Small churches/Plant Churches are using this app to replace having huge tv cameras that bust their budget from the start. Use this app with a few iPads and you have a small amazing video team for your church/brand. I’ve helped a few churches switch to this app. I really suggest checking it out: http://recolive.com/en/
- Pixelmator (Graphic Software/iPhone App)(the Mac Computer version)-If I could be a Pixelmator spokesperson and travel the world speaking to small businesses, I would. Why? I’ve created tons if not thousands of social media graphics in the course of my past 5 years as a graphic designer. Pixelmator is my go-to next to Adobe Photoshop. It’s only for Mac users. It’s an amazing program that includes the basics that you need to create beautiful graphics. I’ve rarely needed Photoshop for many of my projects unless I’m creating vectors in which I need Adobe Illustrator. There are definitely some limitations but it’s a really amazing platform.
Welp, we’ve reached the finish line. Maybe you’ll BOSS up your social media graphics. Maybe not. Who knows! However, I hope the next time someone tries to keep you on the outside when it comes to what apps they use, you’ll already be in the KNOW! You’ll be feeling like Stanley from The Office on Pretzel Day. Baby, it’s a good day!
Now, I’m sure I’m missing some apps. Of course, there is good ‘ole Photoshop. You can’t speed past learning Photoshop. Just download it, find some YouTube videos, and start practicing. It took me a few years to master it and you have to have a passion for graphics and the creative world to get good at it. I have a pet peeve with people who try to rush through becoming a great designer. Photoshop is a life saver for me because I know that none of y’all are using an app to create my magic. Haha. However, technology is really creating a bridge between amazing graphics and the everyday business owner/organization. So check out these apps. I’m sure there are a ton that I missed. However, I can only talk about what I know and have used. Here is a quick snapshot of one of my screens.