Instagram tools and apps for marketers

Why PR is essential for promoting business-to-business products

Only 28 percent of marketers use Instagram. That means 72 percent are missing out on great opportunities.

These Instagram tools and apps will help you make the most of your Instagram efforts, whether you're creating captivating posts, monitoring your Instagram analytics or converting your Instagram followers to customers.:

1. Flipagram
Flipagram enables you to assemble photos into a slideshow, which it calls a "photo video story." Through these posts, followers can quickly and easily consume a brand's products — it's much faster than going through photos manually — as each photo is seen for about a second before it flips to the next. Clothing retailer Reformation uses Flipagram to introduce its Instagram followers to its new collection. This post drives traffic to its e-commerce store, as Instagram users can shop for the look with the link provided in its bio.

2. Repost
Did you know that 65 percent of Instagram users say they feel honored when a brand @mentions them? Using Repost is an easy way to make your followers feel appreciated. Repost makes sharing other people's photo or videos simple. Just browse your feed or search for a specific user or hashtag, click on the photo and press, "repost." This app is a great way for brands to show their user-generated content (UGC) and give praise to their customers. Lots of big brands and celebrities use tools like Repost. In this screenshot, soccer star Giovani dos Santos uses Repost to share a photo from his teammate.

Tip: Create a hashtag unique to your brand. It will make it easier for you to find user-generated photos for your brand to use, and it's a great way for Instagram users to browse your photos.

3. Like2buy
Nearly four out of five consumers (78 percent) make purchases influenced by a brand's social media. We all know to include a link to your website or blog in the brand bio, but Like2buy takes this a step further, offering a gallery of products instantly available for purchase. Like2buy provides a link that marketers put in their brand's bio. When users click on the link, it takes them to a page of the brand's featured products. It only takes a few clicks to get from a brand's Instagram to its Like2Buy product page. Big brands like NastyGal and Forever 21 use Like2buy to make it easy for their followers to buy.

Tip: Use Instagram captions to say "shop link in bio" to remind users that they can shop for the products conveniently.

4. Layout
Layout is Instagram's collage app, by far the easiest of its kind. It enables you to combine up to nine photos into one image. There are three sources for selecting photos: camera roll, recent photos and an interesting "faces" option, through which Layout compiles photos of people's faces. It includes creative features such as mirroring, flipping, resizing and rearranging with just a few taps.

Bonus: With its photo booth feature, you can snap up to four photos in a row.

5. Instasize
Instasize enables you to post the entirety of your visual on Instagram. If you forget to take a photo in "square mode," Instasize will resize your photo or video-in less than a minute — so Instagram doesn't crop out a hefty chunk of it. Simply access your camera roll, and upload the file you want. Then edit your photo or video, and use the red icon in the upper-right corner to export it by opening it in Instagram, save it in high-resolution to your camera roll or share it on another social network. Instasize has more features than just image resizing — check out its unique overlays, borders, collage frames and stickers. You can download more borders and stickers easily through the app.

6. Over
Chances are, if you've browsed the "Explore" section on Instagram, you've seen a graphic designed on Over. This sleek app was designed for mobile-creative types and Instagram users who are serious about making visually appealing graphics. With Over, you can add text and artwork to your photos. It features both standard and custom-made fonts, as well as original artwork. Over makes it easy to make beautiful graphics for Instagram while you're on the go. If you design your own fonts, you can upload them to Over to use on your photos.