Introduce yourself to us through your three favorite Instagram posts and give us a little story behind them!
I am a mother, wife, designer, creative director and founder of Planoly – a visual and marketing software for Instagram. This is one of my favorite Instagram posts of my little family taking a #selfie in Hawaii.
When I gave birth to my son Teddy, I dreamt up Planoly to be more organized with my social media strategy (Instagram in particular) as I was a one-woman team executing my own content creation and marketing. Planoly was born out of my own need. I used to shoot, edit, and plan content during his nap times before he woke up in the mornings and after he went to bed at night.
I love sharing my story and my experiences with fellow creatives. I feel that it’s important to share what I’ve learned because I wish I had the guidance when I was younger. Here I am at The Bloguettes Workshop in Austin sharing everything I know about creating a visual brand, marketing, and Instagram.
Tell us about Planoly – you found a solution for something people may not have known they needed. How did it start?
With ten years of experience in the fashion industry, I went off on my own and built my namesake jewelry company out of my 400 square foot NYC apt. The company was bootstrapped with savings, and within the first year, I did six figures in revenue and was carried in stores like Anthropologie and Henri Bendel. I achieved this through pure hard work and hustle – cold calls, trade shows and going to boutiques one by one.
After having my son, I wanted to spend more time at home and decided to slow down my wholesale business while growing my business online. During that time, Instagram was just on the cusp of taking off with influencers tagging brands and sharing their daily #ootd. I saw this and made planning digital content for my Instagram a priority, and it took up the majority of my time. I knew magazines, editors and buyers were looking at my Instagram so I was obsessed with the look of my feed and treated it as my online portfolio.
After showing the tedious process of preparing my Instagram feed and captions to my husband, he thought it was crazy. That was the genesis of Planoly. I took this idea and designed the software the way I wanted. In eight short months, Planoly grew to over 100K organic users. To date, Planoly has over 800K users around the world and has been well-received by every industry across the board (not just fashion)!
Since Planoly is a social media management tool, tell us what role social media plays in your life.
Social Media plays a significant role in my life, as well as my team’s lives. We wake up to Social Media and go to bed with Social Media. It never turns off, so we have to stay on top of the ever-changing landscape in order to stay relevant, to innovate, and to evolve. Social media is where we get our news and stay up to date with family and friends. It’s a form of communication that is slowly becoming the main point of contact for everyone.
As you mentioned, you’re also a jewelry designer! Where do you find inspiration for your pieces?
I have a passion for design and detail, so I find inspiration everywhere, whether it’s in furniture details, personal experiences or architecture. My classic collection consisted of needle designs as a homage to my first love of fashion (my design school major and where I first started my career), so there’s always a backstory to my pieces.
How do you balance both jobs, while also tying the two of them together?
I’m a designer at heart, whether it be jewelry or designing UI’s and wireframes for Planoly apps or the web. It goes hand in hand, and I use the same design theories and beliefs when I design. For me, everything is about the branding, presentation, and how the design makes the customer/user feel when they wear or use our product. I hate the word balance, but it’s all about time-management and scheduling out time for each project. I prioritize by urgency and work my way down my to-do list.
What is one of the most important things you’ve learned from starting a business and building a brand?
Starting a business is hard. It takes perseverance and dedication to start and maintain a successful business. You always have to have a clear vision and try not to stray from it. To me, building a brand is much easier because we’re all about authenticity. Every single feature we add on Planoly is actual needed features that I personally use. The story of our brand is about me, so it’s much easier to tell my story versus making one up. Some of the keys to building a brand are authenticity and consistency.
Who is your social media crush and why?
I have a few social media crushes and can’t name them all but here are a few… I love @glossier and what their team has been doing since the birth of their brand. They’ve always told their story from their perspective and related to millions of women because of their authenticity, and that has never changed.
The same with @mansurgavriel. I’m drawn to designers who put out mindful, and beautifully crafted products with so much love and care and Mansur Gavriel is one of them.
I also love and adore @glitterguide, and it’s Founder @taylorsterling and Director of Content and Partnerships @caitlinkruse. Glitter Guide shares such inspiring and beautiful content that make you feel good and the people behind it is even lovelier! They are so genuinely sweet and supportive of Planoly and has championed us since the beginning. I’ll always be grateful for everyone I’ve had the pleasure of meeting through social media and building those friendships offline.
What’s a social media hack you can share with our readers?
I take a few hours at the start of the week to plan out our entire week’s worth of social media content (sometimes two weeks in advance). Planning is essential, and it’ll save you tons of time and headache. Whether it’s a few hours on Sunday night or Monday morning, you’ll be able to plan everything out for the week so you can concentrate on other tasks.
Another strategy I use is labeling colored post-it mini notes to plot out a month’s worth of blog content. I know exactly who Planoly is going to interview or feature on the blog a month in advance; then I use that as a roadmap to plan daily social content from there.
Written by our Digital Specialist, Nora Henick.
Have someone you’d like to nominate as our next #SomeoneSocial? Tweet us @somethingsocial or tag us on Instagram- @somethingsocial.