Purveyor of the sweetest baby moccasins in the entire world, Susan of Freshly Picked has, without question, made waves through internet land. At the top of her marketing must-do? Instagram, of all things! If utilized properly, this fabulous tool can help you make huge strides in your pathway to success. And with over 55,000 followers and counting, you may want to take notes.

1. Create an editorial calendar. We try to have planned a week out what we will be posting on Instagram. At the same time, our calendar is fluid because social media marketing works best in ‘real time’, but there are many thing that you can and should plan for.

2. Find your voice (through pictures). The best instagramers out there definitely have a voice to their pictures, at a glance you can tell it is them. If you feel like a certain filter really defines you, stick with it! Some of my favorite photo editing apps are Snapseed and VSCOcam.

3. Be nice! Never belittle or ignore your customers or followers. I try to answer each and every question that is asked, no matter how many times it has been asked. I am also constantly thanking my followers and customers, it’s all because of them!

4. Don’t take yourself too seriously! Have fun on your profile, allow yourself to look goofy! Customers and followers will relate so much better to a brand that is having fun.

5. Keep a 20/40/40 spread on content. Twenty percent of your content should be promotional, promotional is anything that takes people away from your Instagram feed, a blog post, a new item listed in your shop. Forty percent of your content should be what I like to call company, this is the nuts and bolts, behind the scenes, and coming soon, anything that pulls back the curtain and reveals a little more of your company. And the last forty percent is personal.

PS: follow @FreshlyPicked on Instagram here, and @SMPLiving here!

Photography: Weston Colton | Tips: Freshly Picked