Blog: Crossroads Style

October 13th, 2016 by Jennifer Beile 5 Simple Tips to Build Your Brand on Instagram

Instagram allows bloggers to connect on a more personal level with their followers. Less staged than blog content and less casual than Snapchat, it’s the perfect middle child that gives followers just enough of a peek into a blogger’s real life. It’s what takes them from a follower to a fan.

That is what a blogger, brand, or anyone that is looking to expand their following is looking for: fans. Followers are fleeting, while fans typically develop brand loyalty and have the power to make a stronger impact. Are you looking to build your brand on Instagram? Or just looking to become Insta-famous? (Hey, no judgment here!)

I’ve scoured the Internet for the best Instagram brand-building tips and rounded them up for you below. Remember to thank the little people when you’ve hit it big with your first 100,000 (or more!) followers!


1. Keep it Simple


No worries if you don’t have a fancy camera or professional lighting set up—the biggest bloggers out there are simply using their iPhones. Look for even, natural lighting and a clean backdrop. You won’t even need a filter! If you do choose to use filters, only use one or two to let the natural beauty of your photo shine through.

2. Study Photographs

build your brand

You don’t need to go to photography school, but when you see a photo that you love, ask yourself what it is that you love about it. Is it the lighting, the subject, the framing, or something else? Focus on one or two details when you’re taking your next Instagram photo and see the difference it makes.

3. Consistent Posting


You can’t post once every couple of weeks and expect to gain a massive amount of followers. Posting relevant content three or four times a day will make followers notice you.

4. Engage and Reach Out


Take the time to find new accounts to follow and engage in their feed. Like their photos and leave meaningful comments. They will most likely return the favor. Also, use proper hashtags so that users can find you based on your content.

5. Utilize Statistics


Apps like Iconosquare can analyze your Instagram statistics and show you your most liked photos, most successful time of posting, most successful hashtags, etc. Use these statistics to better cater to your followers, current and future!

Photos Via

August 16th, 2016 by Jennifer Beile Round Up: 10 Fashion It Girls to Follow on Instagram

From fashion magazines and runway models to bloggers and street style stars, we’ve come a long way in our fashion inspiration sources. Fashion has been able to flourish through technology in the way we’re able to instantly share new ideas, images, and videos. Instagram is my current go-to for fast fashion inspo when I’m lacking my own. It’s a backstage pass to the best in the fashion industry!

Check out my round-up below of my ten favorite fashion it girls to follow on Instagram for endless #ootd inspiration.

instagrams to follow

Natalie Suarez (@natalieoffduty) & Dylana Suarez (@dylanasuarez)

I am combining these two stylish sisters into one pick because I couldn’t choose between the two! There is rarely a blog or Instagram post from each that I don’t save for inspiration. Dylana tends to wear more color and take chances with prints, while Natalie sticks to traditional model-off-duty uniform.

Beth Jones2

Beth Jones (@bjonesstyle)

Beth is a fellow Crossroads Style Council member, but there is no nepotism here! I have been following Beth’s blog and coveting her style long before we were recruited to the CTC Style Council. If you are a thrifter and vintage lover, you will fall in love with Beth!

Anne Laure

Anne-Laure Mais (@adenorah)

This stylist and fashion editor has a wonderfully simple, classic style. She is the epitome of #goals and her everyday style is perfect for when you are needing an outfit-of-the-day idea.

Mary Seng

Mary Seng (@happilygrey)

Mary has been one of my favorite fashion bloggers ever since I started to regularly follow blogs. Her style is on trend yet effortless.

Lucy Williams

Lucy Williams (@lucywilliams02)

Lucy is the ultimate “cool girl” and her wardrobe is enviable for those who are looking to add a bit of edge to their style.


Thania Peck (@catcherinthestyle)

Thania’s Instagram is a testament to her genuine love of all things fashion and one that you should definitely be following for your daily dose of style inspo.


Cara Delevingne (@caradelevingne)

Model, actress, and fashionista Cara Delevingne shows her true self on her Instagram, and that includes stunning images from her work, her papped street style, and her candid moments.


Dree Hemingway (@dreelouisehemingway)

She’s a model, actress, and California girl all the way. Dree’s laid-back, Cali vibe is reflected in her style.


Olivia Palermo (@oliviapalermo)

From reality TV star to a style icon in her own right, Olivia’s sophisticated and chic #ootds will leave you both envious and inspired.


Solange Knowles (@saintrecords)

She may be the little sister of the biggest pop star on the planet, but she shines bright in her own way with her music and her taste in fashion. If you love color, all shapes and sizes, and prints, you will love Solange’s Instagram feed.

Who are your favorite fashion it girls to follow?

July 21, 2015 by Jennifer Beile Round Up: iPhone App Must-Haves

I was one of those people who did not think they needed a case to protect their iPhone. I dropped it plenty of times and never got a scratch, so obviously my screen would never crack on me. But a few weeks ago, I was getting out of my car with my hands just a little too full, and down my iPhone goes–in all of it’s glory–onto the concrete. The screen was so cracked I practically cut my face every time I made a call. I had to give in and get a replacement.

What does this have to do with my must-have apps? Well, I also happen to be one of those people who have no idea what “The Cloud” means or how to transfer phone info, so I ended up having to start from scratch. Luckily, you never lose your apps, but it gave me the opportunity to refresh and cleanse; I deleted the apps that I never opened, and downloaded new ones that would benefit me the most, at home and on the go.   Along the way I found some really useful apps, some old and some new, and rounded them up to share!

Social Media


Buffer: An all-in-one social media posting and scheduling platform that provides analytics based on clicks.

Bloglovin’: My favorite RSS feed for keeping up-to-date with the blogs I follow, saving favorite posts and discovering new blogs.

Snapchat: We all know and love Snapchat. It’s quickly becoming my favorite social media platform, and the first one I check each day!

Periscope: A live video streaming app, I use it to see behind the scenes moments or Q&As with my favorite celebrities and bloggers.


Personal Organization


Dropbox: Forget the Cloud on your phone; you can set up all your photos and documents to automatically save and sync to all your devices with the Dropbox app. All you have to do is set it up and let it do it’s job!

Calendars 5: This will quickly become your favorite new calendar app to organize your busy life. If you’re a visual person, you’ll love being able to see your whole day, week, or month color-coded by activity type.

Evernote: Another fantastic app for storing all your important documents digitally and syncing them with all your devices. Imagine it as a digital filing cabinet.

Google Now: Think of Google Now as Siri x 10. It will become your new personal assistant, and will even provide recommendations based on frequent activities.


Photo Apps


Afterlight: With an easy to use interface and beautiful filters, this is my go-to photo editor.

Squaready: Why spend all that time finding the perfect composition for your photo, only to have Instagram cut it off? Never lose parts of your photo again with this app!

Snapseed: If you have a little more time to edit your photos, Snapseed is the equivalent of having Photoshop right on your phone.

Photo Manager Pro: If you keep too many pictures on your phone (ahem, guilty), this is the perfect app to store, organize, transfer, and share them all securely.


Health & Fitness


Nike+ Training Club: This is a great app to use when you don’t have time to get to the gym, but still want a trainer worthy workout. You can do all the routines in the comfort of your own home with little to no equipment.

Fooducate: Food labels can be tricky to read; simply scan the bar code and this app will help you understand the quality of the product, not just the calories. You can also use it to track your food and exercise and stay motivated with the online community.

HeathyOut: I always, always read a menu before going out. Sometimes out of curiosity, sometimes because I know I will take longer than everyone else at the table, but most of the time to make sure there is something healthy on the menu. This healthy restaurant guide app will help you stay on track, even when eating out.

Glow: This is for the ladies! It is so important to be aware and to be knowledgeable about your body.




Shazam: I’ve discovered so many new songs and artists with this music identification app!

Mallzee: Shop 100’s of your favorite stores in just one place! I apologize for the trouble this one might get you into!

Stylebook: Importing photos of your clothes creates an incredible handheld version of your closet and makes it so much easier to plan outfits and keep track of what you have. Whenever I am shopping, I try to think of 3 ways to style a piece before buying it and this app has made it so much easier with a digital version of my closet that I can take anywhere.

Dubsmash: Use the user uploaded sounds or upload your own to create silly lip synching videos to send to your friends.