free instagram training with emelina spinelli

Building my personal brand on Instagram helped my change my life and circumstances forever.


I went from sleeping in a broken down car homeless in Brooklyn, to working with Fortune 100’s living in Beverly Hills. The experience of my personal transformation made me realize how malleable our situations are and that we can change them for better. I believe creating social media influence can be easily taught and built to be on purpose, profitable, and fun. Now, I teach others to create their own personal brands using the power of social media.

Media Contact:

– – – – – – – – – –

Emelina Spinelli

es [at] dscience [dot] co

emelina spinelli instagram consulting
public speaking social media marketing expert public speaking los angeles, public speaking instagram, marketing strategy social media

Expert Areas/Topics I Can Speak To:

+ How to Grow an Instagram Audience

+ Marketing a brand or business on Instagram

+ The Culture of Instagram Influencers

+ How to Charge for Instagram Posts/ What to Pay Influencers

+ Influencer Campaigns, Brand Partnerships, and Content Collaborations

+ Content Creation and Creative Direction

+ Instagram Visuals/Photography Trends and Tips

+ Using Instagram Stories to Increase Engagement

+ Building a Personal Brand using Social Media

+ How to Creative Direct a Personal Brand

+ Build an Online Business with Digital Marketing

+ Developing Content Marketing Plans to Create Passive Marketing Online

+ When is Instagram too much? Setting Healthy Social Media Boundaries to Keep Yourself Sane

+ Using Instagram to Strengthen Career Highlights and Resumes













I started my influencer journey sleeping out of a broken down car, homeless with my boyfriend in Brooklyn, NY. It’s not a glamorous start, but it’s the truth.


I didn’t want to be in this position, and I sure as heck didn’t think I was going to become an “Instagram influencer” but this is how my journey began.


Moving down to New York (from upstate) I thought I could make it. I was a talented designer and marketer, but I underestimated how competitive New York was. I didn’t stand out, I couldn’t catch a break… I had no market validation. Worst of all, I became part of the homeless population.


Regardless of the web of negative circumstances I had woven for myself, I persisted every day. I knew that if I got myself to the point of homelessness, that I could muscle my way out with an unending work ethic. I am a true believer that we create our worlds and experiences. I knew I could create a better life for myself and this started the relentless pursuit to growing my personal brand.

During the day, I would apply to jobs. At night I would work on my marketing blog teaching entrepreneurs how to market themselves on social media.


It wasn’t easy. I scraped, clawed and climbed my way out of that situation. Oh, and I did shed more than a few tears, and a few grey hairs along the way.


I was freelancing for a PR agency in Manhattan when I was exposed to the world of influencer marketing. I saw a white space. All of these amazing “Instagrammers” with hundreds of thousands of followers didn’t have digital marketing experience. I thought, “if they can work with big brands and live life on their terms, I can too. Especially with my marketing experience.”


This is what drove me to use Instagram as a marketing tool. I played the Instagram game and obsessed over how many likes I was getting on photos and how many followers I gained. I was excited when some of my photos went viral, and my audience fell in love with my style. In the end, all the followers and likes paid off. It didn’t happen overnight, but I’ve been able to build a combined audience of over 100k from scratch.



Alongside hard work, Instagram was the catalyst that helped me change my life, forever.


It was the very thing that took me from homeless in New York to living in beautiful Beverly Hills, California.


Social media was the tool that allowed me to build my personal brand. It gave me the market validation and credibility that I needed to stand out in an overcrowded marketplace.



I went from sleeping in the passenger seat of a car in Brooklyn to working with Fortune 100 brands in Beverly Hills.


I pitched multi-million dollar marketing campaigns, was paid as a brand ambassador to post on my Instagram account, and built an Instagram marketing consulting business.


At the end of the day, I received amazing opportunities because I was more than qualified to do the work— and I had a credible social media following.


Now, I have the opportunity to consult others on building their personal brand and an audience just like I did. I consult influencers on how to use Instagram as a tool to gain more market validation, and new opportunities. I help businesses use Instagram as a marketing tool, and build influencer and social campaigns for big brands.


I’m grateful for the massive personal promotional abilities that social media gives all of us.


Instagram really did change my life.


How do I pronounce your name?


Pronounce it like Thumbelina, but Emelina.



How can I contact you for a story/media opportunity?


Please email me at  es [at] dscienceinc [dot] com


How did you get started in Instagram?



I remember when Instagram began to pick up in popularity a number of years ago. I jumped in once I realized it was a great platform from which to build a personal brand. I was able to grow my following from my 300 friends to 12,000 in just one year.


I began to take Instagram seriously when I was briefly freelancing for a PR agency in Manhattan. They exposed me to the world of influencer marketing and it felt like I had blinders on that were taken off. I understood how social media could be used for more awareness and publicity. I noticed at the time that the bigger “Instagrammers” with hundreds of thousands of followers didn’t have digital marketing experience. I have this in spades so I thought “if they can work with big brands and live life on their terms, I can too.”


How many followers do you have on Instagram?



Just over 36,000.


How would you describe your style on Instagram?


I’ve been working on my style for years, but I would categorize myself as “skater chic”. I love looking put together with a feminine, but also rough skater or biker style. I am an LA-based influencer that loves board sports so sunshine and my longboard, and me having a good time always makes it into my feed.


How long have you been in social media and personal branding? What other experience do you have?


About 8+ years.


I started working with social media for business early on—around 2008. I started my first businesses selling my pop-art paintings and commissioned graphic design work on Facebook. I worked Facebook as a marketing platform to sell my artwork, gain commissions and garner shows around the Northeast. This was in the early days before Facebook had an advertising platform.


Since then, I worked with small businesses to attract more qualified clientele to their brick-and-mortar shops. I built a digital marketing agency where myself and a team would manage social media profiles, build content marketing plans, and drive leads and sales using both Pinterest and Facebook’s advertising ability.


I’ve developed large influencer campaigns with Fortune 100 brands and was part of a small team that created the digital marketing strategies behind big campaigns like the on-pack Pepsi artwork for Fox’s show “Empire” and first to market VR digital content to promote “24: Legacy” in collaboration with Samsung.


How are you building a business on Instagram?


Instagram is a great tool for lead generation.


When people check out my profile and read my bio, they learn that I have a free video training. In my video training, I teach people how I’ve built my following on Instagram and the tactical steps for them to do the same. Using Instagram to drive fans into an email marketing funnel is not only smart, it’s profitable.


I use email to nurture my leads and convert them into sales off Instagram.


I also manage business requests in my DMs, but I encourage people to get ahold of me via email to chat about working together.


I have received a number of clients through Instagram for my consulting business. I’ve also received plenty of paid brand ambassador campaigns due to my Instagram following.


I’m also in the process of building product based businesses on Instagram. There is vast potential to sell products on the platform and look forward to exploring this more.


What does your free Instagram training cover? Can people really follow your tips to build a following?


My free Instagram training covers the tactical tips to growing a new Instagram following. I teach what I’ve done to build an audience of 36K+ and the steps on how I did it. The training is 70 minutes long. I walk through how to attract the right audience, build engagement, typical photo trends that do well in the platform, how to write a bio that sells you, and create a branded “theme” for your content.


This system doesn’t just work for me. It’s worked for the hundreds of people that have taken the training, and my dozens of clients. If you implement the tips I give, you’ll be able to build an Instagram audience.


What’s an Instagram consultant? Why would someone need one?


An Instagram consultant combines the skills of  a social media director, marketing consultant, creative director, growth hacker and influencer —all wrapped up in one.


For Individuals:


Individuals work with an Instagram consultant when they’re looking to build their personal brand on social media. This makes sense for anyone public facing. Having a large social media audience would heavily benefit them to receive more gigs, and opportunities. For example: authors, public speakers, artists, musicians, actors, fitness personalities, entrepreneurs, solo-preneurs, and more.


For Businesses:


Businesses would hire an Instagram consultant when they know they’d like to grow more, and when they want to create a relevant marketing funnel to transition followers to email leads and then sales.


Typically, a businesses work with me when they have hit a plateau in Instagram. These business accounts could have 20k to 100k followers and have reached a level of success.

They know that the larger the audience, the more attention on what they do, the more sales they make.


For Brands:


Brands work with an Instagram consultant when they’re looking to create a specific digital campaign. Bringing in an Instagram consultant would be beneficial to build out the influencer marketing, and creatively direct the campaign to be on trend with content that typically does well on Instagram, while being on brand and innovative.


Typically brands hire me to creative direct their social and digital campaign to generate the highest yield based in Instagram/influencer trends.


Are there other Instagram consultants? What makes you different?


I’m going to answer this question in a few parts. If this question was a Facebook relationship status it would say… “It’s complicated”. I’m sure there are some out there… somewhere. I don’t know that there is anyone embracing the full embodiment of the career the way that I am.


Anyone can write “Instagram consultant” in their bio. It doesn’t make them the true embodiment of this position. Most consultants are generic social media consultants and many don’t have a substantial real follower base in Instagram—but many have an audience over on Facebook or Twitter. The tactics used to grow a Facebook account are almost completely irrelevant to grow an Instagram following. I’ve found that many social media consultants claiming to be adept at Instagram have bought 50K+ fake followers to overcompensate for misunderstanding how the market uses the platform. These analytics aren’t hard to find to see if someone has a fake following, and you can usually tell with their engagement.


To take it a step farther, there are social media influencers that did successfully grow their own accounts. However, they probably won’t become consultants because even though they grew a following for themselves, they become paralyzed when trying to create it for someone else. It’s one thing to create the success for yourself and another to repeat it consistently for clients and receive the same results.


I am able to use the same tactics I used to grow my following to get the same results for my clients. And I have plenty of clients that share similar results, so I know it’s repeatable.


Additionally, I understand how to grow at different “levels.” There are specific tactics to employ on an account with under 50,000 followers, and these are very different than the tactics that would be implemented to sustainably grow an account at 300,000 followers.


I show what it takes to build a following on Instagram (sustainably past 50K) in my free Instagram training.


There are probably a lot of big influencers that could be Instagram consultants too —but it doesn’t make sense for them. They’re making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in brand collaborations. It doesn’t make sense that they would be consulting anything less than big brands.


I’m different in that I walk my walk. I fully understand the native culture that’s present in Instagram. I know the content trends, what does really well and what flops. This takes an understanding of visual presentation, trends, how people engage with the platform and a deep knowledge of growth hacking and partnerships.


I understand all the subtle nuances to visual presentation. For example, there are actually different visual “feeds” that are typical for influencers depending on where they live in the country. Nashville accounts usually take on a more orange hue, Miami always has more yellow and teal, New York is monotone and high contrast, and LA almost always has pink pops and clean white looks.


To another level, consulting for businesses isn’t just about making their content “pop” on IG. I apply the social media strategies to an overall marketing or content plan. For businesses, we develop a marketing funnel to use with Instagram. I’m functioning as a well versed marketer, giving tried-and-true advice to convert followers into email leads.


Who are your clients, and why do they choose to work with you?


My clients choose to work with me because they want to develop their Instagram following and creative content. They see that I have the proven skills to help them through my personal account (I implement for myself everything I teach), and the marketing and branding know-how to bring them increase visibility.


I have a range of versatile clients. I’ll break it down below.


Personal Brands/Influencers:


Individuals work with me to grow their Instagram following and creative direct their brand on Instagram. They know Insta is a hot platform right now, and they’ve heard more than once that they would have gotten an opportunity if they had a bigger social following. There’s pain around missing opportunities. Even though these people may be amazing at their craft — someone else beat them to being hired for a gig because they had a social media audience.


In this scenario, I work with social media influencers, entrepreneurs (with a personal brand), authors, public speakers, smaller celebrities, artists, musicians, and more.


Additionally, I work with influencers with a large existing brand. Let’s say you have 500,000 followers. Most people wouldn’t’ think they would hire a consultant. However, these influencers already understand that any increase in followers is a direct revenue and opportunity increase.


They’re already growing ~20K+ followers a month, but understand the benefit of increasing their growth sustainably. In this case, I provide a high level of support helping them to develop strategic partnership and publicity campaigns that will leverage their existing brand for monumental growth. I’ll also help them concept campaigns and keep them on track with their Instagram goals.


Businesses Looking for Social Support:


Businesses understand that social media helps their bottom line. They just require support around building out specific marketing campaigns, and the funnels to actually track and convert followers and impressions into leads. When I work with businesses, I am functioning as a digital marketing consultant while simultaneously focusing in on Instagram trends and influencer marketing tactics.


Brands with Social-Specific Campaigns:


Brands notoriously have an in-house social media team. It makes sense for a brand to bring me in to develop a specific campaign. In this case, I am creative directing the content for a social/digital campaign to meet key brand, marketing, and content objectives.


What’s your business? What do you do?


I help personal brands, businesses and big brands develop strategic content, branding, partnerships and growth on Instagram.


I help personal brands and influencers elevate their visual style, create a distinguishable brand, and sustainably grow their audience all on Instagram. I support businesses in developing their social media content and marketing funnels to drive business. I help brands develop strategic social and digital content campaigns.


I do all of this through consulting, creative direction and growing Instagram accounts monthly.


Want to work with me? Get in touch here.


How can businesses best use an Instagram Consultant?


Businesses understand that social media helps their bottom line. They just require support around building out specific marketing campaigns, and the funnels to actually track and convert followers and impressions into leads. When I work with businesses, I am functioning as a digital marketing consultant while simultaneously focusing in on Instagram trends and influencer marketing tactics.


Businesses can use an Instagram consultant to help build out content marketing plans and a funnel to take users of Instagram and onto an email list. Additionally, I support businesses around training their social media team to manage Instagram, and I’ll support in helping grow the account monthly.


When is it a good time to look into working with you?


When I work with personal brands, it’s best to get a feel of Instagram for months and see what it takes to grow your account on your own before working with me. My clients all have a great base of knowledge and understanding of Instagram’s culture, that allows me to give them higher-level advice to elevate their Instagram presence. If you’re  new to Instagram, i have a free Instagram training you can enroll in. Take my advice and implement my time-tested tactics. Then when you hit a wall, inquire on how we can work together.


There are a number of times when it’s good to work with me.


  1. When they hit a growth plateau.

Many of my clients decide to work with me when they’ve hit a plateau in growth. They know they could do so much better in the platform, but lack the strategic experience to understand their next moves.


  1. When they’re growing, but they know they could be doing more, better and faster.

My clients know they can do more, but have no idea what. They’ve been doing well in IG, growing an audience. But they realized they’re not bringing all their assets and talents to the table, and they need help holding themselves accountable to pushing their account forward.


  1. They want to “rebrand” and change up their creative content.

Many of my clients hire me to provide some creative direction to their Instagram gallery feeds. They know they could go out there and take some photos. They lack the discernment to know what’s on brand for them, and how often to post what types of content.


  1. They are looking to build a business in the next 1-3 years.

Many clients come to me because they are looking to build a new business in the next 1-3 years. They understand that building an audience takes time and steady dedication. They also understand that it’s more advantageous to start a business with the ability to leverage an existing audience.


  1. They already have substantial “real world” influence, but have a lagging social media presence.

Simply, these are usually Gen-Xers that have “made it” one way or another already in their careers. They’ve put in the time and the work and have significant influence from traditional marketing, networking, big career moves and the like. They’re actors, musicians, artists, entrepreneurs, and more.


They are “successful”, but their social media presence just doesn’t match the amount of actual influence they wield. They realize that social media is a skill they haven’t developed. They come to me to catch up their social media presence to something closer to their real influence.


  1. They want to know where they can improve with an account audit.

Some clients just ask me to provide an account audit. I’ll review their account and their content. I’ll read their analytics, and find out what their audience is responding to. We’ll drill in to what they can do to elevate Instagram growth and engagement and I tell my clients where they can improve. This is best when they want to do it all themselves, and they’re fast movers. They know they just need to know exactly what to do and they’ll execute on the plan to be successful.


  1. Businesses that see their competition out-growing them on IG.

Many businesses will approach me when they see their competition outgrowing them on Instagram. They know how important Instagram and social media is for business, but they lack the necessary skills to vet a team to bring in house, or they’re just hitting a content and growth plateau. Additionally, they know that social media can be used as a marketing funnel but aren’t sure how to make it happen.


Can’t people just buy followers? How does that work?


The short answer is yes, but it is a terrible long term strategy and will sabotage an account.


First, there are analytics programs that allow us to view follower growth. When I see someone gain 10,000-50,000 followers within 2-3 days on Instagram (without a viral sensation or steady growth where this is typical), I know they’re fake. The tip off is that there’s always a huge drop off and the reverse of a bell curve immediately after when I’m looking at the graphs. Instagram frequently deletes fake accounts and there’s always a huge drop off after someone purchases fake followers. This information is public, so it’s not really beneficial for accounts to purchase followers.


A trained eye can see the difference between healthy growth and someone that couldn’t figure it out. It shows in the graphs. Instead of learning how to grow, they give in to the competitive mindset of “I don’t have enough” and buy them, just to experience it all over again in a month.


More people purchase followers than you would think. And even bigger people— influencers, celebrities, social media personalities and even social media consultants. There are countless social media consultants and influencers with 150K+ followers that have to consistently purchase fake followers to make up for the drop-off, and the cycle continues.


Additionally, the moment you purchase fake followers, Instagram knows it. The Instagram algorithm is incredibly “smart”.


It’s constantly calculating the quality of your account against the quality of the accounts following you. Fake accounts are… fake! They’re not real people and subsequently their actions and behaviors on Instagram don’t mimic typical users’ behaviors. I don’t work at Instagram, but this is just common sense here. The algorithm will then take an account that was perhaps previously in good standing and immediately start throttling the exposure and reach of the account (due to buying fake followers).


With this approach, these accounts sabotage their reach and engagement indefinitely.


Inevitably those same people will email me and swear high and low that they know what they’re doing but they just can’t figure out why their engagement is under 2%. It’s simple. Instagram’s algorithm is smarter than you. You can’t get out of doing the real work to grow an account. It always catches up with them.


Don’t expect something for nothing. All good things take consistent time and effort to build.


Are you a blogger? What’s the difference between a blogger and influencer?


Although I do occasionally write on my blog, or on the blog, I do not consider myself a blogger. I don’t write on these sites to win over advertisers, or gain sponsorships. I write to educate my audience driving traffic, leads, sales and business. This approach falls under strategic content marketing.


Social influencers are people on a social media with a substantial audience. Bloggers are writers, fashionistas or the like, that share their reviews of style, food, tutorials etc. with their readers. They often share their thoughts to advertise for different products and brands. Bloggers’ business models usually are based around selling advertisements on their website with unique traffic to their domain. Sometimes these two fields overlap, but they’re not mutually exclusive.


What should people do if they want to get into becoming an influencer? What’s involved?


I have some tips below for people that are interested in becoming a social influencer. The first thing I would say is don’t expect anything to happen on “your terms”, overnight, or when you want it to happen. Building real influence happens with consistent energy and education, posting, branding, and growth tactics. With this being said, it’s very achievable when you put in the right actions.


  1. Create a consistent look and feel to your account. Post daily.
  2. Find a unique way to show your personality (and brand) and to develop your voice.
  3. Use growth hacking tactics like following/unfollowing accounts to begin developing a community.
  4. Take my free Instagram training here.
  5. Bring on an Instagram consultant to get you thought the plateaus and elevate your approach.
  6. Have fun. Seriously, don’t stress too much. Life is short and the amount of likes you get on a photo doesn’t determine your worth as a human.


Is being an influencer a new career that we should look out for?


The simple answer is yes. I’m hearing teenagers now say that they want to be a social media influencer when they grow up.


The catch, is that being a “social media influencer” typically is only going to support a full time career (posting on behalf of big brands etc.) for people with more than 100K followers. And as the years go on, more influencers will grow. This number will inflate higher each year as the demand increases. There is a cost of entry, and I think it’s good for people to be mindful of this.  Being a “full-time influencer” is for people with a substantial audience base.


However, it’s advantageous for most people to build an Instagram following to help them build their careers. You don’t have to make full time income as an influencer to gain the main benefits.


Having a social media audience strengthens most job applications, resumes, and helps get a foot in the door for career moves. I received major big brand opportunities in marketing with only 10k followers on Instagram. If people start using the platform as a means to stand out (rather than make it full time as an influencer), they’d experience tremendous success.


How do influencers make a living posting on Instagram? Can people really earn full time income from Instagram?


The short answer is Yes. People can definitely make a living from Instagram in a variety of ways. The longer answer is, it’s so much easier if you’re running some level of a business. In this case, Instagram would serve as an element to an overall marketing system.


Most larger influencers (100k+) derive at least a portion of their income from creating photos featuring content for brands, then distributing the content to their Instagram audience. Earning a full time income this way is usually only done with an audience of over 100K followers. It’s not always the case, but it’s typically the cost of entry.


However, I will say that there are many personal brands and businesses making full time income with a business they created. They’re using Instagram as the platform to drive credibility and awareness to their offerings. They may accept an occasional brand collaboration, but this is not the focus of their earning potential.


How do Influencers know when to start charging for sponsored posts?


There is a supply and demand economy.


Right now, there is a large supply of people willing to accept free product in exchange for an Instagram post. Most Instagrammers up to approximately 25K, and some at  30K – 40K will accept free product for a collaboration without being paid. This number will increase as the supply increases.


When influencers receive an offer for a paid campaign from a brand, this is the best indication that it’s time to start charging for posts.


There are thousands and thousands of people that will accept free product in exchange for Instagram posts.


I have found, right now that 30,000 followers is the current rough minimum following to effectively begin charge for posts. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule.


What is the #1 mistake people make when trying to gain followers on Instagram?


The number one mistake people make in trying to gain followers is buying fake followers from flashy websites. This may give them fast numbers upfront for vanity metrics. However, the long term effects are detrimental for any progressive growth.


More frequent mistakes are:

– Not being consistent about posting and actively growing their following.

– Posting low-quality content.

– Not engaging with fans so they keep following you and engaging with you.

– Lacking the patience it takes to grow.

– Trying to monetize their audience prematurely.

– The list goes on and on.


What do people assume about your career that isn’t true?


People assume that my work experience is just in Instagram. I am an incredibly versatile and experienced with 8+ years of digital marketing, creative direction, branding, and partnerships. I understand holistically what it takes to market a brand online.


Also, everyone assumes that I spend all my time on Instagram. I’m really spending the majority of my time running a business, and working on my marketing. Instagram is a part of the equation but it’s not my 24/7.


Why do so many micro influencers invest so much time into Instagram if they’re not making a living from the platform? It doesn’t make logical sense.


First, Instagram is fun for so many people as a hobby. The perks? Once you begin to develop a following of at least 3k – 5k businesses start to send free product in exchange for posts. Most hobbyists are stoked to receive free swag in exchange for something they just do for fun.


Second, they’re probably trying to become an “influencer” and find that it’s worth putting the time in now to build an audience. Then there’s the complete flip. It’s also possible that they miss the mark, have unrealistic expectations of what it takes and are wasting tons of time.


Lastly, there are lots of micro influencers secretly posting on Insta waiting for their 9-5 to end for the day.


Can building an Instagram/social media following help your resume? Can it help you get your dream job or career?


Absolutely, Instagram has been pivotal in helping me land many amazing job opportunities.


In the beginning, when I was sleeping out of a broken down car in NYC I had less than 3,000 followers. I landed an amazing gig with West Elm who brought me in to run their DUMO flagship store Instagram account. After that, I got an amazing opportunity to work with celebrity entrepreneur who flew me out to LA to work with her team.


Then in Los Angeles and was able to work on marketing blockbuster hits like “The Nice Guys” with Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe, sliding my way into the competitive entertainment industry. I even designed an interactive Game of Thrones piece for San Diego Comic Con. I received the opportunity to work with Fox Broadcasting because of my ability to market myself on Instagram. In this opportunity, I worked with a small team that closed $12M+ in partnerships in just one year. And the opportunities abound…


I highly recommend building a social media following to strengthen your resume if it makes sense for the jobs you’d be looking for. Anyone in marketing, advertising, business or entertainment should look into building their following.


Do you do brand partnerships or serve as a brand ambassador? What brands have you worked with?


Yes, I do work with select relevant brands as an ambassador. Right now, I’m an ambassador for Magnum Ice Cream. The campaigns have been really fun (as you can imagine ice cream would be!).


At a local level, I am an ambassador for Good People Coffee Co. in Los Angeles. I help drive awareness for their hip, new coffee shop.


On Instagram, I’ve also worked with: Daniel Wellington, Frank and Oak, Thiel Audio, Happy Socks, Forever Matcha, Milk and Eggs (LA), Catalina Tourism Board, Uncommon Goods, Simple Contacts, Le Labo, Minibar Delivery, Gorjana, Free People, Pura Vida Bracelets, and more.


Do you run any other Instagram accounts, personally?


I just started a brand new account that I’ll be building a new audience from scratch. The account is:  I also run a travel wanderlust account:


Do you use a professional photographer for your Instagram shots or do you take the photos yourself?


Yes to both.


I started by taking the photos myself using an iPhone. Then I dragged my boyfriend along with me. Eventually I taught him how to take photos while I hand-modeled with coffee, or while I stood against a swanky mural-wall.


I still take many of the photos on my account using an iPhone 6s plus. However, I also invest in hiring a professional photographer almost monthly to alleviate the pressure of creating so much content throughout the month. It’s often much easier to batch my content with one photo shoot during the month to use for 30 days of content.


Who are influencers that you personally follow and look to for inspiration?


I source so much of my inspiration actually from Pinterest. But there are definitely Instagrammers that inspire me on the platform.


I’ve always been a big fan of @inthefrow. I love Victoria’s style and her high-production content.

I love @jacimariesmith ‘s romantic visuals and candid So-Cal vibe.

@Meglegs has great style and a cute bohemian flare.

I’m always inspired by @pilotmaria ‘s fun travel lifestyle and @pilotmadelieine.

@Melissamale always inspires me to keep my coffee game strong.


Additionally, my friends @austiniuliano @megansnedden @kind_effect inspire me every day


What’s the hardest obstacle you’ve had to overcome in creating your brand?


Like so many creative people, I am multi-talented. One of the most difficult aspects to branding a person is finding a way to incorporate all of their major interests and expressions without diluting the brand. In a way, branding is singular focused. This is what makes it challenging. It can be difficult to show the full spectrum of a personal brand.


Another challenging aspect of personal branding is that we’re ever evolving. As we learn and grow, our brands shift and change and we have to keep up with them. I’ve re-branded and re-positioned countless times as I get to know myself better.  Many people think branding is a “one and done” thing. Actually building a brand is the process of constantly fine tuning who you are and your positioning to the market.


You seem to know so many social media influencers. Could you connect us with some to talk with for media?


Yes, absolutely. Please email me at — es [at] dscienceinc [dot] com and I’m happy to facilitate introductions with relevant influencers I know for your story.


Why do you love coffee so much? We see coffee in your feed all the time.


Coffee represents a lot of things that make me smile. I’ve been working from a laptop at coffee shops on my online businesses for over 10 years now. Coffee and the coffee shop culture has come to represent success, and working on projects that move me forward.


Many people also begin their days with coffee— myself included! In this way, coffee has come to represent my morning rituals and how I choose to start my day. It’s a constant, reminds me to be grateful, and create my day rooted in positive choices I can make .


I just started a new coffee account that I’m looking forward to growing over the coming months. If you love the coffee culture, check out my account—


Get in Touch

es [at] dscience [dot] co