Hello. My name is Rebekah and I am terrible at putting together photo albums.
Can you relate?
I have thousands of pictures on my smartphone and tons more on my computer. I have hopes and dreams of creating photo books online, but I am so far behind. I’ve made plenty of them, but then babies happened and all my progress came to a screeching halt.
I haven’t abandoned my dreams for organized photo books. However, I have found the perfect compromise between my dreams and doing nothing (which is what I have been doing).
Chatbooks is a free app that you can download on your Apple or Android device. Then you can use it to easily create photo books of your Instagram pictures. I have been using Chatbooks for since March and I love it!
This post isn’t sponsored by Chatbooks. I just think it is super awesome and worth passing on to you.
15 Things You Should Know About Using Chatbooks To Make Instagram Photo Books
1. It is easy to get started. – Download the app, connect your Instagram account, and you are all set!
2. I highly recommend the “subscription” option. – With the subscription option, all of your Instagram pictures will be automatically loaded into books. The books have 60 pictures each and they only cost $6 each with free shipping. (That price will be changing soon! Keep reading to find out how to lock yourself into the $6 per book price.)
Once you have your Instagram pictures loaded into Chatbooks, you will be able to edit your books. I joined Instagram a few years ago and have over 1,000 pictures. Once those were loaded into Chatbooks, I had over 10 books that were filled and ready to be printed.
The subscription part comes into play because Chatbooks will automatically continue to fill books for you with your newest Instagram pictures. Chatbooks will send you an email once you have filled a book and you’ll have a few days to edit that book before it is printed and mailed. There isn’t a monthly fee. You are only charged when a book is printed.
3. You can omit pictures from your book. – If you don’t want every single picture to be included in your books, you can easily delete some. Start at the very beginning (book number 1) and delete any pictures that you don’t want included. Chatbooks will automatically shift your pictures to fill in those gaps.
As a blogger, I had many photos that were blog related that I didn’t want in my printed book. Perhaps you like to take pictures of your food, but you don’t necessarily need those images included. I was surprised with how many pictures I eliminated from my books.
4. Captions or No Captions – You can turn off the captions or include them. Some of my pictures won’t make sense without the captions, so I decided to include them. If you include them, you can edit each one if necessary. I deleted a lot of hashtags from my captions. There were some captions that I chose to delete completely.
If you have an extra long caption, Chatbooks will print the text on the page next to the picture. I don’t care for that look, so I’ve tried to edit down my extra long captions.
5. Pick Dates or No Dates – You can also include the date for each picture and it will be printed just above the photo. You can also include the time. Both of these features can be turned off in the settings. I decided to include the dates, but not the times.
6. Pick Locations or No Locations – This is another detail that you can have printed with each picture. I never use locations on Instagram, so I turned this off.
7. You can use hashtags to create specialized books. – If you are going on vacation and use the same hashtag in all your photos, you can filter your photos in Chatbooks to fill a book with only that hashtag. Pretty cool, huh? I’ve seen people use a different hashtag for each child on Instagram. This would be an easy way to fill a book with photos for each of your children.
8. You can add multiple Instagram users. – If you and your spouse both have an Instagram account, you can add both of your accounts to Chatbooks and your photos will be combined together in your photo books.
9. You can pick the cover image. – Chatbooks will automatically select the first picture in each book as the cover image, but you can change it. I tried to pick my favorite photo from each book to be the cover image and then I edited them so that my kids would have somewhat equal showtime on the covers. *wink-wink*
10. You can customize the spine of your books. – The spine of your books will automatically come printed with the date range of the pictures included in the book and the volume number. Plus you can add a customized title. I decided to go with “The Ordinary & Extraordinary Hoffer Life.” I picked this because I feel like that is the theme of my Instagram account. Each of these ordinary moments make up my extraordinary life.
11. The books are cheap, but not cheaply made. – They are printed on thick photo paper that is similar to other photo books I’ve created online. The covers are paperback and could be easily bent, but so far my children have been very gentle with the books. The books are 6 inches square. The photos inside measure 4 inches square.
12. You can create custom books instead of the subscription option. – These books cost more and don’t come with free shipping. I haven’t created one, so I’m much less familiar with the details.
13. Chatbooks will help you get “caught up.” – After I uploaded all of my Instagram pictures and edited each book to remove the unwanted pictures, I was left with 13 completed books. Chatbooks offers several options for catching up. You can…
- Order all of your completed books at once.
- Subscribe to receive 10 books every month until you are caught up.
- Subscribe to receive 5 books every month.
- Subscribe to receive 1 book every month.
I went with the “5 books a month” option to help spread out the cost of ordering all of my completed books.
I think it is important to note again that there is no monthly fee with Chatbooks. You are only charged when you fill a book with 60 pictures. Now that I am caught up with all of my completed books, I won’t be charged again until I fill my next book (even if that takes me 2 or 3 months).
Note: The poor coloring in this photo is 100% bad photography (oops!) and not the true color of the Chatbooks. All Chatbooks are pure white.
14. You can get your first book for free! – Everyone who uses Chatbooks is given a referral code. When your friends use that code (for the subscription option only – not valid with custom books), they will get their first book for free and you will get $1 credit towards your next order.
If you would like a free Chatbook, you can use my referral code: SREBEKAH.
15. Chatbook subscriptions are just $6 per book, but that is going to change soon! – At the end of July or the beginning of August 2015, Chatbooks will be releasing an update to the app. Along with all the updates that is coming with Chatbooks 2.0, there will also come a $2 per book price increase. However, as a way to say thank you to all of Chatbooks current customers, if you download the app before the update you will be “grandfathered in” at the $6 per book price for the next two years!
If you have any interest in trying out Chatbooks, download the app today to guarantee you will remain at the $6 per book price for the next two years.
I could go on and on about Chatbooks, but I’ll stop!
Goodness! I have gone on and on!! I just really have loved this app. It is fun and easy to use. The updates that are coming with 2.0 will include photo integration from other social media platforms and video. I’m pretty excited about it. If you have photo book guilt like myself, I hope that Chatbooks can help. Snag yourself a free book, lock yourself in at that $6 rate, and let me know how you like it!
Have you tried Chatbooks? What do you like to use to print your Instagram photos?
Disclosure: This post is not sponsored by Chatbooks. However, I will receive a credit if you use my referral code.