4 Free Tools to Measure Your Instagram Success

March 26th, 2013 | Rachael Seda | 28 Comments

Instagram LogoFor the past few months, my friend Ryan has been managing a boutique in a nearby shopping center called Apricot Lane. I know 80-90% of the stores in this area are out of my price range and, because they are so expensive, their typical customers are more likely to be women in my mom’s age group.

I assumed that Apricot Lane was another boutique with clothes for women older than myself. That is… until Ryan started an Instagram for the boutique. She posted photos of the clothes, jewelry, and new items on Instagram. She even posted photos of people I knew modeling the clothes.

I fell in love with the different styles and fun items. I realized my preconceived notions were wrong, and I was quickly convinced that I needed to visit the boutique. Not only did I visit, I brought my mom and sister with me, both of whom loved it.

***

My wedding photographer and wedding planner are also on Instagram. I hired them both before I started following them on Instagram, but every time I see their photos, I am even more happy that both of them will be a part of my wedding day.

My photographer (Andi Grant) and wedding planner (Jamie Howell) post fun photos of their office construction, clients, DIY projects, and their everyday life. By giving me a peak into their everyday lives, I feel closer and more comfortable with them as people and professionals. As my trust for them has grown, I am inspired by their creativity and love for their profession.

***

By building an identity on Instagram, Ryan changed my perception of her boutique, and Andi and Jamie have continued to grow my loyalty as a client. Perhaps this was their goal when they began their Instagram accounts, perhaps it wasn’t.

Either way, I’m proof that their time spent on Instagram is reaping benefits… but how else can they measure their Instagram success?

Immediately intrigued, I sought out to find some Instagram measurement tools and, of course, they do exist.

Here are four free tools small businesses can use to keep track of their Instagram success:

1. SumAll – I just started exploring this tool and it looks like the perfect tool for small businesses looking to track their social success, find out which network is reaping more benefits, and how it’s affecting the bottom line. I’ll have to explore it some more (and maybe make my friend’s new business Modern Maternity my guinea pig) but I definitely think this tool is worth trying out, for Instagram and more.

2. Statigram – This tool is solely for Instagram and provides statistics such as the amount of photos you have, likes received, comments, followers, and more. I like how it shows you the photos with the highest engagement, the day and time that your users are most engaged, your most engaged followers, and your growth and loss in followers as well. You can even manage contests using this tool!

3. SimplyMeasured - This tool allows users to download analytics on different profiles for free as long as you agree to share a tweet to promote the company. You can download a detailed, and I mean detailed, Excel document that even shows you the engagement your photos have had outside of Instagram. The free analytics report is definitely worth sharing a tweet!

4. Nitrogram – This tool shows engagement rates, statistics per photo, follower count, and the number of photos shared.

Regardless of which tool you choose, I think it’s important to measure and track your brand’s Instagram success. Tracking your account’s metrics and the engagement of your community can help you learn more about your audience, grow your existing followers, understand what your audience values, and convert your followers into loyal customers.

Do you use Instagram for you business? If so, what type of success have you had? Are there any other tools you’d recommended or important statistics you think brands should be tracking on Instagram? Please share!

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Rachael Seda

Rachael Seda

Account Executive at CRT/tanaka
Rachael Seda grew up barefoot in Hawaii. Determined to find a career that put her creativity and social skills to good use, she double majored in communication and media arts and design at James Madison University and set out to do just that... and is now an Account Executive at CRT/tanaka. She shares her career experiences and journey at rachaelseda.com. Her ultimate weakness is cheese.
Rachael Seda
Rachael Seda
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14 comments
ThibautDavoult
ThibautDavoult

Thanks for the article Rachel. Instagram is a fast growing network and brands are quickly getting a hang of it for their social media marketing activities. It's a powerful tool to attract talent by showing good company culture, as well as to showcase products and events.


Nitrogram was recently updated with a lot more features. For example it's possible to see your followers' map and benchmark competitors. Nitrogram also allows to track Hashtags, an important metric for brands as Howie said in the comments.

sherrilynne
sherrilynne

Brands underutilized Instagram. Some great advice here. Thanks for this post.

rachaelseda
rachaelseda

%s %s %s Thanks for sharing my %s post!

LKersey1
LKersey1

Great post, Rachael! Do you see any appropriate applications for health care?

Howie Goldfarb
Howie Goldfarb

Great post @rachaelseda and grats on the engagement!  

I have a client who asked about Instagram and I told her that it requires someone taking pictures and 'your employees won't even take a photo and upload to twitter' so she nixed it for now. But I did show her the love she got for her brand via the hashtags showing there were at last count 70 photos.

I love the boutique idea. The problem I come up against when I research this (and pinterest) is getting people to know you exist on these platforms. It takes a lot of work to build your own network. I also find Social fracturing into so many places and slices it is really hard to  find one place that truly impacts your business.


Where i do find the most value though is if someone knows the brand and googles it their pages for pinterest and instagram show up and they  have a better photo hosting presentation format that Facebook and Twitter.

JasonVerhoosky
JasonVerhoosky

Love seeing how a tool like instagram has created new clients/audience, brand/client loyalty, and given you an inside look!

I think it is so important in our current age of communication to be able to interact both professionally and personally.  It allows for a deeper level of connection and gives you the opportunity to truly share your story as a business/brand, and for audience/client to feel that inside look and behind the scenes perspective.

Lastly, SumAll and Simply Measured are both great tools!

rachaelseda
rachaelseda

@LKersey1 Most definitely which is exactly why I was then inspired to write my Buzz Bin post, http://www.crttbuzzbin.com/instagramhealthbrandsecrets/. For companies/businesses that do believe Instagram makes sense with their goals and audience, I think determining how and what to measure from the get go is crucial. Your clients or CEO want to know you're actually helping them meet a goal, if not you're just wasting your time and theirs. 

rachaelseda
rachaelseda

 @HowieG I agree with you. Spreading yourself too thin is never a good approach. I think it can work very well for some but again, you have to be dedicated to make it part of your comprehensive marketing/comm plan, it must tie into your key goal and your audience or potential audience needs to be there and be active. If not, it's not helpful. And like you said, it's not overnight but I think it's important for people/companies to understand that if they don't determine how and what to measure at the get go, they won't be able to see the value their time and investment on any given network has given them.

Thanks for the comment Howie!

rachaelseda
rachaelseda

@JasonVerhoosky Thanks Jason! I agree. It's fun as a customer or potential customer to feel like I'm getting a look at what it's like inside at a company, that's what makes following a company valuable to me. 

Yes, I just played around with them both and they're awesome! I will definitely be using them more. 

Thanks again for the comment! I hope all is well with you and your family!

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