Best Instagram Analytics Apps

Posted on June 25th, 2014 by Skye-Lynn Ferch Categories Blog

iStock_000019764309SmallInstagram is wonderful for showcasing photos of your products, employees, or your business’ experiences. However, tracking your follower engagement can be tricky. We’ve compiled a list of our favorite free analytic apps for Instagram. By using one of these apps, you’ll gain insight into who your followers are, who follows your account the closest, and much more.


1. Iconosquare: Formerly known as Statigram, this website offers an Instagram viewer, statistics, comment tracker services, sharing with Facebook, ability to host Instagram contest for followers, and the capability to search on Instagram online. The online viewer allows user to see their Instagram feed along with likes, comments, popular photos, and other user profiles. The bonus to using this viewer is that it provides easy sharing capabilities with other social media sites, such as Facebook and Pinterest. Iconosquare offers statistics on growth, account history, community insights, and tips to optimize your time on Instagram. You can also find out what photos have earned the most likes and what filter you use most often. The comment tracker allows you to mark comments as read or unread and respond to commenters. This next Inconosquare feature is more for brands than individual users, it allows you to connect your Instagram directly onto your Facebook page using a widget. If you feel like spicing up your Instagram by hosting a contest, for a fee Iconosquare will help you! This website is definitely worth checking out.


2. Followers+ for Instagram: This app is produced by Tappple and offers statistics on followers and photos. You can see who your “best” and “worst” followers are, and who is not following you back. You can see what accounts you like the most posts from and how near your followers are to you. iTunes users have given this app a 4.5 out of 5 star rating. This app also has a user friendly interface that is easy to read. A bonus for using Followers+ is that you can use it with Facebook and Twitter as well. For the average social media user or a small business, this may be the app for you.


3. Followers For Instagram- Followers and Unfollowers Tracker: Made by NoApostroph3s LLC, this app allows users to track followers, accounts that do not follow you back, users who follow you and you do not follow back, and your Instagram unfollowers. Unfollowers are users who used to follow you and no longer do. Furthermore for $0.99, this app will tell you who comments and likes your photos the most often, and whose photos you like and comment on the most often. You can also see your “worst followers”- those who do not like or comment on your posts. This app has an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars on iTunes. If your primary focus is knowing your followers, this may be a good app for you.


4. Your Followers on Instagram- Management Tool by TechDevPro: This free app received a 5 star rating on iTunes and is made by TechDevPro. With this app you can see followers, those who have unfollowed you, followers you do not follow back, and user profiles. You can also see your most liked photos and your favorite users on Instagram. For $0.99 you can purchase an Essential Pack, although no details are given as to what that includes.


Snapchat and Your Business

Posted on June 18th, 2014 by Skye-Lynn Ferch Categories Uncategorized

FThere are millions of people sharing photos or videos, otherwise known as “snaps”, with their friends on a day-to-day basis with the use of the newest social tool on the market called Snapchat. It has been catching the attention of people and companies across the nation, including the infamous Facebook who wanted to buy it for a mere $3 billion. With so many users on Snapchat every day, it has been hard for businesses to continue turning their head from this social tool, but instead businesses are now running to their marketing teams for ideas on how they can utilize this social tool to better their business.

Why should you begin “snapping” to your customers? Well for starters, Snapchat is the newest viral social media on the market, and it isn’t going anywhere! Using Snapchat will show that your business is eager to reach the customers in as many ways as possible and that you can keep up with society’s everlasting changes in technology. Some business owners may be concerned with how Snapchat will affect your Facebook and Twitter metrics. The answer to that is hakuna matata! Your existing social platforms can remain healthy even while you are promoting Snapchats to your customers!

On a day-to-day basis, the general users of Snapchat use it to send silly pictures to friends, make short videos of a crazy situation or just to say hi to basically anybody on their contact list. So, how is a business supposed to use it? Keep reading and we will go a little deeper into this epidemic that has hit us all!

One major way that businesses will promote Snapchat to their customers is by giving coupons through it. On Snapchat there is a way to screenshot the picture (on the iPhone keep one finger on the picture while pressing the home button and lock button at the same time) so what a business will do is put an ad that says, ‘Send us a Snapchat of you tasting our yogurt’. The customer will send the snap, then the business will send a coupon back and the customer screenshots it! The next time they visit the shop they would show the clerk the coupon and receive the discount.

Another way businesses use Snapchat is to give a “behind-the-scenes” view. The NBA has perfected this. The NBA Snapchats pre-games, players being silly, talk shows, locker rooms, players’ outfits and anything else that happens off-screen. You may not be the owner of the National Basketball Association, but you and your business can still utilize the same idea! Let’s say you own a clothing store that gets new arrivals every week. You could Snapchat your employees setting up the new merchandise for a behind-the-scenes look! When politicians, businesses and companies started using Youtube they figured out that views for their videos went up with more authentic and less-than-perfect footage. Snapchat is the same way with consumers. They don’t want prim and perfect ads, but instead like the real footage of what’s going on. So don’t hesitate to send a Snapchat of you and your employees working hard on a new set-up in your store at 5 am!

One more way to use Snapchat is for promotions! This covers a large spectrum of things like new arrivals, daily specials, seasonal sales and even job openings! For example, GrubHub utilized Snapchat to find an intern with “Snapchat skillz”. They sent out snaps promting the opening and steps to take to apply. Putting promotions on Snapchat generates excitement from your consumers and gives them a close connection between themselves and you.

As you can see, Snapchat has endless possibilities for your business and presents a new way to market to the public. Snapchat is unique because when your consumers view the snap it is because they want to, not simply because it popped up on their newsfeed based on what they have viewed in the last 24 hours. Utilize Snapchat, and take your business to a new level!


July 4th Events in Houston

Posted on June 11th, 2014 by Skye-Lynn Ferch Categories Blog

Did you know that the Fourth of July actually isn’t the day America legally gained its independence? While it’s commonly believed that July 4 marked our nation’s independence, it was actually July 2. It was on July 2 that the Second Continental Congress voted to approve the Declaration of Independence. The Declaration, however, wasn’t signed until July 4, though historians often question the accuracy of this date. Even so, the Fourth of July became a celebrated day and eventually, an official American holiday in 1938. To this day, the Fourth is still celebrated by proud Americans. The holiday most notably includes fireworks, parades, picnics, and all things red, white, and blue. Houston is no exception. When it comes to Houston, there is no shortage of Fourth of July celebrations. From concerts to parades, the city has it all. Not to mention the fact that many of the celebrations are actually free and fun for the whole family! The following are two of the biggest and best celebrations in the area.


Firework display over downtown Houston
Firework display over downtown Houston


This event, held at Miller Outdoor Theatre, features music from the Houston symphony, including music from Tchaikovsky. A magnificent fireworks display will conclude this evening of catchy, patriotic music. Free tickets for the covered seating area are available at the Theater box office the day of the performance from 10:30am to 1pm. There will also be free seating on the hill for all those without tickets. All of the festivities begin at 8:30pm. A Star Spangled Salute is one celebration you don’t want to miss!



Freedom Over Texas has long been one of Houston’s signature Fourth of July celebrations. Over the years it has attracted big name artists such as Billy Currington and Chris Young. This year’s celebration will feature Jennifer Nettles, lead vocalist for Sugarland. In addition to live music, Freedom Over Texas will include various activities for the kids, including arts and crafts, face painting artists, and free rides and games. As a reminder of the patriotic roots of the Fourth, the festival will also feature exhibits from various museums, such as the National United States Armed Forces Museum and the Museum of Military History as well as a vintage aircraft exhibit from the Lone Star Flight Museum. For looking for more adult fun, the festival includes a Bud Light Zone and a Dr. Pepper Zone, offering everything from a tikki bar to an interactive club on wheels. There’s something for everyone! These festivities all begin at 4pm and will take place at Eleanor Tinsley Park. Regardless of what kind of Fourth of July entertainment you’re looking for, Houston has got you covered. However, if the aforementioned celebrations don’t appeal to you, don’t sweat it. There are plenty of smaller events happening in and around the city. With so many to choose from, you might have trouble deciding on just one!

Introducing Heather Anderson

Posted on June 4th, 2014 by Skye-Lynn Ferch Categories Blog

The REFUGE Group would like to welcome our newest Digital Marketing Intern, Heather Anderson.

Heather Anderson

Heather was born in Corpus Christi and grew up in Houston, having graduated from Stratford High School in 2011. After high school, she left Texas to attend the University of Missouri. While at Mizzou, Heather is earning her Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing, along  with a minor in Textile and Apparel Management. Heather has known she wanted to study Marketing since she was a freshman in high school; however her interest in Textile and Apparel Management was discovered as a sophomore in college. Her favorite courses at Mizzou have been Consumer Behavior and Marketing Research. Heather took Consumer Behavior this past spring. The the course studied consumer’s thought processes and buying choices. Heather took  Market Research last fall;  this course focused on statistics, and featured a group project with the Mizzou Volleyball team. She is excited to be taking Retail Marketing this next fall. On campus Heather is involved in her sorority, Pi Beta Phi, as well as having done volunteer work around the Columbia area.


Last summer, Heather worked as a PanHellenic  Recruitment Counselor for Mizzou’s Greek system. This experience taught Heather a lot about leading a team and working under tight deadlines.  Additionally,  Heather interned with the Greater  Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau as a market research intern. From her time with Greater Houston CVB, Heather learned how to put together a marketing report, what research goes into ads, and what tools are used to analyze data.  Her goal after college is to get a job in the marketing field, in promotional marketing such as social media, or in market research. Other marketing fields that interest Heather are focus groups and product testing.


In her spare time, Heather likes completing DIY projects, baking, watching movies, or reading a good book. Heather also enjoys hanging out with her seven roommates. Her favorite social media platform is Instagram. However, she uses Pinterest for most of her DIY projects and for gathering baking recipes. This summer with The Refuge Group, Heather is hoping to learn more about social media platforms, web design, and blogging. Some personal goals of Heather’s are to get a dog shortly after college graduation (preferably a Corgi), and take her first trip to Europe sometime during 2014.


Welcome to REFUGE Heather! We are excited to have you for the summer!