Instagram Analytics: Using Iconosquare to Track Performance

So you’ve created your Instagram account and populated it with incredible visual content. Now what? Like any other social media platform, in order track your growth and determine a return on your efforts, it is necessary to monitor and understand the analytics on your Instagram account.

Unlike Facebook and Twitter, Instagram doesn’t provide its own analytics through the app. Iconosquare, formerly known as Statigram, is a trusty Instagram analytics platform that I have been using for the past couple years. The tool is easy to use and provides you with all the useful reports you need to manage a successful Instagram account. Here is a brief overview of how to use Iconosqaure analytics for your Instagram campaigns.

Getting Started

To get started on Iconosqure, simply visit, log in with your Instagram credentials and authorize your account. Once your account is authorized, Iconosqure will sync with your Instagram data in a matter of minutes. From there, Iconosqaure will give you an updated summary and you are ready to start analyzing your Instagram performance.

Iconosquare Instagram Analytics Platform - Getting Started

Statistics Tab

Here on the Statistics tab you are able to view an overview summary of your Instagram account. This summary of your Instagram analytics includes: a grand total of likes and comments received, your number of followers, people you are following, new followers, lost followers and the total growth within the last seven days.

Iconosquare Instagram Analytics - Statistics Tab


A neat feature of the Iconosquare summary page is the Scores section. Here you can see your Love, Talk and Spread Rate — or in other words, your engagement rates. In the Scores section, the percentage on your last photo is the larger number and your average rate is the number below in each box.

  • The Love Rate is a calculation of your follower engagement and how many people like your content.
  • Talk Rate is the average engagement in terms of comments on your photos.
  • And Spread Rate computes your likes received from people outside of your followers.

Iconosquare Instagram Analytics Platform - Scortes and Love Rate

These engagement rates are very similar to what you would see on Facebook Insights. The Scores section is great for gauging your engagement on Instagram.

Content Section

The Content section on Iconosquare is jam-packed with data analysis of all of your content ever posted on Instagram. It breaks down the density of posts according to each day of the week, the times you post the most, filters used most and ones never used, your hashtag usage and a percentage of time you use the geo-location feature on content. I like to use the Content section for looking at the filters I never use and then trying to incorporate them into my photos. I also like to see the filter I always use and try to give that one a break for a while.

Iconosquare Instagram Analytics Platform - Density

Engagement Section

In the engagement section, you will find a break down of your most liked media and most commented media. Iconosquare also provides a graph for each to show your likes and comments growth history.

Iconosquare Instagram Analytics Platform - Engagement

Optimization Section

The Optimization page is probably one of my favorite sections. Here, Iconosquare helps you optimize your account in accordance to your Instagram community. They provide you with hints on the best time to post in order to increase engagement, the impact your filters have when it comes to acquiring likes and comments, the impact of tags, and the average media lifespan. Using this page is extremely important. Since Instagram has only offered paid advertising to certain brands at this stage, all engagement is organic only. The Optimization section will help you capture and capitalize on the habits of your Instagram community in order to maximize engagement.

icono (6Iconosquare Instagram Analytics Platform - Times to Post

Community Section

Last but not least is the Community section, where you can find more information about thek typology of your followers, your account growth and accounts you like the most according to likes given.

As you can see Iconosquare is a goldmine for all types of Instagram analytics data. For anyone running an Instagram account or campaign, I recommend using this tool for brand community management and performance optimization on Instagram. Not only is Iconosquare easy to use, but it is also free (for now)! Take advantage of this opportunity and sign in with your Instagram account today.

Big Data and Social Media Help NASCAR Lap the Competition

In 2009, NASCAR was in an unenviable spot. The economic recession, a changing media landscape and several other factors crashed down simultaneously on the racing company. “Rising fuel prices hit our fans badly,” explained Sean Daugherty, the company’s Director of Digital and Social Media Engagement. “Our fans travel more than 100 miles on average to attend our races, so increases in fuel prices have a direct impact on race attendance.”

This is how Daugherty opened his portion of a recent webinar titled How NASCAR is Using Social Media to Deliver a Dynamic and Engaging Fan Experience. The presentation was held in collaboration with HP, the company’s partner for much of the hardware and software its Marketing Communications department uses today.

Fast forward to 2014, and NASCAR is in a much better position. Race viewership is at an all-time high, the largest media deal in the sport’s history is in place through 2024, and pillar partner companies are renewing to long term agreements. So what happened? According to Daugherty: unprecedented research, a large investment in technology and a dedication to using live data and social media to offer fans a more engaging experience. Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at how the company is doing just that.

Fan and Media Engagement Center

Fan and Media Engagement Center

NASCAR has developed a technology “headquarters” unlike anything else in sports or entertainment. Unveiled in Charlotte, the Fan and Media Engagement Center is a 500-square foot room with several 46” HD screens and three workstations. This hardware, and the HP “analytics engine” that supports it, allow the company to track and better understand the conversations trending across social, traditional and broadcast media that impact their industry. They then leverage that information to provide live updates to the team on the ground during each race and distribute detailed and customized analytic reports to key stakeholders after the checkered flag waves. These groups include its teams, tracks and partners.

Nascar Big Data

Live Interaction and Engagement

Just as important as their impressive infrastructure and software are the creative ways NASCAR uses its gained insights to drive an engaging, memorable experience for fans and viewers. During all races in NASCAR’s 3 national series, the Fan and Media Engagement Center is bustling. A team watches a live broadcast of the race and engages fans by answering questions and live tweeting from the official NASCAR social media handles. They keep an eye on live trending topics and fan sentiment during the race, dive deeper into topics that gain traction and relay insights to teams and drivers’ social media managers so they can live tweet and post on Facebook more effectively throughout and after each race.

Where the Rubber Meets the Road

Another impressive benefit of harnessing real-time clustered data is the ability to recognize when mistakes are made or negative comments are being shared. For example, during their most recent All-Star race, which is an exhibition race where drivers are re-ordered based upon fan voting and fan rules, a broadcast graphic was aired displaying the driver order incorrectly. “Even though the cars were in the correct running order on the track, it seemed like the wrong driver ended up winning the race,” recalled Daugherty.

Fans reacted negatively and reporters portrayed it as a big deal saying NASCAR had a firestorm on its hands. “Well we went back and analyzed the data and found that the issue was only 3 percent of the overall conversation around the race at that time,” Daugherty shared. “So, what the media portrayed as a firestorm was really just a blip on the radar and in an instance where we may have continued to issue a statement and extend that news cycle, we were able to, in this case…take no action and not extend that news cycle and let our broadcast partner handle that response.”

How Can Your Company Reap Similar Benefits?

Data collection, analytics and social media are driving value for companies across all industries and specialties, not just motorsports racing. If you’re interested in learning how the proper mix of marketing, analytics and cloud solution services can help your company win big, spend a few minutes browsing our website or contact us directly to discuss your unique business model and requirements.

Content Marketing, Scalable Data and One Night Stands

I’m a big fan of author, entrepreneur and self-proclaimed Digital Marketing Evangelist, Avinash Kaushik . The guy is insightful, witty and consistently shares content that entertains and educates. That’s the type of content I enjoy and like to share on my own social platforms (not to mention actually read beyond about this point in the article). In case you’re not one of Avinash’s 130k Twitter followers or haven’t attended one of his key note addresses, I wanted to share a few of his digital marketing pearls of wisdom that have led to “ah-ha” moments for me (and often, a good laugh)!

1) AK: “The metaphor I use is that the likes or +1’s are like one-night-stands. My metrics show how things went on a second or third date. How many got engaged or married to your brand? In this case, polygamy is OK. One-night-stands might feel good, but when you wake up the next day, you have nothing.”

  • Takeaway: It’s easy to get caught up in the short-term satisfaction of Facebook likes or your number of Twitter followers. While these stats are important, it’s critical to move beyond the superficial and into measurements that provide insight into areas such as conversion rate, applause rate and economic value. Guess what? Mr. Kaushik dives into this in one of his blog posts.

2) AK: “And what’s not dead? Ads that live and breathe these three strategies: entertain, inform, provide utility. The ad from Honda is a great example of Entertain and Inform. It uses immense creativity to deliver a memorable message that you might remember for a little while. Chances are also high you’ll share the ad, and increase its organic reach well beyond what Honda paid for (or could ever have paid for).

  • Take away: From a social media perspective, it’s important to share content that meets the above criteria. Sure, an SMB might not have the budget to produce a video on the same level as Honda’s. Still, before posting anything on Facebook or Twitter, always ask yourself why it’s being shared and what the goal is. If it’s not entertaining, informative or useful (and preferably all three), rethink that piece of content.

3) AK: “My keynote at the eMetrics summit yesterday was a call to arms for less obsession with data, dramatically more obsession with business (influence, experience, value) manifested via using scalable frameworks, drastic simplicity in data outputs (ex: dashboards) and use of super-amazing visualizations. The picture below represents the “notes” that [@NickSeeber] took during the keynote. See what I mean by art? Thanks Nick!”

AK picture

  • Take away: At first glance, I thought this “call to arms” might oppose the point Mr. Kaushik makes in item 1 above. However, upon closer inspection, they’re perfectly aligned. Mr. Kaushik isn’t minimizing the importance of data (he’s a data guy, after all). Rather, he’s advocating for more intelligent use and delivery of the data. When I think of scalable frameworks for example, Marketing Automation comes to mind. These platforms help SMBs track leads throughout the “sales funnel” and customer lifecycle so they can effectively deliver customized content at appropriate times.

What do you think about Avinash’s ideas? Let’s talk in the comments below. In the meantime, I’ll be working to get Avinash to follow me on Twitter. I’m not interested in one night stands though. I’ll offer him informative and useful content and try and take our relationship to the next level!