It can be disappointing when Instagram growth services don’t deliver what they promised, but the bigger problem occurs when they actually do more harm than good.
And once you get in business with such a tool, you’ll be lucky if you realize it’s a scam in time. That’s why it’s so important to do research before you opt for a growth service.
Did you ever wonder which was the first growth service that people realized it’s actually a scam?
The whole trend of negative experiences in the Instagram automation industry was started by none other than a tool called Social Envy.
Today, they’re known as Social Steeze. But why did they have to rebrand?
How shady were they?
Keep reading my Social Envy Review to find out.
What Is Social Envy?
Social Envy was one of the first tools to offer organic follower growth.
They promised to give each of their clients an account manager that would be a real human being, not a bot. This person was in charge of interacting with your target audience.
While I appreciate the idea behind this, I’m not 100% convinced it was true.
Ex Social Envy users left many reviews on Trustpilot saying they didn’t get a sense their account manager was an actual human, and that it was very bot-like.
Honestly, this didn’t surprise me at all.
Even today, you have numerous companies who claim you’ll get a manager or a team of real people who will guide your account and help you grow when, in reality, it’s almost exclusively bots.
So, yeah, no surprise there.
And Social Envy did ultimately shut down, so the bot thing makes even more sense.
This company was run by a couple of New Zealand scammers who were actually sued by Facebook (Instagram’s parent company), so you can imagine the amount of bot activity they brought to the network.
Top Social Envy Alternatives
How Does Social Envy Work?
Social Envy had various features, with tactics meant to improve your activity and overall presence on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Instead of offering classic Instagram automation services, like most companies of this kind, they provided you with a dedicated account manager.
All you had to do to use their services was connect your Insta account, subscribe to a plan, set a few filters, and your manager would do the rest.
Most users stated they appreciated that Social Envy was an online tool, so you didn’t have to go through the hassle of installing software on your device. It was very easy to use.
Social Envy Features
Social Envy’s primary goal was to help you achieve organic Instagram growth, so Twitter and Pinterest kind of faded into the background. Therefore, I want to focus on Instagram.
The features Social Envy had for Instagram were nothing extraordinary – they were typical for a tool of this kind.
Geotags are an efficient way to find your audience. If you select places and venues that people from your niche visit often, your account manager will be able to follow them and hope they’ll follow you back.
This is a classic Instagram feature. You choose hashtags based on which your manager will like posts and maybe follow accounts, and you instantly reach more people.
One tiny problem with features like this one: whether those people will want to check out your account or follow you back, it’s entirely up to them.
But at least if they follow you, it’s likely because they like your content.
So, Social Envy had this option for comments where you could create a few templates and your manager would leave them under other people’s posts.
These were usually generic compliments, like ‘Beautiful’, ‘Awesome’, etc.
Based on all the reviews I found, this one was the least effective way to attract followers, since most people consider random comments to be unnecessary spam.
If you really wanted to reach people inside your niche, this was the way to do it. By leaving handles of your competitors and most successful people in your industry, you could follow their followers and bring the spotlight to your account.
Another useful feature for gaining targeted followers. You could blacklist accounts and your manager would avoid getting in touch with their followers.
This way you ensured you wouldn’t attract people way outside of your niche.
Social Envy Pricing
In order to determine the exact price you’ll pay, Social Envy requested you to first do a consultation with their team of experts.
Their job was to examine your current content and engagement and determine which plan suits you the best.
There were two plans, Regular and Pro, and they cost $15 and $25, respectively.
I know this sounds more than okay, but these are weekly prices, so on a monthly basis, it perhaps wasn’t so affordable after all.
I couldn’t find any information regarding free trials, but I did come across a few reviews saying there’s no refund for any of the plans.
Is Social Envy Legit?
On the outside, Social Envy seemed like a completely legitimate company.
However, there was some shady business going on behind the curtain.
Their claims of getting you a real account manager turned out to be false news. There were also a couple of complaints from scammed users who say Social Envy made unauthorized charges after they had canceled their accounts.
Plus, the lawsuit by Facebook doesn’t really work in their favor.
So, evidently, Social Envy wasn’t a legit company.
Is Social Envy Safe?
Social Envy was very persistent in getting all of your data, like passwords, phone numbers, etc. There’s absolutely no reason why they would need this info, so we can assume it was for, let’s call it – unethical reasons.
This alone should be enough to doubt the safety of using Social Envy, but that’s not all they did.
They actually continued to charge long after people would cancel their services, and there was nothing you could do about it.
Social Envy’s now the thing of the past, so whether it was safe or not – it doesn’t matter anymore.
PROS and CONS
|Some alright features||False promises of a real account manager|
|Sued by Facebook|
|Continued to charge after cancelations|
|Proven to be a bot|
|Asked for your personal information|
Social Envy Review: Final Verdict
What kind of a growth service was Social Envy?
Not a reliable one, that’s for sure.
One thing we can all learn from companies like Social Envy is not to mess with the big guys – they will win. If you’re running a scam business, you’ll meet your demise sooner or later, be it by a request of Instagram or a lawsuit by Facebook.
For your safety, I can’t stress how important it is to find a legit, secure service that plays by the rules.
Albeit rare, there are still a few trustworthy tools, and it’s only a matter of time before you find them.
So, what are you waiting for? Get down to it!
Top 10 Instagram Growth Tools
If you need a kick-start looking for said trustworthy Instagram growth tools, check out the table below! We’ve tried and tested many over the years, before ranking them in the table for your ease.