Social media is indispensable for advertising. And that’s because social platforms are an extension of consumers’ social lives. It’s where they go to talk with their friends, and increasingly, it’s where they go to search for new products and services. As such, brands are using this medium to engage consumers—especially when it comes to Instagram.
There are 1.3 billion users on Instagram—that’s a lot of eyes and hearts to catch. So how do brands know if their Instagram marketing efforts are paying off? Luckily, brands have Instagram analytics to measure their efforts!
In this blog, we’ll discuss the following:
- What are Instagram Analytics?
- Important Key Metrics to Track
- How to View Instagram Analytics
- Monitoring Instagram Activity
- Tools to Help Brands Succeed on Instagram
And if you’re not already on this social app, here are some statistics to convince you that you should be!
- 50% of Instagram users use the app to shop for new items weekly.
- Instagram was the world’s most downloaded app of 2022.
- People reshare Reels 1 billion times a day—this increases your potential reach and is free “word of mouth” advertising for your brand.
What is Instagram Analytics?
Instagram analytics is a set of tools that help brands understand how effective their marketing efforts are on Instagram. It’s a set of metrics that, at their fundamental, cover things like reach of an individual post. But they can get more detailed and reveal when a brand’s audience is most active online or uncover positive and negative sentiments.
NetBase Quid® example of summary metrics of a famous beverage brand from February 2-March 2, 2023, revealing mentions, posts, potential impressions, and sentiment.
Companies need these analytics to gauge what is working correctly and what isn’t. Without them, you’re operating blind and won’t ever be able to test or refine your efforts, let alone develop new winning strategies.
We will explore the key Instagram metrics you want to track using an Instagram analytics tool…
Important Key Metrics to Track
For clarity, we’ll break up this section into fourths—Account, Feed, Reels, and Stories. Each has similar but individualized metrics that brands want to pay attention to for the best understanding.
- Engagement rate: This represents the number of interactions expressed as a percentage of audience size. This metric is a benchmark for assessing how well your content connects with readers and motivates them to take action.
- Follower growth rate: The rate at which you gain or lose followers. Nothing else on Instagram has a more significant influence on organic reach. A drop-off in followers can indicate that something may be amiss.
- Referral traffic: How many people your website receives from Instagram is referral traffic. This is a crucial metric to keep track of if you want to improve your Instagram ROI and link your Instagram activities to off-platform objectives.
- Best posting time: This shows the times/days you’re more likely to get your audience’s attention—it shows when your followers are more active, so you’re sure you’re sharing content at the optimal time for engagement.
- Demographics: Who are your followers? This metric shows what percentage are male or female, the geographical location of your audience, and what age category they fall in. These metrics inform targeted messaging to create content that will resonate more effectively.
- Post engagement rate: The number of engagements per post lets you know what content engages your followers and those Instagram users who may not follow you. If your post gets positive engagement, you may want to post more of that type.
- Post comment rate: Number of comments each post receives. This is where brands can nurture a relationship with their audience. By counting this metric and using it as an opportunity to reply back, you can raise your engagement rates and send a message to your audience that you’re paying attention.
- Impressions: Total number of times users could have seen your post. This indicates how well you’re promoting your brand on Instagram.
- Reach: Reach shows how many people actually saw your post. Because of the Instagram algorithm, your posts must be engaging—the more engaging, the more people will see them.
- Story engagement rate: Number of engagements (likes, shares, comments) received on your Story.
- Completion rate: This metric reveals how many consumers watched your Story all the way through. If you find Instagram users skipping ahead, your content may not engage enough to hold their interest. On the other hand, if they are completing the Story, you know you’re on target.
- Reel shares: This tracks how many people shared your Reel with one of their friends.
- Reel interactions: This metric combines how many total likes, comments, shares, and saves your Reel received.
- Drop-off rate: Same as stories—how many people skipped ahead or watched your Reel through to the end.
- Views vs. TikTok: This is a valuable one for brands that are on both Instagram and TikTok. This metric reveals how many people watched a reel compared to a similar one on TikTok. This can indicate whether the content on Instagram would also work on TikTok.
These metrics should be tracked and measured often, as what consumers want to see sometimes changes overnight. But where can you find these metrics? Let’s explore.
How to View Instagram Analytics
The great thing is that Instagram makes it incredibly easy to find these metrics in-app. You can view Instagram analytics via your cell phone and on your desktop. However, they aren’t created equally. On your mobile, you’ll get access to most of the metrics we spoke of above. On the desktop, the complete Instagram Analytics isn’t available. We’ve detailed below how to view your metrics on both mobile and desktop:
Once you’re in the Instagram app, go to your profile, and select Professional Dashboard. This will bring you to a new page where you can tap Account Insights. Here, you want to select See All.
Here, you can look at your content overview, including accounts reached, engagements, total followers, and shared content. You can also select a timeframe to view from 30 days to the last 90 days.
To go deeper into any metrics, select the right arrow next to whatever category you’d like to explore more, such as Accounts Engaged or Total Followers.
This view is good for basic insights on individual posts. Select View Insights under the individual post in your feed that you’d like to analyze. Doing this will bring up a screen that reveals total likes, saves, comments, DM shares, comments, reach, and profile visits.
Outside of this, if you want to do more digging via desktop, you must turn to Meta Business Suite.
Meta Business Suite
Similar to mobile, you’ll click on Insights.
To look at Instagram Analytics only (eliminating Facebook insights), under the Content heading, click Content. From here, you can open Ads, Posts, and Stories from the drop-down menu (and uncheck the Facebook options.)
These metrics are essential for any brand wishing to know how its marketing efforts impact its audience and bottom line. However, to add context to these likes and shares and to understand what your consumers think and feel, you’ll have to go outside these apps and invest in an Instagram Analytics tool. And this is especially true when it comes to influencer marketing…
Monitoring Instagram Activity
When using a visual platform like Instagram, influencer marketing via influencers can effectively build brand recognition. Research shows that word-of-mouth marketing is still one of the best ways to capture consumers’ attention. And this is because consumers trust family and friend recommendations over a brand ad—and these friend recommendations extend to influencers.
Your business or product is instantly validated within your target market when a reputable influencer recommends it. And you can increase engagement and broaden your reach with influencer marketing. But you must track your efforts if you hope to succeed.
When your Instagram analytics tool includes influencer analysis, brands can dive deep into the influencer world and monitor known influencers. An Instagram analysis provides a conversation summary for overall volumes, such as mentions, and helps companies understand how passionately people speak about them. And an influencer analysis reveals potential impressions as well, which helps brands understand how impactful these conversations are.
Our NetBase Quid® example below reveals top influencers for a popular beverage brand. From this, we can determine the size of the influencer’s audience, as well as word clouds illustrating trending hashtags and general conversation—we can also see mentions, potential impressions, and passion intensity:
Companies can examine the original discussions that your influencer is having and the actual conversations their audience is having. From this, brands learn which topics resonate with their audience and identify those that are shared the most:
And an influencer analysis isn’t just good for known influencers but for identifying new possible influencers for your brand.
Your audience is vast, and so are their interests. Influencers who speak to Gen Z will likely not be the same as those who can effectively target Gen X. An influencer identification analysis locates potential influencers for any category. It uses everything we spoke to above to measure the impact of these social celebrities:
With the variety of influencers spanning almost every industry and interest, you’ll have plenty to choose from, including those in tech, fashion, politics, and more. And when you find one that piques your interest, you can monitor them and their posts to ensure they’re a good fit before reaching out.
In summary, with an Instagram analytics tool that includes an influencer analysis, a brand can answer the following:
- How are influencers talking about your brand?
- How well received influencer content is among their followers and how that impacts your brand.
- Who else is talking about your brand that may be an influencer?
- What type of content is an influencer creating, and how does it impact your brand?
- What type of content is an influencer creating, and how does it affect your category?
With all this in mind, let’s explore three tools to help skyrocket your brand on Instagram!
Three Tools to Help Brands Succeed on Instagram
Your social media marketing game will only be as good as the social media analytics tools you use. Here are our three top picks!
Use NetBase Quid®’s social listening features to better understand your audience’s demographics—going beyond location and gender. NetBase Quid® users can also get a full view of their consumers’ interests and professions; brands can use these audience insights for better-targeted messaging.
With its social media monitoring features, you can see the market and consumers in real-time. And NetBase Quid® uses NLP sentiment analysis to examine unstructured chats and uncover driving sentiments behind consumer posts. This valuable intel reveals why consumers feel how they do and why a post may get more love.
And visual analytics tools make it simple to dissect pictures, memes, emojis, and other rich media forms so that they can be considered during sentiment analysis. This is particularly helpful when consumers don’t directly mention you.
NetBase Quid® enables a straightforward setup to get only the intel you require on any specific topic, whether it be your brand, products, competitors, influencer identification, or trends. And it goes beyond just Instagram and can pull information from all the major social platforms and forums, blogs, feedback sites, news articles, and more. It can even include data you pulled using other tools by utilizing its Intelligence Connector—offering a comprehensive view of your brand.
The focus of Rival IQ is social and competitive intelligence. This Instagram analytics tool includes built-in integrations with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and TikTok for brands who want to monitor their rivals on all the major social media platforms. However, you can also compare your brand on social media, looking at how you’re performing between the different platforms. This feature is valuable when comparing how your Instagram Reels are doing versus how your videos on TikTok are performing.
Rival IQ alerts you of changes to target social media posts, mentions, and boosted posts, among other essential details. Their social media post analysis can help companies identify opportunities for audience engagement and new trends.
Additionally, with easy access to data, you can conduct entire social media audits featuring content performance, hashtag analytics, and popular topics.
Hootsuite is an all-in-one tool, meaning it successfully combines several essential social media marketing features, including social media management, social listening, content publishing, and analytics and reporting.
Brands can manage their Instagram right from their Hootsuite dashboard. Set up streams to keep tabs on mentions, keywords, and hashtags to keep track of the conversations taking place in your area.
Hootsuite’s collaboration capabilities also bring your team together to work on separate social media marketing projects. It has built-in performance measurement features allow brands to monitor their productivity in areas such as answering and resolving user inquiries on social media.
Social media is only growing and becoming a crowded venue quickly. To stand out in a crowd of competing brands, you need more than what the in-app Instagram analytics offer; reach out for a demo and take control of your social presence!