Editor’s Note: Instagram’s new Business Profile Analytics were announced a few weeks ago, and Instagram have said they will be “rolling out in the US, Australia and New Zealand in the coming months, and will be available in all regions globally by the end of the year (2016).” This post serves as a preview of what you can expect based on publically available information at the time of the post.
Instagram seems ready to capitalize on the influx of social influencers on the platform with its recently introduced business profile analytics. If you are looking to take advantage of the still growing Instagram, here is the inside scoop on how to use the new business profile analytics to your advantage.
Savvy marketers have recognized the introduction of Instagram analytics as a tactic to improve the performance of the faltering Facebook ad program. Regular Instagram profiles do not get any analytics. You must have a business account, and this requires having a Facebook account first. James Quarles, a high ranking Instagram executive, attempted to justify the connection in a recent interview, but the excuse was paper thin. The analytics are worth connecting your Facebook account, however, even if you do not use it anymore.
Instagram is allowing businesses to turn posts into ads from the mobile space. Businesses now have the ability to monetize select posts based on well performing analytics. This alone will likely drive up the current number of advertisers on Instagram, which now stands at 200,000.
Instagram continues to rise in the ranks of websites that businesses use to brand their products, especially those looking to utilize user-generated content from Instagram. Companies from many industries, not just entertainment and personality driven businesses, are finding new life in their Instagram following. The business analytics mentioned below are among the most important and useful that business Instagram users now receive.
What the New Tools Show You
Instagram offers a wealth of metrics that any business would find useful.
- Demographics – Business Instagram users can view the age and gender of the people who viewed a post, liked a post and shared it. You can also separate these demographics by geographic location, an especially important tool if it turns out that most of your viewers are not in your home country.
- Engagement – Profile users can see how many people interacted with a post by day, by week, by month, etc. Charts show the number of likes, shares and comments. Drilling down into a specific time frame will also show the change in the percentage of engagement within that time frame.
- Hashtags – Profile users can figure out which outgoing hashtags were the most popular by post and overall. Instagram lists the hashtags that caused the most engagement and the hashtags that were used the most.
- Audience growth – You can see the amount of people that you followed and who followed you over a specified period of time.
- Top posts – Instagram keeps records of your top posts, organized conveniently for your perusal. You can check the life span of a post and what percentage of your audience is engaging with what type of post. For instance, if you have 50,000 followers, but you have experienced a drop off of 25% in engagement of your posts over the past seven days, Instagram will show you.
The Instagram Insights platform takes many cues from the Facebook Insights platform. You will have access to many important characteristics about the activity of your followers here, including website clicks, reach and total impressions. You will learn how much of your activity is repeat activity and how many unique hits you have.
- Follower activity – This breaks down the schedule of engagement across your previous posts by the hour. Not only can you now schedule posts based on the general time zone of your preferred audience, but you can now focus that content on the specific hours in which they are most active.
- Site clicks – You can easily see how many people clicked to your website profile.
- Total reach – Instagram will tell you how many people you are reaching based on the time frame that you set (day, week, month, etc.).
- Total impressions – You will be able to see how many impressions you made within a certain time frame and with a certain audience separated by demographics or geographics.
The Facebook connection to Instagram becomes important here, because many marketers have actually inferred that the Insight data comes from Facebook. If so, you can assume a high degree of precision.
Ensuring Accurate Analytics
Although Instagram analytics will certainly improve the marketing campaigns of virtually every business taking them seriously, there are some natural dampeners on any set of data that occur in modern social media. Instagram has its own set of unwritten rules that everyone must follow.
First of all, make sure that all Instagram pictures and videos are in HD. Low quality visuals will reduce engagement on any piece of content. Secondly, make sure that the content is appropriately hashtagged and indexed. If you misspell a hashtag, you may throw off your analytics for a post. Use Instagram’s automatic drop down menus to make sure that you index your picture under headings that are actually searched. Lastly, consider the location of your audience. Now that you have proper analytics, you can time your posts as well as target them for the best results.
Do Instagram’s new Business Profile Analytics contain everything you are looking for? Are there 3rd party tools that offer better analytics? Please chime in!