The Instagram Metrics You Should Care About
If building your brand on Instagram is one of your goals, it's important to track the right metrics. Numbers don't lie — they offer proof that your marketing strategies are actually working. Instead of spending all your time going through all the numbers and graphs, try to focus on the metrics that actually impact what you're trying to achieve.
When it comes to social media marketing, data is a very important guide to show if your strategy is working. But first, let's discuss a few of the terms you'll likely encounter.
Impressions mean the number of people who saw your post. It includes the posts that didn't receive likes or comments. By looking at the Impressions analysis, you'll be able to see how well you're promoting your content.
Take into account your hashtag strategy. Using hashtags can guarantee some reach for your content, which may increase your Impressions number. Posts with at least one hashtag gain about 12.6% more engagement than non-hashtagged posts. Check out my blog on The Ultimate Guide to All Things #Hashtags here. Research relevant and trending hashtags and consider storing them in a hashtag vault a lá Planoly. When you post your content using these hashtags, you're bound to see better impression and engagement.
Engagement refers to likes, comments, shares and saves a.k.a. different ways people can talk/interact with you — all boost your engagement rate. If you analyze your rate of engagement on individual posts, you should be able to tell the type of content your audience likes and adjust your strategy to produce more of what's been working for you.
Comments are so important (do NOT forget to reply to your comments; this is what develops the relationship with your followers and boosts your engagement!)
"Click the link in my bio for more info." — will they do it? The link in your bio is really the only clickable opportunity on Instagram. It is full of opportunity to boost engagement, especially if you use a Linktree or similar. Or even a direct link to a sign-up form. Keep an eye on the number of people who click the bio link — it means your followers are interested in what services/products you have to offer.
Followers matter, but don't confuse tons of followers with a thriving marketing strategy. Many followers are bots, spam, or passive followers. What's more important is tracking how your following count changes over time.
Stories are a fun and easy way to connect with your followers. Unfortunately, they only last for 24 hours so it's difficult to track engagement. But there are a few ways you can track their metrics, including replies, profile visits and engagement with your stickers. Remember, the data won't save on your Stories, since they're short-lived, so you'll have to track this manually.
So now that you know what important metrics are, which should you track? Here's a quick guide — depending on your strategy (growth, engagement, etc.), you may need to readjust the formula, but here's a general rule of thumb:
The Metrics That Matter
For Instagram Posts, check out your comments, shares, saves and reach through hashtags. This will show the number of your followers who resonate with your message and have taken an action (save/share/comment/etc.) to show it. Permanently keeping an eye on these numbers helps indicate what type of content is near and dear to your follower's hearts.
For Instagram Stories, look at your replies, profile visits and engagement with your stickers. (Do people actually use them when you put them out there?) Note: Adding stickers makes it more likely to appear in Explore or the sticker's larger story.
For Instagram Reels, track your likes, comments, saves and shares. (Note: Instagram only recently released Reels Insights a couple months ago. If you haven't seen it, check it out!) In-depth analysis can help you make better informed creative decisions and build more engaging content strategies. Plus, it helps you get to know your audience better!
Quick note: Insights are only available for Instagram Business Accounts. But don't worry! You can switch to a Creator or Business account in your settings. To view your analytics, go to your brand's Instagram profile and locate the "Insights" tab under "Edit Profile" OR tap the hamburger icon in the top right corner and tap on "Insights" from there.
Instagram is such a great way to expand your reach and boost engagement. But if you truly want to measure your success, numbers matter. I know it's overwhelming to track the numbers and analyze the charts and graphs, but by focusing your analytics on these data points above, you can better understand what is really vibing with your tribe and avoid those social media “crickets” and data overwhelm!
Written by Alexandra Reilly CEO of LadyBoss Global Media LLC
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LadyBoss Global Media offers custom client consulting, platform optimization, monthly management, content creation, email marketing creation and consulting, campaigns, social media event day management, photography, videography, and much more! Alexandra has spoken to many audiences teaching social media principals and tips customized for their field and has worked with men and women from many different industries throughout the United States and Canada.
Contact Alexandra at Alexandra@ladybossglobalmedia.com