Many marketers end up asking themselves this question: what are the right metrics to track with Instagram analytics? A lot of data is tracked, so the key to every marketing campaign is identifying which data matters most.
Did you know that 60% of Instagram users say they discover new products on the platform, and 72% of Instagram users report making purchase decisions based on something that they saw while browsing the app. If you’re selling a product as a marketer, you’re on Instagram, or you’ve made a conscious decision to not join a multi-billion dollar market.
It’s important to note, that just because Instagram is a good bet for most companies (especially B2C), it’s important to note the difficulties in measuring a direct ROI, and a traditional methodology for calculating ROI might not always be possible. For example, you may not see immediate and direct sales from your ads, but Instagram ads can promote solid brand recognition, which is invaluable to your client’s brand.
You may not be able to trace the exact effects of an Instagram Ad, but you can still track plenty of growth metrics, especially given enough time. The only difficulty for larger marketing campaigns is isolating the true effect of particular campaigns in the sea of marketing strategies that are being simultaneously executed.
Over 8 million business profiles exist on Instagram and mobile ad revenue is set to top $7 billion in 2018. Its no wonder ad revenue for mobile is seeing such a rise when you see that Instagram is pulling in over 100 million new accounts every year.
As an agency, when you’re running Instagram campaigns for your clients, there are several metrics you’ll definitely need to measure if you want to show the value of the Instagram campaigns you’re running. Here are some interesting Instagram statistics from Socialpilot to review before we dig into the 4 metrics that benefit your clients most:
⚡Influencers are now charging up to $100,000 per post
⚡One in every 5 organic stories gets a direct message
⚡Hashtags on Instagram average 12.6% more engagement than posts that don’t include any hashtags
⚡68% of Instagram users are female
⚡Instagram has 500 million daily users
⚡Photos with faces get 38% more likes
1. Follower Growth Rate
A high follower count is a popular way to measure Instagram reach. However, it’s not often the most telling metric, especially for marketers interested in showing clients how well their campaigns are performing.
A more impressive metric to measure is follower growth rate. Follower growth rate tells you if your business is expanding its reach and if your campaigns are garnering the attention of new people. It’s important to measure because you can learn how much and how quickly your count is changing. Growth rate captures your overall increase in reach.
When you measure this metric over the long haul, it can tell you which are your campaigns are being better received. If you see a rise in follower growth rate during a particular campaign, you know you are doing something right in terms of spiking follower interest. Similarly, if you see a lag of growth rate during specific campaigns, it indicates you may need to switch up your strategy.
Many Instagram analytics platforms will calculate follower growth rate for you. If you need to do it on your own, you simply take the number of followers you gained over a specific period of time (usually over the last month). Then, you divide the number of followers you had at the beginning of that period (or the first of the month). That will tell you your follower growth rate.
When you include this metric in your client reports, you can easily show the results of your social media marketing efforts. It’s important to note that the ultimate metric is one that is connected to a purchase. Many skilled marketers can achieve good growth rates, but it’s important to grow the right way. If you buy your followers or do a poor job of engaging your followers then growth rate means much less to you than it does to the business that actively engages their Instagram community.
Make sure you don’t do the right thing the wrong way, otherwise you’ll dilute the importance of tracking Instagram growth rates.
2. Engagements Per Follower
Tracking your engagement rate is a good way to determine how many likes, comments, and reposts your posts are receiving. However, if you’re looking to measure success in more specific terms, consider measuring engagement per follower too.
Engagements per follower is one of the most important engagement metrics for your digital marketing campaign. Measure engagement based on your audience size as opposed to measuring it against an account that has had much more time to grow in terms of followers. This metric is good to use in conjunction with growth rate as it provides a more robust view into your instagram insights.
Measuring engagements per follower will help you understand how much engagement you are generating proportionally to the size of your current audience. As your audience grows, and if you see this number stay steady or improve, you know you are on the right track.
Interestingly enough, it’s possible for an Instagram profile of a smaller brand to generate a higher level of engagement per follower than a more established brand, even if the engagement rate of the brand is higher. In my personal experience, the more you can engage you’re followers and the more they see you as an individual and not just a faceless business entity, the more likely it is that engagement percentages will be high.
What this key metric tells you is that you have a solid Instagram strategy, and you will continue to see meaningful account growth. Like w
3. Referral Traffic
Often the purpose of growing an Instagram account is to lead your most loyal followers to your website where they can purchase your products or services.Referral traffic is a metric that tells you how many people found your website through Instagram. This metric is important to measure because it gives you insight into how well your posts are performing in terms of leading people to your website.
While this is an important metric, it is a little more tricky to track within regular posts. The main reason is that, as you know, Instagram doesn’t allow clickable links within the caption of a post. One popular way to lead people to your client’s website is to include the link you want followers to click on in your profile and use the caption section to guide them to your profile.
If you are running an Instagram ad, it’s much easier to track referral traffic. The reason? You can include a call to action and a link in your Instagram picture. Similarly, you can add links in your Instagram stories track referral traffic that way.
Regardless of what combination of strategies you use to lead people to your client’s website, this metric will help show the value of your campaigns. Make sure to include it in your social media reports.
4. Comments Per Post
Want to show your clients just how well you’re building their Instagram following? Then, you need to include the comments per post in your reporting.
Comments per post will give you more insight into how well engaged your audience is, even more so than likes. It only takes a quick “double tap” for a follower to like your post, and sometimes they may even do this mindlessly. However, typing in a comment is an active engagement, requiring time and thought, that shows the follower is truly interested in the post. The higher this number is, the more you can show your clients your Instagram strategy is working. You know you are creating posts that resonate with people who love your brand. When this number goes up, you know you are doing something right. If this number goes down, you may want to rethink your strategy.
Either way, it’s a good way to show the value of your work.
Tracking these 4 metrics will help you show your clients exactly how the Instagram campaigns you are running are growing their business. Now that you know what to track, don’t forget to report to your clients. With TapClicks, you can send automated reports that include all your top Instagram metrics. Additionally, you can easily create a social media dashboard that will provide insights into how all your social media campaigns are performing for various clients.
Measuring metrics is half the battle and reporting is the other half. When you have these down, you can demonstrate value much more effectively.
Check out our massive Social Media Content Guide if you’d like some additional insights into your overall social media campaigns. We also have a social media infographic that provides a snapshot of social media marketing.
We’d love to hear from you on the topic of Instagram or Social Media. Let us know what you track and what works or doesn’t work for you in your marketing campaigns.