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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Pacella

Getting the Most out of Instagram Analytics

Every successful media campaign is only as strong as its ability to efficiently reach its target audience. Today, there’s a plethora of analytic software and marketing techniques that can help increase the impact of any online campaign.

For a small business, obtaining this software or having an outside organization evaluate measures can be a costly endeavour. Fortunately, relying on Instagram’s inhouse analytics is a great way to gather preliminary data on your campaign, which can help guide your decision making. Using these analytics to your advantage is a great way to spur organic growth at no extra cost!

The ultimate goal of any Instagram campaign or is to reach the “explore page” - a random, yet seemingly connected collection of pages that serve as a “suggestion page” based off the viewer's interests. The more popular the post, the more likely it is to show up on a viewer’s explore page. This action allows for the largest potential audience to interact with your post.

The insights page is divided into 3 separate sections.


The content section keeps track of the number of posts made on your account each week (and compares it to the previous week), the level of engagement each post within your feed experiences, along with your Instagram story.

The content section can allow users to:

  • Find a posting schedule that works for them. More content doesn’t always mean a better likelihood of success. Whether that’s posting once day, or maybe 2-3 times a week, Instagram’s algorithm (and most likely your target audience) isn’t going to reward an account for bombarding the platform with content.

  • Quickly sort effective posts from ineffective posts. Under content, all posts made over the past year are sorted from most engaging to least engaging. The idea of engagement will be discussed under the next section, but this allows marketers to tell which kinds of posts were well received and which were not.

  • Interact with their Instagram stories. Insta stories, which debuted in August of 2016, do in fact have a tangible effect on the likelihood of reaching the explore page. Stories, with many other factors, play a role in determining which posts make the explore page and which do not. Having analytics on how many people responded to a story, screenshotted a picture, or skipped a post altogether can be incredibly helpful.


The second section of the insights page includes more in depth data regarding the specific actions that viewers take when they see your post, along with where their access your content from. This section includes which days of the week your posts experience the most interactions and what kinds of interactions are the most common. This section can tell you a lot about the success of your campaign.

For example, the activity section can allow users to:

  • Tell how successful their posting schedule actually is. Typically, if the days they post content to Instagram aren’t the days followers are interacting with their posts, they may need to alter their schedule.

  • Determine if their posts are actually enhancing specific campaign objectives. Some campaigns may have the goal of increasing awareness of their brand, while others have more immediate and tangible goals such as influencing consumer behavior. Being able to differentiate the amount of “Impressions” from “Profile Visits” and “Website Clicks” allows marketers to determine how efficient their campaign is at meeting its objectives.

  • Determine the number of unique accounts that are viewing their content each week. This is important because it gives marketers a sense of whether their campaign is effective within their digital landscape, assuming most viewers occupy a similar industry or area of interest. By looking at the insights of specific posts, marketers can tell how many of those unique pages saw your content by visiting your profile, from your tagged location or from hashtags.


The audience section is the third and final portion of Instagram’s insights. This section provides information on the amount of followers gained (or lost) over the past week, where most of your followers are located, along with more specific demographic information such as age, gender, and viewing habits. This is an important section for obvious reasons-it gives you a better idea of who you’re actually marketing to.

The audience section allows users to:

  • Track the highest concentration of followers based on city and country. If LA and NYC make up a majority of your followers, but their product is more directed towards midwesterners, that’s evidence that your message needs reworking. This goes for age and gender as well. If your analytics say that most individuals who view their content are females between the ages of 25-34, but that’s not the target audience they’re trying to reach, they should consider revisiting their content strategy.

  • Determine the times when their followers are most active. Creating a posting schedule around followers' most active hours and days is a great way to rack up impressions immediately, hopefully giving a post the push it needs to reach the explore page.

Although Instagram analytics aren’t perfect, when used properly, they can reveal a lot of hidden information about your media campaign. Instagram provides the tools, but leaves the marketer with the difficult (and fun!) job of using intuition to fill in the gaps. Hopefully this article makes it seem a little less daunting!


Original Post by Matt McDonald


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