7 Instagram Metrics to Measure Your Campaign's Success

Instagram can be a great way to get your business in front of more people, especially if your target is millennial and Generation Z customers. It’s also one of the most powerful social media platforms for branding specifically.

But like any other social media platform, there’s not much point in using Instagram if you’re not getting results.

Below are the Instagram metrics you should be watching in your social media reports to see how well your social marketing strategy is paying off.

1. Follower Growth Rate

A high follower count can be an ego boost and add brand credibility, but it doesn’t actually say that much about the health of your business or marketing campaigns.

A high follower count can be an ego boost and add brand credibility, but it doesn’t actually say that much about the health of your business or marketing campaigns.

Your follower growth rate, on the other hand, gives you a good idea of whether your business is expanding its reach and catching new people’s attention. In other words, the way your follower count changes is more important than your actual number of followers.

For instance, suppose you get 50 new followers in a month. If you started out with 500 followers, that means your growth rate was 10%, which is excellent. A number like that is a sure sign that your business’ reach is growing quickly. If you started out with 5000 followers, though, your follower growth rate would only be 1%, which could indicate that your Instagram marketing is stagnating.

Determining your follower growth rate is simple. Take the number of followers you gained over the last month. Divide that number by the number of followers you had at the beginning of the month. For instance, if you gained 90 followers this month and had 1500 followers at the start of the month, your follower growth rate this month was 90/1500 = 0.06, or 6%. (Or, you generate an Instagram report in a few clicks with AgencyAnalytics).

2. Engagement Per Follower

When it comes to your audience on Instagram, quality beats quantity.

It’s better to have a small but highly engaged audience than a large audience that doesn’t pay attention to anything you post. Tracking your engagement per follower lets you monitor how just interested your audience is.

Just like with follower count and growth rate, it’s important to compare the number of likes and comments you get with the size of your audience. For example, suppose your average post gets 10 likes. That means one thing if you have 100 followers, but something very different if you have 1000. Many smaller brands get fewer likes and comments on every post than big businesses do, but their audience is still more engaged (and therefore higher-quality).

You can calculate your engagement per follower on a monthly or weekly basis. Don’t try to calculate it on a daily basis, since normal day-to-day fluctuations will probably throw off your data. Look at the total number of likes and comments you got during a specific time period and then divide that number by the number of followers you had during that time period. For example, if you got 78 likes and comments last week and you had 600 followers, your follower engagement rate was 13% for the week.

3. Comments Per Post

Likes on Instagram are gratifying, but they’re not worth as much as comments. It only takes a second to tap the “like” button, but typing out a comment requires time and thought. When someone leaves a comment, it shows that you’ve really caught their interest and connected with them in some way.

Thus, the number of comments you get is an important metric to track. Keep an eye on your average, and notice if it goes up or down. For instance, if you got an average of five comments per post six months ago, and you get an average of eight now, you’re doing something right in terms of connecting with your audience. If your average number of comments has gone down, try to figure out why your audience is less engaged than they used to be.

It’s also a good idea to notice which of your individual posts get the most comments. See if a pattern emerges over time. For instance, if your audience really likes a particular type of product photo, create more posts like that to keep engagement high.

4. Link Clicks

Like other social media channels, Instagram can be a powerful driver of traffic to your website.

However, Instagram is more limiting in driving traffic to your site since it only allows you to have one tap-able link in your bio.

Any links you include in your posts must be copied and pasted by your audience. This can make it difficult to know how much of your web traffic is from Instagram.

However, note that Instagram is currently in the process of testing adding links to your Instagram Stories for verified users. (Keep on reading for more information about using Instagram stories for your business below!)

With additional links available in Instagram stories, it adds a lot more opportunities to drive traffic to your site via Instagram. But, which updates and stories drive traffic your website? And ultimately, which ones led to conversions on the site?

You can take your Instagram analytics to the next level when you create URLs with UTM parameters that tell your analytics platform where a particular visitor came from. UTM parameters are basically informational tags that you append to your normal URL.

UTM URLs can be unwieldy to type out manually, but there are a number of simple tools on the internet that will generate these URLs for you. GA Campaign Builder is a popular (and free!) one.

Below is an example of a simple UTM URL:

utm url

UTM URLs can be a bit clunky, so you may want to shorten your finished URL with bit.ly or a similar tool. GA Campaign Builder provides a link shortener directly in the tool. Below is a shortened URL:

utl url 2

Take it a step further in your reports to really impress clients and demonstrate results from Instagram.

Easily add to your AgencyAnalytics reports an overview of all social traffic, including goal completions. This report will allow you to measure how often traffic from social channels, like Instagram, converts on your client’s website.

instagram metrics dashboard

5. Most Engaged Hashtags

Using hashtags well is an essential part of succeeding on Instagram. Hashtags let you categorize your posts, and they help people find you.

Over time, you’ll probably find that some of your hashtags are performing better for you than others. Tracking your hashtags lets you keep your finger on the pulse of which terms are most popular and which ones earn you the most engagement. It also lets you see which hashtags your audience doesn’t love so much, so you can cut back on your use of them.

hash tags

6. Instagram Stories Engagement

Instagram stories – which can be either video or photos – are a bit different from regular content because they disappear after 24 hours. This gives you some extra freedom to try out different or experimental marketing ideas, but it also makes the feature a bit difficult to track. Platforms outside Instagram don’t currently support analytics for expiring content, but you can still track this metric with Instagram’s native analytics tool, called Insights.

You’ll need a business account on Instagram to access Insights. Creating one is easy. Go to settings, and you’ll see an option called “Switch to Business Profile.”

instagram

After that, you’ll be prompted to enter information about your business.

After setting up your business profile, you should be able to access data about your stories on Insights. There are two main things you should pay attention to: reach and exits. Your reach tells you how many unique viewers saw your story; the longer you’re on Instagram and the more followers you get, the more your reach should increase. Your exits tell you which slide people were on when they exited your story. Exits are a good way to see what holds your audience’s interest and what doesn’t. If you notice a lot of exits on one particular slide, try to figure out why so many people lost interest at that point.

Be aware that you can only see statistics for your stories while they’re live. Make sure to check back within 24 hours, or your data will disappear along with your content.

7. Top Locations and Hours

Timing is important on social media. If you want your content to get seen, you’ve got to post updates when your audience is online.

If you have a business profile, Instagram gives you lots of information about your followers’ locations and active hours. You can see the cities and countries where the majority of your followers are located, as well as the days of the week and hour of the day when your followers are most active. Pay attention to patterns in the data, and schedule new posts for times when your followers are online – it’s an easy way to get more engagement without doing anything else differently.

The Takeaway

Instagram can be a great place to market your business. It’s fun, it gives you an artistic outlet, and it lets you connect with your audience. However keep in mind, if you want yourInstagram marketing to be profitable as well as fun, you’ve got to track the right metric regularly. Focus on these seven things, and you’ll get a clearer picture of how your current strategy is performing, as well as some ideas for how to improve.