Do you remember the days when we all slapped a grainy, sepia-toned filter over our Instagram photos of coffee cups, landscapes and our furry friends? I sure do! If you’ve been on the photo-sharing platform for a few years, you’ve witnessed a ton of changes to the layout and the algorithm. Some helpful, some a little difficult to wrap your mind and marketing around. What started out as a cool way to showcase my baking hobby evolved into a marketing strategy to attract my dream clients and make meaningful connections with wedding professionals across the world.
But it wasn’t always such fun. There were many nights that I agonized over what picture to use, what catchy caption to share and how to ‘beat the algorithm.’ Then, it finally clicked. Instead of trying to do it all on my own, I decided to work WITH Instagram instead of trying to outsmart it – I started digging around in my Instagram Insights and Analytics to maximize my social media marketing. What I found completely shifted the way I use Instagram to share Sugar Euphoria with my community.
I’m going to share my best practices for making your Instagram Analytics work FOR you, not against you.
Key tips to making the most of your Insights
Post when your audience is most active
This will help you maximize your social media marketing efforts
I used the data provided by Instagram to determine when my audience was actually using the app. I found my sweet spot of posting early in the morning, before folks started getting ready to work (you know, scrolling through IG before they groggily roll out of bed). I started getting more likes and comments during a shorter period of time when I did this, and found that my posts remained visible to others a lot longer than if I posted in the afternoon.
Determine which posts get the best engagement
Determining what posts and stories my followers are drawn to. I used to get really discouraged when a picture that I loved didn’t get a ton of engagement. Then, I started looking at the data on the reach and impressions of my posts. I realized a few things: my followers were particularly engaging with photos of me and photos of my more unique cakes. Photos of smaller desserts, like cupcakes and macarons, didn’t reach as many accounts as I would expect. They also responded really well to videos of me and Question stickers.
You can calculate the engagement rate on each post by first adding the number of likes and comments on a post. Then, divide that number by the number of followers you have. Next, multiply by 100 to get your rate. After doing a bit of research, I found that a good engagement rate is between 1% and 4%. But don’t be discouraged if your posts fall under that number, just keep experimenting with different types of content.
I realized that likes alone are not a true measure of how well your posts are performing. I’d much rather have increased brand awareness by knowing my posts make it to the feeds of people who would want to book me instead of having a lot of likes. Remember, likes don’t always equal sales and neither do follower counts.
Check your Calls to Action (CTA)
I love checking out the numbers related to the various calls to action – whether someone emailed me after viewing a post, visited the website or checked out my IG feed after a photo of a wedding cake came down their timeline. This also helped me curate my pictures and include a Call to Action that will move potential clients from casual browsers to booked events. I know this metric isn’t usually talked about as often as the others, but it really helps me quantify how many people reach out to me as a direct result of an Instagram post.
Now that you know what you want to be looking for… here are the steps to actually finding your analytics and insights within Instagram so you can let your social media marketing work harder for you.
HOW TO FIND YOUR INSTAGRAM ANALYTICS
Before you begin clicking around on your Instagram profile, I have to let you know that Insights are only available within Business and Creator accounts.
- Now that you’ve confirmed that you have one of the above accounts, Tap on the Insights button on your profile. You can also use the Menu button in the upper right hand corner and then click Insights.
- Next, tap the arrow next to Accounts Reached in the section labeled “Overview.” Here, you’ll find a high-level overview of your reach over a week.
- Tap the “See All” link within the Top Posts section to see the metrics on your posts. The first thing that populates is the Reach of your Feed Posts over the last year (or as long as you’ve had a Creator or Business account if less than a year). Your posts will be arranged from greatest reach to lowest reach. If you want, you can also filter by Photo, Video, Carousel Posts and Shopping Posts.
- You can also find other metrics by tapping on the down arrow next to Reach. This is where you can find Impressions, Profile Visits, Follows and more.
- Another analytic that you can see is the reach of your Stories. However, the time period only goes back to 14 days prior.
- Account Activity is also available for you to check out. Here, you can determine your Profile Visits, Website Taps and Email Button taps for the previous week. This can give you insights into how many people are taking action directly from your Instagram account.
- To find your optimal posting times, head back to your Insights and tap the arrow next to your Total Followers in the Overview section.
- On this page, you will find some cool charts related to your follower breakdowns. You can see your growth over the last 7 day along with the top locations, age range and gender of your followers.
- The Most Active Times section gives valuable information on when your followers are online. There are two different views – Hours (which are broken up into 3 hour intervals) and Days. Be sure to toggle among the days to find the best times for each.
After putting in the research and shifting the importance of likes to actual engagement I’ve finally found my groove with Instagram. Everyone’s feed and audience is different. Check out your Insights and Analytics to see what works best for you and fine tune your content to fit what’s best for your business and social media marketing!
Ready to increase revenue and grow your business with Social Media? Get our Social Media Marketing Ultimate Guide.
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