Digital insights
10.06.2016

Instagram Analytics – The New Frontier

Lauren Crystal

Australia’s social influencers & brands alike are this week feeling extremely giddy over Instagram unveiling a new super suite of analytical tools. Businesses using Instagram to promote or extend their brand can now jump on the backend of Instagram to track and trace their followers. Here at Your Creative we have coined these new analytics ‘NLS’ – Next Level Stalking.

From a commercial point of view, this is predicted to lead to better targeted sales and a try-before-you-buy-ads approach to social campaigns. This is great for small-scale businesses using Instagram as part of their digital marketing strategy. The Financial Times predicts that approximately 60% of Instagram’s 400 million monthly active users learn about new products and services through the platform. Analytics will now allow small and large businesses to better target users with their products and/or services, without paying for ad space.

Here are Your Creative’ 5 Tips for Insta Analytical Success:

1. Get an Instagram business account

Firstly, make sure that you have the correct business credentials to access analytics. Instagram haven’t overly advertised the free upgrade to ‘business account’, most probably because they still have the facade of a non-commercial content-sharing platform. You can sign-up for the upgrade via your ‘edit profile’ page, lucky for us you can pop in your Businesses Facebook details and Instagram will fill in the blanks for you.

2. Don’t be allured by Impressions

Instagram have gone out of their way to provide a simple user experience, mainly by showcasing your businesses data via graphs. Regardless of the sleek layout be wary of focusing on ‘Impressions’. This means the total number of times all your posts have been seen. It’s not a complete waste of time but it’s important to remember that on a content-based social site, if users aren’t engaging with your post, its unlikely they’ll remember your content for more than 5 seconds.

3. Instagram Analytics + Google Analytics = Extra Insight

While Google & The Zuckerberg clan may be rivals, they both know how to make an excellent analytics tool. Most websites will have basic Google Analytics linked up to the back, if not you can add Google analytics simply via the link at the bottom of this post. The beauty of having two platforms with two analytics tools is that you can cross-reference to find the sweet spots. Use Instagram analytics to find out the ‘Website Clicks’ – this will let you how many account have tapped onto your website link. If you tee this up the engagement you receive on your actual website during these timeframes you can start to get a picture of genuine, effective engagement. If Google Analytics looks a bit tragic (i.e. high bounce rate for example) but your Instagram ‘Website Clicks’ are high, you know the issue lies with your website not your social campaign.

4. No need for a third-party tool

There has been many a third-party Instagram analytics tools jumping on the bandwagon. We would suggest keeping it simple, Instagram analytics can provide robust insight straight from your account, so there is no need to give your details or money away to an alternative tool that changes the graphs from pie to bar chart.

5. Target Post Times

Last but not least, Instagram analytics will not only tell you what works and what doesn’t work, but it can help target your digital strategy to your desired audience. The ‘Average times your followers are on Instagram’ feature is a small but deadly extra, allowing you to know the busiest times to post, therefore get the most traction. Combine this with Facebook analytics of a similar strand and you can give your content the best chance of achieving results.

https://www.google.com.au/analytics/standard/features/

An Afterthought: The Dark Side of Instagram Analytics

While we are all very caught up in the commercial potential of Instagram analytics, it is important to mention that when Mark Zuckerberg bought Instagram he promised to keep it an ‘authentic content-sharing platform’. Here at Your Creative, we do wonder; is Instagram analytics the final step in the transformation of holiday snaps and cupcake competitions to a confusing advertising warp-hole?