Instagram account with right name set up? Check.
Branded profile pic? Check.
Short and snazzy description on your bio? Check.
That’s not all. You’ve even posted quite a few photos, followed a couple of interesting Instagram users, and even have quite a few follow you back!
So what’s next? Well, it’s time to measure your Instagram performance and success.
The old adage that you cannot manage what you can’t measure is true. This applies equally to Instagram marketing.
So how do you do so?
Number of Followers
The first and most basic Key Performance Indicator (KPI) for Instagram is the number of followers you have.
Here, I am talking about genuine flesh and blood human beings and not bots or fake followers that you buy en masse from click farms.
Without a decent following, it will be difficult to tap on Instagram for any marketing purposes. The same applies to most social media channels.
Quality of Followers
Beyond numbers, it is important to determine the quality of your Instagram followers. By this, I am talking about how relevant they are to your business, either as potential customers or partners.
For example, if you are a fashion brand for teens, it may make little sense to have lots of followers who are in their 40s and 50s. The same applies if you are an F&B business operating a steakhouse – the last thing you want to do is attract vegan greenies to become your followers!
Number of Likes
Having a large pool of targeted followers isn’t enough. Your followers need to care enough to engage with your photos and videos on Instagram.
The basic tier of engagement is measured via “likes” (or hearts). In Instagram, you can “like” by double tapping a photo or video.
Likes are the social currency of the Internet. These days, they carry more significance than just views or followers alone.
Number of Positive Comments
Beyond likes, you should also measure the number of comments on your Instagram posts. As comments require more effort to give than likes, they are usually more highly valued.
However, while a “like” is a “like” whichever way you look at it, comments can take on several shades:
- Positive comments are usually encouraging, participative, relevant to the topic, and personal. They could be as simple as “Good post!” to longer and more considered ones.
- Neutral or clarifying comments could be those that seek to find out more information about a post. Sometimes, they could be more valuable than a “Nice pic!” type of comment. An example of a clarifying comment could be “How do I buy this?” or “Where can I sign up?”
- Negative comments normally criticise the company and its products. If they are genuine requests for help (eg “Service was very slow when I went there last week.”), you should address them by taking it offline. However, trolls and cyber bullies who posts comments which are seditious or untrue should be blocked and reported to Instagram.
Number of Shout Outs and Mentions
The next level of engagement would be shout outs or mentions (ie @yourbrand) of your Instagram nick on other people’s posts.
Shout outs are made by other Instagram users when they mention your Instagram nick in their captions, whereas mentions are normally made in the comments that follow a post.
These posts would normally be made by other Instagram users mentioning your Instagram nick in their captions or comments. For brands, shout outs or mentions usually occur during a campaign or contest which requires your followers and other Instagram users to do a particular action.
Hashtags are the “magic dust” of Instagram marketing. By using relevant hashtags, you can increase the visibility of your Instagram posts to the right target audience. In a way, they function like keywords on Google searches.
Branded hashtags are those that are specific to your brand. For example, one for StarNgage could be #starngage while another for your brand could be #yourbrandname.
Beyond your brand names, it may be useful to also have specific hashtags for each campaign, and to track how widely they are being disseminated by your followers and other Instagram users during a campaign period.
Number of Reposts
Similar to the “share” function on Facebook, a repost occurs when an Instagram user uses an app to “copy and paste” an Instagram photo while acknowledging and crediting the source. This is similar to the credits on blog photos or Facebook photos when we wish to highlight where they came from.
Reports are a great way to get your branded Instagram content shared by other Instagram users. It is thus a good way to measure your engagement and influence.
What is an engagement ratio?
Well, engagement on Instagram derived by dividing the quantity of likes, comments, hashtags, or reposts over the number of followers or posts that you have made for a specific time period.
There are several ratios that may be worth tracking:
- Likes per post: ie no of likes/ no of posts (in a specific time period)
- Comments per post: no of comments/ no of posts
- Branded hashtags over time period: No of hashtags/ unit time (eg month or week)
- Percentage of reposts per post: No of reposts/ no of posts
Now that you’ve got all your various metrices in place – no of followers, likes per post, comments per post, hashtags/unit time, reposts, etc – it is time to measure how well these indicators are over time.
Like in any form of marketing metrics, measuring Instagram marketing performance should be done over a time period. The rates of growth in the various indicators could then be tracked over a time period. Examples of growth rates include the following:
- New followers/month
- Average no of likes per post/month
- Average no of comments per post/month
- Percentage growth in hashtags/month
Clicks on URL
Last but certainly not least, a good way to measure Instagram marketing performance is done through the number of clicks on your URL. By now, you would already know that there is only one place where a clickable URL can be placed – namely on your bio.
A good way to track this is to have a customised URL and a tracking mechanism incorporated into it. By doing so, you can track and monitor how effective your Instagram campaigns are in driving traffic through that link.
Instagram Measuring Platforms
As you’d imagine doing all the above manually can be quite a hassle, especially when you’ve reached 10s or even 100s of thousands of followers. How in the world are you going to measure each and every individual like, comment and repost, plus track them over time?
This is where platforms like Starngage comes in.
Through our specially developed algorithm, we are able to track and monitor your Instagram marketing analytics with daily updates on key metrics. StarNgage also allows you to find the right influencers to be matched against your brand.
Keen to find out more Instagram Marketing or StarNgage? Sign up for a FREE account today by clicking here