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Analyzing Instagram: 5 Tips for Planning Your Pics

So you have a company Instagram account, you’ve posted some pictures and you’re starting to build a following. So…What next?

If you’re letting your Instagram account off the hook for its share of your social marketing plan, you’re potentially missing out on a gold mine of engaged, socially-active fans.

In a recent study, we found that 40% of top brands are now using Instagram to reach the mobile-only photo-sharing app’s 80-million users.

So the market is there…but what’s the best way to reach it? How can you leverage this audience to help build your brand? More importantly, how can you measure success and plan around it?

Answer: Simply Measured’s new Instagram report.

Our new Instagram reporting tool, which helps you put context around your Instagram engagement and better understand how to optimize your photo sharing as part of your broader social media programs.

The new reports make it easy to analyze a number of key features, from total followers and engagement all the way down to keywords, filters, time of day, external sharing, and top content.

Want to see which filters are engaging your followers? It’s in there. Number of times the photo was shared across your other networks? That’s there too. It even breaks down the keywords that are used the most in your followers’ comments on your photos.

5 Ways to Use This Tool

1. Try new things:  Use your analytics proactively. There’s a tendency to look at metrics and say “Great, now I’m aware” but then go back to business as usual.  Instagram is a new network, and there are no “standard practices” in place like there are with Facebook and Twitter. Try new things, but when you do, dive into your analytics. Gauge your successes and failures against previous successes and failures to determine the components that worked, the ones that didn’t, and how you can improve in the future.

2. Dig deep: The high-level reports do a great job of letting you know your overall progress and position, but if you want a complete picture and a better understanding of the Instagram ecosystem you’re shaping, dive into the focused reports: Comments, filters, influential fans, tags, even the keywords uses in the comments on your photos. These details are what make this report so unique, and they’re what can help you have that “Ah ha!” moment when it all starts to click.

3. Time yourself: One of the questions people constantly ask about their content marketing is “When is the best time to post?” The answer varies from network to network, industry to industry and brand to brand.  The Instagram report shows you comprehensive breakdowns that will tell you which days are getting the best response, and which time of day people are engaging. This is a key tool in planning your content.

4. Step back: Cross platform promotion & engagement is a way for your social media efforts to reach new fans that it wouldn’t have otherwise. In order to do this, you need a way to scope your networks and how they interact with each other. With the Instagram analytics tool, you can see how the Instagram posts you’ve shared are engaging audiences on Twitter and Facebook as well.

5. Find power players: As you’re breaking down your engagement statistics, and identifying key commenters on your photos, you can now categorize them based on their volume of comments. This gives you the ability to focus your efforts on the users that can help grow your business in meaningful ways.

Ready to get started?

Use the report as a starting point. The in-depth analytics provide an opportunity to chart your growth and insight that you can use to determine how you handle that growth. Integrate these analytics into your strategy to help build a focused, realistic and goal-oriented plan.

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Kevin Shively

I lead marketing for Simply Measured. Recovering journalist. My team is embarrassed of my hilarious jokes. Firm believer that the best marketers are the best storytellers and the best storytellers use the best data.

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