Digital & Social Media

Buy the Numbers at Instagram

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What Happened: In a long-awaited effort to make itself more advertiser-friendly, Instagram announced this week a roll out of business tools and analytics. Included in the suite are:

  • Account insight metrics like reach, impressions, and engagement
  • Ad insights on the performance of paid campaigns,
  • Ad staging capabilities allowing advertisers to preview, save and collaborate on ad creative before publishing live

The dashboard provides more visibility — way beyond likes and comments — into how photos and campaigns are doing on the visual social network. As Instagram is Facebook-owned, the analytics will also leverage Facebook demographics for those who have their accounts linked.

The metrics are not only for advertising but also for organic posts, giving brands a better sense of what content resonates with their audience. In October 2013, Instagram started offering ad buys to a handful of clients like Taco Bell, and though successful (Taco Bell saw a 400% jump on paid Instagrams over their organic posts), advertisers demanded more robust metrics. For now, the dashboard will be available to Instagram’s ad partners only, with the prospect of expanding to other brands coming soon.

What This Means for Brands: Obviously, the new metrics should position Instagram as a more viable paid-media platform for many more brands. That’s good news for Instagram, but also for brands that appeal to Millennials. It also may prompt upgrades on metrics by other social channels as the competition heats up for paid media on social.

Contributing to current TRENDING items are Bram Berkowitz, Natalie Hensley, Chelsea Lowe, Caroline Michelman, Tom Pompei and Daniel J. Sheehan.