Getting to grips with Instagram essentials should form a core part of your social media strategy. But what are Instagram impressions and why do they matter?
How can you keep track of Instagram impressions? More importantly, what can the data you collect and analyze tell you about your performance?
What Are Impressions on Instagram?
With hundreds of millions of publishers all competing for the same attention, getting ahead on Instagram isn’t easy. Keeping tabs on the performance of your content means focusing on two primary metrics – impressions and reach.
Equally important, but indicative of different things, nonetheless. Instagram defines impressions as “the total number of times that your post has been seen”. In a typical working example, this means that a post with 30,000 impressions was seen a total of 30,000 times.
But this does not necessarily mean that 30,000 different people saw the post, as many they have seen it twice, three times or even more. It also does not mean that those who saw the post actually took the time to look at it.
They could have simply scrolled past it when it appeared on their screen, without really noticing it. Just because a post has been seen on Instagram does not mean it has generated engagement. Nevertheless, it still constitutes an impression – recorded and taken into account by Instagram.
Instagram impressions matter because they are one of many metrics Instagram considers when promoting and recommending content. Impressions are a measure of popularity, appeal and content that is trending at the time. Hence, the more impressions your posts collect, the more likely they are to be promoted and recommended.
What is the Difference Between Reach and Impressions on Instagram?
Reach and impressions are often confused as the same thing, but are in fact quite different. Here’s a brief explanation of how reach and impressions differ from one another:
Instagram Reach: Instagram reach refers to the number of unique users that saw something you published within a specific period of time. Reach is different to impressions, in that when a user views the same post multiple times, it does not result in increased reach.
Instagram Impressions: By contrast, Instagram impressions refer to the total number of times a post has been seen during a specific period of time. If a user views the same post 10 times, this constitutes 10 impressions.
Again, it’s important to note that neither of these metrics provides confirmation (or even an indication) of engagement. Engagement occurs when somebody interacts with your content in any way, as opposed to simply viewing it.
Engagement is an even more important measurement of quality and value on Instagram. But engagement cannot occur without plenty of impressions and a high level of reach in the first place.
How to Measure Instagram Impressions?
Measuring Instagram impressions is surprisingly easy, even if you lack extensive knowledge and experience. The quickest and easiest way to get to track impressions is to use Instagram Insights.
This is the built-in analytics tool Instagram users can access freely, which provides invaluable information as to the performance of your posts. Some of the more advanced features can take a while to get to grips with, but the initial learning curve is surprisingly easy to navigate.
What is Instagram Insights?
In a nutshell, Instagram Insights is the native analytics tool that offers in-depth insights into follower actions, demographics and behaviors. It is basically the all-encompassing resource you need to see who your posts are reaching and how they are interacting with them.
Using Instagram Insights is relatively simple, but you will first need to set up a business account. Switching from a personal account to a business account is easy, and you can also switch back at a later stage if you prefer.
However, Insights is only available to those with a business account, so it’s worth making the switch and sticking with it.
How to Access Instagram Insights?
Assuming you already have a business account, you can access Insights from your account page by clicking on the bar graph symbol in the top-right-hand corner of the screen.
If you are currently running a personal account, you will need to switch to a business account as follows:
1) Set up a Facebook Business Profile to correspond with your personal account
2) Check whether you have set your Instagram profile to ‘public’ as private profiles are exempt
3) Log into your account and access the setting menus via the gear icon at the top
4) Find the ‘Switch to Business Profile’ option and select it
5) You will then be prompted to choose the Facebook page to be associated with your profile on Instagram
6) Carefully check the details on the ‘Set Up Your Business Profile’ page to make sure everything is in order
7) Hit the ‘Done’ button and you will have switched to a business account
You will now be able to start using Instagram Insights, though will not be able to access any historic data regarding the performance of your posts to date. Hence, getting up and running with Instagram Insights at the earliest possible stage is advisable.
How to Access and Analyze Key Metrics?
The performance metrics you should be focusing on when using Instagram Insights will be determined by your objectives. If you’re looking to attract more followers, you may have very different priorities from a business looking to boost sales.
In any case, there are various invaluable insights you can gain access to via the central dashboard. For example, Instagram Insights enables you to:
1) View your impressions and reach
2) See website clicks
3) Track profile visits and followers
4) View post likes, comments, and saves
5) Learn which actions (engagement) were taken
6) Use Discovery to see where you post showed up in feeds
7) View Instagram Story insights
Using these and other insights, you will be able to evaluate the performance of your posts in accordance with your goals and objectives. You’ll learn which of your posts are performing as expected, which are failing to hit home with your target audience, and which could stand to be improved.
The data you access and collect will subsequently serve as an invaluable blueprint for your Instagram campaign. You’ll have all the information you need to make more strategic decisions, based on hard facts and evidence.
It’s an exercise that can be quite revealing – an inside look at how your audience behaves. Which often turns out to be nothing like you expected!
Can You Buy Instagram Impressions?
The short answer is yes, and doing so can make a big difference. At Buy Real Media, we make it quick and easy to buy authentic Instagram impressions of the highest quality. Over the past decade, we’ve added millions of impressions to thousands of Instagram posts spanning every niche imaginable.
When you purchase Instagram impressions from Buy Real Media, you enjoy all the benefits without having to wait weeks, months or years for things to happen organically. All at a rock-bottom price, with packages available to suit all budgets.
In Summary: Why Should You Track Impressions on Instagram?
Tracking impressions on Instagram is important for a long list of reasons. As already touched upon, impressions contribute to visibility and exposure on the platform. If Instagram sees a post attracting plenty of impressions, it stands out as a quality post.
But tracking impressions is also the only realistic way to ensure your campaign is on the right track. Unless you keep an eye on impressions (and other key metrics), you have no real way of knowing whether you are:
- Not targeting the right audience
- Posting too little or too much
- Publishing content at the wrong type
- Attracting low-quality traffic
- Focusing on the wrong topics
- Overlooking major engagement opportunities
Instagram impressions give you a clear idea of who is seeing your posts – other metrics show you if and how they are having the desired effect. At which point, you’ll find yourself in a much better position to turbocharge your Instagram strategy.