The Instagram Data Brand Marketers Are Missing – Monitor these 5 Metrics to Improve Influencer Selections

Did you know that according to a survey conducted by Facebook people said that they perceive brands on Instagram as popular (78%), creative (77%), entertaining (76%) and relevant (74%)? While many brands partner with influencers on Instagram, Sylo data has found that marketers are unable to effectively determine the quality of influencer audiences, and their ROI has suffered as a result. If you want your influencer marketing campaign to work, then you need verified data monitoring to set accurate KPIs and interpet Instagram data. With that in mind, here are 5 metrics you should be keeping track of to improve your influencer selection:

Follower Growth Rate

If you keep track of the follower growth rate, it’s easier to see which influencer is doing better than their competitors. For example, one influencer might have less followers because their account is newer, but when you track follower growth rate, you will see that they could be gaining traction much faster than their competition. 

The follower growth rate is calculated as the number of followers gained divided by the number of followers started with, times 100% (for a specific period).

The follower growth rate calculation is:

Follower Growth Rate = New Followers / Starting Follower Count x 100%

For instance, if influencer A has 1000 followers to start and gains 100 followers in a month, they’re follower growth rate is 10%.

Now let’s say influencer B has started with 10,000 followers and gains 100. They’ve only seen a follower growth rate of 1%.

Both influencers saw the same number of raw followers in a month. Although it looks like influencer B has more followers overall, it’s influencer A that is more successful when it comes to attracting new followers!

Some influencers use Giveaways to artificially inflate this metric, and will often subsequently delete the posts to hide the evidence. Fortunately, Sylo can see this type of activity because we retain all post data even if the influencer deletes them.

Instagram Impressions 

Impressions measure the number of times users saw your post or ad. This metric doesn’t take into account unique users, which means if your post or ad is shown 150 times to one person, it would technically count as 150 impressions. It’s best when both reach and impressions are high, but you want the number of impressions to be higher than your reach. Why? Because it’s a sign that your followers have viewed your content multiple times. When people see your post or ad more than once, they start to become familiar with your brand, so even if people aren’t in the market for what you’re selling right now, their awareness of your brand might lead them to purchase in the future.

However, it’s important to note that platforms often estimate impressions because they aren’t publicly available. To get the real number of impressions on Instagram, it requires authentication. In fact, Sylo highlights a case study on our website that cites how a platform over-reported impressions on a campaign by 631%! That goes to show that only independent, direct access to your verified campaign data guarantees that your brand receives what was paid for.

Story Engagement Rate 

How do you calculate story engagement rate? Good Question! Although there are no likes, comments, or saves on Instagram Stories, you can measure interactions such as swipe ups, replies, tap backs, and tap forwards to figure out the engagement rate.

Swipe ups are available to influencers with 10K followers or more. Once an influencer has unlocked the swipe up feature, they can add a link to your product or website so users can swipe up on the story and be taken to your landing page. Instagram Story analytics will track the number of times someone has swiped up on a story, which is key to understanding what content is best for driving traffic to your website. Approximately 15 to 25% of Instagram users will swipe up on a story.

Another great way to measure Instagram story engagement is by tracking how many users reply to your story. Instagram is about creating a community, so it’s essential to have conversations with your audience. That’s why influencer marketing is so successful because they encourage more people to tap the reply button and send a message! 

Also, how many people tapped backward is a good indication of story engagement. When people tap backward, it often means that your story was interesting, so they wanted to watch it again! If you see too many taps forward, it could mean that your story is boring, has too much text, or maybe you have too many stories posted. 

For a full breakdown, we love this guide from Social Media Examiner. 

Audience Composition

Instagram Insights will let you know about an influencer’s audience composition. That means you can track crucial stats about followers, such as age range, gender, and location. This is important because you don’t want to select an influencer who has 100,000 followers if none of those followers match your target audience. Once you have the data about an influencer’s audience composition, you can combine it with your buyer personas to help gain a clear picture of what your Instagram target audience should be. 

Reach  

When it comes to Instagram, your reach tells you how many unique viewers saw your story or post, while impressions let you know how many times each viewer saw your story or post. For example, if one person viewed your story three times, you would see a reach of one and an impression of three. Typically, the longer an influencer is on Instagram and the more followers they get, the more reach they gain. 

Besides total reach, you also want to monitor the reach rate. This is the percentage of followers that see your post, and it’s calculated by dividing the total reach of a post by the total number of followers. For instance, if you have 300 reach and 1000 followers, your reach rate is 30%. According to a study conducted by Sylo, close to 90 percent of influencers reach less than half of their audience; while more than 50

percent of influencers reach less than 25 percent of their audience. 

Sylo is Here to Help

Keeping track of vital data for your influencer marketing campaign doesn’t have to be hard. When you use Sylo, not only do you get Campaign Data Verification & Benchmarks, but you also get Vetting & Fraud Detection! Sylo provides access to the most accurate and comprehensive dataset in the industry, allowing you to optimize every step of your influencer programs and maximize ROI. With Sylo, you get authenticated data that delivers precise influencer audience and performance metrics and removes the guesswork from influencer partner selections and campaign measurement. So if you’re looking to reduce risk, avoid waste, and increase ROI, contact Sylo today!

SYLO Chosen to Present at VidCon!

The SYLO team is excited to announce that we have been selected to present at VidCon‘s first annual Creator Track demo session! The session will take place June 23, 2018, from 11:30am – 1:30pm PT in Room 260 at the Anaheim Convention Center. The demo session also includes Amazon, Adobe, and more!

As stated on the VidCon session description:

Join as predetermined companies will present new products, apps, and programs that will help you, the creator, maximize your total reach, views, or make creating online content easier.

You can view the full details by clicking here!

If you’re going to be attending VidCon in Anaheim, please email Erick Schwab (erick@meetsylo.com) and/or Curtis Davey (curtis@meetsylo.com) to set up some time to meet or grab a drink! You won’t want to miss this exclusive look into SYLO’s never-before-seen third-party-verified analytics dashboard.

 

Image source: VidCon US

Study: Instagram’s “New Posts” Affecting Creators?

On March 22, 2018, Instagram announced that they were introducing a New Posts button to make posts in the timeline more likely to appear chronologically – see the full details in Instagram’s announcement here: https://instagram-press.com/blog/2018/03/22/changes-to-improve-your-instagram-feed/

Following the announcement, SYLO immediately launched a research study to see how (if at all) this change would affect creators (i.e. influencers) on Instagram. As part of this study, SYLO analyzed 61 Instagram creator  accounts (which were authenticated in the SYLO platform) and these accounts 6,068 Instagram posts that were posted between January 1, 2018 and April 22, 2018, to see if their engagement and reach metrics could have been affected by the change.

As part of the research, SYLO analyzed the likes and comments that the creators received on each post within each of the first few hours after publishing the post to see if their engagement traction could have been affected by the change, since the change was meant to increase the number of posts that would appear chronologically.

SYLO analyzed the creators’ post metrics for 2018 leading up to the change (January 1, 2018 – March 21, 2018) and compared that to these same creators’ post metrics for the month following the change (March 22, 2018 – April 22, 2018).

Here are the three key findings from this research:

1. Creators received post engagements much more quickly
After the Instagram algorithm change, the average creator received a much larger percentage of their total engagements in the first hour after their posts were published than they had received before the algorithm change, with an increase of 19% for likes and 18% for comments. (Total engagements are the combined likes and comments collected for seven days after the post is published.)

2. Follower growth per day increased exponentially
From March 22, 2018 – April 22, 2018, the creators analyzed saw an average 520% increase in follower growth per day compared to January 1, 2018 – March 21, 2018. This average accounted for extreme outliers, so SYLO also calculated a trimmed average of 64% increase in follower growth per day, which accounts for the removal of these extreme outliers on both ends of the spectrum.

3. Posting increased by 23% month-over-month
Comparing the creators month-over-month, in the month after the change (March 22, 2018 – April 22, 2018), creators posted 23% more than they did in the month prior to the change (February 21, 2018 – March 21, 2018). SYLO analyzed the month prior to that (January 20, 2018 – February 20, 2018) to see if this was a trend, and found that during that time period, on average, creators posted 11% more than they did from February 21, 2018 – March 21, 2018. In other words, the creators analyzed were posting less in the month before the change than they were two months before the Instagram algorithm change, and that trend reversed in the month after the Instagram algorithm change.

If you would like to receive a verified performance analysis of your influencer marketing efforts, please contact SYLO at contact@meetsylo.com!

 

Image source: Unsplash

SYLO Featured in The National’s Article on Fake Followers

The National has just published an article diving into how influencer marketing space can tackle fake followers and grow as a whole. SYLO‘s Co-Founder and COO Erick Schwab was featured in the article, giving his insight on this topic. Here is an excerpt from the article:

Fake followers (essentially social media accounts masquerading as real but controlled by automated systems) can be unmasked by companies such as Sylo, by looking for patterns of activity that are automated in nature. As a result, they can begin to assess who are the fake influencers, too.

“You can use technology to look like an influencer,” says Schwab. “There have been studies where people launched Instagram accounts and built up enough numbers over three months for brands to want to work with them. But by monitoring things like reach of posts, how content is consumed and how it’s responded to, we are able to measure the things that really matter.”

The gold rush that characterised the early days of the influencer industry will slow down now, he says, as a consequence of all this scrutiny. “It’s going to become divided into professionals and amateurs,” he says. “Some people will have a genuine influence over an audience that a brand will pay for, and that advertising will be worthy of those dollars.”

Read the full piece by clicking here!

Want to learn how SYLO is providing third-party audience and data verification for the influencer marketing space? Contact us here!

 

Image source: Pixabay

SYLO Featured in The New York Times!

As a follow-up to The Follower Factory article that was published in February 2018, The New York Times just released another article to explore how agencies are using technology to fight influencer marketing bot and fraud issues. SYLO’s technology was included in this article, along with insights from SYLO’s Co-Founder and COO, Erick Schwab. Mediacom was one of the agencies featured in the article:

““In the absence of direct pressure on the platforms, it’s a way for advertisers to take more control of their own spend and not be at the mercy of the platforms themselves,” said Jeff Semones, head of social media at MediaCom, which has recommended SYLO to clients.”

Read the full article by clicking here!

Want to learn how SYLO is providing third-party verification and data transparency to the influencer marketing space? Contact us here!

 

Image source: Pixabay

Five Tips for Your Social Content Strategy

SYLO conducted a study on 4,334 pieces of branded influencer content, and the themes which were present in each piece of content, to analyze the most recurring content themes as well as the highest performing content themes. These pieces of content were posted by a random selection of 35 influencers in SYLO’s platform whose content can contain any of, or up to, the 85 content themes SYLO assigns in our content categorization process.

Performance was determined using the SYLO Score (learn more here) by calculating the average of the scores for each content theme present the overall content sample.

Here are several findings from the study:

1. Top 5 performing content topics

The top five topics, or themes, present or discussed in the content analyzed are ranked here:

  1. Motivational
  2. Advice/Recommendations
  3. Cars
  4. Beauty
  5. Collaboration


2. Top 5 most frequently used content topics

The study found that none of the top five most used content themes ranked in the top five performing content themes. The most frequently used theme, Lifestyle, ranked #24 in the overall list of top performing content themes.

  1. Lifestyle
  2. Fashion
  3. Food
  4. Personal Stories
  5. Beauty


3. Love of food and art isn’t always reciprocated

Though food was the third highest occurring content theme in the sample set, it just missed the top 10 performing content themes, coming in at #11, followed by art at #12.


4. Don’t wake up early to catch the sunrise

When comparing time of day content themes, SYLO’s study found that content featuring sunsets outperform sunrises by 67%! However, posts during the daytime outperformed nighttime posts by 3x.


5. A human element resonates with audiences

Our content themes also include whether the post includes a human or not. The study found that photos including a human element averaged a 28% higher score than those that did not.


If you want to find out the verified data-supported content themes and benchmarks where you or your creator partners perform best, contact the SYLO team
by clicking here.

 

Image source: Pixabay

Study: Creators and Brand Integrations

SYLO conducted a research analysis of 100 creators to analyze their influencer marketing brand integrations, which we classify as brand-paid ads, promos/reviews, and unpaid mentions. Below is a breakdown of what each of these delineations mean:

  • Brand-Paid: When a brand partners with a creator and pays them to post an ad for the brand.
  • Promo/Review: When a creator’s post is promoting and/or reviewing products or services they’ve received for free from a brand.
  • Unpaid Mentions: When a creator promotes a brand and explicitly states that they have no affiliation, or if the creator is promoting something of their own (e.g. merchandise or clothing line).

These brand integrations are attributed based first on any disclosure by the creator, and then on the context of the content if disclosure does not fully define the terms of their partnership with the brand. When a creator registers and authenticates their social media accounts in SYLO’s platform, our team of content analysts with the help of AI analyze each and every native and branded post that a creator has published. These posts are tagged with the brand (if any), the type of integration (mentioned above), and categorized using content themes that are present in that post. (You can learn more about this process by clicking here.)

Of these types of brand integrations, paid/sponsored made up 51%, promos/reviews made up 46%, and unpaid mentions accounted for nearly 3%.

The average amount of brands per creator analyzed in this study were as follows:

  • Brand-Paid: 24
  • Promos/Reviews: 22
  • Unpaid Mentions: 2

Furthermore, 100% of the creators analyzed had at least one brand integration that was paid for by the brand, and 99% had at least one brand integration that promoted/reviewed a product or service.

While the brand-paid ads and promo/reviews must be disclosed as an ad, according to FTC regulations, an unpaid mention does not. Also pointed out by the FTC, when disclosing ads, it is not sufficient for a creator to just include terms such as “#sp,” “Thanks [Brand],” or “#partner”.

Find out more about how SYLO ensures FTC compliance, brand safety, and fraud/bot identification for influencer marketing advertisers at www.meetsylo.com.

 

Image source: Pixabay

Giving Brands & CMOs Exactly What They Want: Verified Influencer Marketing Data

This is the fourth and final video in David Beebe‘s series featuring SYLO‘s CEO Brett Garfinkel, discussing how the biggest problem in influencer marketing, that is verification and transparency, can be solved. CMOs and brands are demanding standardized reporting and measurement, yet are getting unverified data, conflicting reports, and no understanding of ROI. You can view the full discussion below, and view the whole series by clicking here.

David and Brett presented a webinar on why CMOs and brands are demanding third party independent reporting, measurement, and verification of influencer marketing data. View the presentation by clicking here!

 

Image source: Pixabay

Finding the True Creators Among the Influencers

In this most recent video in David Beebe‘s series on how to keep the influencer marketing space from stalling, he interviews SYLO‘s CEO Brett Garfinkel to discuss how third-party verified data and benchmarks will set the true creators apart from the slew of influencers.

As Brett states in the interview: “Creators are putting out so much content across so many subject matters, they often get siloed into one category, but with the right data, influencers can see what works best, identify new opportunities, and use independent third party verified data to present to brands to close more deals.” See the full interview below! Click to view the first and second videos in this series.

View the whole series by clicking here!

Image Source: Pixabay

Will This Algorithm Solve the Biggest Problem Facing Influencer Marketing?

Content Decoded‘s David Beebe has released the latest video in his series, as well as an accompanying article, on what’s needed to prevent the influencer marketing space from stalling in 2018. The first video featured SYLO‘s CEO, Brett Garfinkel, and can be viewed by clicking here. This latest video features tech entrepreneur, Michael Montero, to discuss the biggest threat to influencer marketing. Check out the video below and let us know your thoughts in the comments or by emailing contact@meetsylo.com!

View the whole series by clicking here!

Image source: Pixabay