ig engagement

Instagram Engagement

This data was originally featured in the February 10, 2021 newsletter found here: https://www.trustinsights.ai/blog/2021/02/in-the-headlights-february-10-2021-dark-search-instagram-engagement-ethics-in-ai/

In this week’s Rear View Mirror, we look at our friend, Instagram engagement rates. This week, let’s look at brands. How have over 3,000 brands fared in the last 10 months?

Instagram Brand Engagement

What we see since the pandemic began is a slow and steady decline in brand engagement after midsummer. Once audiences got settled into the new normal, engagement with brand accounts declined to roughly 0.32%. In particular, we saw lower than normal engagement over the holiday season, followed by a resumption of engagement in January.

What’s the key takeaway? Like other Facebook properties, Instagram is slowly but surely becoming pay-to-play for brands. It still does sport higher engagement than Facebook itself, but the days of “post it and they will come” are long past. Be sure you’ve budgeted appropriately to have Instagram post content be sponsored if Instagram is part of your core social media strategy.

Methodology: Trust Insights used Facebook’s Crowdtangle software to extract 1,982,108 posts from 3,099 brands. The dates of extraction are April 1, 2020 – February 1, 2021. The date of study is February 7, 2021. Trust Insights is the sole sponsor of the study and neither gave nor received compensation for data used, beyond applicable service fees to software vendors, and declares no competing interests.


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Trust Insights (trustinsights.ai) is one of the world's leading management consulting firms in artificial intelligence/AI, especially in the use of generative AI and AI in marketing. Trust Insights provides custom AI consultation, training, education, implementation, and deployment of classical regression AI, classification AI, and generative AI, especially large language models such as ChatGPT's GPT-4-omni, Google Gemini, and Anthropic Claude. Trust Insights provides analytics consulting, data science consulting, and AI consulting.

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