Instagram Statistics: Lessons from a Study of 115 Million Posts - Carney
The Daily Carnage

Instagram Statistics: Lessons from a Study of 115 Million Posts

Fact: there are approximately a trillion research reports out there about social media.

Okay, that’s totally a lie. There aren’t a trillion, but there are a heck of a lot. And the majority of them tend to be surveys (bad), rather than actual reports on user behavior (good).

That’s why the folks over at Mention decided to do a report in the correct way. They collected more than 115 million Instagram posts and had their data scientists crunch the numbers on engagement. Here’s the full report.

It’s super long and really in-depth, so if you don’t have time to read it, here are the important facts:

  1. Instagram posts get an average of 1,261 likes. Uhh, what? That doesn’t seem right, but it is. That’s only because it’s skewed by the massive number of Instagram “celebrities.” When Mention looked at the median – the midpoint between the most and least popular posts – they found that it’s closer to 200 likes per post.
  2. The top 5 Instagram hashtags in 2017. These are the five most-used hashtags: #love, #instagood, #fashion, #photooftheday, #style. So should you start using those hashtags in every post? Absolutely not. Even though those are the most used, they don’t actually get the most engagement, which leads us to our next point…
  3. Hashtags don’t increase engagement rates. Their data is pretty clear on this. Even though it’s pretty dang surprising, Mention’s research shows that with every hashtag you use, your engagement will actually decrease. The quality of your content matters way, way more than the hashtags you use.
  4. Tagging other people does increase engagement. The more social you can make social media, the more effective it tends to be. Duh, right? Mention suggests that you try to tag other users/businesses organically. Don’t be spammy about it and you’ll easily increase engagement.
  5. Video posts have the highest engagement rates. Videos aren’t posted nearly as often as images on Instagram, but they’re actually better at getting engagement. Might be time to rethink your Instagram strategy a bit.

That’s only a few nuggets of data. Dive in to get it all.


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