Discrepancies with Instagram Insights Results

This guide will cover the most commonly seen kinds of discrepancies seen when querying Instagram Insights. Unless specified in the section, all guidance within should apply to all Supermetrics products that support the Instagram Insights connector.

Quick links to specific issues below:

Follower Discrepancies When Splitting by Demographics

The count of followers may not be exact when splitting by demographics dimensions (country, city, age, gender) as compared to the profile follower total. This is due to the fact that not all users may have defined these demographics for their account, so those would not be included in the split results. There may also be some estimations happening to protect privacy, as seen with other demographics metrics on the Facebook API platform. 

Instagram Insights Only Tracks Organic Data

The Insights API only tracks organically generated values for most metrics. Per the API limitations section:

The API only reports organic interaction metrics; interactions on ads containing a media object are not counted.

Exceptions are "Profile reach" and "Profile impressions" as those explicitly state they include some ad activity in their field descriptions.

Screenshot from Impressions API field definition, with orange box highlighting "includes ad activity generated through the API"

So if you look at the post interactions on the website or app, you could be seeing a total value that includes both paid and organic values, and that will not line up with the results returned by Supermetrics. Unfortunately, there's limited reporting for Instagram in its own platform to tell these apart, other than the specific "Promoted" section, which should be avoided to validate Instagram Insights as it deals with only ad data in that section.

If you do need to track promoted or paid metrics, you will need to use our Facebook Ads connector instead, as Instagram Ads is embedded in Facebook Ads.

Reach Does Not Match

Reach in Instagram Insights is calculated in the same way as Facebook Insights, meaning that you can only get reach values for 1-day, 7-day, or 28-day date ranges. If you pick a range outside of that, the connector will return "no data". 

Also be careful about summing daily reach values, as the counts are checked for uniqueness daily but not for the whole period, and that can lead to false values if you sum them.

Missing Stories

Stories are only available for 24 hours, so special steps need to be taken to capture them before they disappear from the system. See Known Issues with Instagram Story Insights for more information.

Missing Older Post Data

Per the API documentation, the metrics data will only be stored for 2 years. After that, the data may be removed from the API and you will no longer be able to query it.

Also be aware that any posts/metrics generated before the account was converted into a business account will not be available to request. Only metrics and posts made after the account became a business account last will be available through the Insights API and can be requested by Supermetrics.

Media count is "1" on my scorecard

The media count behaves in a way that it will not work if not queried with another media related field. Thus a scorecard with this metric will not work as it is. Fortunately there is a workaround for this: add a filter to exclude a certain media type, but write a type (or any string) that does not exist - this will effectively be read as a dimension in the query, and you will get the correct results to your scorecard:

Escalating to Support

If you've checked everything above and you still believe that Supermetrics has a discrepancy with the results in Instagram Insights UI, then please gather the following information and place it in a new Support request:

  • Give support@supermetrics.com EDIT access to the report file and then provide the URL to the report (or equivalent configuration information if using BigQuery/API).
  • Take a screenshot from the Instagram Insights app in your phone (do not use the website version) showing what the values should be.

Do be aware that the reporting available for Instagram organic data is quite poor at this time and it can be difficult to resolve discrepancies due to this. Please try to report discrepancies as soon as possible (as the reporting in the phone app only lasts about a week for some types of data), and provide as much detail as possible from phone app insights.

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