top of page
wildflower creative co logo



Competitor Analysis on Instagram: A Strategic Guide

competitor analysis step by step guide

Instagram has become a powerhouse in the social media world, with over 2.35 billion monthly active Instagram users.

It’s not only a place to showcase your brand, products, and services, but offers many opportunities for competitor analysis.

Understanding your competition on Instagram can provide valuable insights to optimize your strategy, boost engagement, and stay ahead.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore how to conduct competitor analysis on Instagram and how it can be a game-changer for your brand.

Why Competitor Analysis on Instagram Matters

Before we dive into the how, let's discuss the why.

  1. Competitor analysis allows you to benchmark your performance against others in your industry. It gives you a clear picture of where you stand.

  2. By examining successful competitors, you can gain inspiration for content ideas, strategies, and campaigns. What's working for them might work for you too. (But remember, the goal is to stand out, not blend in, so use Instagram to get inspired, never to copy.)

  3. It helps you identify trends within your industry. Trends can be capitalized on to boost your brand's visibility and engagement.

  4. Analyzing competitors provides insights into the preferences and behaviors of your shared target audience. This can guide content creation and audience targeting.

  5. Understanding the competition can help you identify gaps in their strategies. This is an opportunity for you to use those gaps to gain a competitive edge.

Let's explore how to do competitor analysis on Instagram:

aesthetic patio chairs with coffee table | competitor analysis on Instagram

Step 1: Identify Your Competitors

The first step is to identify who your competitors on Instagram are.

These could be direct competitors in your industry or businesses that share your target audience. Here's how to identify them:

  • Look for businesses in your industry or niche that have a presence on Instagram. They are your direct competitors.

  • Identify businesses that have a similar target audience. They may not be direct competitors but can still provide valuable insights.

  • Search for industry-related hashtags on Instagram. You'll likely discover posts from competitors and related businesses.

  • Check the engagement on posts from businesses that you find. High engagement usually indicates strong competitors.

Step 2: Create a Competitor List

Compile a list of your identified competitors. Organize them based on relevance and impact.

You can use a simple spreadsheet to keep track of their Instagram profiles and other relevant information.

aesthetic indoor plants | competitor analysis on Instagram

For each competitor, include:

  • Instagram username

  • Industry or niche

  • Follower count

  • Average engagement rate (likes, comments, shares)

  • Posting frequency

  • Types of content (photos, videos, stories, reels)

  • Successful campaigns or posts

Having this information in one place makes it easier to conduct a comprehensive analysis.

Step 3: Analyze Content Strategy

Now that you have your list of competitors, it's time to dig deeper into their content strategy.

Here's what to look for:

  1. Identify the types of content your competitors are sharing. Are they focusing on photos, videos, stories, reels, or a combination of these?

  2. Determine how often your competitors are posting. Are they consistent with their content calendar, or do they post sporadically?

  3. Look for recurring themes or topics in their posts. What are the key messages they're trying to convey?

  4. Analyze the engagement their posts receive. Pay attention to the number of likes, comments, and shares. This provides insights into what resonates with their audience.

  5. Examine the style of captions they use. Are they short and witty, or longer and more informative?

  6. Check the hashtags they incorporate into their posts. Are there specific industry-related or trending hashtags they frequently use?

aesthetic home interior | competitor analysis on Instagram

Step 4: Audience Analysis

Understanding your competitor's audience is essential. Here's how to go about it:

  1. Look at the profiles of their followers. What are the demographics of the people engaging with their content? Pay attention to age, location, and gender.

  2. Analyze the comments on their posts. What questions do followers ask? What feedback do they provide? This can be a goldmine for understanding your shared audience's needs and a great source of inspiration for your own content.

  3. Monitor the growth rate of your competitor's followers. How quickly are they gaining new followers, and what strategies might be contributing to this growth?

  4. Examine the overall sentiment of the comments on their posts. Is the feedback predominantly positive, negative, or neutral?

  5. What other Instagram accounts do their followers follow? This can give you insights into other accounts your audience is interested in.

Step 5: Campaign Analysis

To stay competitive, you must understand the campaigns and promotions your competitors are running on Instagram:

  • Promotions and Contests: Identify if your competitors are running promotions or contests. Analyze the tactics and incentives used to engage their audience.

  • Collaborations and Partnerships: Look for collaborations or partnerships your competitors have with influencers or other brands. These collaborations can significantly impact their reach. If you’re considering working with influencers, this will also give you an idea of the type of influencer that resonates with your target audience.

rattan chair with a camera aesthetic | competitor analysis on Instagram

Step 6: Performance Metrics

Finally, analyze the performance metrics of your competitors. Look at their growth, engagement, and overall Instagram success:

  1. Examine the growth of their follower count over time. Are there spikes in growth after specific campaigns or strategies?

  2. Calculate their average engagement rate. This is usually a combination of likes, comments, and shares per post.

  3. Identify their top-performing posts. What content garnered the most engagement, and what can you learn from it?

  4. Pay attention to the feedback they receive from their audience. What do followers appreciate, and what areas do they criticize?

Step 7: Apply Your Insights

Once you've gathered all this valuable data, it's time to apply your insights to your own Instagram strategy:

  1. Use what you've learned about content types, themes, and engagement to refine your content strategy. Experiment with the elements that seem to work for your competitors.

  2. Adjust your audience targeting based on the demographics and interests of your competitor's audience. Tailor your content to address these preferences.

  3. Get inspired by the successful campaigns and promotions your competitors run. Adapt and create campaigns that align with your brand.

  4. Continuously monitor your performance metrics and compare them to your competitors. Use these insights to refine and improve your strategy over time.

Tools for Competitor Analysis

Several tools can simplify the process of competitor analysis on Instagram:

  • Platforms like Sprout Social, Hootsuite, or Buffer offer analytics and reporting features to track your competitor's performance.

  • Instagram's built-in analytics tool provides essential data on your competitors, such as engagement, reach, and impressions.

  • Tools like Brandwatch, BrandMentions, and SocialBee are designed specifically for competitor analysis and social media monitoring.

  • Platforms like Hashtagify or Keyhole allow you to track and analyze the performance of specific hashtags used by your competitors.


Competitor analysis on Instagram is not a one-time task but an ongoing process. Keep a close eye on your competitors' moves, adapt to changing trends, and continuously refine your strategy based on your insights. Remember that competition breeds innovation, and by learning from your competitors, you can grow your Instagram presence and, ultimately, your business.


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
Nov 03, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

This was so good!!


Nov 03, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

This was a really insightful article on competitor analysis! Thanks for sharing!

bottom of page