Why data matters for creatives

For creative types like us, crunching numbers is often way down on the list of priorities. When I’m working on a research project, statistics is probably my least favorite part.  But, more often than not, our most exciting discoveries originate with diving into stats.  Want proof?  Check out this article about what crunching a few numbers taught us about feminism.

So how does this apply to you?

Data matters to influencers.  Or at least it should matter.  Here at Obviously, we’re big proponents of the Instagram business account, whatever your follower count might be.  Being an influencer is fun, but it’s also a job -- even if it’s a side gig.

Business accounts offer advanced analytics that can be incredibly useful to how you plan out your content.  Knowing what time of day your followers are most likely to be online, for example, can help you time your posts for optimum views.  This allows more people to see what you are posting and increases your engagement.  High engagement means more collaborations with great brands. Working with exclusive brands attracts more followers who will increase engagement on your posts. Increasing engagement will... Okay, you get it.

Knowledge is power, and the more information you arm yourself with, the more powerful you’ll be as an influencer.

Give your audience a regular check-up.

Speaking of knowledge, do you know how many bots are following your account?  You should!  Odds are, you want an authentic following, so you have made the wise choice not to purchase followers. (Red alert: If you’re buying followers, we can tell.)

Even if you've never paid for follows, it's still likely that there is a small amount of bots following you, because that’s just how the internet works.  It’s a smart decision to give your audience a regular check-up and block those accounts that look sketchy.  If doing this manually feels too time consuming, there are also services you can use that will scan and analyze your audience for bots.  However you do this, it’s important to check these numbers. Doing this helps make sure your audience is healthy and happy. (That is, less than 2% bots.)

But this is mad work!

I know! Maybe you’re a numbers whiz and this is second nature to you.  But if you’re like me, this is all new territory.  Still, the best influencers (really, the best creatives of any kind) are those who are willing to master the secondary skills.  Much like the art of crafting great photos, understanding data is a secondary skill that can go a long way towards making you the best you can be.  There are so many incredible influencers out there who have great personalities and are knowledgeable about their subject. It’s these secondary skills that will set you apart.  Start working those numbers -- trust me, we’ll notice.