Written by Vlad Shvets

Want to learn more about the lead attribution on Instagram? Check out this expert guide on Combin’s blog.

With 9.45 billion spent on advertising revenue in 2019 and 1 billion users worldwide, Instagram’s rapid growth rate makes it a force to be reckoned with. True, it’s an excellent platform for posting selfies, food, and pictures of pets. But it’s more than just that.

It’s also a powerful engine for businesses to generate leads.

If you want to be at the forefront of your industry, you need to step your game. And to do that, you need to scale your Instagram marketing efforts by figuring out how to measure the efficiency of your campaigns.

That’s what we’ll be covering in this guide.

What Is Lead Attribution On Social Media?

Lead attribution is a process of determining the marketing activities that resulted in capturing a lead or a potential customer.

There are three types of lead attribution:

  1. First touch - The lead is attributed to the first interaction. An example is a subscription to a mailing list. If someone subscribed to receive emails from you, the incident can be the cause of bringing a lead even if they don’t convert after that or at all.
  2. Multitouch - The lead is attributed to multiple interactions. This happens, for example, when a lead subscribes to an email, then clicks a social media ad, and finally converts through organic search.
  3. Last touch - The lead is attributed to the last interaction that happened before a successful conversion. An example is the lead that is attributed to an affiliate link if a customer purchases your product right after clicking it.

Lead Attribution Strategies For Instagram

Lead attribution is not an obstacle-free path. Here are the best lead attribution strategies to use and pitfalls to avoid.

Use Instagram Insights

Instagram Insights is a built-in analytics tool that you can use to gain valuable insights from your posts and stories. To access it, you need a business account.

Source: https://www.oberlo.com/blog/instagram-insights-guide

Here are the steps to create a business account.

  1. Make your Instagram account public.
  2. Make a Facebook Business Profile.
  3. Go to Settings.
  4. Tap Account and choose Switch Account Type.
  5. Click Switch to Business Account.
  6. Once you finish setting up your business profile, click Done.

So once your business account is up and running, all you have to do now is navigate to your profile. Then open the menu and click Insights. From there, you can collect the following data:

  • Accounts reached
  • Number of followers
  • Profile visits
  • Website clicks
  • Content interaction

Using Insights, you can also:

  • Get View Story insights - Here, you can see insights about the story you posted. In addition to seeing Reach and Impressions, it shows Replies, Taps Forward, and Taps Back.
  • Use Discovery - Here, you can see where your post was discovered. It also shows you metrics on Reach and Impressions.
  • Learn about actions on your post - To know specific actions taken on a specific post, open that post and click View Insights. It shows you the actions taken like profile and post visits, post clicks, and follows.

Leverage Instagram Ads

Instagram ads offer a plethora of benefits. They can showcase your brand thoroughly, inspire high engagement rates, and raise your brand’s organic reach.

Source: https://business.instagram.com/advertising

It’s also a great deal because it allows you to use Facebook’s Audience Network and its extensive advertising platform (don’t forget thatInstagram is part of Facebook).

But here’s an important tidbit worth knowing.

On April 20, 2021, when Apple released iOS 14.5, the world of social media advertising changed. The software update came with Apple’s App Tracking Transparency policy and from then on, it required apps to obtain a device owner’s consent before they can collect and share data across third-party applications for ad targeting.

Its long-term impact on social media advertising included reduced personalization and reduced attribution capabilities. The update redefined social media advertising — a real wake-up call for all advertisers.

A  brilliant tip that’ll help you always remain on top of your Instagram ads and collect attribution data with real precision? Use premium analytics and tracking apps other than Instagram’s native Insights.

Source: https://ga-dev-tools.web.app/campaign-url-builder/

UTM links stand for Urchin Tracking Module links. They are unique pieces of code added to the end of a URLs. And they’re perhaps the simplest and most effective way of tracking Instagram traffic to your pages using Google Analytics.

How they work is simple. Every time a user clicks on UTM links, Google Analytics will be notified that someone out there used the code that was generated.

To create UTM links, follow the steps below.

  1. Go to the Campaign URL Builder.
  2. Enter the necessary information on the form.
  3. Copy (and share) the generated link below the form.
Source: https://ga-dev-tools.web.app/campaign-url-builder/

Here are the best practices when using UTM links.

  • List down UTM links - Use the same UTM link for one campaign to avoid confusion. This also results in better collaboration if you’re working with a team.
  • Use short and descriptive names - Compared to complex URLs, links that are easy to read and understand are enticing to click. In the image above, you can see the Campaign URL Builder has a feature that allows you to shorten links easily.
  • Use + in your campaign name - If you're using spaces, better to use the plus sign instead.  It enables Google Analytics to display a more understandable term.
  • Always test links - Before setting your campaign live, simply copy then paste the links to a web browser to see if they’re working properly. If the links disappear after a web page loads, they’re problematic. To solve this, you need to generate new links again.
  • Stay consistent - Use all lower case or all upper case characters because UTM links are case-sensitive. Mixing lower and upper cases will make your campaigns appear on different lines.

Beef Up Your Attribution With Premium Tools

Instagram has a restrictive system when it comes to sharing links on posts and stories. But thanks to certain specialized software tools, you can work around this and still properly attribute your leads.

Below are some of them.


With LinkTree, marketers can present one link on their profile that redirects visitors to a dedicated landing page that contains a new set of links. They can then integrate Google Analytics into these landing pages, and thus, properly attribute the leads.


Branch’s concept is similar to LinkTree’s concept — but it has a more holistic approach. The broad idea is to raise user engagement and provide marketing effectiveness across different devices. Branch is better suited for bigger enterprise companies than individual entrepreneurs.

Ruler Analytics

As an attribution tool, Ruler Analytics allows marketers to connect their leads and marketing with closed revenue and sales. Its best feature is its phone tracker. It works by overriding the phone number featured on a website and then replacing it with a unique phone number for the next visitor.


WeCanTrack helps marketers to organize their data in one place. They can integrate WCT with Facebook Ads (and thus Instagram ads as well), Google Analytics, and more than 200 affiliate networks. In addition to the attribution, WeCanTrack also features funnel optimization, efficient retargeting, and campaign automation features.


Lead attribution may not be as creatively rewarding as copywriting, branding, graphic design, or other social media disciplines. But it’s not something worth overlooking because it’s immensely valuable.

If you (or any Instagram marketers) can identify the specific marketing activity that produces leads, you can streamline your operations and maximize your marketing investment.

About Author

Vlad Shvets is a growth marketer at Paperform – a no-code form builder software.