AI-supported Instagram study identifies the most successful Swiss accounts

Powdience has been collecting and evaluating data from more than 200 well-known Swiss organizations on Instagram for several years. In a recent, AI-supported Instagram analysis, the most successful growth and engagement accounts of the past year were identified and further key learnings for successful business accounts were drawn.

This year, the content of more than 3,000 image posts was analyzed with the support of AI. In total, there were 19.5 million interactions from 4.8 million followers on 28,621 posts. The 15 fastest-growing accounts - also known as growth accounts - as well as the 15 accounts with the most engagement - the "engagers" - were analyzed in detail.

Powdience was able to derive various key takeaways and key learnings from the insights gained from the study.

Seven key takeaways at a glance

  1. Even if you focus on commitment, you grow at an above-average rate.
  2. If the account is to receive more engagement, pictures are more important than reels.
  3. If the account is to grow, it is advisable to focus on reels.
  4. Top engagement accounts post throughout the day, especially in the mornings.
  5. When posting, quality is more important than quantity: two good posts per week are better than 3 to 4 bad ones.
  6. For more engagement, it is advisable to use posts with individual people, events and sport. Products, too much text and advertising-like content should be avoided.
  7. The image production should be medium to simple - not highly stylized. Emotionality, colors and strong stylistic devices are essential.

Pictures experienced a renaissance in 2023

Last year's announcement by Instagram to promote images again has come true. Accounts with the most engagement have focused on photos. In addition to a lot of engagement, there was also considerable growth. What was striking was that successful accounts posted less.

A comparison of top and flop engagers shows that successful profiles post more often in the mornings. Friday also seems to be an important day.

"UBS Kids Cup": lots of growth and commitment

According to the study, the fastest-growing Instagram accounts had around 13,318 followers in 2023 and grew by around 80 percent.

Their posting behavior was below average: On average, they made 2.3 posts per week, with slightly fewer reels (36%), a similar number of images (35%) and slightly more carousels (29%) than the average.

The accounts with the best interaction rates had an average of 6,141 followers and a growth rate of 41%. The average interaction rate was 10.4 percent - with ranking leader UBS Kids Cup being an outlier. If this account is not counted, the interaction rate drops to 5.5 percent.

Compared to the top growth accounts, the top engagers published even fewer posts per week at 2.2. If the Welovesnow account, which posted almost 10 posts per week, is not included, this figure drops to 1.6 posts per week. Reels usually receive fewer interactions because users simply watch them. Interactions are not relevant for the reach or virality of reels.

Radio Energy also stands out from the surveys. The account generated a total of 10.7 million comments, likes and shares - almost as many interactions as all other accounts combined.

What do successful accounts do differently?

Powdience used artificial intelligence to analyze 3,000 image and carousel posts from the 15 Swiss Instagram accounts with the most and least interaction. This showed that more people can be seen on posts from successful accounts - most frequently a person. People therefore generally generate more interaction, as well as emotionally appealing, colorful posts.

Across all the images analyzed, the ones that generated the most engagement were those that were classified as inspiring, dramatic, nostalgic, cheerful and humorous. It also seems to be important for the success of a post that the images are not too perfect in terms of quality - what is more important is conveying approachability and communicating at eye level.

The Instagram study was conducted in early 2024 by Powdience and written by Sandro Gafner and Mike Schwede. Further details and analyses of the most successful posts and Swiss Instagram business accounts can be found at can be downloaded.

A booklet on the study is available download here.

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