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Shake Shack Is 100 Times More Successful Than McDonald's on Instagram, Analysts Say Looking at Instagram followers per total sales, the newly public hamburger chain comes out far ahead of larger competitors on social media, according to Goldman Sachs.

By Kate Taylor

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Shake Shack is proving that Millennials' propensity to share pictures of their burgers on Instagram can affect the stock market. If this sounds a bit over dramatic, let me explain.

On Tuesday, Wall Street analysts began coverage of fast-casual Shake Shack, nearly a month after the burger chain's promising IPO in late January. Buried within Goldman Sachs's discussion of the brand is one tidbit that shows just how important social media has become in analyzing a company.

Goldman Sachs says that, similar to Chipotle, Shake Shack has a "unique resonance with Millennials," in part due to a strong social-media presence. The burger chain has racked up 155,000 followers on Instagram, in spite of only having 63 locations, half of which are in the U.S. For comparison, McDonald's has more followers -- 491,000 -- but also has way more locations -- 36,000, of which more than 14,000 are in the U.S.

Related: Burgers Beat Out Sandwiches Big Time in 2014

Using Goldman Sachs's measure of followers by system sales (i.e. all outlets' total sales figures) in North America, McDonald's has 11 followers per systems sales, while Shake Shack has a stunning 1,808.

Using the same followers by system sales measurement, Goldman additionally found that Shack Shake is more successful than competitors on Vine -- though Taco Bell is a close second, as both are near the 20 followers per North American system sales mark.

The firm said Shake Shack has additionally driven relevance with Millennials by sourcing "real food" at competitive prices, as well as partnering with local brands and charities. The burger chain needs to work on building recognition and approval outside of the core market of New York City, as the brand is still in early stages of growth in the U.S. and internationally, according to Goldman.

Related: Shake Shack Surges in Trading Debut

Kate Taylor

Staff Writer. Covers franchise-related trends and topics.

Kate Taylor is a staff writer covering franchises for Entrepreneur.com. Related areas of interest include chain restaurants, franchisee profiles and food trends. Get in touch with tips and feedback via email at ktaylor@entrepreneur.com or on Twitter at @Kate_H_Taylor. 

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