Ever since its launch in 2016, Instagram Stories has continued to grow in popularity, with over 500 million now using Instagram Stories every day – 90% of which follow a brand or business.
Instagram Stories is therefore an important part of any brand’s marketing strategy, and with the addition of filters, sticks and other visual effects, Stories are now more engaging than ever before.
Here’s our top tips for producing killer Instagram Stories which will boost your brand:
1. Use hashtags and locations
Just like a typical Instagram Feed post, you can use hashtags and tag locations within your Instagram Stories. By using both, users will be able to find your content when searching on the particular hashtag or location used, improving the discoverability of your content. Using a brand hashtag in particular is also a great way to invite your audience to share their own content, which will drive more user generated content (UGC).
2. Add emojis and stickers
Emojis and stickers are a great way to increase engagement with your Instagram Stories by increasing the opportunity for your audience to do so. Polls and questions are especially great to use, as they offer you the opportunity to involve your audience in your future content or service provided e.g. restaurant brands inviting their audience to vote on the next menu item they bring out.
3. Use branded fonts and colours
While Instagram itself provides a lot of creative options to create Stories, there is also a wide range of external apps that can enhance your Stories further; Unfold, Mojo and Life Lapse to name a few. As well as the advanced photo and video editing features available on such Apps, you can also use your branded fonts and colours to help build brand awareness.
4. Mix up your content
Instagram Stories is a great storytelling platform, but this story does not necessarily need to be told using one type of content only. It’s great to use a mix of content (image, video and UGC) to keep your audience entertained. Stories ideas that have proven successful for brands to share include behind-the-scenes, product unveiling, customer takeovers and how-to guides. You can also enlist in the help of influencers to either produce content for your brand’s Instagram Stories or to share on their own accounts – authenticity being key across all content shared.
5. Assume sound off
When a user clicks on an Instagram Story video, the video will auto-play with the sound off (unless the user has opted for videos to auto-play with the sound on). Captions are therefore important within Instagram Stories, and you can also consider using the “Sound On” sticker to encourage your audience to turn on sound when you do share a video that requires sound.
6. Swipe up
Finally, once your account has reached 10,000 followers or more, you can use the ‘Swipe Up’ feature in your Stories which attaches a link that followers can swipe up to visit. This allows you to fully take advantage of selling within the platform, as you can direct your audience to purchase your product or service online. Another option to direct people to your website through Stories is to use paid Instagram ads.