With over 500 million daily users, Instagram Stories are a great way to reach potential new customers while building a stronger connection with your existing ones. Instagram stories were first introduced in 2016 and have since become a powerful tool for businesses.
Stories have continually changed and evolved over the years, now including many engagement-boosting features such as polls, reaction stickers, question stickers, quizzes and chat options. If you’re not regularly posting on your business’s Instagram Story, you could be missing out on a big opportunity. Let’s go over what your business can gain from posting Instagram Stories, as well as best practices for doing so.
Benefits of Instagram Stories
1. Regularly engaging with your audiences.
Millennials and Gen Z make up the vast majority of users on Instagram and it can be difficult to effectively engage with them. With social media users having access to endless amounts of content, it takes time, commitment and effort to get and keep their attention. Instagram Stories have a number of features that allow you to do this easily. You can now:
- Set up polls.
- Ask your followers questions or let them ask you questions.
- Tag others.
2. Driving traffic to your websites.
You can effectively use stories to create content that drives traffic to your website. If you run a retail or e-commerce business, you can direct your followers to shop products on your website. A recent study actually found that 1 in 3 users were more interested in a brand or product after seeing it on an Instagram Story. There are now features enable businesses to:
- Utilize the shopping bag notification. This allows users to click on select items on your story and shop the items on your site. Product stickers help people access product information seamlessly.
- Incorporate the swipe up feature. This helps drive traffic to your website by directing your followers to landing pages, blogs, etc.
3. Growing your audience.
As we previously mentioned, Instagram has over 500 million daily users, making it a great place to increase your brand awareness. There are now many story features that makes this even easier, such as:
- Location Tags. Using geographic location tags on stories can help make your business more discoverable. Whether it’s a specific location, city or even a country, it can help reach a variety of demographics.
- Hashtags. Including hashtags helps increase the searchability of your profile and its content among Instagram communities.
Instagram Story Best Practices
1. Point your followers to your stories.
Even with Instagram’s huge user base, not everyone regularly checks stories. So, if you’re posting fresh content, don’t be afraid to let your followers know. You can include it in your regular content caption from time to time, such as this:
2. Make it visual.
With stories, you have a very short window to grab users’ attention. You can make your stories more compelling by:
- Using bright contrasting colors.
- Including a person to make an emotional connection.
- Capture interesting or unique settings.
3. Post consistently.
The more consistently you post on your story, the greater your chances of reaching more users as they tap through their feed throughout the day. With every new story you get bumped to the top of your followers’ story feeds.
4. Create shareable branded assets.
Visual and shareable assets on your story can help boost your Instagram virality. For example, content creator Kelsey in London, regularly shares templates on her Instagram Stories that can be screenshotted and personalized.
Data visualisations, Q&A’s, recipe cards and how-to’s are great content types that are most likely to generate re-posts. Be sure to always make your branding clearly visible, so you benefit from every share.
Stories have become an integral piece of so many brands’ Instagram presence lately. Given that Instagram is focusing so heavily on Stories and the format only appears to be getting bigger, brands should get on board with them ASAP. By understanding the best practices above, you can stay ahead of the curve and keep your followers engaged via Stories without missing a beat.
More from Onimod Global
Onimod Global releases the latest digital marketing news and essential marketing tips every Tuesday and Thursday! To catch up on the top digital marketing news and trends, click here. To find out more about who we are and what we do, click here.