With more than 83 percent of users worldwide unhappy with the new platform update, Snapchat’s usage could see a big decline in the coming months. Instagram has been making changes too, and – aside from the lack of a chronological timeline – users seem to be pleased with the updates. New Instagram Story features include various font styles, new stickers and gifs, highlights, and more, all of which have users sharing content now more than ever.
In 2017, Facebook announced that Instagram Stories surpassed its competition, gaining more than 250 million daily active users in its first year. And with 100 million more people using Instagram Stories than Snapchat, it’s no surprise that businesses are starting to take advantage of this widely used feature.
By allowing users to share photos and videos separate from the main Instagram feed, Instagram Stories provide an additional way to share exclusive content that lasts for only 24 hours before disappearing. With an Instagram business profile, marketers can track impressions, followers, and engagements, as well as manage promotions. The Instagram Story feature allows marketers to track the number of views, the number of people who exited (swiped away from) your story, and the number of people who re-watched (tap-back) or skipped ahead (tap-forward).
Below are a few tips for using Instagram Stories to build your brand:
Give exclusive access and deals.
Because Instagram Stories only last for 24 hours, it’s the perfect way to deliver exclusive offers to your followers. Business can either (a) post a special offer/discount code directly to the Instagram Story or (b) refer viewers to the link in your Instagram bio, containing a direct link to a landing page for the special offer. By creating a sense of urgency, followers will be more likely to pay attention and engage as a result.
Provide a look behind the curtain.
Your followers continue to follow you for a reason, most likely because they’re interested in what you’re doing or offering. By sharing the creative process or giving a look behind the well-edited curtain, brands can give followers a peek at what goes on behind the scenes through content on their Instagram Story.
Let influencers take the reign.
By partnering with influencers that connect with your audience to conduct Instagram Story takeovers, brands can offer different perspectives for their followers. Hosting regular guest segments can provide both a variety and consistency of content for your followers to connect with. By promoting the takeover on the guests’ profile, brands can gain additional engagement and brand recognition from the influencers’ followers as well.
Collect feedback and increase engagement.
Aside from asking followers to ‘comment below’ to get their opinions, brands can take advantage of the Instagram Story feature that allows businesses to solicit additional engagement in the form of a two-answer poll. Post a question to your followers and they can simply select one of two responses, all of which are tracked in the Instagram Story metrics. Brands can also open their inbox to followers by asking them to ‘direct message’ (DM) them with responses, ideas, and more.
Tag your location.
By using the geolocation feature via Instagram Story, brands can tag and share their location for additional engagement. Instagram auto-populates locations near you or your business for simplified use, but brands can create a new geolocation tag using Facebook. From popping up on the Instagram ‘Explore’ page and finding local influencers to locating new followers and seeing who’s tagging you, the geolocation feature allows brands an alternate avenue to connect directly with other Instagram users.
Link to additional content.
For brands with verified accounts with more than 10,000 followers, adding a URL to the Instagram Story is a great way to link to additional content online. This feature can be used for promoting a new blog post, linking directly to a sale, or directing traffic to a partnered site. Brands who aren’t verified, or who have less than 10,000 followers, can still gain web traffic through Instagram by using their Instagram Story to direct followers to the link in their bio.
Need help creating content, increasing engagement, or generating brand awareness via social media? Request a consultation with us today!