Believe it or not, Instagram Story’s number of daily active users has hit 500 million people; for every 16 people you meet, at least one of them is posting or viewing on Instagram every day. However, for me, a digital marketer in her late-twenties, out of 16 people I may meet, all 16 would be using Instagram Story actively.
If you haven’t created an Instagram account for your brand, you should; if you already have an account for your brand, it’s time for you to step up your game!
Instagram is a lucrative market for e-commerce businesses to attract potential customers and stimulate them to purchase. If you’re unfamiliar with creating stories or want to improve on your techniques, stay tuned and let’s dive into everything you need to know to make the best out of Instagram stories.
An Instagram story only lasts for 24 hours, your stories could either be a still photo or a 15-second clip (now available to be continuously-split recorded). In this article, we will introduce some tools and tips to give you some ideas on how to make your Instagram more interesting and engaging for your audience.
GIF and Stickers
If “A picture is worth a thousand words,” then so can a GIF. Using GIFs and stickers are great ways to grab the viewer’s attention and highlight specific elements in your story.
Some stickers can double as call-to-actions like “Swipe Up,” “link in bio.” These are helpful when you want to direct your audience to a more detailed landing page or the product page.
Allows you to get feedback and consolidate opinions by asking questions and offering custom answers. Once your followers have picked an option you can get real-time results. This is great for brands to gather free user research by asking them relevant questions about your brand, or simply to engage them with trending topics.
If you’re holding a product launch event like Apple’s WWDC, then you might want to go on live and share it with all your viewers. A study has shown that 80% of users would rather watch live video from a brand than to read a blog, and 82% of users prefer live video from a brand to social posts.
When going Live, your audience can leave live comments and you can respond instantly. It’s a great chance to set the tone and personality for your brand and create exclusivity for your followers.
There are few occasions that might be great to get you started on live, such as press events, FAQ sessions, celebrities and so on.
Putting your stories into highlights so they won’t vanish after 24 hours
The Highlight feature is not only a great way to save your stories permanently, but you can also use it to showcase your product line like a curated collection, FAQs, tutorials, brand advertising, poll, brand news, and hashtags for all of your audience – new or old. Once viewers reach your Instagram account, they will see the information that interests them the most and not just browse aimlessly without guidance.
If you’re a big fan of road trips or camping then you probably know of Airstream, a company that manufactures travel trailers and touring coaches. Airstream offers a wide selection of travel trailers that comes with different features. Airstream introduced each of its product lines in its Instagram highlights, so viewers can get a holistic overview of different products and find the one that’s perfect for them.
Take viewers to your website or the product page
If you have 10,000 followers or a verified account, you’ll see a link icon in your Instagram story tool, this allows to you include clickable links in your story to direct viewers to brand website or product page. A good way to have viewers visit your site is to tease them with something they want to see more of. If you just started with Instagram and don’t have 10K followers yet, make sure to put your link in the bio section and encourage your viewers to get more information by clicking the link.
Reposting Instagram Stories & User-Generated Content (UGC)
If a happy customer tagged you in their story, make good use of it. UGC these days are equivalent to word of mouth and research has shown that 91% of 18-34 year old consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Instagram story has a feature that allows you to add other people’s content to your story and share them publicly. Featuring UGC content in your story will add credibility to your brand.
Hashtag – Create A Hashtags For Your Brand and Products
One of the most amazing features by Instagram is Organic Search. A catchy and memorable Hashtag is great for your brand to get more followers and attention. Try to create a Hashtag from your brand’s value proposition or use the tagline from your new product line. In addition, using Hashtags that are relevant to your business can expose your brand to a larger audience. For example, if you run a coffee shop in San Francisco, you might use #SFcoffee #SFcoffeeshop in your post to get a bigger chance of being showcased on Instagram featured/explore page.
Tell Enticing Stories with Instagram Stories
With all those features from Instagram story, if you’re still not sure how to get started with creating content for your brand. The best advice I can give you is: Learn from others.
But it’s true, all of the big brands out there either have an in-house marketing team or work with an advertising agency to come up with marketing strategies and creative content. And research has shown that there are more than 2 million monthly active advertisers on Instagram and it has now become a platform for brands to show off creativity.
Here are a few examples of how you could use Instagram story to strengthen brand image and engage with viewers:
Wrapping it up
It would be best if your Instagram story can let your customers take action. To optimize this function, besides having a great ad copy and appealing visuals, you must understand your target audience and speak their language, provide them with content that they are interested in and want to engage with.
Always remember to keep track of your results and know what your audience like. Let’s get started now and take your brand to achieve its creative potential!