Instagram stories is just over three years old, but it’s already changing the way users and businesses engage on social media. Here’s some information about how Instagram stories can help your business, nerdy facts, ideas for creating stories, and sharing some built in features to make your stories more powerful.
Why Choose to Promote your Business on Instagram
A number of business owners who do not use Instagram personally often shy away from using the platform for their business. But if you’re not using Instagram, you’re missing out on a lot of potential new customers.
Here’s some of the reasons you should be using Instagram for your business:
- More than half of the US residents between 18 and 29 years old use the platform.
- 56% of the users on Instagram make over $50,000 a year. And 26% of them make over $75,000 a year.
- Half of the users follow at least one brand on the platform, although a lot of users follow multiple brands.
If your target market includes 18- to 29- year olds making over $50,000 a year, then there’s a good chance those users are on Instagram. So go get ‘em tiger!
How to Start Creating Content for Instagram Business Page
It’s best to create unique and targeted content on each of your social media platforms. Many businesses tend to create a post on Facebook and then share that exact same post to their Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram accounts. Users can tell that’s what their doing, and the low engagement rate on those posts reflect this as well.
To succeed when promoting your brand on Instagram, you should plan out a campaign or focus for your posts. Ideally, they’ll have a consistent look or layout to them, so when a user sees them as a cohesive unit, it will be clear that they all belong.
That’s where our team of social media gurus come in. We’ve got our cell phone glued to our hands 24/7/365 and can create campaigns or advise you on successful social media posting that makes your users say .
Benefits of Instagram Stories for Businesses
It’s not just enough to post pictures and great captions on your Instagram page anymore (though that’s a great place to start)! More and more users and businesses who are paying attention to trends are turning to Instagram stories to promote their brand. Do you want to be a trendsetter too? I thought so.
Ever heard of a little thing called Snapchat? The platform all the millenials (and gen Zers or whatever they’re called) are using constantly. The app that has a rep for duck faces, sexting, and stories about everyday life has 210 million daily active users. Instagram wanted some of that action, and added stories to their platform in August of 2016.
Instagram brought in stories to offer a different way for people to share videos and pictures with their users. Stories are done vertically and the full height and width of the smartphone screen, versus the square box that posts have. Each story (one video or image) runs for just a few seconds. They also disappear from your feed and profile after 24 hours, but you can save them for longer by adding them as a highlight or sharing them within your feed. So they’re great of-the-minute news, versus trying to share evergreen content.
Instagram stories are located right at the top of the Instagram app, so they’re the very first thing a user sees. With an interesting image or video clip on there, you can pull a user away from their original plan of scrolling through the posts and have them view your story instead.
Another perk of Instagram stories is they play back to back. As soon as one picture or video is viewed, the app automatically starts playing the next one. So if your story is in someone’s feed right behind the latest from Beyonce, users will still be on their high from seeing what Queen Bey is up to and those great thoughts can carry forward to what your business shares (in theory; no we cannot guarantee story placement behind Beyonce, The Rock or Kylie Jenner).
The Best Content for Instagram Stories for Businesses
Instagram stories do best when they’re a well-done video, or series of images and videos that are a planned set.
Here’s some ideas your company could consider based on what other successful brands are doing:
- Instagram Takeover: Allowing an employee to take short videos throughout the day to showcase something at their job. Fancy brands invite athletes or lifestyle bloggers to do an Instagram Takeover to run their account for a day – perhaps you have one of your interns do it? These can be announcing a new product launch with polls peppered throughout to get viewers opinions, someone sharing their love of your brand, or an office tour.
- Day In The Life: Short videos throughout the day showing a day in the life of an employee. Can be done on a regular basis such as the last Friday of the month. These are great if you’re growing your company and trying to attract new employees.
- Pets at Work Day: If your furry friends are at the office with you, share that on your stories! This is great combined with an emoji slider that animates as people slide it lower or higher with a phrase like “cuteness level” on a picture of your CEO holding a puppy
- Around the Office: Pictures of people working, desk decorations for holidays, playing ping-pong, etc. Include emojis or stickers in these posts, for example for a party or next to a spicy meal at a team lunch.
- Location, Location, Location: Pictures outside your office, of your city, or when your team is at a conference. Use location markers in those stories, and perhaps the temperature as well if it’s unseasonably warm or cold weather.
- Message Me: After a set of pictures or videos in a cohesive story campaign, ask people to message you with feedback or with the answer to a specific question. This is a great way to get direct engagement from your followers, and a way to start building an actual real relationship with them.
- Teasers: If you’re expanding your office space, having a well known guest speaker at an event, or even launching a new product, promote it on your Instagram story. Include hashtags like #newproduct or #guesswho to these stories.
- Poo Emoji: Pretty much any content with the poo emoji will get reactions. Maybe it’s raining outside and your umbrella broke? Take a picture and post it with the . Coffee spill on your keyboard? . Wearing mix-matched shoes because there’s no power at your house when you left? . Pets at Work Day and someone had an accident? You get the picture. The poo emoji will connect with your users and make your company and employees seem all the much more real, because we all have poo days, am i right?
- Wallpapers: If you’re more graphically inclined, you can create wallpapers users can save to their phone. For these posts, it’s best to have a post on your story telling the user a wallpaper is coming and get ready to screenshot it. These should be promoted on #wallpaperwednesday and use the hashtag accordingly.
- Shopping: You can even use your Instagram stories to promote items you have for sale. You can use the Product sticker to make the image or video you post clickable to lead to your eCommerce platform. Note that you can only have one product sticker per story.
Getting New Users via Instagram Stories
Users who follow your Instagram account already will see your stories in their feed automatically. Ideally, you can attract new users to your stories as well. Here’s some ways to do that:
- Location tag: People who are in a location (often when they’re on vacation or at a conference) will search Instagram for other posts in that same location. If you’ve tagged San Francisco, tourists checking out the Golden Gate Bridge could see your posts and stories.
- Hashtags: Like in other social platforms, hashtags can bring more users to your stories and posts. There’s popular hashtags that are successful on Instagram that are great to mix in to your stories. Want to know what those are? Call our team of social media experts and we’ll help 😉
Get Expert Help on Instagram Stories
You might have read this content all the way through – congrats! – but still not sure where to start. Or are thinking to yourself “how long is this going to take me to do?” That’s where our team comes in!
Let our team become your team of social media gurus to take the heavy lifting of content ideas, strategy, posting, and user engagement off your plate. Want to do it yourself but want some guidance? We’re happy to coach you on using Instagram stories or other social media platforms if you want to make a go of it.
Learn why you should promote your business on Instagram, some nerdy facts, how to create better content, consider doing it yourself, get overwhelmed, then hire our team of experts to do it right the first time.