Instagram has grown to be a great medium for engaging new followers and expanding your brand’s reach, but ever since the debut of Stories almost two years ago, brands that are just posting images to their feeds and ignoring this game changing feature are missing out on a major opportunity to grab eyes and new audience members.
So what are Instagram Stories, anyway?
Simply put, a “story” is a collection of 15-second videos and images Instagram users can post, that only stay viewable for 24 hours.
Instagram Stories are fast, easy to use, and even better– they’re inexpensive.
They boast a staggering 250 million daily users, and 33% of the most popular stories are posted by businesses. Not to mention, 20% of stories posted by businesses result in direct messages to the account.
So whether you’re already using Instagram for your brand’s marketing or not, the data shows that you should be -- especially Stories.
Even though their initial reach only last 15 seconds at a time and they expire after a day, it’s clear that the opportunity to promote your business and expand your reach is worth the time..
So how do you get started? Instagram Stories are easy to get going, but making them effective for your marketing is another story (pun intended). To help you get started, here’s a quick guide for small businesses to Instagram Stories.
In this infographic, Headway Capital shares some valuable statistics and actionable tips for each of the major components of Instagram Stories, so that you can turn your Instagram page into an audience engagement machine.
Here are some of the tips they say can really help optimize your stories for more engagements:
Add a geotag to your post to get you into the relevant stories for audiences in your area.
Put a link in your story to give yourself a 15-25% view to click rate.
Use a hashtag for a 12% increase in engagement.
Get around the 15-second video rule by using apps like CutStory to upload longer length clips.
The infographic gives you some actionable ideas for your story content too:
Show off your company culture by letting your employees “takeover” the account. These stories get a lot of engagement and are a good opportunity to add faces to your brand for the community to see.
Polls work really well too; asking followers to help you make decisions here and there can give your engagement a significant boost.
Offer them a great discount or deal; exclusive to just your Instagram Story viewers.
The overall idea is simple– Post things to spark a conversation, not to sell your products. Check out some more Instagram Story advice in the full infographic below: