Last year Instagram announced Stories as one of the mobile platform’s new features. While we all saw a little… of Snapchat in Instagram’s version, they did try to make it their own. However, they are highly similar in the sense that both offer you the option to share candid, real, “raw” content with your followers that will only be available for a 24-hour period before it disappears for good.
Now you may be like me and many other people that started sharing “in-the-moment” content on Snapchat and look to remain loyal. While your loyalty is respected, Instagram Stories is the new place to be. Sure, Instagram is missing out on some features that you can only find on Snapchat, such as Lenses, but let’s be real, how can you compete with the dog selfie lens?
So why should your business use Instagram Stories?
Active User Base:
- Instagram has a built-in user base with over 600 million active users and is extremely popular with the millennial age range. It is also one of the highest engaged platforms out there with an average of 2.3% engagement rate.
- That’s a lot of eyeballs that have the potential of seeing your content.
- Stories appear in the Explore Tab allowing users that don’t follow your business to still see your content.
- Instagram launched its first geo stickers this month, which will allow users to add and arrange illustrations to their Stories related to their locations. This new feature is in addition to the existing location stickers that add the name of a place to your Story.
Reach Younger Demographic:
- 52% of teenagers on Instagram and taking advantage of the Stories feature.
Higher Engagement Rates:
- 1 in 5 Instagram Stories receives a direct message.
- 70% of stories are watched with the sound on.
Stay Ahead of Competition:
- Over 50% of brands are already utilizing Instagram for their business, do you really want to get left in the wind?
- While Instagram is still playing around with the feature, users will be able to add a link within the story to “see more” and will be able to access the content within the mobile-only app.
- Instagram has opened its doors for Analytics!
- We can track reach, impressions, replies, and exits for each story within Business tools.
- Instagram has released in-between Stories ad placement, allowing advertisers to promote their brand with photos and videos in between someone’s stories.
- Being a Facebook product, you’ll see a similar targeting model as Facebook Ads that will allow you to get your content in front of the right people.
What kind of content should you be sharing on Stories?
While on Instagram, you want to be sharing engaging, visually appealing content, but it needs to be offering your followers something a little bit different than your other channels. Think cream of the crop with only the best photos and videos you can provide. Something that will make them want to come back again and again.
Stories are different than Instagram proper. You still need to be a storyteller to your followers, but it can be more real and raw than your perfectly curated Instagram feed. Think behind the scenes, live event coverage, goofing around with coworkers, sneak peeks, etc.
- No, I’m not talking about posting uncooked meat.
- Show user’s a behind the scenes look. If you’re doing a photoshoot for your products, take a photo of the photoshoot (get meta about it), and show viewers what goes into that final crafted picture that ends up on Instagram.
- Being that you are posting on Stories; you’re allowed to skimp on the production a little bit. Keyword being little. Users expect that “raw” look.
- Even consider going Live for your followers to see what you’re doing in real time. Live video will only be available for the time your broadcasting, once you finish broadcasting, the video is gone.
- Follow one of your employees around and provide a day in the life of or simply ask them to participate in a quick Q&A.
- Ask a customer or client to do a quick testimonial. If it’s good, save it, and turn into an actual Instagram post or repost to another channel like Twitter.
- Show users who’s behind the camera, whether that be your intern or your boss.
- Just because it’ll disappear within 24 hours, doesn’t mean that your content shouldn’t be original. Make it worth their time, and don’t be afraid to experiment and get creative!
- Taco Bell is a great example.
- Drive the exclusivity of the channel. Post photos, videos, and other related content and highlight the message that as soon as the Story expires, so does the offer.
What kind of content will you be sharing? If you need any help in determining what kind of content you should be sharing on your Instagram account, please feel free to contact us. Also, add us on Instagram, to see what we’re up to!