Instagram Stories are a great way to get better reach and great engagement.
We love Instagram stories. With interactive features that are unique to stories they have scope to get better reach and great engagement for your account. Not only that but they are a great way of sharing content that you may not want to share as a post. You can use them to share things that are more immediate and spontaneous, leaving your feed to be more curated and on brand.
In this blog we will share with you the features we love and how to use them.
As well as creating standalone Stories you can also share your posts to Stories too and there are good reasons to do so.
- Your post may not be seen by all your followers due to the Instagram algorithm
- As stories are accessible and show on top of people’s feeds for 24 hours, they are more likely to be seen. You may have seen how the number of people who see your post increases over the 24-hour period as they sit above people’s feeds for that time.
- You can use stories to explain why people should read your post.
The first two points apply to all stories and explain why posting them should be part of your Instagram strategy.
Increasing reach and engagement on Stories.
There are several features that you can add to your stories that will increase their reach and engagement.
A simple way to increase reach is to use the location and hashtag stickers. If you use a location or hashtag sticker on an Instagram story it will be added to a story created for the location or hashtag. We’ve tried it – it works and certainly increases the reach of the story.
The easiest and best way to increase engagement is to use the various stickers that ask for a response such as polls.
Instagram stories has lots of options for creative posts. Open Stories and scroll along the bottom to find layouts that allow you to post several images to one story or have fun with the Boomerang feature.
The create section of Instagram stories is also useful for when you don’t have an image to post. Scrolling along the bottom will give you options for things to post.
Click on the @ to find stories that mention your profile. You will then be able to reshare to your Stories.
This section also has some pre-loaded Gifs and questions and the archive features posts and stories shared on the same date in previous years.
Branding Your Stories
The Create section has a choice of coloured backgrounds to use. Obviously, you could use the same one every time to stay on brand but you are limited to a small selection of colours.
We’ve recently discovered that you can create your own on brand background and use the stickers as normal. This does mean that you won’t be able to use the create option, but it will keep your Stories on brand.
To do this we used Canva.
- Open the Instagram Stories template and select a background.
- Using the colour wheel select the correct colour code for your brand.
- Download the template as an image to your phone and use it as you would a photo adding stickers and wording as you need it.
Another tip we discovered recently is to use the drawing tool to create a border around all your stories using the same colour each time.
Using the Archive
Instagram automatically archives all Stories after 24 hours. You can access the archive and reshare the Story another time, handy if you are promoting an event or running an offer.
You can also archive previous posts. This is handy for any posts that have outdated information, especially helpful if you are using Instagram to communicate with your customers during the Coronavirus lockdown.
You may also be interested in our 5 Instagram tips for your business blog
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