Are you adding YOUR story to Insta stories?
Do you have an Instagram business page, but not yet taken the plunge into Instagram Stories? Using this extension of social marketing is not a passing trend, and you need to get on board with this exciting way of engaging with your audience, as it has so many benefits for business owners.
Some of you reading this are going to think “no, not more content to create” – I get it - but Stories have so many advantages and you’ll get the hang of them quickly and (whisper) you may even get to love them & see how many marketing initiatives they have to offer! Such as…
No fine-tuning of content
One of the huge positives of Stories is that they’re only around for 24 hours, so there is no reason to make them as ‘polished’ as your grid images. This can mean they’re less time-consuming to create than content for your profile grid. Raw content doesn’t demean your brand as a story is just a snapshot of you. I like to think of them as ‘real-time’ marketing, while you leave your profile grid for showcasing your best and most evergreen content.
However, you still need to think very clearly about how every story will fit into your marketing plan. ‘Shooting from the hip’ seems a great way of getting more content out there, and sometimes this will be what you need to do, but Stories can and should be planned wherever possible in order to meet a specific business object.
Added personality to your brand
While maintaining brand consistency is vital to any business, Stories allow you to have more fun with what you put out – you can think a little outside the box with your stickers, using bespoke hashtags and mixing up fonts with the 'type' button.
Or why not include other handles to nourish relationships with other businesses or your employees?
Show the ‘behind the scenes’ to an event. Giving your followers a first-hand look at what goes on behind the scenes will really show off who you are and more about what makes your business.
Positive engagement with your followers
Just as you should be asking questions in your main profile content, the Poll button allows you to have immediate interaction with your followers. Asking questions about your brand via a poll will give you high-level feedback from your audience but the main thing is the engagement will start to happen.
Direct your followers outside of the Instagram platform
Doing something exciting on Facebook Live or pushing a promotion on your website? Insta stories is your best friend here. Hop on and shout about your Facebook live that is starting in an hour and you may just gain a few new followers on your Facebook page.
Do a live shout-out for a promotion. Direct followers to the link in your bio, post a “coupon” in your story with a caption stating that the offer runs out when the story does. Then create a ‘promotion landing page’ on your website from the link in your bio.
Or use a story to let your followers know about a new blog. It's YOUR story, so do it your way.
Broadcasting live with another user
Live video was introduced on the app at the end of 2017. When you begin a live video (on the latest app update) you can invite another guest to join in. Not only will you have your own followers as potential viewers, but it exposes you to a whole new audience as you’ll potentially be exposed to the followers of your interviewee's account.
As with any live interviewing, preparation is key. And think about how you manage the risks of error in your live broadcast.
Highlight your highlights
Instagram is kind. It allows you to ‘pin’ your favourite stories and group them under terms such as ‘blog’ or ‘new season’ (you get my drift), so they don’t disappear after 24 hours. Isn’t that clever?
So you might have guessed I love Instagram Stories. Let me know how you are using them as a business and the successes you have had.