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Julia Hammond
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Are you using Instagram Stories effectively?

There is no doubt that social media is fast evolving and the latest feature, Instagram Stories, is a testament to how broadly Instagram can expand. A new feature on the platform means new opportunities to create content, increase engagement and even advertise. But are you using it effectively? Or even at all?

Editors Tip: Start using Instagram Stories NOW!

Increase Engagement

Are you struggling to increase engagement on Instagram? Instagram Stories have a higher engagement rate than a regular post to your account. Send followers on a journey behind the scenes of your business and watch your views increase.

When considering what type of videos or images to share on Instagram Stories, there are a few different strategies you can take:

  1. A Day in The Life

Document your day for your followers, using natural, candid videos. Share a sneak peek into tasks that your followers wouldn’t normally see. Whether it is restocking their favourite item or taking photos of new products for your website, giving your customers a behind-the-scenes insight can help them feel connected to your brand.

When you watch influencers’ videos on Instagram Stories – they share “in the life of” videos, which could capture them enjoying their holiday or relaxing at home. These videos are mostly natural, not staged. Your followers will know when you fake it. It is vital that you make the stories feel real and authentic.

  1. Push Your Product

Use Instagram Stories to share products in store or coming soon. The benefit of stories is that you can share content that might not fit with your feed’s aesthetic. The WME social media team is very strict on our clients’ social feeds. We need to ensure it looks amazing and is effective. By posting on Instagram Stories, you can share content more frequently that you might have hold off on posting to your feed. What we have learnt is the more content you share with your followers (always remembering to place a priority on authenticity and quality), the stronger their trust becomes.

  1. Poll Your People

Get your followers’ opinions on products, branding or any topic you want insight into, by creating a poll on your Instagram Story.  The poll feature is interactive, which helps boost engagement, but secretly does market research for you in a quick and visual way. Next time you have to choose between two product colours to stock just ask your followers on your Instagram Story!

  1. Offer Exclusive Benefits

Share promotions that only viewers who watch the story can get! This is a great way to show your dedicated followers that they are valued. This type of customer nurture is often used in email marketing, providing only a ‘select few’ with the benefit of the offer. However, email marketing only allows you to contact existing customers or leads. With Instagram Stories you can send out a discount or offer and reach new viewers while still retaining that appealing sense of exclusivity.

Editors Tip: Add your Instagram Stories to your page so new and existing followers can replay your message. To add them, see Story Highlights under your bio. You can add them by category to make them clear and you can even create thumbnails that suit your brand’s style.

Advertise on Instagram Stories

Yes, you can now advertise on Instagram Stories and our social team is very excited about this new ad space. The WME team have seen great conversions from Instagram Story ads due to the structure of the story. If the viewer is interested in your call to action (CTA), they will swipe up on and be led to your website. If they are not interested in the ad they can click on the ad to reveal the next story.

As this is a new advertising space, we recommend jumping on it soon, as your competitors might not be aware of the feature yet. In the same way that Facebook ads do, Instagram Stories also have the benefit of gaining insight into your audience through analytics.

So, what makes an effective Instagram Story ad? Here is your opportunity to be creative and strategic! It is all about being fast with your call to action and very visual. Video content is preferred, but that doesn’t mean an effective image won’t perform well. We recommend keeping the story to 15 to 30 seconds. Use clear calls to action to ensure you entice the follower to ‘Learn More’ or ‘Shop Now.’

To create an Instagram Story ad, you will need to have a Facebook ad account. To edit the placement of your ad and choose the Instagram Stories you want to promote, go to Ad Manager and choose the objective Website Traffic in the Ad Set you need. Once it is live – watch the data and be amazed! 

Ready to start using Instagram Stories effectively?

We hope you are motivated to start creating some amazing content for your viewers, starting today! If you’re a little overwhelmed by the prospect of learning the new feature and would like to organise training for you and your business on Instagram Stories or any other aspect of social media, don’t hesitate to contact WME. Alternatively, if you don’t have the time, we can manage your business’ social accounts for you without fuss! Give us a call or send us an email today!

By Natalia PereiraJulia Hammond

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