Instagram Launches New Feature – 3 Ways to Use Instagram Stories for Business

Instagram Stories for BusinessAre you using Instagram marketing for business?  You’ve probably seen the new feature called Instagram Stories that’s creating quite a buzz in social media marketing news.  Eerily similar to Snapchat, Instagram Stories encourage users to share even more visual content that captures personal moments of their day.  With 95 million images being uploaded daily from its 500 million active users, this new feature will create massive growth opportunities for this social platform…as well as for brands who leverage it correctly in their social media marketing.

Before sharing ways on how your brand can use Instagram Stories to further your business objectives, let’s explore exactly what Instagram Stories and the purpose it serves.

What are Instagram Stories?

This new feature to Instagram now allows users to create visual diaries of the day by uploading multiple photos and videos in a slideshow format.  Like Snapchat, the content is ephemeral in that photos and videos disappear after 24 hours of posting.  The content you share via stories will not show on your profile grid or Instagram feed.

The intended purpose is to give users the chance to share many photos in a given setting without saturating their followers feed with content since stories are accessed via a separate space.  Therefore, you can post as often as you’d like in Instagram Stories and not be concerned with inundating your actual business page.  Users are able to see and engage in stories from accounts they follow in a bar at the top of their feed.  A ring will show around users profile image when new stories have been uploaded.

Text and drawing tools are available to spice up your image, adding a touch of personality and creativity to these posts.  Unlike the images you share on your Instagram feed that are normally high-quality, polished visuals, Instagram Stories are right now and in the moment, bringing real authenticity and transparency to your content.  Have fun!

3 Ways to Leverage Instagram Stories for Your Business

How does this new feature help you in business?  The beauty about Instagram Stories is that it provides another outlet to genuinely connect with your audience to build the like, know and trust factor.  You see, the more your audience engages with your brands messaging, the likelihood increases to becoming buying customers and loyal followers of your business.  This is ultimately your goal…to publish engaging and inspiring content that resonates with your audience, capture and nurture them through your sales funnel, and create long-term clients that become raving fans of your brand!

Here are three ways you can begin leveraging Stories to advance your business goals:

#1 Bring your audience backstage with you!

With stories, brands can take their followers on a journey and tell the story behind the posts in their feed.  By expanding on a recent post, you can bring the event or situation to life by sharing a continuous stream of visual content that goes in-depth and behind the scenes.  Events normally closed off to the public are now accessible via stories.

Allow fans to experience your brand’s culture and personality with Instagram Stories.  It’s a winning asset to letting the world see more of who you are and what you stand for.  Bringing your audience backstage also increases follower engagement significantly, a key metric when testing the effectiveness of your content.

#2 Build buzz around upcoming events and products

Another promotional tool, create campaigns using Instagram Stories to build awareness about your new launch or upcoming event.  The beauty about Stories is that it goes away in 24 hours therefore every day is a new opportunity to create quick, on-the-spot content to generate excitement about the next thing!  You will never overwhelm your audience plus the more times they see your promos, the more likely they are to be responsive when the launch arrives.

#3 Enhance follower engagement and communication with your brand

Engage with your followers on a one-on-one basis with Instagram Stories.  Host Q&A sessions where you inform your followers to post their questions using Instagram Direct Messaging.  Respond to questions within your story, giving individual credit to your followers who took the time to participate.

This strategy is packed with power!  Not only are you boosting engagement with your audience, you are hearing directly from your ideal customers (or buyer personas), providing you with precious future content and product ideas to continue delivering value and solving their problems.  It’s a winning tactic so implement this one right away.

Conclusion

Instagram continues to find innovative ways to expand their user-base and create amazing visual experiences for its robust community.  Instagram Stories presents the perfect opportunity to get followers even more involved in this social platform.  As a business, you can capitalize on this new feature to build momentum, awareness, and loyalty to your brand.  The key is to implement these tips, test and see what works, then tweak to focus more on the strategy that is generating desired results.

Much success!

For more tips and best practices on how to use Instagram Stories for business, contact us at Dapper Goat today!