There are a billion reasons to use Instagram Stories to advertise your business! That’s right. With more than a billion monthly active users and 500 million daily active users (DAU), Instagram has been growing in leaps and bounds. In 2019, advertising revenues from Instagram were estimated at $ 20 Billion as compared to $15.1 Billion, as reported by YouTube.
A Brief History
Instagram Stories were introduced to the platform in August 2016. Instagram Stories do not appear in the grid or on your profile, but in their own section at the very top of a user’s feed.
This has been a very successful model, catering to the top four KPIs for any digital marketer: eCommerce sales, new customer acquisition, brand recognition, and conversions. Instagram has been known as the standout social media platform for brand awareness and brand loyalty.
Why Businesses are Rapidly Embracing Instagram Stories
More and more businesses are investing heavily in visual marketing elements like photos and videos. Instagram Stories is the ideal platform to host and share User Generated Content (UGC), to enhance the customer ecommerce experience and boost sales. Packed with highly intuitive and easy-to-share features, Instagram has moved beyond being just a simple photo-sharing social network and transformed itself into a marketing powerhouse.
Instagram Stories: Why Should I Advertise Here?
Before choosing from the varied advertising options available on Instagram, it is important to understand how to make money advertising on Instagram. Instagram uses Facebook’s advertising system, which has one of the most sophisticated audience targeting capabilities. Just like on Facebook, Instagram Stories Advertisements can be used to target ads based on demographics, location, interests, behaviours, and many other details.
1 in 4 users of the platform, look at Stories for the products or services that they want to buy, while one-third of the most viewed stories are from businesses. The ease of use of visiting the brand’s website, by simply swiping up is unparalleled. Businesses also use Instagram Stories for contests, teasers of products, and fan content, apart from regular advertisements.
Utilizing Instagram Stories for Marketing your Business
Every social media advertising platform is constantly evolving. There is always something new to learn and understand, with regards to capabilities, changes in algorithms, and viewership trends. Instagram is the clear leader to engage with your brand in a very personal way. Keeping the following points in mind will help you to best utilize Instagram Stories as your choice of social media advertising platform.
1. Build Hype: When you are creating stories on Instagram, try to create as much anticipation as possible. As hype is created, people will keep coming back, and you can also draw them to your website by offering some freebies or extra footage of videos.
2. Make your brand relatable and fun: With the precise targeting mechanism available on Instagram, keep your stories relatable to the target audience. Keep away from sensitive subjects, dark humor, and negativity. You never know when your brand can get a backlash of bad publicity. Let your stories be inspirational or funny.
3. Tell actual “Stories”: Quite simply put, as the name Instagram Stories suggest, tell stories. Avoid creating a random amalgamation of videos or photos and think about a connected sequence of the same to actually tell viewers your story. The better the story, the more the viewer stickiness.
4. Increase audience interaction with Instagram Stories features: Using features like geographical location tagging, hashtags, stickers, and filters goes a long way in increasing viewer engagement and increasing brand following. Keep up to date with new features, as and when they become available. The polls feature can be used to elicit feedback from viewers, while making them feel more empowered.
5. Make the most of Instagram influencers: While Instagram influencers have become an industry of their own, they are still an invaluable way to promote your brand, products, or services. There are many types of Influencers you can use, based on your target audience and budget, like sports celebrities, actors, and even pet animals. Another trending activity is the Instagram Takeover, where the brand takes over the Influencers account for a day, or the Influencer takes over the brand’s account. Offering free samples of your product to well-known brand ambassadors can also help increase your brand awareness.
6. Add links to increase engagement and shorten your sales funnel: Generating great content is mandatory for today’s marketer, but Instagram allows you to embed a link with various CTA’s within your stories itself. The link is followed by a simple swipe, allowing the viewer to go to a website, blog, collateral downloads, your ecommerce portal, or more. This makes for deeper customer engagement while significantly shortening the sales cycle.
7. Diligently follow the Instagram Story template: It is a best practice to follow the templates as described by Instagram, rather than having to change the dimensions later for less desirous effects. Keep personalized effects on your videos and photos for your website. InVideo is a great hassle-free tool that allows you to create videos for your Instagram Stories.
In today’s world, if social media is used correctly, it becomes a highly effective way to increase brand engagement and brand awareness. It helps raise the interest in your products and services while enabling viewers to convert to customers instantly.
As you’re creating your social media campaigns, following simple rules like testing your content and your target audience, not posting anything offensive or crossing a line into insensitivity, can help you grow as a much liked and followed brand.
If you’re creating content, which you question yourself, bring in the opinion of others and ensure your stories campaign does not go into a failure mode. To sum it up, understanding how Instagram Stories work is half the battle won. The second half is about how effectively you use your content to create videos and convert them into stories. Use Instagram Stories to put your videos on the fingertips of your target audience and look
Frances might be just at the beginning of her career, but after attending a technical school, she has a fresh perspective on today’s technology. She contributes to the site with tech news.