5 Reasons to Use Instagram Stories for Your Brand

5 Reasons to Use Instagram Stories for Your Brand can help you maximize your presence on social media, as well as grow your business!

Move over, Snapchat - there's a (relatively) new platform in town! Instagram Stories launched summer of 2016 as a way for users to share moments of their day, outside of their profile. These photos and videos disappear after 24 hours, and there are extra features like filters, stickers, and text/drawing tools.

Benefits of Using Instagram Stories

Another social media platform? Don't worry - no need to be overwhelmed! Instagram Stories can be incredibly useful for your brand, and the best part? It's not difficult to use.

Instagram feeds are no longer just casual pictures of how you're spending your day. The majority of brands use Instagram to show their best features, in a highly-curated fashion. Instagram Stories, however, allows for MUCH more flexibility:

  • Have fun with it! Instagram stories is a less-filtered, more "casual" way of engaging with your audience, whether you decide to use video and/or photos.
  • Not as necessary to stay "on brand": if your Instagram photos are heavily curated, Instagram stories can give you a bit of freedom from that style of posting. 
5 Reasons to Use Instagram Stories for Your Brand can help you maximize your presence on social media, as well as grow your business!

5 Reasons to Use Instagram Stories for Your Brand can help you maximize your presence on social media, as well as grow your business!

5 Reasons to Use Instagram Stories for Your Brand

Incorporate Behind-the-Scenes

Let's face it. Audiences crave a look behind the scenes of your beautifully curated Instagram feed! Using Instagram stories to showcase your life - unfiltered - can be a neat way to connect with your audience and let them see the hard work and creativity that goes into your brand. 

  • If you're a food blogger, show your audience what your photography setup looks like, or your editing program
  • Selling products? Share a few tidbits of how your item is made
  • Take your community on a "Day in the Life of" series of video clips

Promote Your content

Using Instagram stories to promote your business is yet another method to get in front of your audience. How you decide to promote your content on Instagram Stories is up to you:

  • Share a video of yourself talking about the blog post/service/product
  • Upload a screenshot of your site to direct readers where to go
  • Give your audience a PREVIEW of your content before you publish it (e.g. stay tuned for a new post about ___)

1:1 Communication

Engagement, engagement, engagement! When you choose to use Instagram Stories for your brand, you're opening up the doors for more personal, 1:1 communication. According to this article in Forbes, we need to "[gravitate] towards communicating with customers on a more personalized and 1:1 basis, through multiple channels and the devices our customers use".

To encourage more direct communication with your audience using Instagram Stories:

  • Ask a question, and prompt them to respond via DM (direct message)
  • Speak in your video as if you're talking directly to your customer!
  • Watch other users' Instagram Stories and engage with them in a genuine way

Share User-Generated Content

Have customers tried your products, made your recipes, or shown their appreciation for your brand in some other way, shape, or form? Shine the community spotlight on them (and give credit)!

  • The easiest way to share UGC (user-generated content) in Instagram Stories is to take a screenshot of their photo and upload it directly to your stories. Don't forget to tag them as a "thank you"
  • Sharing UGC allows you to show appreciation for your community. The result? Stronger relationships, more long-term customers
  • Highlighting a customer's success with your product/service could encourage others to try it, too; nothing says "try it" like seeing someone else show his/her love for it 

Build a Community

...it's all about the overall sense of community! We've talked about the power of social media for building quality relationships; by fostering a community where your audience feels like a) they have a voice, and b) you'll listen to them and take action, you will continue to strengthen and grow your brand.

Start Using Instagram Stories Today

If your business receives a lot of traffic from Instagram, consider using Instagram Stories to boost your reach and engagement. Instagram Stories allows you to add another layer to your brand, in a less-filtered, more casual manner. Making consistent use of this awesome feature from Instagram can help you with the following:

  • Incorporate more behind-the-scenes footage
  • Promote your content 
  • Encourage 1:1 communication with your audience
  • Highlight user-generated content
  • Build a community

Interested in more details about Instagram Stories, or how you can use social media to grow your brand? Contact me here to get started!