Instagram has millions of users worldwide, making it a must for any business looking to improve its social media presence. Though known as a platform for posting pictures and short videos on a permanent feed, the app offers another way to share content that you may have overlooked.
Instagram Stories were introduced back in 2016. The idea behind them is simple; photos, musings, drawings, GIFs, and other forms of self-expression can be shared on Stories, which are confined to a separate feed from regular Instagram posts and disappear after 24 hours. Stories are increasingly popular, and if you own an e-commerce business that’s looking to increase its following and engagement on Instagram, you absolutely must take advantage of this feature.
Here are the best ways to take advantage of the Stories feature on Instagram.
While certainly equipped to show well-produced, quality content, Stories are more often used by people and companies alike to share informal, spur-of-the-moment content that is better suited for the temporary format they provide. Doing a photoshoot for a new product? Give your followers a behind-the-scenes look, show them the studio, share some pictures that didn’t quite make the final cut. Bonus footage and exclusive content are things that your biggest fans are sure to enjoy, and they might even share with their own followers!
Do you have a limited time offer? Are you hosting a 24-hour sale? Instagram Stories are the perfect place to announce this type of time-sensitive information! You can share coupon codes and information, sure, but you can also provide platform-exclusive deals that can’t be found anywhere else. This further encourages people to look out for your Stories in the future.
If you’re looking for other ways to attract followers to your Story, invite them to participate in Q&As or tag you in posts that can be shared on your feed! Q&As are great because they allow you to interact with your followers directly as a person, not a brand, and they double as a way to inform customers about your products and company history. You can share questions and answers on your Story, so everyone is in the loop. Sharing posts you’re tagged in is also a great way to encourage organic, user-generated content. Alternatively, create a hashtag and share posts that use it in their captions.
Looking to get even more personable with your audience? Instagram Story content doesn’t have to be pre-made; you can livestream on the platform as well. Whether you’re hosting a seminar or a live Q&A, Instagram Live is an opportunity to talk in real-time with your fans and followers. You can see how many people are viewing your livestream at any given time, and users can share comments and reactions that appear on your screen as they’re posted. This gives you the chance to have an instant and public discussion with the people who care about your brand, which is great for transparency and engagement.
Did you know you can advertise on Instagram Stories? It’s easy to do, and you can even use content you’ve already posted! Like other forms of Instagram advertising, all you have to do is define your objective and audience, and then ensure that you’ve elected to advertise on Instagram Stories. These ads will appear in the same format as regular Stories- vertical and full-screen. In addition, ads are not limited to one snapshot; you can have up to three Stories in a row for one advertisement.
As users swipe through their feed, your Story ad photos will appear, along with a call to action to visit a post or website of your choosing. For example, if you want to advertise a new product, your first Story can be a photo of the product, followed by text explaining the product in more detail, and then finally a coupon code offering an exclusive discount to people who click the link on your ad! Instagram Story ads offer a lot of versatility, so be sure to experiment to see what works best for your business.
E-Commerce businesses should take full advantage of social media platforms like Instagram to promote themselves. If you’re looking to expand your paid social presence on this and other platforms, contact Relevance Advisors today for a free consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.