Instagram Stories: How to Create Them and Build Your Audience
Instagram launched in 2010 as a photo-sharing social media app. What made Instagram unique is the ability to apply a filter and make everyday pictures look aesthetically attractive. Instagram Stories launched in August 2016 to compete with Snapchat which was hugely popular at the time. Snapchat and Instagram Stories are widely used because the content disappears in 24 hours if you don’t save it, this is in contrast to tweets and posts which are never deleted and can backfire a decade later.
As of June 2018, Instagram Stories are used by more than 400 million people every day.
Social media trend has been shifting away from text and images towards video; this is why Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and many others are investing in video content.
According to WordStream:
- 82% of Twitter users watch video content on Twitter
- YouTube has over a billion users, almost one-third of total internet users
- 45% of people view more than one hour of Facebook or YouTube videos per week
- More than 500 million hours of video are watched on YouTube each day
- More video content is uploaded in 30 days than major U.S. television networks have created in 30 years
- 87% of online marketers use video content
- Over 500 million people are watching video on Facebook every day (via Forbes).
So, why is this important to you or your brand?
Organic social media is changing. Merely posting great content is no longer enough. Instagram Stories and similar features on other platforms are the future of social media. On average, one-in-five Instagram Stories receives a direct message. Engagement with your followers shows the platforms that you or your brand are building a community, and in-turn this get rewarded by boosts and discoverability of your IG Stories and video content.
Here is everything you need to know to get started with Instagram Stories:
How Do I Post An Instagram Story?
To post an Instagram story, start with setting up a Business Instagram Account.
Tap the camera icon on the left corner of the app.
- Tap the camera icon on the left corner of the app.
- Select the format of your content from Type, Live, Boomerang, Rewind, Stop Motion, and Normal.
- Now tap the white circle on the bottom to take a picture and hold it to make a video.
- On deciding the media type, create it and share it with your followers.
How Do I Add Location To An Instagram Story?
Did you know that most locations all over the world have their unique stickers?
- To add a location on your story, tap the ‘folded smiley’ icon at the top of the screen.
- Add your location to the ‘Location’ sticker and select where the image was taken.
- As the sticker is made, you can add it to your story.
Whenever you curate your post with the location tags, it gets more visibility, reach and engagement.
How Do I Add Hashtag To An Instagram Story?
Hashtags help your target audience to find your content.
- To add the hashtag, click the ‘Aa’ button on the top right corner.
- You will see a cursor appear in the center of the screen.
- Adjust the formatting and tap the #symbol.
- Write the hashtag and press return to create it.
Although Instagram allows a maximum of 30 hashtags per post, you should not create 30 as average interactions per post drops about five hashtags.
How Do I Add Poll To An Instagram Story?
Polls are the type of stickers that allow you to collect the quantitative data from your audience.
- To create the poll, tap the folded smiley icon.
- Select Poll and type your question in the field. You can either keep ‘Yes|No’ as an answer or change it according to your convenience.
Users who engage with the poll see the results immediately after answering it. Once the poll has ended, you can swipe up and check who voted and what.
How Do I Check Views On My Instagram Story?
It’s important that you check the analytics once you have posted the story.
- Tap on YOU at the top of home screen.
- Swipe up to see a list of users who have viewed your story.
Want to hide your story from someone? Tap the X against the name of the user.
How Do I Add Highlights To My Instagram Story?
If you have a story that you want to be seen more than 24 hours, go for Highlights. If you add highlights, you give your viewers the access that you want them to see the most.
- Create a photo and add it to your story.
- Open your story, tap highlight in the bottom right corner, press new to name the content and add then it to your profile.
What Is Instagram Explore Page?
The “Explore” page is populated using Instagram’s algorithm which identifies popular content based on likes, comments, overall engagement and similar pages the user follows; this is your opportunity to get discovered and featured.
How To Build Your Audience Through An Instagram Story?
Well, simply posting the stories won’t get you an Instagram audience.
You have to express yourself and your brand through the story. Here are some tricks that you can take a look on to stand out in the Instagram story section.
Converse with Audience Through “Behind The Scenes” Story
Talk how you go around the process.
Try to get a bit personal about your brand, your day, and how you strive to give them an excellent customer experience. Let people see what you do!
Give Shoutout To Your Followers
Unlike the other social media channels, Instagram stories give you a chance to interact with your followers. You can tag your potential customers or share their purchases as a story.
When you give a shout out to your clients, they feel recognized and may even have an urge to purchase again.
Use The Story As A Teaser
Stories last for 7-15 seconds, and you can make the most of it by launching a teaser through it. It can be a teaser of an upcoming product, or you can use the entire series to create a complete storyline.
Irrespective of how you use stories, make sure that you focus on engagement and maintaining the relationship with your audience.
Instagram stories make a significant impact on your audience. If used to their full potential, they can also transform your audience into leads and leads into clients.
For now, Instagram stories are here to stay. So, every business should leverage its uses and find more customers through it.