Using Instagram Stories for your Business

You may have many questions when it comes to using Instagram Stories, such as what makes it different to posting an image on Instagram? And how can I make it work for my business?

Whilst it might seem like a rather informal way of sharing information; using Instagram Stories for your business Instagram page can really help you stand out from the rest. With over 500 million people using Instagram Stories every day, posting a story from your page will help get your business out there. But you might be thinking, what makes it different from posting an image on Instagram? And how can I make it work for my business?

Well, we’re here to give you some tips to help you make the most of Instagram Stories, and how you can turn them into a valuable way of communicating with your potential customers.

What are Instagram Stories?

Instagram Stories was launched a few years ago on Instagram, and they appear in the bar at the top of your news feed. These are short video clips or images which, once uploaded, can be viewed for 24 hours. Once the 24 hours have passed, the stories will disappear, unless you want to include them on the ‘Highlights’ section of your profile. These sit directly below your bio and will stay there permanently for your audiences to see.

These time-sensitive posts on stories are a more informal way of engaging with your customers. It’s also a much better way of getting your customers interested in your business, and creating a much more authentic connection. According to Hootsuite, 58% of people say they become more interested in a brand or product after seeing it in stories.

So it’s clear, that if your business is not using Instagram Stories, you really should be. But how can you make the most out of this medium?

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Using Instagram Stories for Business

Use Hashtags & Location Stickers

With regular posting on Instagram, you can tag locations and use hashtags to get your posts more discoverable. This is the same with Instagram stories; you can use location stickers and hashtags to tap into a particular audience and get them engaged with your business Instagram page.

If you’re not sure how best to use hashtags on Instagram, read our recent blog post on some top tips on using hashtags for your business.

You can also tag people and businesses to help get more engagement, this could be if you’re working with a particular business or person – this will help to get you more interactions between you.

Make the Most of Polls and Engagement Features

Built into Instagram Stories are a number of different features that you can take full advantage of to engage with your customers. You can add one-click polls, ask open-ended questions, create quiz-style questions, and rating sliders – all designed to get your audience engaged with your profile.

If you’re not sure what kind of things to ask to get your customers engaged, Instagram has it’s own ‘Create Mode’ which can help give you some ideas and inspiration on what you can post. Don’t forget that Stories can be informal, so don’t be afraid to ask questions like ‘What’s your favourite TV show?’ or ‘How do you like your tea?’. All of these kinds of questions are simple, light-hearted, and can be a great way of engaging with your customers.

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Post Regularly, but not too much

Much like any social media platform, engagement is always improved the more you post. But posting too much in one day can potentially put off your customers from following and engaging with you. According to Buffer, you should try and post between 1 and 7 posts per day. Any more than 7 posts and your customers are less likely to engage with you and view your content.

Posting should also be consistent, and this is key to the success of Instagram Stories, if you are regularly posting at least once a day, you will start to see more and more people viewing and engaging with your business.

Similarly to normal Instagram posts; there are also optimum times to post in order to get more views, This is usually at the start, middle, and end of the day.

Remember – It doesn’t have to be pretty!

Whilst you might be keen to make sure your Instagram posts are perfectly staged and looking beautiful, Instagram stories can be much less serious, and can even be more of a ‘behind-the-scenes’ look at your business. This means you don’t have to spend hours taking lots of photos to make sure it looks right – have a bit of fun with it!

If you’re planning on trying out using Instagram Stories for your business, you can get some practice by following and tagging our account @sokadauk, and let us know how you’re getting on!