Instagram stories are a fantastic tool for increasing engagement and promoting your business: here's how and why.
Whether it is a pizza, the latest book read or an important event, the question we all ask ourselves is: is it Instagrammable?
Instagram, the platform that allows people to share photos and videos, has grown tremendously in recent years and continues to expand more and more. In 2021 it surpassed 1 billion active users; today it is one of the world's most popular social networks with the highest level of interaction. At Wikipedia find his story.
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Precisely because of this popularity, it has become fertile ground for influencers, advertisers and brands, confirming it as one of the most powerful marketing tools for companies that want to increase their visibility.
Oh yeah, because if the vast majority of people spend so much time on Instagram, that's where the audience to target their communication is: it seems that just being featured makes brands appear in a different, positive light.
So if you are wondering whether or not it is worth creating an Instagram profile for your brand, the answer is "Of course it is!"
But I want to tell you more: do you know what is one of the most powerful features you could take advantage of? Le stories.
You got it right! Launched in 2016, Instagram stories have been a complete game changer. By allowing content to be posted that is only visible for 24 hours, the number and frequency of sharing has increased: 500 million profiles use them every day, and 1/3 of the most viewed stories are posted by businesses.
Not only that, many people say they are more interested in a product or brand after seeing it in stories.
So, if you haven't started yet, this time you have no more excuses: it's time to use them too!
How Instagram stories work
To use stories intelligently, you should know broadly what features they have and how they work.
Also because, let's face it, you can show the most attractive content in the world, but if you let on that you don't know very well what you're doing, you might as well!
Your branding strategy won't benefit much (by the way, if you haven't thought about your brand positioning, I recommend that you read this article).
However, to be precise, remember that stories:
- They appear at the top of the app, rather than in the news feed;
- They incorporate interactive tools such as stickers, polls and filters to make your content stand out, and you can include clickable elements such as mentions, location tags and hashtags;
- They support only vertical photos or videos; images can be cropped and resized manually, but the recommended size is full screen (1080 px by 1920 px with aspect ratio of 9:16);
- If your account is public, your story is visible to anyone, while if it is private, only those who follow you can see it;
- People can respond directly to your story via direct message (DM);
- You can see who has seen one of your stories by scrolling upward on the screen;
- They last 24 hours, but you can save them in the "featured" section above your profile feed, creating real folders; that way your followers can review them as often as they wish.
Why use Instagram stories
The question that might now arise is, why create something that lasts so short?
I'll tell you, this is precisely their strength: while publishing a post takes more time (and also more attention: if you come out wrong and delete it, you risk being penalized by the algorithm), story content is a bit more lighthearted.
Their sharing is more immediate and greater in terms of engagement and views. They are like a sort of conveyor belt: you start watching the first one and, when you look up from your phone, you wonder how they have already gone 20 minutes without you noticing.
When people open the app, in fact, the stories of the profiles they follow are the first thing they see above the news feed; your story can be viewed even if it is not clicked on directly, because it plays right after the one before it.
Popular stories can also appear in the "Search" section, increasing the chances of interaction with new users.
That's why more and more companies have started to pay attention to them and incorporate them into their marketing strategy-their intuitive nature makes them more compelling, and all of this can help build loyalty and showcase their brand's creativity, driving customers to interaction and purchase.
The benefits of Instagram stories
As you have therefore probably guessed, stories are an incredible marketing tool, whatever your goal.
Here are the main reasons why you should use them:
- They are quick and easy: take only a few minutes to create, the content is temporary and fun, you have carte blanche and more freedom to move around so you can experiment with different strategies.
- They give you more visibility: allow more people to interact because of their ease and speed of use, they are a great way to reach new customers and create a stronger connection with existing ones.
- They generate involvement: polls and quizzes, personalized stickers and music, hashtags and mentions, links and geotags are built-in features that help you increase engagement.
- "They "humanize" your brand: being more impromptu and informal than posts, they have less optimized and more transparent content, which makes you empathize more with those who follow you.
- They reduce the distance to your audience: offer people a deeper look at your brand and how you do things, thanks to a "behind-the-scenes" perspective, and allow you to get real-time feedback through direct messages.
- Promote your valuable content: by reposting or linking to your website, e-commerce or blog, you can target your audience exactly where you need them to increase organic traffic and online sales (ps. if you want to know the best web marketing tools to promote your digital business, you can find them in this article).
If we assume that audience engagement is a key aspect of developing one's business, it is clear how Instagram stories are a fantastic recipe made up of social media marketing, visual storytelling and identity building.
Small interactions are helpful in gaining trust and establishing relationships with potential customers: creating a real community (Why you should create a community) Is what will ensure your lasting success.
Do you agree?
Finally, if you are wondering how you can make your stories even more engaging, in the next article you will find all the answers.
In the meantime, you just have to start experimenting.