We are currently living in a world where we actively neglect a lot of the advertising thrown at us. We close down popups without reading them, skip adverts on YouTube, and even pay for premium accounts on some apps just to avoid the ads.
Instagram Stories is changing all that. With this feature, people deliberately choose to watch the content produced by companies in the hope of seeing something fun and engaging. As a matter of fact, many believe that Stories are not a form of advertising at all.
The main difference between Stories and regular Instagram feed is that the former lacks permanence. Any content added as a Story will be available for 24 hours. Also, unlike regular Instagram feed posts, Stories can be significantly enhanced by the use of text, stickers, emojis, and more.
Many companies are already harnessing Stories to enhance reach. Its addictive nature means that users get stuck viewing them usually much longer than originally intended since one Story rolls over to the next. It is like a conveyor belt that is very hard to get off!
Once you see a Story, it is much easier to click and watch the next one than exit and choose among others. For this reason alone, it is the best place for businesses to advertise themselves. They can upload engaging ads for free and get viewed by people who might even never heard about them before.
Here are a few things that you could be doing on Instagram Stories which will raise your brand awareness and grow engagement.
Announcements - Stories provide a great way to share new announcements of a company, whether that is a whole new project, a new product, a piece of news, or even something as simple as a new member of staff. It provides a way to share things with your customers that are not necessarily important enough to make it to your main profile.
Poll - You can get a huge amount of your customer’s data from Instagram Stories, and the poll feature provides a good way to gather it. Placing polls on a post is a good strategy to get some interaction with your followers, whether that is to do some market research or just for a little bit of fun.
Collaborations - Teaming up with another relevant business that you think your followers would like can help you and the other business to increase exposure. Sometimes you might have to pay for this, and others might pay you! There are many different ways that your business could benefit from collaborations.
Links - If your business gathers 10,000 followers or get a verified account, a new feature will open up for you - the ability to include links in your Stories. At the moment, the social media platform does not allow anyone to include external links anywhere other than in bio. However, if you have a lot of followers, you can have people click through to your website directly from your Instagram Stories.
Tag Locations - It is easy to include your location in a Story, and by doing so you will be automatically added to that particular location’s Story, increasing thus your exposure to potential new customers. Even people that don’t follow you can stumble upon your Stories.
Hashtags - Hashtags work in a similar way to location tagging, and are likely to give you a lot more impressions on your Stories. Make sure to do your research about which hashtag is used most commonly by the audience that you are hoping to appeal to, and then use these in your Stories so that you can be found easily.
These are just a very few of the many ways that you can use Instagram Stories in your marketing strategy. Already thousands of brands across the globe are using this feature in varying ways, and the results are speaking for themselves.
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