Instagram Stories – The Basics & Why You Should Be Using it For Your Business
Having a hard time wrapping your mind around why we should share snippets of our life live through Instagram stories?
Maybe you are thinking why would anyone want to see what I am up to and/or my business?
Believe it or not I use to feel that way to but once I got more comfortable with using sites such as Instagram stories and SnapChat I soon realized this was creating positive results in our business.
As you hopefully know, with so much competition and noise on the internet, building up your know, like and trust factor is key to becoming a successful business brand online.
People buy from people they know, like and trust over a total stranger.
Therefore, every business should be utilized and diversifying their presence online.
So, today I want to talk about Instagram stories and how to use them to grow your business brand online.
This past year, Instagram released a new feature called Instagram Stories. If you’ve ever used Snapchat, you’ll notice a lot of similarities.
Instagram stories allow you to post as many videos and photos as you want to your “story,” and they will disappear after 24 hours.
In the past, they used to disappear completely, but now they are archived to your account. This means that once they disappear, no one can see them except for you.
Every single day, there are over 250 million people that post to their Instagram stories.
Are you one of them?
Instagram stories are great because they allow people to connect with you on a more personal level. Usually, people only post carefully selected and edited photos to their Instagram feed.
On their stories though, people are more likely to post raw and unedited images and photos.
If you are new to Instagram Stories, and you’ve never posted one before, here’s some step by step instructions on how to do so:
- On the top left side of your home Instagram feed, you will see a “plus” button. Tap on that. Another way that you can access the story feature is to swipe left in your feed.
- At the bottom of the screen, you’ll see a circle button. Quickly tap down on that button to take a photo, or if you want to take a video, hold down on the button for the duration of the video.
- If you wish to start a live video, create a photo using boomerang, or take a photo using the “hands-free” mode, you can do that easily. Under the camera circle button, you’ll notice that it says “normal.” If you swipe right, you can change it so that it says “boomerang,” or “hands-free.”
- The great thing about Instagram stories is that you don’t have to take the photo right then and there – you can add any photo or video from your camera photo album! To do this, once you are in the Instagram story setting, swipe on your screen. You can also tap on the photo icon that’s in the lower left corner. Then you just select whatever photo you want to post, and that’s it!
- Before posting your photo, you can edit it with filters, stickers, text, or you can even draw on it.
- Once you are done, tap the “done” button to save your story. Then tap the “add your story” button to make your story public. There’s also a “save” option where you can save the story to your phone’s photo album.
Who’s Watching Your Story?
You can choose to make your story public to anyone, or only to your followers. If you want to see who’s viewed your story, all you do is go to the photo or video that you just posted. Then, swipe up on the screen. You will then be able to see the number of people that viewed your story, along with all of their usernames. No one can see this information except for you.
Why Use Instagram Stories?
Here are some potential things you could post about:
- Do Q & A live streams which will help your followers get to know you
- If you release a new blog post, youtube video, or newsletter, you can announce it on your stories
- Promote your product. For example, if you have a cookbook, you could record a couple clips of yourself making a recipe from your cookbook. If you sell shirts, take a quick selfie or pop in to say hi, making sure to show your followers that you’re wearing a shirt that you’re selling
- Show your daily life in general. Post your meals, pets, walks, or anything else that you want
If you’re not already using Instagram stories, what are you waiting for?
Stay tuned for more articles on how Instagram stories can benefit businesses and increase sales.
Future articles will also include tips and recommendations on how to create captivating and unique stories that your followers will look forward to every day.