If you are not using Facebook or Instagram Stories for your business – What are you waiting for?
These temporary pieces of content are not only going to allow your team to go crazy creative, but they will also take your engagement and brand awareness to a whole other level. And that’s not all. They can help you drive more traffic to your website, humanize your brand, and even drive more sales.
Also, they open to full screen, meaning there are no other distractions to pull the user away from what is happening. Advantages, advantages everywhere!
Are you ready to start using Stories?
In this article, we will share with you the best ideas for effective Instagram and Facebook stories. We will show you the best tools, examples and techniques that will make you a STORIES PRO!
With over 400 million daily active users, Instagram Stories is now leading the game. And with one-third of the most-viewed Instagram Stories being from businesses, there is no excuse for your businesses to not jump on this train.
Instagram stories are extremely easy to use. And besides that, it’s hard to run out of creative ideas with that many new features tools, stickers and filters you can use.
How to use Instagram stories
1. Tell a story
People love a good story. And also, they are remembering stories because they are PERSONAL. So, by telling a story to your audience you are not only showing them something they could relate to but you are building (meaningful) connections.
Just take this example from the Hollywood Reporter:
2. Embrace the viral challenges
You might say that challenges are only for people, not for businesses.
Aaannnddd…. you couldn’t be more wrong!
Challenges have a huge potential. With millions and millions of people joining them, they are a great opportunity for exposure and engagement. Also, they can be a big opportunity for you to remind people about your brand, your product, certain features, to show them there are real people behind the curtains or just your support for a certain cause.
Let’s take for example the #10yearschallenge. With over 2.5 million (Instagram) posts, it is the first big challenge of 2019.
Both people and companies saw it as a big opportunity to show how they grew, changed, evolved, and improved.
Turkish Airlines took advantage of this challenge and chose to show the difference between the uniforms from 10 years ago and the ones they use now. By doing so, they are not only showing people their evolution but also make appeal to their emotions, memories and create a nostalgic feeling. So did Ford.
3. Embrace the viral trends
Just like challenges, the trends are a huge opportunity for exposure and engagement. If you don’t live under a rock and you’ve been online for at least one moment in the last week, I bet you’ve seen that egg photo. Yes, I am talking about the World_record_egg. With over 48 million likes, it became the most liked picture on Instagram.
Yes, a picture of on egg. Crazy, right?
With this much success, no wonder that brands wanted to be a part of this. Even though there are many stories about this out there, Frankfurt Airport’s funny approach gained our attention.
4.Learn more about your audience
Do you want to test your audience? Do you want to learn about their preferences? Using polls and questions in your Instagram stories is one of the easiest ways to ask for answers.
A great example is Burger King. They didn’t only use a poll, but they included it in their #10yearchallenge stories. Definitely a smart move!
5. Make your stories forever
I know, I know, this might be a bit confusing. At the beginning of this article, I said that Stories are temporary (and they last for only 24h) and now I am saying you can make them last forever? Well… YES.
By saving them as Highlights you can keep your most important stories visible on your profile FOREVER (well, at least until you decide to change them). Also, you can use them to make your feed look different. How? by adding custom covers.
Some great examples are:
Who do you think made it better?
6. Filters and stickers are the new word-of-mouth
By creating filters and sticker that they can add to their stories, you enable your fans to publicly show their love for you (in a creative way). Also, you are giving them another platform to interact with your brand.
These tools are the new word-of-mouth. In the digital world, as little as using a branded sticker will make it obvious for others that you love and support a certain brand.
Take the example of Wendy’s. They made it not only interactive but also super fun.
7. Give them what they need
Everyone is going to tell you that giving your clients what they want is the key. But what about what they need? Jumbo is doing a great job at offering its followers what they need. Every day they post both a meal idea and a shopping list. This helps a lot, right?
8. Use videos to share your message
Video is THE THING in 2019. Even though Stories support videos that are (maximum) 15 s long, you can still tell a lot through them. Launching a new product? Or you just want to remind your followers of some of your services? Why not using a short video for it?
iHerb is a great example. In only 8s they managed to present all the services available on their new app.
How to use Facebook Stories?
With over 150 million users, Facebook Stories are something you should definitely consider. One of the biggest advantages is that Facebook lets you roll video for up to 20 seconds. So, if you want to repurpose some of your older videos, this might be the right channel for you. But videos are not the only thing you can share through Facebook Stories. Just like its brother Instagram, Facebook is providing its users with a lot of stickers, filters and extra functions. Here are some ideas on how to make the most out of them:
9. Announce your new products in a different way
Facebook Stories is the perfect place for teasers and product launches. Why that? because you can easily test your audience’s response to your new product.
A great example is BMW. They just launched the new 7 series in style, with a great series of teasing Stories.
10. Share educational content
Sharing your knowledge will make your customers trust you more and more. A study by Kentico Software found that 74 % of the general public trusts content from companies that educate them on a topic. Take UberFacts for example. Over 4.7 million people are following their page to read facts and statistics about the world.
11. Make inter-channel announcements
Your audiences can be completely different on each social media platform you are managing. Therefore, when new content (that cannot be repurposed) is being posted on one of the platforms, announcing and promoting it on the other channels will make it visible for all your audiences.
Sephora published its first IG TV videos half a year ago. Since then, every time a new video is being uploaded it gets promoted also through Facebook Stories.
12. Announce games and contests in style
Are your contest announcements getting lost in the hundreds and hundreds of similar posts? Or your customers are just losing interest? Then it’s time for a change. Catch your audience’s attention by announcing your contests through Facebook Stories. Need some inspiration? Check out this Tech Insider game announcement:
All in all, using Instagram and Facebook Stories is a great way to interact with your customers. And, considering their huge daily usage, a great opportunity to boost your business.
Do you have any great examples of brands using Stories? Please share them with us in the comments section!