6 ways your small business can use Instagram Stories


Instagram Stories to the rescue!

Have you noticed that your business’ Instagram isn’t getting the same response it used to?

Or that photos from days earlier are first on your feed?

If you’re at a loss for what to do with your next upload, don’t panic. Just scroll up to the top of your feed.

Your new weapon of choice is staring right back at you with a pink halo. Instagram Stories are a tool that can save your brand by allowing you to interact with your followers in new and exciting ways!

Skyrocket your Vancouver social media’s success with these 10 ways to dominate Instagram Stories

1. Expand your reach

Quality over quantity isn’t always the case in the wild west of stories. It seems that the more you post, the more often your Story appears first for your followers. So where do you begin? To prevent disappearing from your followers’ feeds (thanks to the new algorithm) upload Stories to remind them you’re there!

Use stickers and text to shake things up aesthetically and don’t forget that #hashtags count on Stories, too. By using hashtags and geotagging your location, your content can more easily gain traction from those who don’t follow you…yet! Using these features can give your content hundreds of extra views.

2. Post with purpose

Uploading often on Instagram Stories can boost you up in the ranks, but make sure there’s a purpose each time you publish!

New shipment of plaid shirts in your boutique?

Different hours for your tasting room tomorrow night?

Holding a theme night at your bar?  

Often, showing people a behind the scenes look at your business is a great purpose for your Stories. Let your followers get to know you personally, so show your face! Take a fun selfie and share it as a Story.

*Tip: Does your business already have over 10k followers? You can insert a link that they can swipe up to access right from your Story! Not only is this a great way to share extra content, but it also saves your followers time.*

3. Show your personality

It’s hard to avoid colour-coordinated themes scheduled to perfection on Instagram feeds these days. But all of this focus on perfection can sometimes lead to people forgetting about the beings behind the brand.

Use your Instagram Stories to show the human side of your business!

One perk to uploading to Instagram Stories is that it takes no time at all. It’s a medium that inspires in-the-moment creativity. For example, introducing your staff’s personality with a Boomerang video can gain you more than views.

Turn another faceless follow into a regular local customer who already has formed a deeper connection with your business.

4. Instagram Story Highlights are key

Instagram Story Highlights can help take your Instagram to the next level! This new feature can really elevate your company’s social media success… but it does require some strategy.

You may notice when you click on someone’s profile that they have pinned Stories. A regular Instagram Story will expire after 24 hours but highlights live directly on your profile for as long as you choose. You can use them to feature recipes, an event you hosted, menu items, sale updates or even as a way to expand your bio and introduce your business. How you use Highlights to work around your specific brand is up to you.

5. Build relationships with a tag or repost

Right now, we can’t repost Instagram Stories from our followers like we can regular photos (though rumour has it that this feature is on its way). For now, you can screenshot someone else’s Instagram Story or photo they tagged you in and manually tag them when uploading to your Story. While this is a little extra work, it really does go a long way!

Let’s say you’re a yoga studio and a new member just joined. They uploaded an awesome Story saying they loved your candlelight freedom flow. You then re-share their experience to show your followers an authentic interaction with your brand.

The more you engage with, recognize and appreciate your customers, the more they will do the same to your business.

Plus the more engagement your prospective customers see, the more likely they will want to engage with your business, too.

6. Instagram Story ads

This feature is a baby – born in January of 2017, businesses could place an ad within Instagram Stories! One of the biggest perks of Instagram Stories ads is that they blend in with other users’ Stories. These ads are great for generating brand awareness and attracting website sales. However, there are few things to consider first when constructing an Instagram Stories ad:

  • Make your ad in a vertical format.
  • You can either choose to post a 15-second video, or a photo.
  • If you go with a single photo, bold images with simple text may perform best!
  • If a video is more in your company’s taste, ensure it is quick to the punch and self-explanatory for best results.
  • Ensure that your ad stands out and informs the user about your business efficiently.

To create an Instagram Stories ad, simply connect your Instagram account to your Facebook Page (you do not need to convert to an Instagram Business account in order to do this) and use the ad creation tools on Facebook to put your ad together.

The more most important thing to keep in mind when it comes to using Instagram Stories for your small business it to have fun!

It’s Instagram’s world, we’re all just living in it. Social media in Vancouver is always evolving, so how will your business keep up? Try out Instagram Stories – and watch your engagement and reach flourish.

Need direction in your social media strategy? Contact the social media wizards at Legendary Social Media Vancouver. We’d love to help your business in the ever-changing landscape of social media.

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