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Can you remember a time when Instagram didn’t have stories? According to Planoly, these days over 500 million people use and watch Instagram stories on a daily basis. Stories are a way to connect with your audience on a more interactive, personal level. You can ask questions, chat, and post daily updates relevant to your brand. Stories disappear after 24 hours and don’t show up on your feed, so they’re a more casual, temporary, way of sharing content on Instagram.
While the concept of Stories was first introduced by Snapchat, Instagram Stories now have almost double the daily users of Snapchat. This could be because Instagram Stories act as a supplemental feed, while Snapchat Stories standalone.
How to Make an Instagram StoryMaking an Instagram story is actually easy to do, whether you’re getting creative or keeping it simple. Even beginners can make it happen! Here’s how:
10 Fun IG Story Examples to Try
#1 Q&AInstagram Stories are a great way to get to know your audience. You can ask your followers questions and answer in short videos.
#2 TakeoverHave a loyal customer or employee take over your Instagram Stories for the day! Customers can show off the shopping experience and employees can share their day-to-day activities and job highlights.
#3 Start a contest, giveaway, guessing gameThese Stories might seem like all fun and games, but they act as little building blocks that strengthen relationships between your brand and its followers.
#4 Behind the ScenesInstagram Stories allow you to connect with your audience on a deeper level. What better way to do that than by lifting the curtain and showing them what’s going on behind the scenes? You can show how your products are made, give an inside scoop on an upcoming release, or share clips of your team in action.
#5 Educate on something/share other accounts, quizzesFor an educational story, you can highlight accounts in your space, give a quiz related to your product or industry, or record a few stories discussing a relevant topic.
#6 Ask questionsUse Instagram Stories to get feedback from your followers using Instagram’s Questions Sticker. Ask your followers how they like your products and website, what they’d like to see in the future, what their favorite product is, and what they’d like to know more about. You can share their responses in the following stories (more content, yay!).
#7 Use pollsUse the Polls feature to learn more about what your followers prefer. This is super helpful for feedback in the product or service development phase and it makes your followers feel like a part of the creation process!
#8 Fill out a template or make a new oneTemplates are a fun way to engage with trending content (or start your own). Find a fun template— there are so many available by searching on the internet. If you want to get creative, design a brand-relevant template and ask your followers to fill it out on their stories.
#9 Start a seriesYou can use Stories to start a fun series on any topic of choice. Maybe it’s reviewing products in your industry, trying new workouts, or even just chatting about the daily news. Having a consistent series on your Stories will give your followers something to look forward to and keep them coming back to your account for more!
#10 Personal brand prompt For those marketing a personal brand, try answering personal prompts every now and then. You can google topic ideas or even use a book of writing prompts for inspiration. Answering these questions on stories helps your followers learn more about you and your brand, while also inspiring them to answer the questions for themselves. You can even prompt them to share their answers in a Question and post them to your stories afterward.
Instagram Stories are a casual, fun way to connect with your audience. When you start planning your Instagram Stories strategy, keep consistency and creativity at the top of your priority list. Don’t make stories for the sake of making stories— make sure every story has a purpose. When you’re consistent with your story posting schedule, your followers will get excited to watch your stories each time you post (hopefully daily). Now, go give them something to get excited about!
Small Business Saturday is just around the corner. And that means it’s time for you to start thinking about how you can make your business stand out! There are tons of opportunities for unique marketing efforts throughout the holiday season but here are a few to help get you started!
Negative comments happen on social media. It truly makes having the power to share our business or our thoughts online so easily a blessing and a curse.
Facebook is a wonderful way to market your business - but, how do you know if it's working or who is seeing your posts?
Facebook's Insights Tab is a great place to start, but it can be a little overwhelming to look at. I'll guide you through some Insight basics to help get you started and on your way to seeing results!
What is the Insight Tab?
This tab will allow you to gain more information about your followers and people who are interacting with or seeing your page/posts. For example, you can see the number of people who like your page, page views, post reach, etc. You can click into each one of these for more information. Keep in mind that you can edit the dates in the top right corner if you’d like to see a different date range.
Once you are in the Insights Tab you will see an overview of your page's performance for the last week. You will also see several options along the left side or you can click on any of the sections in the overview to learn more. Some of the most common stats you'll want to keep an eye on are Page Views, Page Likes, Post Reach, Post Engagement, and your Responsiveness. If you are a product based business who sells through Facebook, you can also see the number of orders received and your earnings for that time frame.
Should we dive a little deeper? Below we'll take a look into some of the tabs on the left hand side of your screen.
Likes: Click the "Likes" tab in the left column and then set your date range at the top of the page. I usually like to look at this on a monthly basis, but do what works for you! You will then see your number of total page likes followed by net likes. The Net Likes graph will show you your number of unlikes, organic likes, and paid likes. Paid likes are counted as paid when they occur within 1 day of viewing an ad of yours or within 28 days after clicking your ad.
Reach: This tab will show you the amount of people your post is reaching and on what date. You can see organic reach as well as paid reach. Paid reach would include anyone reached as a result of an ad or boosted post.
Posts: This tab gives you a lot of information about what day and time your fans are online. This is should teach you when you should be posting so more of your fans see it! It will also give you a full list of your posts along with reach and engagement information.
People: Maybe I'm just creepy, but I love looking at this tab! It gives you insight to the demographics of your audience. You can see the percentage of male vs female, age ranges, and even city and country information! I bet you didn't know you had fans in Australia?!
If you found this post helpful please drop a comment below or let us know on Facebook! If there's something more I can help you with, please go to my About page and fill out the form on the bottom!
I Algorithms have been the hot topic for quite a while now because they affect everyone. But, there are a lot of rumors that have gone around with just how it works and exactly how to beat it. So, I thought I would give you the down and dirty details behind just how this beast works so you can work with it instead of against it!
How the Algorithm Works - 2019
Way back when, Instagram was in reverse-chronological order so you'd see the newest posts first. Instagram is no longer like this, but they do take "timeliness" into account.
The most important thing to know is: Instagram's main goal is to maximize the time users spend on the platform. The longer they are there, the more ads they see, and the more money Instagram makes.
Instagram's Top Ranking Signals
The algorithm prioritizes content from accounts that users interact with a lot. So, if a person leaves comments on your posts, if they have notifications enabled for your account, you Direct Message each other through the app, or you tag photos of each other, the algorithm will recognize that the two of you are "close."
The algorithm also uses your past behavior to predict what is important or interesting to you. This might include images that are similar or hashtags that you've liked.
According to Instagram, the algorithm shows users newer posts first. This is important for businesses to know when their target audience is online and posting at those times.
Other Algorithm Factors
Frequency of Use
Instagram always aims to show users the best and most relevant/popular post since they last looked at their feed, so your posts and content will update based on how often you open the app.
Without being too obvious, the amount of accounts you follow makes a difference in what you see. If you only follow a few accounts, you are going to see a lot of posts from those same accounts. If you follow more accounts, you will likely see a smaller number of posts from one account but a wider variety of posts from multiple accounts.
A user who spends more time in Instagram will go further back and be able to see more posts than a user who is on for a shorter amount of time. The user who is on for less time will likely only catch the best performing or most popular posts.
How to Make it Work in Your Favor
1. Post Often
It's important to post regularly but do not sacrifice quality for quantity. Be sure your posts are still on brand and speaking to your audience. I would recommend starting with once per day. If you feel like you can do more, try for twice a day. But, again, do not sacrifice quality for quantity. Once or day might feel like a lot for some people! If it does, try posting about 3-4 times per week to get started.
2. Mix in Videos
While Instagram doesn't prioritize videos over photos, many people like to watch and stop scrolling to watch videos. The people that do like to watch videos will have more videos show up in their feed. You can post videos by going live, as a story, or on IGTV.
Videos also increase the time your audience spends with each post - which can in turn lead to increased engagement.
3. Post When Your Audience Is Active
The algorithm favors recent posts so be sure to pay attention to when your target audience is online. You can see the amount of people who are seeing your posts by clicking on the insights for each post if you have a business profile.
4. Be Personable
Building relationships authentically is important because the algorithm will promote your posts to people who already have a relationship with you. To do this, write captions that will drive engagement, respond to comments, ask questions, like and comment on other people's posts, etc.
5. Use Hastags
I often get asked, "What is the purpose of a hashtag?" The purpose of a hashtag is to make your post accessible to people who may not follow you, but have an interest in the area or topic you are posting about. Many people click on or even follow hashtags they are interested in. Do you love when cute puppies show up on your feed? You may want to follow a hashtag like #DogsOfInstagram! Make sense?
I hope this information and these quick tips help you up your Instagram game! If you have questions, please do not hesitate to reach out!
Sources: https://blog.hootsuite.com/instagram-algorithm/, https://www.falcon.io/insights-hub/topics/social-media-strategy/21-tips-increase-instagram-engagement/