How to Make the Most of Instagram Stories

 
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If you are an Instagram user, then you most likely have seen the little circles at the top of your Instagram Feed. These are called Instagram Stories and are a great tool to help reach your Instagram followers. In fact, an Instagram Story has the potential to reach 2-3x more followers than an average Instagram post. Now that's exciting! 

When working with a client, I always take into consideration the overall goals when advising on the best features to utilize on Instagram. And while you may have heard of some of these tips/tricks before, I like to go beyond this and talk about the why as every action in a business should have a reason behind it that supports your particular growth goals! 

My favorite instagram story Tips:

Avoid Being Cut Off When Using Video: 

A video Instagram Story allows for you to record a video for up to 60 seconds. I then often recommend clients to speak into the camera to talk about their day to day activity and connect with their community. However, it can get a bit frustrating if you keep reaching the 60 second mark, have to post the video, and then continue from where you left off. 

To avoid this, try recording the whole video with your camera first. Then, upload the video to Instagram. Even though it may be longer than 60 seconds, Instagram will automatically cut up the video into separate posts and do the work for you. :) Then you have a perfect story that runs smoothly from each story to the next.

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Utilize the New Highlights Feature: 

Instagram recently rolled out a new feature called Highlights. This allows for you to save your favorite stories to your Instagram profile so they live longer than 24 hours. Influencers and businesses have been using this feature to categorize different areas of their business that they want to highlight. For example, a fashion blogger may save stories about her family, her daily outfits, and her favorite sale finds. These would live in 3 separate categories so you can refer back to them anytime you would like. 

Utilizing this new feature is a great way to further tell your brand's story. While this is feature for your current followers, I find that it is best used as a way to connect with potential and new followers. By highlighting your key message points, these individuals are able to learn a bit about your business leading to a more engaged follower. 

Tag a Location and/or Hashtag: 

A great way to grow your Instagram following and engage potential new followers is by using the location and hashtag feature of Instagram Stories. This allows for those searching the location or hashtag to discover your story and Instagram profile leading to a greater exposure than your current following. A great example of this is to tag the location of a restaurant you are dining in as many individuals search the stories of a restaurant to see what food items are being served! 

So next time you are out and about, be sure to utilize both of these features to help expand the exposure of your Instagram Story. And don't forget to switch your profile to public so that potential new followers can easily see your story and profile! 

Try the New Animated Gif Features: 

With so many brands utilizing the Instagram Stories feature, it is important to think through ways to differentiate yourself. When a user is scrolling through their stories, they tend to just fly through them and not fully pay attention to what you are posting. And while we are all guilty of this, as a business owner, you want your follower to pay attention, otherwise, what is the point in posting? 

A fun new way to stand out is to utilize the new GIF feature. This allows for you to choose from a variety of moving images that add animation. This creates a Instagram Story that catches the eye, engaging your follower. 

 
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 Have fun with it!!

I hope you enjoyed these quick tips on how to best utilize Instagram Stories! To watch these tips in action, be sure to click on my Instagram feed below and follow along through my day to day stories. 

mackenzie_mmodern