Instagram Stories launched last year to rival Snapchat (read: Instagram vs. Snapchat Stories). Since the release, Instagram Stories have continued to improve and become more beneficial to business owners, small or big.
Keep reading for 3 reasons businesses should be utilizing this Instagram feature:
STAY RELEVANT TO YOUR AUDIENCE
The placement of Instagram stories happens to be at the top of every user’s feed. Meaning, it’s the first thing they see when they tap into their Instagram app. Recently, Instagram also started to stick unwatched Stories in the feed, in between posts. With the high-prioritized placement of Stories, it is more likely that your audience will see and watch, automatically keeping your business (and content!) relevant, regardless if they are consistently seeing your posts in the feed or viewing your account. It’s another way to expand your reach!
ADD A LINK! The ongoing frustration for businesses on Instagram is not being able to add specific links in post captions. Instagram hasn’t adjusted this yet, however, Stories have made it possible for some users to add links into each Story created. This creates an opportunity to share more detailed information and include a link for further information. For example, if you have a new blog, if your store started carrying a new line of shoes, if your restaurant has a special event...etc. You can add the link as you create the Instagram Story and viewers will be able to ‘swipe up’ to be directed to that link (so don’t forget to add that CTA in your story telling your viewers that there is a link attached and they must ‘swipe up!’.
Now for the downfall...this feature is currently only available to business users with 10K+ followers (but an improvement from only being available to verified accounts when initially rolled out!).
NEW POLL FEATURE
Instagram recently released a new poll feature. Just like you can add a location or a sticker to your story, you can now add a two-question poll. If you’re a business...use this to your advantage! Conduct quick and easy market research by asking your audience a question. Just make sure it’s a fun question for your audience so that they will want to provide feedback. Instagram shows you which users voted for which option, so you have the user information (Instagram accounts) of participants. An idea to increase participation in poll voting would be to incorporate some sort of giveaway by creating an incentive and rewarding those who participate. For example, ‘Answer our poll: which dish is your favorite? We will be randomly choosing three participants to give gift certificates to our restaurant!'
Placement of Instagram Stories within app make it visible for your audience!
The possibility of linking from stories gives the opportunity to provide more information while driving site traffic
Polls = easy, quick, free and engaging market research