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Can you remember a time when Instagram didn’t have stories? 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. Instagram is more suited to brands and influencers as a platform. Where the content creators go, followers will follow.
Like the rest of social media, the Stories landscape is constantly evolving. For example, TikTok is currently piloting a Stories feature— stay tuned to see how that plays out! For now, here are 10 fun Instagram Stories ideas to increase engagement.
How to Make an Instagram Story
Making 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:
- In the Instagram app, tap the ‘+’ icon in the top-left corner of your screen then when the new window pops up tap ‘Story’ on the navigation bar on the bottom right.
- Next, tap the white circle at the bottom of the screen to take a photo or film a video. You’ll notice more circles after the plain white circle. Those are your filters. You can also upload photos from your camera roll by clicking the photo button in the bottom-left corner.
- Now, it’s time to personalize and bring your story to life. You can draw on your photo or video by hitting the pen icon, choosing a color, and choosing the pen you’d like to use. You can add sound by clicking the music icon, or add emojis/GIFs by clicking the box with a smiley face (in between the music icon and the pen icon). Finally, you can type any text you want by clicking the Aa icon in the top right corner.
10 Fun IG Story Examples to Try
Instagram Stories are a great way to get to know your audience. You can ask your followers questions and answer in short videos.
Have a 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 game
These 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 Scenes AKA BTS Shots
Instagram 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, quizzes
For 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 questions
Use 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 polls
Use the Polls feature to learn more about what your followers prefer. This is super helpful for feedback in the product development phase and it makes your followers feel like a part of the creation process.
#8 Fill out a template or make a new one
Templates 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 series
You 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!