All you need to know about Intagram Stories

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In this post we will talk about Instagram Stories, both in their organic use, we publish them directly on our profile, as well as their use in Facebook ads. As a company, we can use these two types of publications according to our needs.

Have you ever wondered if it is possible to make an announcement only on Instagram Stories? The Instagram Stories allow different creature than it is to post something on our wall, either on Facebook or Instagram. Plus, they can gain more audience, as people are likely to be curious about those new stories that are being released and will be erased shortly.

In this post, we will see how we can use these two types of publications for Stories and how it can benefit us.

First of all, why use Instagram?

In 2018 Instagram already had more than a billion active users every month. So… do you need more than a billion reasons to start posting to Instagram to promote your business?

Posting on Instagram is not just making an account and posting photos from time to time, it takes a certain strategy behind that will allow you to grow in this network, have more notoriety and, above all, be able to use all the tools that Instagram offers you.

For example, if you are a company it is better that you create a company account (you create a normal one and then choose to convert it into a company account). This will allow you to have statistics and relevant information about what happens on your Instagram account.

It is also recommended that you pay attention to all the features and functions that Instagram offers you. For example, have you ever thought about posting a video to Instagram TV? I have clients who get more video views on Instagram TV than on YouTube. Do you know what Stories are and what you can use them for?

Next, we are going to talk about the stories, since today’s post is aimed at knowing how to make announcements on Facebook / Instagram that only appear in the Instagram Stories.

What are Instagram Stories?

The idea behind the Instagram Stories is quite simple (and precisely for that reason ‘brilliant’): the goal was to allow people to share moments of their day to day quickly and easily. Stories can be in the form of videos or photos. You can add photos or videos throughout the day and thus mount a very visual and dynamic slide show of what has been your day. A story is deleted 24 hours after it has been uploaded unless you put it in ‘highlights’ so that they are on your Instagram profile.

The most important thing is that … the Instagram Stories are highlighted at the top of the main Instagram screen! So, it is not necessary to fight against the algorithm to be able to appear in the first positions. Simply update and you will appear again there.

Ideas on how to use them to promote your business

I have already mentioned it in the previous section, Instagram Stories can be highlighted so that they are saved in your profile, and when someone visits you can see those highlighted Stories.

You can group them by theme, for example, around a service or product you sell, around an offer, you can even post customer testimonials. The agenda with the next events you do … The Stories in this sense serve to summarize what you do, who you are, and what services you offer.

Features and functions that you can use in your Instagram Stories

Polls: You can poll your followers so that they can interact with your Story.

Questions: You can take the opportunity to ask your followers and thus also interact with them. You can ask for suggestions, open a question and answer session … whatever you can think of.

Tutorials: If in your business you have to explain how something works (a service, a product), you can use Instagram Stories to make small tutorials.

Locations, tags, hashtags: You can add locations and hashtags in your Instagram Stories to reach those people who are looking for Stories by location or hashtag. You can also tag other people/company accounts, so they will receive a notification in the form of a message on their Instagram with the option to share that Story in their stories. In this way, you can get some virality from your content.

Three reasons why to use Instagram Stories for your business

Customers will get to know you and your team better: You can let your team introduce itself, making your business closer and more transparent. It allows you to show the process of your business:  You do not have to reveal all your secrets, but you can go on publishing Stories about the process that you are carrying out at this moment. For example, how do you pack products in the case of an online store, how do you buy the freshest ingredients in the case of a restaurant, how do you prepare a conference. You can highlight your product and it allows you to have more visibility: It is another way to highlight products and gain brand visibility

How often to post Instagram Stories?

Don’t worry, the Stories are highlighted for 24 hours at the top of the main Instagram screen. Therefore, you don’t have to publish them just when your followers are more active. Do not stress.

Of course, do not publish too often (many Stories a day), since you can get to exhaust your followers and they can silence you so that you do not “bother” them anymore.

Schedule Instagram Stories to automatically post

If you have a company account and follow a strategy on Instagram to get more customers and brand recognition, you will be interested in the option of being able to schedule your Instagram Stories to be published whenever you want. You can design the Stories at a certain time and have the programs to be published automatically whenever you want. For example, on a Monday you spend designing Stories for the rest of the month. Those Stories are the programs to be published throughout the next month … and you forget about this topic for 4 weeks.

Why make an announcement on Instagram Stories?

Now we go to what was incumbent on us according to the title of this entry. How to make announcements in Facebook Ads [I say Facebook Ads because it is from Facebook that the ads that appear in Facebook / Instagram are managed] that only appear in the Instagram Stories? There may be several reasons why we prefer that our ad is only distributed by Instagram Stories:

  • It is a fresh channel, not yet saturated with ads
  • We can communicate in a more spontaneous way, using a narrative less like an advertisement
  • We can create small stories (storytelling)

Goals in an Instagram Stories campaign

Facebook allows us to choose different goals when we create an ad for Instagram Stories:

  • Brand recognition: Increase your brand recognition by finding people who may be interested in it
  • Scope: Show the ad to as many people as possible
  • Video views: Get more people to view your video
  • Conversions: Get specific actions on your website or in your app
  • App installations: Get more people to install your app
  • Lead generation (potential customers): Get information about potential customers such as name, phone, e-mail …
  • Traffic: Send more people to your website

The goal of the campaign so we choose when we believe in the campaign:

Attention! In order to create campaigns choosing the objective, you first have to create your Facebook Ad Manager account. Otherwise, you will not find anywhere the menu that I am showing you. How to do it? Go to your Facebook and in the top menu you will find a little triangle, there click and, on the menu, you will see the option “Add Manager”. Click here and follow the instructions on Facebook. It will ask you for data to make payments but don’t worry, they won’t charge you anything until you really don’t post ads.

How to choose to have my ad appear only on Instagram Stories

We continue with our ads … So how do we choose to have the ad only appear on Instagram Stories? When we are creating a new campaign, the next step will be to create an ad set. This term refers to the audience to which we will show the ads that will depend on that set of ads. That is, in the set of ads we define the audience. Voucher. But we also define the locations where we will show those ads. Thus, the same campaign could have several sets of ads, one for Instagram Stories, another for the Facebook wall …

To edit the locations, we will have to go to the set of ads in question and look for the option “Locations”. Choose the “Edit locations”, deselect all the ones that do not interest us, and leave only the option “Instagram” -> “Stories” checked.

Look at this image. This is a campaign creation called “Stories Instagram Campaign”. We are at the level of “Ad set”, where we will find the “Location” option to choose where we want to show the ads that will depend on that ad set.

What kind of images/videos can I put in an Instagram Stories ad

The recommended resolution is 1080 x 1920 for both videos and images.

Images

  • File type: .jpg or .png
  • Maximum size: 30MB
  • Duration: Images are displayed by default for 5 seconds

Videos

  • File type: .mp4 or .mov
  • Maximum size: 4GB max
  • Duration: Up to 15 seconds
  • Codecs you can use: H.264, VP8

Promote stories

I am not in favor of using the “promote” button both on Facebook and Instagram, since at the level of campaign optimization I think that it falls very short and that it causes money to be spent uselessly without the user who has paid for that promotion get your results.

But I cannot, in this definitive guide to Instagram Stories,  ignore the fact that when we have already published a Story, in the menu that appears when we visualize it (the three dots where it puts more, at the bottom right) also appears to us the option to “promote”.

This option allows us to promote a Story in a very basic way and, as I say, most likely we will end up spending money in vain for not being able to use the powerful tools that Facebook offers us in its  Ad Manager.

The best apps to create Instagram Stories

You can create the Instagram Stories manually with Photoshop, Illustrator … or you can use apps and tools that allow you to create Stories in a faster and even more creative way.

Canva

Canva is an app and also a web app. You can use it both on your mobile and on your computer. It’s great for creating Instagram stories and all kinds of content for social networks. For example, Facebook ads, posts for Instagram, … not only helps you in creatives by offering you very interesting templates but also helps you not to be wrong about the images.

Unfold

Unfold comes by default with 25 free and 75 premium templates. They are divided into different designs/categories and the truth is that it offers very, very interesting results.

Storeo

This app allows you to divide a video of more than 15 seconds into parts of 15 seconds. So if your intention is to create a longer video for Instagram Stories, with this app you can ‘do’ this limitation.

Over

Over is like Canva in the sense that it not only allows you to create Instagram Stories but also allows you to create other types of content such as Facebook ads, Facebook posts, … It has a very defined aesthetic as we can see:

Kapwing, video editing

Kapwing is a very interesting tool for those who do not have time or do not know how to edit videos so that they match the standard size of an Instagram Story (1080 x 1920). You can upload a video, a photo or a GIF, put text on it, edit it, … and export it to the extent that suits you best. You can even make a video that you have previously posted on YouTube and transfer it to the Instagram TV format to be able to post it on IGTV (in another post we will talk about IG TV).

The future of storytelling for brands is in the Instagram Stories

I suppose storytelling will sound familiar to you and how brands and companies can use it to generate more ‘engagement’ (loyalty, interaction) with their potential audience and customers. Instagram Stories allow us to create stories in a very easy way. If you have made Stories or seen on Instagram Stories of the people you follow, you will have noticed that it is easy to explain a story through Stories. It almost happens inadvertently.

New York Public Library Success Story

What better example to explain this new narrative that the Instagram Stories offer us than using a literary example? In this case, the NY Public Library has used Instagram Stories to promote the reading of classic books like Alice in Wonderland. Here is the sequence:

Let’s see statistics on the use of Instagram so you can see that it is worth using this network to promote your business:

  • More than 80% of Instagram users follow company accounts
  • Almost 60% of Instagram users say they discover new products via profiles of other contacts
  • There are almost 25 million company Instagram profiles
  • Almost 800 million Instagram users follow company accounts
  • People spend almost the same time on Instagram as on Facebook
  • More than 20% of Instagram users visit company profiles daily

So, what about having an expert opinion about your brand.

 

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