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Instagram Stories Guide

Updated: Dec 12, 2022


Instagram stories is a platform with one of the highest engagement rates. You have the ability to see what people have been doing in the last 24 hours then after that it disappears! The idea is to keep the story going, reveal the next chapter and keep this updated on a regular basis.

Thinking about that next story and not wanting to miss a slot can often lead to some of the best content and shows aspects of your business, people would not normally see. This can show the personality behind your business and show its not just a brand name but real people. Think of more raw and unpolished content and remember the best Instagram content is authentic.

Your followers get to know you through stories, they can warm a lead and build brand loyalty. Taking them on the journey with your business. Stories are not only good for existing followers but they can be discovered by other Instagram users who don’t normally see your feed. This gives you an additional opportunity to get in front of new people.

Instagram stories only last for 24 hours. On a personal account once this time has expired the content is gone but for a business they are archived and stored in the highlights area of your profile. You can use story highlights to showcase new products, organise stories into themes and demonstrate products.

There are features within the stories that allows viewers to interact with you. This could be asking questions in your story, poll and slider to get viewers interacting. You can also add geolocation and hashtag sticker to increase visibility.

To create a story use the camera icon in the top left corner then either take a photo or hold down the camera button to record a video. The thunderbolt icon lets you control the flash and arrows allow you to switch the camera around. This is very similar to your normal camera.

From here you can then select pens to doodle on the image, the AA simple allows you to add text and hashtags and the fun sticker allows you to add stickers, polls etc. Tag another account by typing the @ symbol and searching for them. Viewers can then click this to visit their profile. Once you’ve created the story you can publish it straight away or save and come back to this later.

You can create a closed friends group and only publish stories to these accounts. Do this by going into your settings and adding accounts to the close friends option. You can add as many people as you want to this list but you can only have one list. Once you come to publish a story you either have the send to publish (going to everyone) or a green icon for close friends.

In a business setting this could be used for an exclusive group, VIP customers, connect speakers for an event, offer deals to the most engaged fans or welcome new customers. Viewers know they are on your list however won’t be able to see anyone else that’s been added to the list.

There is different type of stories you can post on Instagram:

  • Type – simple type a message into the story and add a coloured background

  • Music – Add music to a video

  • Live – stream live and let your audience comment in real time – you can add filters if desired

  • Normal – video or photo posts you can add various filters and stickers to

  • Boomerang – 1 second looping video

  • Rewind – playing a video in reverse and normally longer than boomerangs

  • Superzoom – dramatic story zooming in on an object with a variety of effects

  • Focus – photo a person or object and Instagram will blur out the background

The goal of your story is to take viewers through a journey, draw people’s attention in using stories and get viewers to make an action.

Test the functionality out and create some stories for your account.

If you are worried how to do this try planning ahead and stage your stories to begin with, thinking about what photo you might take, content you want to add and so on. One you’ve done a few stories you will soon get the hang of it and creating them will take no time at all.


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