Instagram stories are such a powerful way to connect with your audience. But in order to connect with your audience, you’ve got to make sure your stories are ENGAGING. This is for two reasons:
- To keep the attention of your audience (humans have short attention spans)
- To tell the Instagram ‘Gods’ (aka algorithm) that your content is WORTH showing to other people
Love or hate Instagram, we all know that (at least as of 2021) Instagram is one of the leading social media marketing platforms out there. Stories and posts generally have two different purposes. While posts are generally more ‘put together’, stories provide an opportunity to show up as you are. Whether you are literally TELLING a story, sharing an update or message with your audience, providing a teachable moment, sharing a behind-the-scenes, whatever it is, stories are an incredible way to show up for your audience.
The mistake many business owners make, is not being intentional with their stories. There are 5 tips I have to help you increase engagement for your Instagram stories.
Listen in below!
In today’s episode of The Imperfect Pursuit Podcast, we discuss:
- Why captioning your stories is so important
- Stickers/polls/quizzes on Stories are more than just a fun novelty
- How to effectively do face-to-camera stories
- How to get others to re-share your content
- Keeping your content entertaining, educational and promotional
Prefer to read?
If you prefer to use your eyes more than your ears, here’s the brief rundown of the episode:
- CAPTION YOUR STORIES. This is probably the most important tip I have to share with you. Many people are scrolling the platform with their sound turned OFF. So that lovely series of stories you recorded where you are sharing a message with your audience? No one knows what you’re saying (unless their volume is up) and they are likely going to scroll past altogether – so that means they won’t hear your message, AND they’ve also just told Instagram that your content isn’t worth sticking around for. It’s so important to take a few extra minutes to caption your stories so that people can READ what you’re saying (kind of like what you’re doing now – you’re reading instead of listening to the Podcast ;)) Even if it means saving your videos to your camera roll and coming back a few hours later when you have time to caption them out, it will be so worth it.
- UTILISE ENGAGING STICKERS. If you think polls/questions/quizzes/any of those fun little stickers people can engage with, is simple just for novelty, then I’m sorry to tell you… You’re wrong. While they are a fun little feature that Instagram has released, they can be leveraged to increase the engagement on Instagram. Every time someone reacts, engages, taps something on your sticker or messages you through your story, this improves the Instagram algorithm for you! AND sometimes it is a nice way to be able to connect with your audience and even continue ongoing conversations. Not that I want you to use stickers in every single story, but start thinking about how you can leverage some of these features to encourage engagement on your account.
- BE STRATEGIC WITH FACE-TO-CAMERA STORIES. Now, if you aren’t already showing your face on your stories, this is my first piece of homework for you. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you how important it is to show your face and personality on social media. But let’s say you already ARE confident with showing your face on stories and speaking to your audience, I encourage you to keep these stories as concise as possible. We’ve all been on Instagram listening to a story or message that someone is sharing on their Stories, and can see that someone has like 30 more slides… Ain’t nobody got time for that. Try to keep your ‘talking stories’ to 8-12 slides maximum if possible. Of course, there may be times that you’re telling a really powerful story and your audience will stick around to watch it all (psst: if you caption your stories they will be even more likely to stick around!) – but don’t get into the habit of rambling on and on about nothing every single day.
- TAG/MENTION OTHER ACCOUNTS. If it’s appropriate, tag or mention relevant accounts on your stories because those people may actually re-share it onto their stories. So, if you’re a wedding vendor sharing some professional photos on your stories, tag the other vendors who were involved in the wedding. If you’re sharing a lesson that you’ve learned recently or a Podcast episode you think others would like, tag the person/educator/Podcast host you may have learned it from. If you’re simply just sharing a funny story that involves other people, tag them. It’s not guaranteed that people will re-share it, but hey, it at least notifies them when you’ve shared the story and they’ll likely engage with you anyway!
- KEEP YOUR CONTENT A MIX OF ENTERTAINING, EDUCATIONAL AND PROMOTIONAL. Often I see creatives make one of two mistakes: they keep their content ALL promotional and salesy, OR their content is ALL entertaining but they never actually talk about their offer. Your audience wants to be entertained, they want to be educated AND they want to be sold to. Ensure your content is a balance of all of these things – on stories and on other social platforms in general!
- Follow me on Instagram!
- Plann – the Instagram planning tool I use and love (I pay for the premium version as I have multiple accounts to manage)
Stay in touch!
Thanks for tuning into today’s episode of The Imperfect Pursuit Podcast. I’d love to know — what was your biggest takeaway? Head to my Instagram to join the conversation!