Create high-quality content There was a time when Instagram delivered photos and videos to your feed based on when users added them chronologically. A few years ago that changed, and now an algorithm that is reportedly based on engagement decides when and where posts appear to you. If you have a Business account on Instagram, you can view your Story “Insights” to see how people are engaging with your posts – including where you might be losing users over the course of a Story. Use your Stories to create fun tutorials that provide value to your followers. Deals and discounts: If followers realize that you’re posting exclusive offers on your products or services to your Stories, they’re going to check in far more often. Too much live streaming for a small business account can come across as spammy, but a well-timed use of the feature can both provide followers with fun insight into your office culture, a day in the life of an employee, or a fun event that you’re throwing at your brick-and-mortar location – as well as catapult your account to the top of your followers’ Stories feed. Engage with other accounts This is good practice for any social media account you operate: Remember, your activity is not a one-way street. Creating high-quality, timely, useful content is important, but so is engaging with other accounts on the platform. Reply to comments left by followers, invite users to DM you customer service issues (and respond when they do), and comment on the posts or Stories of users who tag you or use your company tags. Click here to find experts on social media marketing.
Over the past few years, Instagram has taken the world by storm. With over a billion users, Instagram trails only parent company Facebook in terms of traffic. While IG has long been a fan-favorite, the addition of a “Stories” feature is what put the platform on the fast track to worldwide ubiquity.
Stories began as a way for Instagram to emulate competitor Snapchat’s ephemeral nature; now, Stories alone boasts twice as many active users as Snapchat has in total. The combination of Instagram’s immense user base, its relationship with Facebook, and its ease of use catapulted Stories to social media stardom.
The incredible number of eyeballs on Stories means that brands and businesses that don’t utilize the format are missing out. Advertising on Instagram and Stories are on the rise, but businesses should also focus on creating eye-catching, engaging, and ultimately persuasive organic content as well, in order to appear naturally in users’ Stories feed.
The only issue with this plan is that a user may follow hundreds or thousands of other accounts. How can you rise above your competitors and consistently appear near the top of your followers’ Stories?
Here are some tips that will help your business rank higher on Instagram Stories:
1. Create high-quality content
There was a time when Instagram delivered photos and videos to your feed based on when users added them chronologically. A few years ago that changed, and now an algorithm that is reportedly based on engagement decides when and where posts appear to you.
When Stories debuted in August 2016, the algorithm was already in full effect. While that algorithm has been tweaked over time, its mission remains the same: Instagram wants users to spend as much time as possible on Instagram – viewing ads, engaging with brands – and so they will show users what they think those users want to see.
Therefore, if someone demonstrates a history of interacting with an account (liking their posts, commenting, direct messaging, and yes – watching their Stories) then Instagram will elevate their posts to the top of your feeds.
Of course, “making good content” is easier said than done. Some best practices for posting content that gets higher engagement include:
- Create more likable photos by following a few ground rules: According to research by Curalate, images with a single dominant hue, images with blue as the main color, images with more background space (to give photos depth) and images with low saturation are all more likely to get likes – and thus to make an impact on Stories.
- Engage with polls and quizzes: Everyone in digital marketing knows the power of the call-to-action. Stories make it easy to get people to click, with polls and question stickers that you can share the results of to drive even deeper engagement.
- Go bold with your text: Make creative choices with the text that you overlay on photos and videos. Use easy-to-read fonts, different colors, and prominent messaging and copy to keep people clicking through.
- Share user-generated content: Harness the power of your followers to share quality content that your business spent zero time making. Fellow users will be inspired to submit their own work, and check back often to see if they made the cut.
Via @LEGO: A combination of kaleidoscopic colors and question stickers creates a fun, informational Story post.
2. Lead with your best stuff
Whether you’re writing a blog post or posting to social media, hooking consumers instantly is the goal. Your introduction – or in this case, first post or two of your Story – should make it clear what you’ll be offering viewers. Don’t be coy, because all it takes is a swipe for people to move on from you entirely.
Whether you’re making a how-to video or tutorial, premiering special behind-the-scenes footage, or presenting followers with discounts and deals, take the time to make the introduction of…