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What Instagram Stories should brands be posting? - Dart PR
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Instagram Stories for brands

What Instagram Stories should brands be posting?

Instagram now has in excess of 1billion monthly active users, with fifty per cent following brands. More and more users are consuming Stories, with latest statistics putting the figure at 500 million users every day. One third of the most viewed Instagram Stories are from businesses. But what types of Stories should you be posting to make your brand stand out from the crowd?

This was one of the questions tackled at a recent workshop on Instagram Stories for Brands run by Michele of The School of Social. (As well as sharing a whole host of invaluable insights and tips on how small businesses can use Instagram to promote themselves.)  

Here I’ve wrapped up four top takeaways.

Tell don’t sell

We all know it as individuals consuming social media, but as a business pushing out content it’s easy to forget that no-one likes being sold to. People are on Instagram to be entertained and inspired.

The role of Instagram, and especially Instagram Stories, is to…tell stories! There should be a beginning, middle and end.

Once upon a time

People buy from people

The primary reason for a business to be on Instagram should be to build a community, so start thinking about sentiment rather than sales.

It’s essential to understand what audience you’re talking to. Even if you think of just one of your customers when deciding what to post.

Instagram Story types

There are various types of Stories you can be sharing on your business Instagram feed. When you’re plotting out content think about which could work for you and how they could be used.

  • Behind the scenes, insights
  • How to…
  • Guides and useful info
  • New in/ today’s special
  • Events/ what’s on
  • The team (this can link back to ‘behind the scenes’)
  • Inspiration
  • Answer your customers FAQs

Ultimately all content should be created with the aim of being helpful and adding value to your followers.

Have you thought about…?

Running a poll – Not only is this a great way to engage with your customers and invite their feedback but you can then share the results. For our client Talland Bay Hotel this translated into a highly effective way of encouraging a debate on the use of plastic bottles of miniature toiletries and what they should be replaced by.

Talland Bay plastics debate IG
Talland Bay Hotel Instagram Stories poll

Sharing staff & customer photos – For Talland Bay Hotel the photos posted by guests are an invaluable resource. People love taking photos of their dogs on holiday; by sharing these pictures the hotel can also share the key messaging about how dog-friendly they are.

The hotel’s chefs are rightly proud of the amazing food they create and often post photos on their personal Instagram feeds. Used as Stories these pictures give an immediacy to what’s coming out of the kitchen right now.

Promoting a blog post – If you’ve written some helpful blog content – and already put a post out on your feed – why not reshare the post as a Story?

Dart PR spring scribblings

Creating a countdown – In the run up to an event or launch you can create a countdown. This function enables followers to set a reminder and even share and will help build anticipation.

Sharing to close friends – You now have the option in Stories to share a photo to ‘close friends’ rather than ‘your story’. This allows businesses to build an exclusive list, a community within a community.

The workshop served as a fantastic reminder of the art of storytelling. Something I believe is at the very heart of good PR. Get in touch if you would like to discuss how Dart PR can help you tell your stories.