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A few years back, when Instagram launched the “Stories” feature, it didn’t get much attention from businesses. After all, what is the point of posting something that will be going to disappear after 24 hours? And, why would any brand want to create and post something for such a short span of time?
Well, pioneered by Snapchat and levelled up by Instagram, Stories have become one of the powerful ways to engage with your targeted audience and boost brand awareness. Stories have branched out from Snapchat and Instagram to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and now even to YouTube.
It’s an indisputable fact that these social media Stories are transforming the way social media marketing is performed. In fact, if used right, social media Stories can make a remarkable impact on the digital presence of a brand.
So, what exactly social media Stories are?
Basically, social media Stories fall into the category of ephemeral content, which has a life time of 24 hours only. These stories are mobile-based, full-screen, vertical images or videos that last only for 24 hours.
Despite the fact that social media Stories are temporary in nature they create a sense of scarcity that help you keep views stay in the loop. However, Stories can be organized into collections on some social media applications such as ‘Highlights’ in Instagram for later viewing.
The best part is that social media stories are not limited to just one post only, you can sequence multiple photos and videos to make your Stories relatable and engaging. As you share one story, the clock starts ticking and it will disappear after 24 hours. But, if you have shared something that you want to keep on your profile then you can create a permanent Highlight too. Unfortunately, for now, this option is limited to Instagram only.
Should Businesses Use Social Media Stories?
Do you know, more than a billion of people around the world share or see social media Stories every day using popular social media applications like Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Twitter and WhatsApp.
Facebook Stories have 500 million daily viewers. (TechCrunch)
500 million IG accounts use Instagram stories every day. (Oberlo)
YouTube Shorts is getting 3.5 billion views a day in India. (CNBC)
Snapchat Stories are reportedly viewed 10 billion times a day. (MashableIndia)
Undeniably, Stories are transforming the way people consume content on social media platforms. As, social media users are watching Stories in massively, the businesses should leverage the potential of social media Stories too! In fact, this is a fantastic way to increase your brand’s visibility and boost engagement rate with your targeted audience.
However, in order to gain desired results, you will be required to create appealing and engaging Stories!
Let’s jump into some clever ways that can help you make your Stories stand out:
Keep It Upright
Of course, there is no rule to create Stories in vertical mode only; but portrait orientation is the key to increase their engagement rate!
Do you know, approximately 90 percent of smartphone users hold their mobile phones in portrait mode while checking Stories?
Thus, you should create vertical Stories to get better results. You can also use a mixture of videos and illustrations to make them attractive.
Add links to your social media Stories
If you believe that social media Stories are created for fun only, then you are wrong! You can create services or product-based Stories as well, to boost the sales of your business. After all, lead generation is the ultimate goal of every business.
Well, adding links to your Stories is the best way to drive your prospective customers to your website. Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, and LinkedIn allow you to embed links in your Stories. Certainly, it is an effective way to increase the relevant traffic of your website and boost sales.
In fact, you can use a URL shortener like Bit.ly to shorten the targeted link you want to incorporate in your Stories. That way, you can track and evaluate the success of your Stories too.
Isn’t it cool?
You should definitely try this!
Do Not Spam with Stickers
Certainly, stickers make your Stories lively and attractive. In fact, they also boost engagement rate of your Stories. However, using too many stickers in your Stories may push the people away. So, if you want to make your social media Stories stand out of the competition, then use relevant stickers only. Make sure that the stickers you use in your Stories fit properly with the context!
Give live option a try
Clearly, live streaming makes your brand look “more real” to the users. When it comes to social media marketing, keep in mind that people love to participate in real time, and live Stories allow social media users to like and comment in real time. In short, live streaming connects people more effectively with your brand. This also helps you improve your brand authenticity and boost engagement rate too. Live Stories is an extremely interactive way to improve social media presence of your business. Therefore, you should give this a try!
Add Clear & Strong Call-To-Actions
Adding call-to-action (CTA) in your Stories is an incredible way to push your followers to perform certain actions. Well, if you do not add CTA in your Stories, then most of your followers may continue swiping to the next Story! Obviously, you will not like that. Therefore, you should use CTAs in your Stories. This will not only increase your website traffic but also bring more sales to your business. So, add relevant CTAs to your Stories!
In The End…
When it comes to generating results from social media Stories then “interaction” is the element on which you should focus. So, create Stories that are attractive and engaging. Undoubtedly, Stories are here to stay. In fact, they have actively become more important for businesses than ever. So, if you are not creating social media Stories yet then it’s high time to incorporate this feature in your social media marketing strategy. If you don’t, you will lose a big opportunity to improve your social media presence.