Instagram expert Jenn Herman gives us some Instagram Stories tips.
When it comes to Instagram stories, there is a lot going on. They keep adding more features, they keep adding more stickers, they keep adding more functionality to them, which is great.
Some things to keep in mind…
We still don’t want to oversaturate our stories. Three to five posts in a sequence is the ideal range. Anything beyond that, you start getting into a minute-plus worth of attention span—which, in a stories world, is a very long time. So try not to do the ten to 15 stories in a sequence; try to keep it to three to five.
The other amazing thing right now is that everyone—and I say “everyone” because, you know, Instagram says it’s a global rollout, but not everyone gets it—but everyone has the link sticker now, regardless of what type of account you are or how many followers you have. You want to use it. It’s such a powerful way to drive that call to action to go watch your video, to sign up for that webinar, to download that white paper, to sign up for your newsletter—whatever it is that you’re doing, you can have it go directly to that link using the link sticker.
But here’s where it’s super important: you can actually customize the text on that link sticker. So you can drop your URL and immediately below that it says, “Customize Text.” Tap on that and then put your call to action in there. So if I’m going to send somebody to my YouTube channel, if I just put the YouTube link, the sticker just says “YouTube”—but it’s not really clear when you’re looking at the story if you’re supposed to click on it or where it goes. So instead I change the text to say, “Watch video,” or, “Click here, watch it now”—and you can change that to anything—register now, sign up now, go to the website, buy now, whatever you want it to be, but you can change that text.
And then I still recommend adding some GIFs, like some animated flashes or sparkles or arrows or something that really draws attention to that call to action so that people are more likely to actually follow through.
They’re also adding a bunch of other fun things to help keep engagement up. The “Add Yours” sticker is new and fun, where you can actually create almost like a daisy chain of your followers adding content to your original post. It’s a great way to get additional usage around your audience and to get people commenting and posting on things related to either your brand or their lifestyle.
They have also rolled out the liking of Instagram stories. Down in the bottom, where you see the message bar, you see the little heart. You have the ability to like a story. This is drastically going to change how people interact with stories, because that doesn’t open up the DM when you do a quick reply or a reply. Now, a like is more of a passive engagement, so you’re going to want to monitor that and see if that changes your interactions—if you’re getting less DMs, if you’re getting more engagement—because now people can like it without having to send you a DM.
Those are things you’re going to want to stay on top of over the next six to nine months to see as people evolve with that behavior.
Jenn Herman @jenn
Social Media Advisory Board Member
Jenn Herman is a social media consultant, speaker, and globally recognized Instagram expert. She is the forefront blogger on Instagram marketing and author of “Instagram for Dummies”.