How to increase your reach on Instagram Stories: examples and lessons learned

5 min read
6 April 2022


Such emotions as tenderness, anger, sadness, irritation, fury, excitement, and hatred trigger our attention and make us continue watching. Negative emotions tend to catch an eye more than positive emotions do. You might have noticed that all the news is built on that constantly growing feeling of agitation. Many bloggers are trespassing on emotions in their stories to increase reach.


For example, you went traveling — and your Stories reach will grow on your first vacation days, especially if you are in some paradise place. But further on, your audience gets tired of such content, and the reach decreases. In a perfect world, you would be showing something new and being creative all time.


Touchpoint is an aim, life cycle, values, or issues shared with your audience. For example, you are telling about emigration to Canada. Sure enough, those thinking about migrating to somewhere (not even specifically to Canada) will be watching your stories with a greater interest.

That is why it’s vital to show your values and mindset rather than just the daily routine in your stories.

‘Mechanical’ engagement

It is about polls, questions, and quiz stickers. A question sticker is the hardest one to use. A user has to spend their time and write something. Quiz stickers are easier to deal with — you need to read options and choose your answer. And the easiest one is a poll sticker — all you need to do is to choose ‘yes’ or ‘no’, either ‘this’ or ‘that’. It is not about asking your audience: ‘what should I do? — This or that?’ — but rather about asking so that a user would be eager to know the answer — the answer they need to choose and vote.

Provocative content

Sex, nudes, and explicit videos always increase reach — that is why bloggers usually post intimate photos. The body attracts attention, and content like that will get more likes or reactions in stories. It also works for displaying your relationship, private life, failures, and personal problems.


It is also a provocative topic as it always raises heated discussion — how much you get, have earned on this new course, spent on traveling, and are spending in general.


Talking about politics will always be a Holy War. It is necessary to remember that renowned international brands do not like bloggers who talk about politics, religion, and immunization too much. Do not cover these topics if you want to continue doing paid advertising for brands.

Collective pain

Collective pain is something that hurts everybody at the moment. An example of recent collective pain may be COVID and lockdown. It is unsensible to abstain from discussing something everyone wants to discuss.

Series of Stories

A series of stories works excellent for giving your view on some topic — you create a set of Stories covering the issue from the very beginning to the end. One can do series by series, but as a rule, it’s pretty hard to do more than three series of stories per day. What is the point of the series? It gives your audience the whole idea of what you are saying — it is much better than watching stories as clips or missing the first stories and watching the next ones.

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Official algorithms by Instagram developers

Recently, in its official blog, Instagram explained how it ranks posts and how the algorithms work, why some posts have better reach than others, and how to get into recommendations.

Pick the catchiest part and put it in your first stories. A catchy beginning will arouse interest in your audience and make them watch your stories further.

How to increase your reach on stories

Skip one day in posting stories — less is more. If you do too much content, your audience will consider it spam. If you have nothing to show — just skip this day, and you will see an increased reach on the next day.

These are some examples of engaging stories:

  1. Intrigue. Give a hint to your audience that you will give some tasty content later on. However, do not stretch this intrigue for ten stories, as some bloggers do, because everybody now can spot intrigues made out of thin air. Daily intrigues do not work either. Do not take advantage of this technique.
  2. Interactive content. For example, do polls or discussions with your audience.

Lessons learned

  1. Don’t do ideal stories. Users are tired of ideal images. It is better to show life as it is — without using filters excessively.
  2. Stories are a part of your job — schedule them. Creating stories takes even more effort than posting does. Story makers often get paid better than copywriters only because stories are harder to make. You need to have a thought-out drama line, be good at telling stories, know how to shoot and edit videos and add music and questions or quiz blocks. It is quite a time-consuming job, so you need to schedule it in your workday — otherwise, you won’t make any progress.
  3. Show your expertise. Many people think that their audience knows perfectly who they are and what value they can add, but this is misguiding thinking. Remind your audience what your expertise is and what you are good at. We all are overwhelmed with information nowadays — your audience might forget what kind of expert you are. Do not hesitate to tell about your competence on stories, fill in your Instagram profile, and make postings about your work.
  4. Stories are not just about value and benefits. Your audience doesn’t always watch stories to get some advantage —users tend to prefer entertainment and leisure content rather than some helpful stuff. Communication is crucial on social media. People go online to build relations, get entertained, have a rest, and forget their daily routine. So, if you are giving helpful content only and no fun, your audience will get tired of that shortly.