How to use Stories for business

5 May 2021

Posting Stories on Instagram is as important as publishing posts. Using the format of Stories, you can increase the reach and engagement rates, find new customers and attract followers, acquaint the audience with your brand, products, and services, increase loyalty to your company, and announce new offers.

In this article, we will take a closer look at how to use Stories in your business.

You can read more information about managing Stories (posting, deleting, adding music, etc.) in our Ultimate Guide on Instagram Stories.


14 ways to use Stories in your business

Here are some ideas for using Instagram Stories for brands and businesses to develop their accounts, gain new customers, and increase the reach.

Warming up the audience

In Stories, it is convenient to warm up the audience before important events. It can be a new product launch, a promotion, or a special offer. You can start with publishing a Story and introduce your brand, show the process of creating a project from scratch, arrange an interactive activity with followers using polls, quizzes, giveaways, and a countdown plate before the event starts.

Special offers

If you want the users to watch your Stories without skipping them, you can arrange short-term special offers. For example, you can offer a small discount for winning a Story contest.

Backstage

This format of Stories is gaining more and more popularity. Followers love to keep an eye on what is going on behind the scenes. Sharing the “hidden side” of the process increases audience loyalty to your company. It happens so because followers can watch how the process is going on, how you implement your ideas, people who create the goods and services that you promote, and what your office looks like.

In addition, such Stories are easy to make because you do not need to show a perfect picture. The more natural the backstage Stories are, the better.

Product reviews

You can use Stories to tell about your products and services: from the history of the establishment to functionality in use. For example, if you have a clothing store, you can show the garments on models of different sizes and the combinations of the collection pieces. For the tech industry: post a review, show the hacks and tricks of using the products. For interior design elements: show the items in different rooms. Use the “Before / After” comparison so that the followers can visualize transforming a space by using your products.

Personal brand development

Using Stories, you can increase audience confidence and develop your personal brand. Tell them about yourself, how you work, how your weekends go, how you prepare for public speaking, for interviews, publish short episodes of these interviews, make reposts of those users who attended your presentations and speeches in your Stories. These actions help to enhance your media exposure and recognition rate.

Lifehacks

Share the information that is not in your feed with followers. You can publish unique life hacks and helpful tips. Show the users unusual ways to use your products or secret methods, which will make your followers’ lives better and more convenient. Given this kind of content, the audience will definitely not skip your Stories.

Communicating with followers

Create polls in Stories to get feedback from your customers and followers. Arrange Q&A days and be sure to try to answer most of the questions from the audience; post the most interesting questions with answers in Stories.

Publishing reviews

It is very convenient to publish customer reviews in Stories: take screenshots from chats or direct messages and post them in your Stories, showing your gratitude for positive reviews.

Reacting to negativity and objections

Post screenshots of dissatisfied customer reviews or critical comments and respond politely.

Work with the objections of your audience. In Stories, you can explain why your product is worth buying, how it can be useful and convenient, what makes up its cost, what materials it is made from, what story lies behind its creation, why people should trust you as a professional.

Stories reactions

To increase your reach, create Stories that your followers can react to. The more reactions you receive in direct messages, the more users will see your Stories.

Text Stories

Use not only visual but also textual content. People want to read the text; they will stay a little longer on your Stories. To do this, you need to click on Stories and keep holding your finger on the screen. For Instagram, this is a sign that you generate interesting and helpful content — therefore, it will show your Stories to other users more often.

Games with followers

Arrange days of interactive engagement with your followers, for example, quizzes with catchy and informative content. With the help of them, you can advertise your products and services. Start a regular content category with such games — and do not forget about it.

Humorous content

If your brand image allows this, you can post memes or funny Stories about your products or services. It cheers up the audience and adds variety to your content.

Highlights

Ordinary Stories stay only for 24 hours, so it is vital to save some Stories to Highlights. Why are they convenient?

  1. In Highlights, you can pin the answers to the most popular questions from your followers; this way, you do not need to answer them every time.
  2. You can add core information and contacts: your office location, detailed directions, how to get there by metro, or where to park your car.
  3. Add photos and videos of current offers, promotions, and products.
  4. Save important moments from the history of your brand you want to remember and share with your followers.

How companies use Stories: cases

  1. A cosmetic brand creates a survey and gives recommendations for skincare:
 


  1. Puma shares the posts of the followers wearing their clothes:


  1. Benefit Cosmetics brand answers their followers’ questions:
 


  1. Photography schools publish backstage from their classes in Stories:
 


  1. This is an example of an excellent Highlights design. The users can quickly and easily find all the information they are interested in.
 



With Stories, your Instagram business account will not look abandoned and lifeless, even if you do not post frequently to the main feed. Stories will help you increase audience loyalty, find and establish contact with new followers, develop your personal brand and the company itself. Use Stories wisely, add Highlights, experiment with the ways of publishing Stories. You can start with the ones we mentioned in this article.