Instagram Stories is heating up. For me, it’s all the rage. It’s a place to connect with the audience on a behind-the-scenes level & it shows real time. I find it to be one of the most helpful tools when it comes to distribution of content. But it’s also not too selly, ya know? Meaning I’m able to really connect with the community & talk back & forth over DMs. It’s one of my favorite mediums & something I can’t live without.
And lets be real… the Paris filter is LIFE.
In saying that, I felt like this post was much needed because there’s a real art to Instagram Stories. It takes work to keep people’s attention. It’s easy to get people to look at your Stories but you need people to keep coming back.
Before we get into it, I should also say, I’m into commercial breaks… I’ll take a couple days off once a month to do a social media black out. 1.) It’s healthy for my own mental wellness, and 2.) every TV show has commercial breaks. It keeps things fresh and fun.
Ok, on to the tips:
ENGAGE WITH THE COMMUNITY
This is #1 for me on every single platform. I never want to be an influencer who outgrows her community. The reason I have this platform is because I have the audience’s support. It’s important that I take 30 minutes every morning & night to answer DMs & ENGAGE. If the same comments or questions keep popping up I’ll do a Story or a post to address it. Putting the audience first by providing value is crucial. I want to constantly bring value & continue the conversation….so let’s say I do a Story on my Hydro Flask– I’m going to tell you where to buy it, what color it is, why I like it, & why you HAVE to have one too. Post valuable content & continue to talk about it whether it’s on Stories, DMs or in the comment section of Instagram. I would recommend that every single Influencer or brand out there NEVER STOPS engaging with the people who support them.
KEEP YOUR BRAND ALIVE
Always pay attention to fonts & colors & the right filters. For instance, I never like anything too yellow. For fonts, I usually do different shades of pink, white & blue. If I do a color, it needs to make sense for the photo. So if my Topo Chico is in the photo & there’s a bit of baby yellow on the label, I’ll adjust the color accordingly, but also add a pop of pink to keep it branded.
Recently I submitted my branded The Skinny Confidential GIFs to Instagram & got them approved. You can find a TSC sheet mask, a skin fridge, Pixy & Boone ( my Chihuahuas ), my neon sign & logo. Getting your locations covered is a big plus too. TSC Dreamhouse & podcast locations are covered so I’m always branding.
Other features deserve attention too- If I’m using other people’s GIFs I want to be methodical & make sure they’re pink. So if your brand is orange & white but you use a green font, then maybe that’s worth re-evaluating. There are a few keywords that I keep in mind when representing my brand on Instagram Stories….. cheeky, girly & chic.
KEEP IT FRESH & EVOLVE
No one wants to watch the same type of Stories in a row. Think of it as a TV show. You want different scenes all the time so don’t take 100 pics of your shoes & post them back to back. Show the shoes far away in the mirror, then show them up close, then show a detail. Mix it up & post different facets. If you’ve talked about beauty for 3 Stories in a row, then switch to a BTS or a wellness Story. Think of your Stories like a bag of Chex mix & produce your Insta Story like you would produce a movie. Show up close, far away, & details. Also, before you post something ask yourself if it will education, inspire or entertain. If it’s not going to do one of those three, then I don’t post it. As a business, it’s important to me that my audience has something to take away from each Story.
GET SPECIFIC WITH THE FEATURES
Utilize location, utilize the music feature, utilize the clock, play with GIFs ( but don’t be overwhelming ). I’m a big fan of sticking with 2 fonts to keep it cohesive. Also, Kirakira is bomb. I use it all the time. You guys always ask me how I add pretty sparkles to my Stories & the answer is Kirakira. It picks up the light on pics & videos & makes everything sparkle in the most pretty, magical, Cinderella-esque way. If you don’t have this app, you need it. It’s very much fun to whiten the background of the photo then add a super pretty sparkle to it.
If you feel overwhelmed by doing all of this stuff in the moment, then batch your Stories. Making sure you’re using all these features in the moment can be a bit too much sometimes. Save them up & then take the time to post a bunch of Stories at once. This way you can really obsess over your brand- think of your intentions, add filters & fonts, add geotags & actually think about what you’re posting.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF CALL TO ACTIONS AKA GROWTH HACK THE SHIT OUT OF YOUR CONTENT
Move people around in a way that provides value. If you just posted a micro-blog on your Instagram about a new skin care product, then direct them to that post by saying “more info in the latest post” in your Story. If you have more than 10k followers then utilize the Swipe Up function to take people right to a blog post or the product you’re talking about. So, if I’m taking a picture with The Wellness Mamma, I’m going to make it easy for you guys to SWIPE UP to listen to the podcast we did with her. If I do a blog post, I’ll have a beautifully designed graphic or video ( what up Skill Share– Skill Share taught us how to make Instagram video ) & I think of them as a commercial break. So I’ll provide tons of fun, BTS, in-the-moment scenes & do a couple swipe ups ( not too many- I don’t want to be obnoxious ). I want people to get value out of what I’m talking about.
Instagram Stories is NO JOKE you guys. You would be SOOOOOOOO shocked by how much of my day it takes up. It’s insane actually.
It’s super fitting after this post to say follow me on Instagram… OR if you’re more of a product whore like me, follow @and.the.skinny.was.like. It’s not sponsored, it’s just Amazon shit that I’m obsessed with.
Leave your Instagram handle below so I can stalk your Stories.
+ Find all my branding tips here.
++ If you’re looking for a hot wallpaper for you phone I got you covered. Check out these cheeky TSC backgrounds.