The Marketer’s Guide to Instagram Stories: Building Your Brand and MAKING SALES

David Linder

David Linder

MSc in Marketing from the University of Salford. Facebook Certified Planning Professional Facebook Certified Buying Professional
13 min read

Out out of all the different elements of digital marketing, social media will change with immediate and drastic results.

There is definitely a fresh platform emerging for marketers to check into and master to remain prior to the trends.

And with algorithms on big platforms like Facebook always evolving, you need to stick to your toes as you work out how to engage in it.

However, through all of the change, there’s a very important factor that remains consistent:

Users desire to build relationships brands in an individual way.

For this purpose, Instagram is distinguishable from all the platforms. It’s among the best places that you should promote brand engagement together with your users.

It’s grown by 1,400% in only the final five years. With growth like this, it’s a no-brainer for marketers to implement Instagram to their social strategies.

In particular, Instagram Stories makes possible for marketers to activate with users, humanize their brands, create leads, and generate customers on the platform.

They’re an excellent tool for showing potential prospects (and existing ones) why your brand is relatable or interesting.

So, how can you obtain the most out of Instagram Stories?

That’s what this guide is here now to greatly help with. It’ll give you methods to use Instagram Stories to create your brand and convert leads and sales.

1. Show why is your brand fun and relatable

All marketers understand that social media engagement is essential. It’s one of the better methods to develop trust from prospects.

And the more they trust you, the much more likely they’re to become loyal customers.

While all social media platforms are excellent avenues for driving audience engagement and ultimately sales, Instagram is on a complete different level.

Of the 700 million users on Instagram, 500 million users are active on a daily basis.

Instagram also excels when it comes to engagement. 68% of users regularly build relationships brands on Instagram while only 32% of users regularly build relationships brands on Facebook.

Why? Because features like Instagram Stories ensure it is possible for brands showing themselves in a great and interesting light. It’s easier than ever before to humanize a brandname.

Tarte Cosmetics does this well. The brand regularly travels to exotic places for photo shoots of services or company bonding trips. So when they travel, they bring their followers along on the experience.

From showing products that they’ve staged for shoots in Bora Bora to showing associates on a mother/daughter retreat in Hawaii, Tarte uses Instagram Stories to provide followers insight into what this means to become a “Tartlet.”

tarte cosmetics instagram

Lululemon is another great example. Being truly a popular fitness clothing brand, the Instagram team at lululemon regularly takes followers through their very own personal fitness journeys using Stories.

From live yoga practices to cooking healthy meals, the brand gives great insight into how employees will work toward exactly the same goals as their followers.

Just recently, lululemon took viewers using one employee’s daily tell you Austin, Texas.

You go through the route she took, the music she was hearing, and the trials she had on the way. Instagram Stories such as this make it super easy to relate with a brandname.

lululemon instagram stories

2. Make the most of Instagram Stories features to connect to your audience

Instagram Stories give marketers a number of methods to facilitate easy interaction with users.

With features like geographical location tagging, hashtags, polls, gifs, stickers, and much more, growing your following and facilitating brand engagement is easy. You just require a little creativity.

Features like hashtags and geotagging ensure it is possible for users to get you predicated on location and interest.

If you’re an area business, geotagging is essential with regards to your interaction on Instagram Stories.

Each time you enter a city, Instagram aggregates Stories that other users have geotagged in where you are.

This is an excellent opportunity for smaller businesses and city tourism brands because they can utilize geotagging showing Instagram users exciting things occurring around them.

Carrigan Farms, that is in the tiny town of Mooresville, NEW YORK, takes benefit of geotagging showing users in your community the fun activities visitors may take part in at the farm.

With an enormous water quarry on the house, Carrigan Farms visitors can jump from cliffs in to the deep, clean water.

Capturing and sharing videos of the activities on the farm’s Story with geotagging brings awareness to others in your community of the fun they might have on the farm.

mooresville instagram stories

Hashtags ensure it is possible for users to get your content predicated on topic.

Many brands or celebrities could have a hashtag they use across social media in order that anyone searching for content concerning the brand or person can simply think it is.

For instance, Justin Timberlake just lately canceled turns up north because of the massive snow storms.

In addition to his publicity team notifying showgoers of the cancellation via email and his website, he posted to his Instagram Story.

Using hashtag #MOTWTOUR, he added another solution to notify his fans who’ve been following together with his tour on social media concerning the cancellation.

justin timberlake instgram story

Items like gifs and stickers enable brands to increase images and videos they share on Instagram Stories.

Lake Norman Surf Co., that is on Lake Norman in NEW YORK, offers wakesurfing lessons. The brand regularly uses stickers and gifs to show their light attitude.

Just recently, Lake Norman Surf Co. shared a video of the lake water and used a sticker showing the temperature. They did this to remind their followers that wakesurfing season is coming.

lake norman instagram story

The poll feature, which Instagram recently rolled out, is really a creative solution to create easy interactions with followers.

As a marketer, you always want feedback from our prospects and customers.

Polls on Instagram Stories give a way to get that feedback from fans while making your audience feel just like your brand is empowering them.

Companies can utilize polls to ask fans anything!

Ask about their opinions on services, how often they’d prefer to receive brand emails, a common forms of sales, what type of content they’d prefer to see from your own brand on social media, and so forth.

Perhaps you’re a clothing company, and you’re wondering if your fans will be ready to see summer transitional pieces or if they’re still searching for winter/spring clothing. If so, work with a poll.

Or maybe you’re a patio adventure gear company, and you’re wondering if your fans would rather see behind-the-scenes stories from product shoots of should they would rather just start to see the services.

Ask them in a poll.

For instance, HomeGoods and Kurgo will most likely show items within their shops and have followers which color they prefer.

kurgo red or black instagram

This can be an interactive solution to get followers thinking about new product rollouts. They could come in and buy the colour of that they chose from the poll.

homegoods tan cream instagram

Some sports teams and leagues will use polls that ask fans who they think will win the big game.

nba tip off instagram

These are fun ways for followers to activate with a brandname and feel important.

3. Host Instagram takeovers with Instagram influencers

Adding Instagram influencers to your social media marketing strategy can be an invaluable solution to both boost your follower base and drive sales.

You can classify Instagram influencers in the micro (1,000 to 100,000 followers) level or the macro (100,000+ followers) level.

forms of influencers

There are many forms of influencers. You could find celebrities, TV stars, bloggers, and even animals!

dogs of instagram

There are two techniques an Instagram Takeover could work: An influencer may take over your take into account each day, or your brand may take over their take into account your day.

Leading up to takeover, both influencer and the brand regularly remind followers when it’ll be occurring.

This builds the hype and reminds users where you can listen in. Here’s a good example from Kurgo.

kurgo stories instagram

Another dog brand that regularly hosts Instagram Takeovers is BarkBox.

The popular dog box subscription brand allows major dog accounts on Instagram to dominate the take into account your day.

During the takeover, you obtain a hilarious inside look at each day in the life span of this pup.

mazie instagram takeover

Throughout your day, they add plugs for BarkBox products from the BarkShop that users can buy, plus they typically provide a coupon for followers a subscription with a free of charge starter box.

4. Boost your to generate leads and sales with the addition of links

At the finish of your day, we’re digital marketers. If our efforts aren’t generating leads and sales, we’re not impacting the company’s important thing.

So just how do most of these visual storytelling and humanizing tactics impact to generate leads and sales conversion?

Well, storytelling boosts conversions by 30% by using it to answer customer questions.

If you’re not telling good stories, you have to can get on board. As much as 78% of enterprise marketers think that their team is quite or very efficient with regards to storytelling.

brand storytelling effectiveness

With the brand new “Swipe Up” link feature on Stories, Instagram has revolutionized just how brands can convert users through social media.

The “Swipe Up” feature allows brands to include links to pictures and videos they share on Instagram Stories.

This helps it be easy to move a prospect through the sales funnel directly from Instagram. All a user must do is swipe up making use of their finger.

swipe up instagram

Here are 3 ways to create leads and sales by using this feature.

1. Share your online content to create leads and sales.

By now, it’s old news that content is king.

And generating remarkable content is essential for SEO, to generate leads, lead nurturing, customer retention, and substantially more.

Instagram gives marketers another smart way to obtain their content before new prospects, existing leads, and customers. How?

Brands can share another photo or video with Instagram Stories and connect to any little bit of content – a blog, a full page on the webpage, a YouTube video, an e-book, and much more!

instagram see more on our blog

This lets a brandname bring users back again to their website to connect to the business on a deeper level. Also it works.

During March of 2017, over 120 million Instagram users visited an internet site, got directions, or contacted a small business to find out more about them from Instagram. That’s lots of interaction with businesses in a single month!

Explore Canada does a fantastic job of using links in Instagram Stories to operate a vehicle users to its blogs.

The tourism company partners with many country-wide travel groups and implements links on Instagram Stories to talk about travel guides.

The example below uses links in Stories to create users to a post that offers strategies for traveling to the fantastic White North. By the end of your blog, they provide the reader a chance to get in touch with a travel agent, thus securing the lead.

explore canada instagram story

These forms of tactics are excellent so you can get users to activate together with your website and convert to a lead.

You may also use Stories to market an instantaneous sale from Instagram.

In fact, at the very least 30% of Instagram users have purchased a product they first discovered on Instagram.

Why is that?

Because 62% of consumers use social media when deciding whether they want to buy a service or product.

This is practical since photos influence purchase decisions a lot more than videos do.

influence purchase decisions

One of the very most valuable features that Instagram Stories gives marketers may be the ability to add a link that brings users right to the purchase page of something.

This feature eliminates the necessity to go to a company’s website, discover the item you saw on Instagram, and create a purchase.

Instead, it facilitates the impulse buy. It puts the merchandise right before a user with the swipe of a finger.

Pottery Barn regularly uses Instagram Stories to operate a vehicle users to its products.

In this example, Pottery Barn uses Stories showing beautiful pictures of services from the collection with Jamie Durie, HGTV’s beloved Australian landscape artist.

After enticing users with several behind-the-scenes pictures of the collection, they invite users to ‘See More’ by clicking the hyperlink to browse products.

pottery barn instagram

Target also uses Instagram Stories to market impulse buys.

Across the brand’s two platforms, Target and Target Style, the business shows products that designers have staged. Followers can to swipe up and buy.

target style instagram story

2. Utilize Instagram influencer and brand ambassador endorsements.

Let’s get back to Instagram influencers. At this time, 95% of influencers report Instagram as a common social media platform to focus on.

So, so how exactly does influencer marketing on Instagram work?

In a nutshell, brands build relationships with Instagram influencers and brand ambassadors by offering them a free of charge or discounted product to market with Instagram Stories and within their feed.

They also supply the influencer a promotion code in order that their followers can shop at a discount.

It’s not too difficult to add a dollar total enlisting an Instagram influencer, too. You may use digital marketing tactics like custom URLs or give influencers tracking URLs to utilize within their Stories.

While enlisting Instagram influencers is common throughout all industries, marketers especially utilize them within the wonder, fashion, and fitness communities.

Past Bachelor and Bachelor in Paradise contestant Jen Saviano is continually promoting brands being an Instagram influencer through her stories.

Jen includes a whopping 203,000 followers on Instagram.

jensav11 instagram followers

And according to SocialBlade, that number will still only increase.

total instagram followers for jensav11

She uses her feed and stories to market a number of products that range between clothing to makeup, jewelry, vitamins, furniture, food subscription boxes, and much more.

She posts something she loves with a promotion code and a web link to look in her Instagram Story daily.

jensav11 instagram story

Fashion blogger Katy Harrell is another example. With 187,000 followers, she actually is constantly modeling for clothing boutiques, offering clothing reviews, sale updates, and online codes.

Boutiques nationwide use mumuandmacaroons to possess her share updates on her behalf Instagram Stories about their businesses and products.

With her Southern drawl and honest reviews, it works.

fashion blogger instagram

Plus, instead of searching for Instagram influencers to market products and sing praises, some brands hold casting demands brand ambassadors.

MVMT, the favorite jewelry watching brand, recently held a casting demand brand ambassadors.

In addition to reviewing a candidate’s Instagram’s influence, the business essentially comes with an application and interview process.

mvmt ambassadors wanted instagram

Since most Instagram influencers depend on companies with them to cultivate their individual brands, they’re always searching for businesses to utilize.

3. Implement ads on Instagram Stories.

As the amount of users on Instagram is growing, so does the amount of ads on the platform. In 2017, the amount of ads grew by 28% in only six months.

amount of instagram #ad posts worldwide

In per year, the amount of ad posts doubled. And it’s clear to see why:

They work.

Instagram uses Facebook’s advertising system, which includes unparalleled targeting ability.

You can target ads predicated on an audience’s interests, behaviors, demographics, language, location, and much more.

And since Instagram and Facebook share exactly the same ad platform, brands can choose if they want their ad to perform on Instagram Stories, in the Instagram feed, or on Facebook.

When ads operate on Stories, users often don’t even recognize that they’re seeing them. The ads flow smoothly because the user transitions in one story to another.

La Mer, a high-end skincare line uses Instagram ads to attain users of a particular age who’ve shown fascination with similar brands.

The brand runs on the short film expressing the kind of woman who uses La Mer.

The ad carries a link in the bottom which allows viewers to swipe up and shop your skin care line.

lamer instagram story

4. To implement Instagram Stories well, anticipate to react to direct messages.

In order to implement Instagram Stories to create your brand and convert more leads and sales, companies need to be prepared to react to an elevated influx of direct messages (or DMs).

A direct message is really a message a user privately sends to your organization account on Instagram.

At underneath of every Instagram Story that does not add a link, users will dsicover a note bar. This tool enables a viewer to easily DM the brand.

dm send to instagram

While that is feature is a wonderful solution to narrow the gap between brands and followers on Instagram, it could be detrimental to a brandname should they aren’t diligent about responding.

Everything on Instagram reaches the touch of a finger for users. It’s possible for them to obtain this content and information they crave with this social platform.

So, in case a brand isn’t quick to react to a DM, an individual who sent it’ll go elsewhere to get the answer.

That’s why it’s very important to marketers to understand their customer response times on Instagram.

As you begin actively using Instagram Stories, you should put a technique set up for giving an answer to direct messages from followers.


Understanding how Instagram Stories works and the huge benefits marketers can gain as a result is half the battle. Now, everything you do with the info is what counts.

With its unique visual storytelling ability and strong conversion methods, marketers in virtually any industry and any consumer base may use Instagram Stories.

It’s a weapon you must have in your social media arsenal.

Take benefit of the simple engaging with fans through the use of Instagram Stories to create your brand.

Show why is your brand fun and relatable. Implement the features within Stories to easily build relationships your audience and help people find your brand on the platform.

Build relationships with Instagram influencers to expand your brand and gain the stamp of approval from the trusted source on the platform.

Then, grow your leads and sales utilizing the link feature.

Put your online content and products at the fingertips of one’s prospects and buyers on Instagram Stories.

Utilize relationships with brand ambassadors and Instagram influencers to possess them promote your services and products and encourage fans to look.

Test the waters within Instagram Ads to find the ROI of putting a few of your marketing budget toward Stories.

Don’t forget to possess quality response times as your brand’s Instagram becomes a normal gateway for consumer conversation.

And as you go forth building out your social strategy on Instagram Stories, remember that no marketing action will probably be worth taking in the event that you can’t gauge the results.

Be sure to work with tracking URLs, custom online codes, and lead/customer sourcing to find out how your usage of Instagram Stories is impacting your current online marketing strategy and goals.

How do you want to use Instagram Stories to cultivate your brand and boost your leads and sales?

About the writer: Neil Patel may be the cofounder of Neil Patel Digital.

David Linder

David Linder

MSc in Marketing from the University of Salford. Facebook Certified Planning Professional Facebook Certified Buying Professional

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