5 Reasons Why Instagram Stories Are Vital To Your Marketing Strategy

Remember that horrific photo of you dressed as a woman, next to your flatmate painted as a strawberry, at that Birthday party where everyone had to arrive as something beginning with “S” and your bright idea was to dress as the birthday girl? The one you want to forget about and have nobody see?

Ok, maybe you don’t, but I do, and so do the thousands of people who have access to my Facebook profile and online photographs…For years now, we have been plagued by the drone of “what goes online, stays online” and will be available for everyone to see, for all eternity.

Such downfalls of the web have led to greater privacy controls, allowing us to hide images, posts and videos from plain sight. Or, even better, control who sees the posts with smart little features allowing only your close friends to view content, not Paul from the office who is bound to have a good old giggle on Monday morning. However, in recent years, this has all changed, with the introduction of Snapchat, Instagram Stories and Facebook Stories, your online content no longer has to follow you forever!

Launched in 2016, Instagram Stories allows users to post a photo and video content up to 15 seconds long that disappears after 24 hours. The feature now has over 300 million daily active users, that’s 60% of Instagram’s daily active users generating or consuming Stories, statistics that just cannot be ignored. Additionally, it has been reported that Instagram’s algorithms also take a Stories engagement into account when considering what content to deliver to people in their feeds, placing you higher in the rankings the more people watch. Last but not least, Instagram has a solid platform to measure the dreaded ROI, you can easily check metrics surrounding impressions, views, replies and click through’s to your website.

Here are our five reasons why you have to implement Instagram Stories within your overall marketing strategy:

1) Instigates Exclusivity

Ever had fear-of-missing-out (FOMO)? Millennials have it all the time, generally not wanting to miss out on experiences. However, this particular demographic does not relate to traditional marketing tactics. Instagram Stories develops an exclusivity in which your followers had to be there, once it has gone, it’s gone forever. Playing on the trends that Millennials prefer experiences over things, the audience has become loyal advocates of brand Stories and regularly engage with them multiple times a day.

2) Features

Stories have some amazing features for you to increase your business’s exposure. Stickers allow you to insert searchable hashtags and locations into the content. Additionally, you can integrate swipe-up links to web pages after you have 10K+ followers to drive direct traffic to the specific content mentioned in the post.

3) Content Shock

Content that disappears can give a business the opportunity to introduce a visual extension of a wider campaign. This approach can generate excitement and engagement around a new product or service through short, visual snippets. Furthermore, unlike traditional feeds where you come across the same, regurgitated viral video over and over again, Stories keeps things fresh and up to date for your audience, generating further trust and engagement.

4) Authenticity

Authenticity is a major factor in marketing. Content that is authentic resonates with your audience. Generic content just won’t cut it; you need to utilise behind-the-scenes footage, backstage passes, exclusive content and tailor-made solutions to connect with your audience. After-all the ability for consumers to share their lives without it affecting the overall social media aesthetic is the reason Stories have become so popular in the first place.

5) Passive Activity

Watching stories requires the user to be engaged in the content. Often consumed on the train or while waiting in line, customers are guaranteed to watch your video or view your photo nearly anywhere, as long as your content is engaging and authentic. This keeps your brand at the top of the mind and ahead of the competition.

HotShot have been developing some stories for leading brands and businesses throughout the UK and Spain. Our animation and product integration give life to your Stories, keeps customers engaged and drives greater conversion. I have included some examples of our latest work below for Aces Couture/ASOS, Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum and Do Not Sleep.

To find out how we can help you develop your Instagram strategy and content, click here.

For authenticity reference, and as it’s already out there, here is the damned, dreary-eyed photo that is currently etched into “the internet of things” …I think Stories are my new favourite friend.

joshua