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Social media can be overwhelming. Each platform is starting to offer more to each of their applications. Sometimes those bells and whistles they keep adding on can add to your frustration. Thankfully, if you just take a moment to understand why these little additives are so important to you and your company, you can stay ahead of the times and right in front of your followers with no difficulty.
2020 has been an interesting year, to say the least. To keep you distracted from the news and the hours of scrolling we have all been doing this past week, we wanted to keep on chugging with business as (mostly) normal. We want to give you something to think about while you're working remotely from home or while you're focusing on the next step of what to do. So let's get right into it, and talk about one of our favorite social media platforms; Instagram!
Instagram can be a place of joy, frustration, confusion, and an amazing advertising tool. We've talked about the importance of staying on top of digital marketing trends and how they can truly benefit you and your company if you stay on top of them. One of the biggest trends happening on Instagram right now is the use of the story option. You can add pictures or videos to your story, and it's an interesting and unique tool that more and more companies are starting to take advantage of. Companies are posting pictures and videos of things at the moment and connecting to their followers in ways they never have before. What's exciting about them is that they give your audience and your followers a real behind the scenes look into the heart of your company. Stories give your followers a sense of humanity because they can see the people at the heartbeat of the company and product they care about so much. It's comforting and endearing. In a world drowned out by social media and that is taking away our human connection from one another, this incredible tool and trend are turning us into beings that crave this insight and are pushing us to be apart of it all. In this two-part blog post, we are going to be discussing why using Instagram stories can be very helpful to your online business, and why you should be using them in your Instagram account.
Ready, Set, Engage!
Are you still skeptical about using stories on Instagram? Does it make you a little uncomfortable to think about as an option for your social media, or you see no point in it? Well, the first huge benefit of this particular tool, is that it will give you page top-notch engagement, and allow that engagement to be consistent. Stories aren't something that lasts forever on your profile, they only stick around for 24 hours and then disappear. You can decide to keep them on your Instagram page as a Permanent Highlights if you so choose to (which, if it's great content - then we encourage you to place it into your permanent highlights. The key is to reuse content!) they'll be around as long as you want them to. You can use Instagram Stories to get your followers excited about your product and to stay in contact with you. It's a great storytelling tool, and a great way to add excitement to what's happening right now. You can build up the excitement for every story by mentioning in your Instagram profile that if you watch these videos or look at pictures, your followers might receive special deals, get exclusive looks at new products, and be the first customers to hear new information. Automatically, your followers get excited about being a part of this "in crowd" and will keep them coming back for more. They will check in on your actual profile more often to see when the next video will appear, and while they're visiting they will get to know you and your brand better. Even though not everyone will get a chance to see these Instagram stories, everyone who will see them will get excited.
No Point in Perfect
The great thing about going posting in your stories is that every video or picture you post to it never has to be perfect. They still need to follow proper business etiquette, but if the video quality isn't the best, if the lighting isn't perfect, or the weather didn't turn out that day to do an outside shoot, that's ok! These imperfect moments shows real humanity to the whole situation and in your company. You are just like your followers, posting videos and content that comes from the heart and is going with the flow of life. Do you know how refreshing that is in comparison to perfectly cut little videos that took hours and cost tons of money to make? You can find those everywhere! But where is the heart in those?
These videos and pictures can also be seen and will be seen as real-time moments and action shots. Plus, if this is fun or important information and it doesn't look quality perfect, that's also ok. It's the heart of the content that matters and what your customers, followers, and viewers will remember. The message will still be delivered without messing up the flow of your profile, too. Your Instagram profile can be kept picture perfect and on-brand with the consistent and professional flow you've built, all while still using the stories to show off your brand in a more personal style.
Algorithms of My Heart
Instagram has been seeing a lot of big changes in the last year or so. Now that Facebook owns Instagram, we are very confident that there will still be many more changes to come. One of the biggest changes we've seen is how posts are displayed and what determines the order that they are displayed in. They used to be shown in the order of when they were posted. Now, they are shown in order based on what the built-in algorithm believes you will enjoy the most. This is based on your interests, what you look at regularly on your Instagram page, and what you have created as your personal demographic. If your company doesn't fit into this algorithm, then your posts and account could go unseen for some time, or maybe not even at all. The great thing about using stories or going live in this situation is that they are posted in real-time and are posted in the order that the users post them in. Your followers will have a better opportunity to see you pop up on their feed without getting lost in the shuffle if you use Instagram stories. The more you post in your stories, and the more they're clicked on, the more often your posts will be seen in your follower's feed. This will help click you into their algorithms, and help to become a permanent part of what they see every time they open the app.
That's all for now! What do you think about Instagram stories so far? Are you already using them and this blog post made you appreciate them a little more? Are you getting excited to try out an Instagram story for the very first time? Or are you still a little confused about what it all means? Keep all of this in mind until our next blog, and please feel free to reach out and ask any questions you might about this topic. We are here to start that conversation with you. Until then, stay safe, healthy, and smart. We love you, Summerville!