Everything you need to know about Instagram Stories for your Business

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With 300 million active users, Instagram stories have fast evolved into an effective marketing channel for businesses. Almost 50% of the brands on the platform are adding stories to their handles on a regular basis and interestingly 33% of the most popular stories on Instagram are from brands. Clearly, Instagram stories are here to stay.

Here is a step -by step guide to creating killer Instagram stories.

Instagram Stories appear in a bar at the top of your feed. When you add an Instagram story, a colored ring appears around your profile photo.

To view someone’s story, you simply need to tap on their profile photo, showing you all of the content they’ve posted in the last 24hrs from oldest to newest. You can tap to go back and forward or swipe to jump to another person’s story.

How to make Instagram Stories

To create a story on Instagram, you have to tap a new “+” icon at the top left-hand corner of the screen, or you can navigate to the camera by simply swiping left. Once the camera is open you can take a photo or record a video. Instagram offers several video styles to choose from. You can experiment with these to select what works best for you:

  1. Normal
  2. Boomerang
  3. Superzoom
  4. Rewind
  5. Hand free
  6. Stop motion

If you are in no mood for recording a live video or clicking a photo, you can use pics from your camera roll for your stories. All you need to do is tap on the gallery icon above the camera on the left sidebar of your screen. If you want to select multiple photos, you can do so by clicking on the stack of photos icon on the top right-hand corner of your screen.  And voila you are ready to share your story. But hold on there are a whole lot of fun features that you must explore before sharing your story.

Make your Instagram Stories Stand Out

 1. Keep up with the latest on Instagram: Instagram keeps adding tonnes of features to the app each year. make sure you are using the trending features on the app. We will show you how to do it. Once you have clicked your photo or video or selected the photos, navigate to the next screen, here you can add filters to your pics and text or drawings.

a. Geotagging: 

Add a location to your story to increase the reach and visibility of your stories.

b. Mentions:

Type the @ symbol followed by the name of the user or account you want to tag. Mention tags work like clickable links, if a user clicks on the mention tag within your story, he will be lead directly to the Instagram account of the brand or person you have mentioned.

c. Poll:  

Want to know what users think about your products, add polls to your stories. You can use the simple A/B   Poll,  by replacing the yes or no with the content you want your audience to choose from. Emoji sliders are another fun way to create a poll, choose an emoji and type in your question.


d. Gifs 

Gifs allow you to add personality and fun into a story. You can check out the trending emojis or search for one according to your requirement.

e. Music Stickers:

Instagram released music stickers for Stories on June 28. They allow users to play their favorite songs in the background of their Story. You can select from the right music for your story by browsing through different genres, moods, or top charts. If you want to add only a particular clip of the song scroll through the song and select that portion of the song to add. Listen to a preview by tapping the play button to make sure, you have made the right selection.

2. Repost Instagram Stories mentioning your brand 

Has someone recently @ mentioned you in their story? You can repost their story to your own! You receive a direct message when you’re mentioned in a story there is also an option to repost it.  Simply tap the ‘add this to your story’ button to repost!


3. Share Instagram Posts to Your Story:

You can now share any post on your feed or someone else’s to your Instagram story.  Navigate to the post you want to share. Tap the paper airplane icon at the bottom-left of the post. The post will appear as a sticker on a customizable background which you can edit according to your preferences. Now your story is ready to be shared. When your audience clicks on the post in your story, they will be taken directly to the shared post!

Share your own posts in your Stories is a good way to cross-promote your content. You can go ahead and share posts by your followers showcasing how they are using your products. Another interesting way to use this feature is to share content from prominent influencer’s in your segment.

4. Shoppable Tags

Instagram finally brought shoppable tags to Stories in June this year. Shoppable tags in Instagram Stories are a basically a sticker that appears with a shopping bag icon next to it. Users can then tap on the sticker to see details about the product and even buy it from within Instagram.

5. Add Links

If your Instagram account has more than 10,000 followers, you can add Link to your stories to lead your audience directly to your website, latest blog post or a specific product.

6. Add Story Highlights

An Instagram Story expires after 24 hours, however, you can use Story highlights to pinned your most popular content to your Instagram profile indefinitely. You must keep your story live for a full 24 hours to add it to highlights. If you delete your story before the 24 hours, those sections of your Instagram highlights will also be deleted.

Highlights can be used to showcase your most important information, product categories, updates or offers

Tap on a live story to open it. Navigate to the pic you want to save to highlights. Tap on the dots that appear at the bottom right-hand corner of the image, select add to highlights. The picture will automatically appear on your profile. Give a name to your highlight.

You can even create a highlight from the archive section of your stories∙  Click on the clock icon at the top right hand of your Instagram page to go to your archives.  Select create Highlight after tapping on the menu in the top right-hand corner. Select the pictures you want to add to your highlight. Once you are done you will be prompted to name your highlight and edit its cover.  Your story highlight will play in the order that the stories were uploaded.

You can create stories cover and them to your highlights to create your own signature identity.


After all the hard work, it’s time to see whether your efforts are bearing fruit. Navigate to the insight section of the app click on content and scroll down to see the numbers. Check what is working and build your future strategy from there.