Stories are set to become the primary way in which we communicate in social media. In this blog we look at the best ways of how to include Stories into your social media strategy.
Stories are now available across Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp (as Status), Snapchat, YouTube, and even Linkedin. We wrote about their rise across all platforms in Our 6 Social Media Trends for 2019 blog.
First of all, let’s take a look at their rise and some up to date statistics:
- Creation and consumption grew by almost 842% on Instagram between early 2016 and 2018, as they became a staple feature of the platform
- There are now 500 million daily users on Instagram (an increase of 100 million in the past six months). There are 150 million on Facebook, 150 million on Snapchat and 450 million on WhatsApp. LinkedIn and YouTube haven’t revealed any data as the feature is so new.
- 2 million advertisers are now buying Stories ads across Instagram and Facebook
- We will see an increasing amount of third-party integrations within Stories from the likes of Spotify, SoundCloud, Eventbrite and Netflix
Stories in Your Social Media Strategy
Including Stories in your social media strategy is simply a shift in mindset. At the moment, you’re probably plotting posts into a content calendar and then creating Stories on the go. This means your Stories will be unstructured, rough and could come across as a little random. It’s time to change that!
Stories should be planned with careful consideration. Planning creative (images and copy) and the interactive elements (question stickers, polls etc) will make your content more engaging to your audience. And therefore more memorable!
Often multiple Stories are used to communicate one message. Consider how many frames you will need to create and make sure to include that all-important call to action on the final frame (swipe up, learn more, book now etc). At Avocado Social we recommend 3-5 frames to tell a clear Story that converts.
Stories offer so many opportunities to engage with your audience that it’s time to capitalise. We recommend using at least one interactive sticker per day on Instagram and experimenting with new features such as GIFs and Music.
Use Instagram Insights to test and learn as you go. This will tell you what works well with your audience. Analytics can be found in the Insights section. It shows metrics such as how many people click on your Stories, skip forward, and follow you after seeing a Story.
Use this insight to inform your future content. For example, a high number of skips forward can be seen as a sign that your story wasn’t interesting, was too long, or wasn’t cropped properly. A high number of taps forward could also mean that the composition of your story is off. Keep trying, and test and learn!
Standard feed posts can be plotted in to support your Stories activity. You could even start to be more reactive with these by seeing which Story is most successful and then base your post on that content.
This may seem like additional work – don’t worry, we hear you! Remember that a Story doesn’t need to be absolutely polished. Users like to see rough(ish), behind-the-scenes content. In fact, The Guardian found in mid-2018 that less polished video Stories drove better completion rates than heavily produced, scripted ones. We love The Guardian’s Stories game, where they use young presenters, lo-fi sets and emojis and stickers to gamify the news.
If you have key announcements we recommend creating more styled and branded assets. Apps such as Canva and Unfold are great for designing the perfect templates for this. You can check out more of our favourite tools here, and take a look at Canva’s great ‘Stepping up your Instagram Stories with Canva’ guide too.
We’d love to see how you’re experimenting with creativity and interactivity in your Stories. Post a link to your account in our Facebook Group, or tag us on Instagram @avocadosocial and we’ll check them out!