June 27th, 2018

5 Ways Brands Are Getting Creative With Instagram Stories

Gladwell Mwangi

With more than 300 million daily users, Instagram Stories is becoming one of the go-to social media content types for brands. Stories are more relevant than ever, and the growth has propelled more users to demand content in short bursts, changing how brands are crafting their content strategies.
Here are five creative ways brands have been able to leverage Stories as part of their social strategies.

1. Announcements

Retail brands in particular have successfully leveraged Instagram Stories for product launches and sales announcements. Converse announced the roll-out of a new shoe collaboration via Stories as an extension of its Instagram feed post. The launch was colorful, exciting, and very unique, which felt like a breath of fresh air from the constant rinse and repeat strategy others have applied.

2. Contests

Who doesn’t love a good contest? While they’re becoming more and more popular for brands to use on Instagram, it’s the reveal that makes all the difference. The online retailer Chumbak has successfully utilized Stories for its monthly giveaways in one continuous fun and engaging thread–from announcing the contest prior to the launch and providing details (where winners are involved), to hosting the entire contest on Stories or via the Instagram Live feature. This strategy allows the retailer to focus all the fun activities on its Instagram Stories and use the feed solely for product features and highlights.

3. Polls and Hashtags

In October 2017, Instagram launched a feature that allows users to add interactive polls to their Stories. This feature adds a layer of fun options brands can leverage to engage with audiences and hear their thoughts on any and all topics. Airbnb used this tool to engage with its audience during November’s Travel Tuesday, letting followers test their knowledge and interact with the brand in a new way.

4. Games

Finding creative ways to keep your audience engaged isn’t easy, especially on social. Warby Parker achieved this with an interactive crossword puzzle contest—a simple, ingenious piece of content that allowed the brand to interact with its audience outside of highlighting its product offering.

5. Content Series

We’ve begun to see a trend of publishers producing episodic series specifically for their Instagram Stories. The Infatuation launched its first episodic series dubbed “Restaurant Review Ride-Along” as a way to establish an audience for its readers. Other publishers such as Bustle and GQ have also produced episodic series tailored to their audiences with a vision of supporting their overall marketing objective.

Perfect examples of digital storytelling include restaurants showing how dishes are prepared and sports teams (such as UCLA Athletics) sharing training sessions and fitness tips with their fans.

Join in on the fun and make Stories a part of your social media marketing strategy.

Tags: Best Practices, Content Marketing, Creative, Instagram, Real-Time, Strategy, Trends

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