Updated: Apr 10
There's certainly a lot that goes into monetizing on Instagram, however, there is one specific feature that we feel we have just have to emphasize and that is the magic of Instagram stories.
Instagram stories are easily one of the most undervalued feature on the app that, from our own personal experience, can drive major results.
Your Instagram feed is like your 'boutique', 'mini website/portfolio' or 'business card' and strangers will come to your feed and browse around or 'window shop.'
Therefore, the content on your page ideally is optimized for a stranger to immediately know who you are, what you do and how you are going to solve their problem or fulfill their want/need.
However, Instagram stories on the other hand, are prime real estate space to continue to further grow interest in you and your business by giving a person the opportunity to get to know you better (always remember, people buy from people they trust). Plus, people genuinely enjoy getting to know the person behind the brand (or screen) and Instagram stories gives you the perfect opportunity to do so.
One piece of advice that we have heard and love is this: "think of your Instagram stories as the light on the front porch of your house. If the light is turned off, people will assume that no one is home. However, if the light is turned on then people assume someone is home." And this is exactly how you should approach your strategy when it comes to your stories and feed.
We've noticed recently that more people are spending more of their time in the stories rather than the feed. So then if we know that people are spending more time perusing through Instagram stories, then this means that you need to make sure that you have something valuable for them to peruse through.
This also means that you need to make sure that your 'light is turned on' and your stories are appearing on their feed during those few short minutes that they spend on the app.
Okay, so you now that you have a better understanding of why Instagram stories are so important for conversion, here are some tips on how to start using stories to begin converting:
People appreciate authenticity and transparency. Focus on being yourself and you'll attract the right people who you want to work with. Stories are the perfect medium that allow for just this. You can share more about you and your life, tips and educate your audience or simply show up and ask them questions and have an open discussion.
This might take some time to get comfortable doing, but just as with anything else, the more you consistently show up, the easier it becomes.
If you want tips for how to get comfortable on camera, download our free Mindful Guide to TikTok + Instagram Reels here.
Create content strictly for stories.
What we have learned is that Instagram likes to see original content. And recently there has been talk that Instagram has been thinking about removing the ability to share content from your feed onto your stories. The reason for this is because they want to see more original content being created.
Whether or not Instagram decides to do this is still up for debate, however, what we have noticed is a major increase in views, engagement and conversion ever since we began to focus on creating content strictly for stories.
In fact, we have completely changed our strategy on how we approach Instagram because of it. For instance, we began to notice that the more we showed up in stories (whether to share tips, value, or simply share a thought) the more interaction we began to see in the DM's and an overall increase in engagement throughout our feed.
Share your wins.
No matter how big or small. Share your testimonials, reviews and social proof. This will help to build your credibility and establish authority in your industry (and don't forget to upload these to your Instagram Highlights once they expire from your stories after 24hrs! - see image for an example).
Give value and educate your audience.
We know you hear this all the time but it's true, even in your stories! What we have found to be extremely effective is sharing some bits and pieces of valuable information only in our stories.
By doing this, we have found that not only does this again help to build credibility with our audience and community but this helps to build trust (and people buy from people they trust). People trust us because we do our research and we're transparent about it. We make mistakes because well... we're only human, but we correct them and we are happy to have an open conversation about it with those in our community.
For additional tips on how to get the most out of Instagram for your small business, be sure to download and check out our free guide: Instagram for Business here.
Adriana Leos Chief Creative Officer