Get the Insider Story on Instagram Stories

In August of 2016, Instagram announced a new feature called “Stories”. These temporary posts have a lifespan of 24 hours, and live outside of the permanent Instagram feed. Users post stories that highlight more “as-it-happens” content instead of disrupting their perfectly curated feed.

Since then, Instagram Stories has reached 400 million daily active users, far surpassing Snapchat at 186 million daily active users.


Although Instagram Stories are similar to Snapchat, there is a definite difference from users across the two platforms. Instagram Stories typically have larger audiences, so although users post more freely, there is still an aesthetic that they try to achieve. Instagram Stories are discoverable, meaning that people can view your posts even if they don’t follow you. By tagging other handles, users or hashtags in the frame, accounts have a higher chance of non-followers seeing their content. Lastly, public Instagram Stories allow reposts. This allows users to share a post or story that they like in their own stories, and add commentary or imagery if they so choose. If your profile is private, then the odds of people who aren’t following you are zilch.

Source: @Madlydon (follow her, she’s really cool)

But how can brands best use Instagram Stories? We’ve scoured the Internet to collect tips and tricks on how to master the posts:

1. Optimal posting length is 1-7 stories.
You want to captivate your audience, but not overload them with content. Brands should consider posting tutorial, behind-the-scenes content, and shoutouts to their fans.

Source: Hootesuite

2. The best time to post IG stories is outside of work hours.
When millennials wake up in the morning, IG Story is the first thing they hit to see what’s new. At the end of the day, they catch up on updates from friends, celebrities, and meme accounts.

3. Post the best story content first.
When making an announcement about a new product or feature, it’s important to grab the attention of your audience. It’s so easy to swipe to the next story if you’re not engaged, so make sure your viewers are interested in following along.

Source: BufferApp

4. Post consistently.
Since stories are more in-the-moment content, users expect to see them more frequently. That doesn’t mean you have to post every hour on the hour, but consider how stories allow your brand to stay top-of-mind and constantly present with your audience.

5. Use strong call-to-actions.
Have a contest? Featuring a specific product? Running a poll? All of these tools are available in the story format for users who want to engage and learn more.

Instagram Stories provide a unique way for brands to build awareness and engage with their community. Here at OH Partners, we love to highlight events that our daytime roommates attend, happenings within the office, and fun shares that show our culture. To catch all of our shenanigans, make sure you’re following us at @OHAdvertising.

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