Our Guide to Instagram Stories for Business

Instagram stories have been a huge success, with an impressive 100 million daily active users within the first two months of launching. Using Instagram stories for business is a no brainer, it’s an effective way to engage with your target audience and it’s straight forward to share content.

If you’re unfamiliar with Instagram, check out our previous blog posts;Instagram Stories for Business

What are Instagram Stories?

Stories are Instagram’s extra feature that allows users and businesses to share content that will disappear after 24 hours. Users can post pictures or short videos on to their Instagram story with the option to add text overlays and drawing tools.

They feature at the very top of newsfeeds, with the newest stories at the front of the que, once a user has viewed a story it goes to the back of the que.

Do Instagram stories ring a bell? Instagram Stories operate just like Snapchat stories …

If you want to learn more about Snapchat for business, look at our blog posts, “Snapchat for Business: Everything You Need to Know”.

The Benefits of Using Instagram Stories for Business

“Why should I bother with Instagram stories if the content lasts for 24 hours?”

Actually …

  • – Instagram Stories have 300 million daily active users
  • – Posts last only for 24 hours, so test the response from content you’re not certain about?
  • – Quick and easy sharing; all you need is something interesting to share
  • – Get creative with a great selection of tools; drawing, filters, text
  • – Increase your chances of getting noticed
  • – Use hashtags to boost your reach

Hopefully in the near future businesses will be able to add links to their website or landing page through an Instagram story, but for now this feature is only available for verified accounts.

You don’t need perfect lighting, angles and camera quality for posting Instagram stories; they’re real and in the moment.

How to Use Instagram Stories for Business

Instagram Stories for Business - Example NewsfeedDemonstrations and Quick Tips

For example, you could encourage users to ask questions about the features of a new product. You could answer their questions through your Instagram stories by sharing quick demonstrations and tips get the best use out of your product.

If your business is service based, you could use Instagram stories to guide your followers through the process of a service to showcase it in a different way.

Behind the Scenes

Your followers are likely to be nosey, so they’d appreciate a quick peak behind the scenes.

If you’re setting up for an event, for example, you could share quick shots behind the curtains to excite your followers and keep them apart of the experience.

As we said earlier, Instagram stories don’t have to be completely professional and rehearsed, show the human side of your brand.

Create Excitement

If you have an upcoming product or service launch, you could count down the days to its release to create anticipation and enthusiasm.

Hype up your product or services to push sales … create an exciting vibe and let your followers look forward to the launch.

If you own a restaurant and your launching a new menu, for example, you could share quick chats of the menu to encourage your followers to book tables. Boast about your products and promote as much as you can!

Flash Deals

Offer discounts for a limited time only … Instagram Stories only last for 24 hours so you could share flash sales.

You could upload announcements on your other Social Media accounts to encourage your followers to keep an eye-out for your upcoming story. This way, you’ll be encouraging users to keep attention on your brand!

1, 2, 3 Action!Instagram Stories for Business - Live

Go live and bring your followers along for the ride. Perhaps your eager to announce some exciting news or you’re at an event your followers would hate to miss.

Alternatively, you could do a live Q&A? Encourage your followers to ask questions and you can answer them in real time. To increase your chances of good sized live audience, inform your followers beforehand that you’re going live around a certain time, so they can tune in.

Instagram Story Ads

Use Instagram Story Ads and target them by …

  • – Reach
  • – Video views
  • – Traffic conversions
  • – App installs
  • – Brand awareness

You can keep track of your ad performance with Viewing Insights. If you want more data, you can use Ads Manager and Power Editor to monitor your reach, impressions and video metrics.

Instagram Stories for Business - Example IconStart Using Instagram Stories for Business Now!

You can post an Instagram story today and it’ll be gone tomorrow, but Instagram Stories should have a permanent place in your Digital Marketing Campaigns.

Every industry is different, our best advice would be to go and experiment! Discover what works for your brand and benefits your business. If you engage your audience and give value to your Instagram stories, then you can’t go far wrong.

Why not check out our Digital Marketing Terms Glossary?

About the author: 

Marie Harwood is a Digital Marketing Assistant at Different Gravy Digital, Hale, Cheshire.

Different Gravy Digital are a full service Digital Marketing Agency operating in the Hospitality & Leisure, Financial Services, Legal & Property sectors.  Products and services range from; 3D & 360° Tours, Website Design & Build, Social Media, Video Production, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), Content Creation, Email Marketing, Online Feedback / Review Systems and Paid Advertising (Google, Bing and Social Media).

Contact Details:


0161 706 0004

120a Ashley Road, Hale, Altrincham, Cheshire, WA14 2UN