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7 New Features and 4 Best Ways to Better Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories

Would you be able to believe that Instagram Stories has outpaced Snapchat? No… Right? But that’s the truth. It actually took 6 years for Snapchat to reach 150 million daily active users which Instagram Stories managed in just first 6 months of its launch. Unbelievable!

Instagram Stories is only 1.5 years old and it has already acquired 300 million daily active users. Wondering, what makes Instagram so popular amongst the users, especially amidst the millennials? On top of it, businesses have also entered Instagram dynasty to increase the user base and improve their social network. In the year 2017, over 50% of the businesses published stupendous stories on Instagram.

Whoooo doesn’t like Stories? In fact, marketing today is all about storytelling. Stitching of images in one frame and presenting it in front of users is one of the best tricks top digital marketing companies are using to engage millions of users and get connected.

It’s not easy to represent creative and innovative ideas on the table and shape it to attract users. But when you are doing marketing activities on Instagram you are open to ample of enthralling features which gives a complete makeover to your idea making it more appealing and attractive- the way users like to see.

New Instagram Features Introduced to Enhance Instagram Stories

Hands-Free Recording: Do you want to speak about your product? Or want to show some handy DIY tips or tricks? Simply press the hands-free recording button of your Instagram Stories camera and create one interesting video to amaze users. 70% of the Instagram users like to watch Stories with the sounds on. Henceforth, stories alone don’t add a value. It is a combination of innovative ideas and a background score that makes it more intriguing for users.

Stickers: Like stickers? Whenever you create any video or images to post it on Instagram, you can add any of these stickers to give it a wondrous look. It provides you breathtaking options for stickers and you would feel to use them all.

But alas! You can pick only a couple of them to make your post awe-inspiring for your users. The options include hashtag, date, time, crazy stickers like yasss, location, and a wide range of emojis stickers. Out of these location and hashtag stickers are used often in business marketing. It is because on clicking the location sticker a dialogue box pops up that enables you to pick the location for your post.

Similarly, on clicking the hashtag sticker, viewers are redirected to the page with a similar post. This is a great idea to develop a prominent brand identity and help it stand out from the crowd.

Customized Markers: If you are good at drawing, here’s the chance to paint your creative ideas with beautiful markers. You will find various shades and marker sizes to add feathers to your designing skills. Record a video or choose an image from the gallery, adjust the width of the marker using the resizer that appears at the bottom left corner.

Once you are done with that, pick the colour shade of your choice. Instagram shows 9 primary colours initially. But you can access the hidden wide range of colours by long pressing any of the colour to make the colour map appear at the bottom of the screen. Simply drag and drop the colour and make your story as creative as it can be.

Solid Background Colour: Marker and solid background colour, a perfect combination to enhance your Instagram story. Pick any image from your gallery or click a pic, push it to the Instagram Story, select the marker icon to make the colour bar visible vertically at the bottom, click on the immediate icon of the marker and long press the image until the selected colour fills the entire screen.

To get more shades of same colour, long press that colour and the colour bar pops up. Pick a shade and colour your story.

Eraser Brush: This is a new feature introduced on Instagram that can be accessed after using the solid colour. Once you paint the background with your favourite colour, use this tool to give your story a unique look. Try using this feature with a designed image, not with a plain image.

Text: To complement your stories, add text. Text plays a vital role in making your story appealing and influencing. Therefore, first thing first is the text size. Pinch and zoom, the way you want and write funny, interesting and amazing lines that describe your story. You can also use the symbol @mention to tag a particular person or a group or a company. This symbol is effective as on clicking it redirects you to the respective profile page. Such activities work well when companies appreciate their customers and write a thank you note tagging them.

Add Link to Your Story: You may be thinking does it makes sense to add links to your story? Why not! This strategy may not be beneficial for users connecting with their friends but definitely, it is fruitful for distinct business verticals.

In fact, would say, it is one of the powerful strategies for various companies to drive traffic to their site. Most of the companies have a blog section wherein we get interesting stuff to read. With the introduction to this feature, Instagram allows you to share your blog or any relevant link along with an image or a video. Simply click the chain icon at the top right corner of the camera and place the link you want to share. And, it’s done. You can play your story and click on the link to see where it takes you.

This brings an end to the most exciting features of Instagram Stories. Keep reading to know the effectual tactics to make your story captivating and intriguing;

Post Images with Links: If you want to boost the engagement rate of your business, this is quite an interesting tactic to employ. There are a good number of famous brands which used link feature to boost the traffic of their store. For instance; Missguided – the popular fashion brand in U.K. The store added its collection in the story along with the link and offered a wow shopping experience to its users. Doing so, it redirected users to the page where it shelved the trendy collection of the season.

Create Captivating Content: That’s said, marketing is incomplete without a proper content strategy. There are big brands which hire top content marketing companies to create unique strategies to skyrocket the engagement rate and garner more impressions. One such brand known as Meon partnered with Olapic- a visual content platform to create motion content for Instagram Stories. This exclusive content marketing platform backed Meon with personalized animations and branded designs resulting in an increase of 45 percent in getting more impressions.

Run Poll Contest Using Poll Stickers: Running contests for fun is a traditional yet an ongoing trend to reach out to a group of like-minded people. When you use Poll Sticker, a dialogue box pops up stating “Ask a question” with Yes and No CTAs. You can ask a relevant question, modify the text of CTAs and know the opinion of potential users.

For instance; soon after the launch of Poll sticker, Taco Bell- an American chain of fast food restaurants invited millions of users to celebrate National Tacos Day by running a simple poll contest “how do they like tacos”. And, the engagement they got from that particular post was impressive.

Go Live and Shout Out Loud: Like Facebook, Instagram too went a step forward and gave users a freedom to do Live Streaming and invite their buddies to join them in real-time. This feature is a bit different from Facebook as in the invitees have to click on the request button to let the event creator accept or deny the request.

Also, the event creator can check out the pending requests in real-time. This can be a potent strategy for brands to keep their old users engaged with the current activities and inform them about their new business activities. Furthermore, the invite option lets brands know who is really interested in doing business or buy their services.

Wrapping Up

Surprising! Instagram Stories has become enormously popular midst social media evangelists.

In the initial days, Instagram was a small platform where millennials used to share images and tag their buddies for fun and enjoyment. There was no inkling that Instagram would uplift business social media activities and help you grow your brand identity.

Jack Dorsey, an American businessman has said it right, “The interesting products out on the Internet today are not building new technologies. They’re combining technologies. Instagram, for instance: Photos plus geolocation plus filters.” This is what Instagram is up to which has made it the biggest social media platform ever.

Hope you enjoyed reading the blog! Which tactics did you use to make your Instagram stories better? Do share it with us in the comment section below.

Related Post:

How to Download Instagram Stories

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Kim Smith

Kim Smith is a Content Consultant at GoodFirms, a full-fledged research firm. She's been journeying through the world of content marketing for more than 4 years. Her experience spans in areas like mobile apps, start-ups, and social media.

Latest posts by Kim Smith (see all)


Leave a comment
  • You said it Kim, in the beginning, it was just a small platform to share your night-out photos and such, but now it’s grown into a massive platform, and if one knows how to utilize that – it can prove to be an amazing ally! Like Gary V said “It took thirty-eight years before 50 million people gained access to radios. It took television thirteen years to earn an audience that size. It took Instagram a year and a half.”

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