Since Instagram launched Instagram Stories in 2016 to complete its offer and compete against Snapchat, the stories format has become a BIG thing. In 2019, 500 million people used Instagram stories every day. This represents half of the platform’s users! There is no doubt: the stories format is now a Social Media essential, alongside posts on the feed and dark posts to promote special offers and new products.
WHY USERS ARE INTO STORY
By its nature, a story is live only for 24 hours. This ephemeral aspect, as well as its user-friendly full screen format, make users more keen to watch a bunch of stories in a row. While users are watching the stories the platform offers to them, they will see content posted by both people and businesses they follow. What is it they love most? In general, a story looks more authentic and is more interactive (thanks to some features such as pool, quiz, react to story, DM the user) than a post on the feed. Therefore, a story has more chance to bond with the audience by inviting people behind the scenes.
WHY YOU WILL SEE EVEN MORE STORIES ON INSTAGRAM AND BEYOND
Instagram’s successful format has inspired Facebook! It’s now possible to share stories on Messenger and Facebook as well as on WhatsApp - under the name of WhatsApp Status. The concept of story is the same on each of these platforms despite the features can change from one to the other: there is the animation option on Facebook’s story whereas the option to crop and change the picture format exists on WhatsApp and Messenger.
MESSENGER FACEBOOK WHATS APP INSTAGRAM
On the other hand, as brands have noticed the success of the Instagram stories, they are more likely to launch ads campaigns within the story format! Indeed, 62% of people say they have become more interested in a brand or product after seeing it in Stories.
AN ESSENTIAL TO YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY
Creating impactful stories is now a challenge for a lot of companies as 1/3 of the most viewed stories are from businesses. To keep the audience engaged, Instagram is regularly adding new features to the platform (the last were introduced during the Covid-19 epidemic to support small businesses). Meanwhile, we saw a lot of apps appearing and flourishing, with a freemium access that enables (almost) everybody to create nice stories.
THE 3 BEST APPS TO BRING YOUR STORIES TO THE NEXT LEVEL
Companies that need to produce stories quickly and may not have a designer could rely on apps such as:
Nichi: a great app to recreate the manual collage looking thanks to a wide range of stickers, filters, fonts and backgrounds.
Mojo: a nice app to animate your picture and turn them into videos thanks to a bunch of classic and trendy templates
Unfold: create a story thanks to templates which are available in several layouts (depending on the number of pictures to share). We particularly like the fonts provided.
FEW TRICKS TO GET THE MOST OF INSTAGRAM FEATURES
Apart from using apps to manage your time while, look into Instagram own features and see how you can hack some of them to make outstanding stories in no time. Here are 3 ideas for you…
1. Without using an app, you can create your own collage. To do so, copy a picture from your camera roll and paste it (as you would paste text) on the picture or video you previously selected on the Instagram app. Warning: if a filter is applied on the story, it will not apply on the picture pasted!
2. Play with the font options! For example, you can type dots with a half-transparent color background and zoom on it to create a color shape. Hide or keep the dots (for a cinema effect for example). You can also create lines by using a lot of underscores.
3. Have fun! Draw the shape of the objects, play with colours, the fonts or even your own writing to create a story that will stand out from the others.
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