Instagram

3 Ways to Use Instagram Stories for Your Business

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Use Links in Stories to Increase Website Traffic

As marketers, links can provide value and context to a story that can benefit you and the viewer. Fortunately, Instagram allows users to embed links to a Stories collection (if you have a business profile with over 10,000 followers). 

If you're promoting products or services, Instagram Stories is a great place to share clickable links to capitalize on the engagement. You can send your followers to a specific landing page, product page, or even a blog post. Make sure to add a call-to-action letting people know to swipe up to drive more traffic to your website.

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Use Polls in Instagram Stories

Instagram Story Polls lets you ask a question and see results from your friends and followers as they vote. The buttons "YES" and "NO" by default, can be customized to anything under 22 to create a fun way to engage with your followers. Maybe you're introducing a new summer line and want quick feedback. With Polls, you can collect insight into what your target audience wants in a product or service prior to launch. You can see your poll results by swiping up to open the viewer's list for that part of your story. And just like Stories, your poll will dissapear after 24 hours.

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Share Live Videos on Instagram Stories

Before a recent update, live videos couldn't be replayed after you were done streaming, meaning followers had to be tuned in to your broadcast to catch it. Now, you can share the replay of your video one you've finished. 

The best part of a live video? They can be as long as they want so you can say even more to get your message across without having to explain it in 10-second clips. It's a great way to give your followers a first look at special events, promotions, or any other important information. Going live alerts your followers so that engagement and interaction are as high as possible. This is a great time to answer questions and comments about your brand, product, or services from users tuning in. 

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How to Use Brand Hashtags on Instagram

The cycle continues. New year. New practices. And more hashtags! 

Instagram hashtags give you the ability to to expose your brands to large and targeted audiences. How can hashtags help your business? Well, that will depend on how you're using the hashtag and how popular your post is. 

When you attach one (or 30) to your post, it is categorized with content that is also using those hashtags. Popular hashtags like #love, #instagood, and #fashion can get you new followers, but they probably aren't the "right" ones. That's where brand hashtags come into play. This strategy is important for a business that wants to expose the message to people looking for a specific thing. 

How brands hashtags work.

Brand hashtags are tags that are specific and unique to your business or campaign. It's common for a brand hashtag to be as simple as the company name, tagline, or line of products. You can also create one for an Instagram contest you are running.

Daniel Wellington does a great job of using their brand hashtag (#DanielWellington) along with their daily (#DWPickoftheDay) tag, for a campaign to encourage users to share high-quality photos that include their line of watches and hashtag, of course. 

Using brand hashtags is also a great way to organize and choose winners for contests since they are all placed on one hashtag page. For other marketing campaigns, creating hashtags to showcase your company culture, products, and services and is a great way to drive engagement. 

Helpful tips and practices

  • Keep your brand hashtags relatively short and easy to remember
  • Don't use too many hashtags! Using too many or irrelevant hashtags can make you look desperate for engagement. You do have a max of 30 hashtags, but keep it down to around 10-12, as long as they are consistent and relevant to your brand.
  • If you want a cleaner look to your post caption, you can "hide" your hashtags by including them in your comment section underneath a few dots and line breaks. 

We hope 2017 is as great for social media as last year was. We can't wait to share the newest trends, strategies, and tools that can help your business! 

Are you using brand hashtags? Let us know what your experience was using them in marketing campaigns and contests in the comments below!