Telling the STORY of your Brand…with STORIES.

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The STORY of your Brand…it’s GROWING.

Snapchat is still a direct-connection to teens for senior photographers, but IG Stories is creating some amazing ways for us to connect with their parents! (Oh…and teens. Because let’s face it, they’re lurking over on IG Stories.)

A new move by Instagram could accelerate the growth of the STORIES audience soon!

The feed for stories over on IG is already driven by the algorithm. Well, watch Stories explode because Instagram believes that its users will like the fact that “suggested Stories to watch” will soon be headed over to the Explore section!

Instagram stats: 100 million people visit the Explore tab daily which his 20% of its 500 million monthly active users and 1/3 of it’s daily users. Mind…BLOWN.

So now, not only can our profiles be “found” on Explore…our Stories can too.

AND… DID YOU KNOW? You now can click directly over to a profile within stories by clicking on the name or photo of the user IN the story! So…now you can direct your viewers to your profile where you can further direct them to a call to action via your LINK. Bam.

Even the biggest stars in the world have to give their Snapchat names because they aren’t easily searchable. Not so with Instagram.

One of the big differences between IG and Snapchat is that IG provides a public, viewable profile for our main content. This supplemental information can be key in marketing your stories to your audience!

My prediction is that IG Stories will continue to evolve into an amazing marketing tool for our brands.

If you’re already using Snapchat, Instagram is an easy transition. Many of us have been using it in the past weeks since it’s release. But if you aren’t on Snapchat, Instagram Stories can fill in that blank for your brand. (However, side note: as of the writing of this post, I still maintain, even 2 years later, that Snapchat is my best marketing tool for connecting directly with teens).

Ready to step it up on IG Stories? Here are some marketing tips for your brand:

1/ CONNECT THE STORY: You can create an IG Story that now feeds back to your IG profile and connects like a REAL story! Think: behind the scenes on stories…SNEAK PEEK on your feed…all within 24 hours. BAM. Simply direct your audience over to your profile by “pointing” to your photo on the story as a clickable link!

2/ CROSS PROMOTE: Use your profile feed to cross-promote back to your story—much like you would your Snapchat channel! Remember, parents are on Instagram and it’s an opportunity to share more about your brand with them via Stories…simply tell them to click your “picture” in your profile to view the current Story.

3/ THE 80-20 RULE: As with most social media platforms, remember the 80/20 rule: share content that is valuable, interesting, entertaining about 80% of the time and promo content for your brand about 20% of the time

4/ BE RELATIVE: Be relative to your audience, understanding that with the overload of information out there, everyone has a shorter attention span and only consume brands online that interest them. So…BE interesting to your audience.

5/ THE 3 “E’s”: Remember the 3 “E’s” and try to include at least 2 of them in your stories: education, entertainment, energy. Why? It’s what keeps engagement.

6/ BE HUMAN: Humanizing your brand is very important on this app due to the casual “real-time” nature of it; let your personality shine