Use Instagram Stories to Sell

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Instagram Stories are different than Posts. Posts are the square photos in your grid. Ideally, your grid should be cohesive, using similar filters, colors, etc. Stories are the circles displayed at the top of the home screen. Stories don’t need to be as “perfect” as posts. When a user taps a circle, the Story expands to full screen (meaning nothing else in on the screen) which gives you a captive audience.

  1. Grid Posts

2. Stories

3. Fullscreen

Stories disappear after 24 hours, so viewers know Stories are timely and recent. More people see Stories than Posts. 500,000+ million read Instagram Stories every day – that’s a LOT of opportunities to start a conversation!

The key to using Stories to sell on Instagram is to be authentic and jump in with both feet. Don’t overthink it. Just do it! Here’s how:

  1. Craft a Story Using Multiple Slides – Use three to five individual images/slides for each Story. Each image/slide should include one “step” or piece of the puzzle. When combined, the series should tell the entire Story.
    Examples:

1.

2.

3.

  1. Add Interactive Elements – Engage your audience by using GIFs, mentions, questions, countdowns, and polls. You can also add a “hold down” sticker (add text or a GIF to your image) to remind viewers that touching the screen will pause the Story giving them time to read everything.
    Examples:

PRO TIP: Use Instagram stickers! Instagram stickers are graphic design elements you can add to your images and videos. They can help you boost engagement, market your brand, and spotlight products in a way that doesn’t feel too promotional.

Find stickers by tapping to create a new Story. Once you add a photo or a video, select the sticker icon at the top of your screen.

Another way to find stickers is by swiping up after taking your photo or video.

Once you’ve added a sticker to your image, drag to reposition or pinch and zoom to resize!

  1. Move the Conversation to DM – Add a “DM ME” sticker from the Instagram app to your images. This encourages viewers to start the conversation because it makes it easy for them to send you a message. All they have to do is tap the sticker! It’s simple to ask a question about a product, hosting a party, or becoming a Consultant. You can also ask a question in your story and incentivize viewers to reply with their answer via DM.
    • Example:
  1. Use Hashtags – Although you can use up to 10 hashtags per Story, recent studies show three to five are most effective. You can use the same hashtags repeatedly. Make sure they relate to your Story and reflect your brand.
    • Use the Instagram hashtag sticker for your main hashtag. Once you add it to your image or video, simply tap it then type over the word “hashtag” to customize.
    • Use text to create additional hashtags. Select the text icon Aa at the top of your screen. Type in your hashtag, then drag to reposition or pinch and zoom to resize!
      Example:

      PRO TIP: Check out Captions that Convert for additional hashtag training and ideas.

  1. Clever Calls to Action – Calls to action (CTAs) encourage viewers to take action, such as, buy a product, book a party, or reply to your Story via DM.
    • Give viewers a timely reason to shop with you.
      Examples:
      • “Act fast! Available to the first 10 customers.”
      • “Today only! DM me for coupon code.”
      • “24 Hour Online Sale! Noon ET May 8 – Noon ET May 9.”
    • Add stickers to your Story to make it easy to connect with or purchase from you right away.
      Examples:
    • Don’t try to book, sell, or share in EVERY Story. Include Stories that educate, entertain, and add value into your rotation.
      • Educate – Share sexual wellness or personal development information.
      • Entertain – Share something silly that happened to you that day, a great joke, or meme.
      • Add value – Share a seasonal recipe, book recommendation, or life hack.

End these types of Stories with a question or poll. Use a “DM ME” call to action to encourage viewers to reply and start a conversation.