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How to Use Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories — a Snapchat-like feature that lets you post photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours — has become one of the most popular and powerful ways to communicate with followers on Instagram. Stories appear on the bar at the top of your feed, so they’re the first thing people see before they start scrolling.

While your Instagram feed is for perfectly polished material, Stories provides a more authentic, candid look into you and your business.

Use it to post behind-the-scenes content, make big announcements, and interact with your followers in real time. With Stories you can:

  • Create polls and questions to gather feedback and get to know your audience

  • Use stickers and GIFs to make your content more fun and exciting

  • Engage with followers and influencers through mentions and reposts

  • Use the Swipe Up feature to link to your website and boost traffic (once you have over 10,000 followers or you’re a verified user)

  • Create Live Stories (videos in real time) to generate excitement and interest. (Bonus: Live Stories will show up first in your followers’ story feed and will also notify them via push notification when you go live.)

  • Repurpose your blog or newsletter content into mini content bytes (think listicles and tutorials)

However you decide to use Stories, remember to have fun and be creative! They’re a great way to generate interest and take advantage of the one-to-one communication that social media offers.

Pro tip: Although Stories expire after 24 hours, Instagram allows you to archive them, which is a good practice to implement so you always know what content was published and when.

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