It seems that every social media outlet is offering stories nowadays, and it’s no wonder—they are recognized as a core part of social media marketing. As something first offered by Snapchat, other websites such as Facebook and Instagram have jumped on the bandwagon due to its overall popularity. Stories were, and still are, a unique way for you to convey a message to your followers.
Simply put, stories are a way for you to share pictures and videos over social media which disappear after 24 hours. So far as real-time brand communication and engagement goes, stories are as good as it gets. As time goes by and stories become more popular, it is likely that other platforms will begin to follow suit and add story functionality.
Stories are not going to be disappearing, that’s for sure, and you need to start thinking about them as a serious medium through which you can market yourself and make more sales. You absolutely should not be ignoring stories, especially if your brand operates on the likes of Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat and if you don’t… why not?!
Using Stories for Social Media Marketing
Not sure where to get started with stories? Here’s how!
1. Use Polls on Instagram
Late last year, Instagram launched polling functionality within its stories. Although there’s lots of fun to be had between friends, they are also a valuable marketing tool for businesses who want to get simple feedback from an already engaged audience. By taking polls through Instagram, you are able to get instant feedback from your customers and followers which can help sway commercial decisions.
You could, for example, use Instagram story polls to find out which product design out of two your followers prefer, or which version of your website they like best. The possibilities are endless.
2. Let Customers Feel More Involved
Stories can be an intimate look into the “behind-the-scenes” goings on of your company. Stories are viewed by consumers as authentic and unedited content which resonates well when it is used to take them on a journey through the niceties of your company’s day-to-day activities.
When your followers can see all the hard work and dedication which goes into operating your company, they are more likely to transact with you in reciprocation for your efforts and willingness to provide an intimate look into your company. Consumers also like transparency and openness, and there’s no better way to do this than to literally take your followers into the heart of your company.
3. Add Links in Stories to Boost Traffic
Got a promotional sale on? Has a new product just landed? Have you published some awesome new content on your website? Leverage the power of Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram stories to instantly notify your followers through a highly interactive medium and then include a follow through link so that they can see what you are talking about.
When you embed links into stories which discuss a product, you are far more likely to have people purchase it because of the convenience associated with being able to easily click through in a matter of seconds.
4. Tell an Actual Story
Let’s be honest, they’re called stories for a reason… their purpose is to tell a story with them. If you are particularly creative, then this could be the ideal way for you to boost your sales through your social media stories. The core of any sales strategy and training is storytelling and when it comes to social media stories, this is the perfect place to do it.
If you manufacture and sell kayaks, for example, then consider creating a series of Instagram and Snapchat stories the next time you take to the water for personal enjoyment. Documenting your journey authentically using your own products in this manner is a great way to encourage your viewers to buy your product. Remember to include a link so they can click through, too!
Social Stores are Great for Social Media Marketing
Social media stories are taking over and all the major networks want in on them. They are a great way to instantly connect with your target market, customers and audience and convince them to transact with your company. With more people using social networks to follow their favorite brands and interact with them, if you are not using stories as part of your marketing strategy then you are going to miss out on a lot of sales!
Companies recognize this and are fast incorporating social stories into their social media marketing strategies.