Instagram Stories: What Should I Be Posting?

There's been a lot of chatter in the social media community about the importance of adopting Instagram Stories as a regular part of your posting routine. It's true that I have seen an increase in my engagement reflected in my feed when I frequently post to Instagram Stories, but I wanted to break down the use of the Stories and how you should be curating your content.

Stories vs. Feed – What content should I be posting to which?

Your feed should be an overall presentation of the brand you are putting out there, whatever that may be. It is the curated culmination of your creative imagery, meant to show the best of what you've got. You'll want to put the content that matters most here – things that deserve longevity. You don't have to constantly upload to your feed. Whether it's once a day or once every few days, what matters is the quality over the quantity.

Stories, on the other hand, should focus on a higher quantity of content. These don't constantly have to reflect the perfect image of your brand. They can be candid moments, things seen in passing, selfies... the updates you share can give off a more personal feeling if you want to connect more directly to your audience, or used to market new updates like blog posts or videos.

How can I take advantage of Stories?

Stories tend to get a lot more casual views than the feed nowadays. People are becoming tired of scrolling and double tapping, and like to connect more personally and in a more streamlined fashion by using Stories. By keeping your Instagram Story up to date frequently, it gives you more visibility with your audience and a greater chance to connect. That's why it's the perfect spot to create a more personal brand image with your audience and to market your brand or service.

Using Story features like Instagram Live, it allows your audience a peek behind the curtain. This way, they feel more connected to you and become more likely to engage with your content. If they're viewing your Stories often as well, there's a good chance that your new posts will also end up in the top of their feed as well.

Stories have a variety of ways to show off your fun side as well –– you can use filters, create stop motion stories, use Boomerang to make gifs –– really give your audience something new to look at and break up the monotony of still images.

These can also be used to drive traffic: if you are a business account with over 10K followers, you're able to add swipe-up links to your stories for your audience to see your latest blog post or product recommendation. If you're not in that 10K range, you can still use it to prompt others to tap the link in your bio.

Should I be using Facebook Stories as well?

It doesn't hurt to take one extra step and hit Share to Facebook Story as well when you're posting to your story. Although these are used much less than Instagram Stories, there may still be an audience from your Facebook page that you haven't been reaching on Instagram. There's no harm in taking one extra step to tap, right?

Are you using Instagram Stories to complement your feed? Why or why not?