The Greatest Instagram Story Ideas: The Ultimate Guide

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The Greatest Instagram Story Ideas: The Ultimate Guide


Instagram stories are one of the most powerful tools  to reach your audience, engage them, and bring new users to your page.

Instagram stories are used by 500 million users every day. Almost anyone who gets a spare minute opens Instagram and starts swiping stories. In this pandemic, many people staying and working from home, spend more time swiping Instagram stories than ever. So, the more stories you post, the more they will see your profile. The more they see your profile, the higher your profile will appear in their story queue. So,  this is your chance to appear in front of your audience more often and make your profile picture the first in their Instagram story queue.

To get more views on your stories you need to understand what makes your audience watch and stay on your stories.

One way to do it is to make them view every story you post. It means you should post only interesting and engaging stories your audience will love and interact with every day.

So, here are some Instagram story ideas you can grab and implement to increase your story views.

Put Gamification in your Stories

Find 3 differences

This kind of story makes people swipe right and back a lot to find all differences. Then you let them interact with your story making them tell you about what they have found.

Instagram story idea find diferences

Here we have 2 same pictures with only 3 differences. First, we make them tap back at the 3rd story and then stay on the 2nd. Then they will swipe right and stay at the 3rd picture till they can find all the differences.

Instagram story idea find differences

These actions (tap and stay on the story, swipe back/forward) make Instagram think that this story is interesting, valuable, and engaging. So, it tries to show a lot more people.

Take a look at the “Forward” number, “back” number, and the impressions. Impressions, on average, have increased which helped us double the story views (reach).

Guess what will happen next

This is a very simple way to make your followers interact with your story. Using a Poll sticker is a really good way to grab Instagram’s attention to  your interesting and interactive story. But you can’t just put the sticker and wait for millions of people to interact.

Instagram story idea guess what will happen

First, you need to think of an interesting video that will be captivating for your followers. Then cut to the most intriguing part. Use polls or other stickers to make them interact somehow with the story.

In our case, it’s a cat trying to jump to the kitchen table. It’s fun, interacting and as it’s a video, it makes people stay and watch till the end. So, we cut the final result of her jumping and ask our followers to guess.

Here we also raised our Instagram story views from 42 to 127 in 12 hours.

You can find a fun video from your niche (it should have an unexpecting end and engaging start) and ask your followers to guess what will happen next.

Conclusion. Think of different ways to make your followers tap forward and back, and stay long to increase the views and  impressions. Use stickers and make it easy to interact with your stories. Monitor the analytics and improve with every story.

Use stickers and make your followers tap

Using stickers is also a great Instagram story idea to increase the engagement of your stories. The key point here is that the stickers are the easiest way to get your audience to take part in your surveys, games, and answer  your questions etc. Followers need to just tap and that’s it.

Here we put together 2 photos of our product BlancMask and other masks. We put a sticker and asked our followers to vote for the mask they like.

Instagram story idea use stickers

Instagram story idea use stickers

Considering that the Blank Mask page has 1,003 followers the stories got about 19% reach which is good. Also the engagement rate of the stories is 37-40% which is also good. As you can see as we go further the reach decreases, it means that you need to put not more than 5 stories at the same time. People get bored when they see the same type of stories 127 times. So, keep it short and interesting.

Conclusion. Think of the questions you want answered from your followers or just want to engage them. Then create 5 stories and put stickers, polls on each story. As much as they engage with your stories the more they see them and you’ll get more reach. So this is a good way to reach others and alos people outside of your page.

Beware of news and keep your eyes on trends

You have about 3 seconds to grab your followers attention before they continue to scroll on their feed. Trends are really a good way to grab attention in the social media world and increase your story views. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it is beneficial for you and your brand. So, keep your eyes on trends and news around the world and try to connect them to your brand.

Instagram story idea educational post

In this case we used Apple’s Airpods Max headphone photo to grab attention. Because it was just released (during the time this article was written), many people keep their eyes on it and because they know the product already we don’t need to show the logo design or name.

After grabbing their attention with the headphones we highlight its – pain point of the most users – price. After that, we show them what they can get with a cheaper price, what’s really important to them with a link to our page and website.

Connecting news or a trend with our brand or product get our followers to watch and stay on our stories, direct new users to our page and get new followers, new eyes and (why not) new sales.

Here is another example of using news in your stories. This story we made in 2019 when Elon Musk first announced about the Tesla Cybertruck. After announcing social media platforms were full of cybertrack memes. So, we decided to take advantage and create a meme about it and post in stories. Our meme story got about 30,000 views by using popular hashtags. This is a really big number considering that the page had around 8,000 followers.

Conclusion. Keep your eyes on the trending news and come up with ideas to connect them somehow to your product or just make a meme to provide fun content to your followers. Note that using trends and news depends on your brand and tone of voice. Don’t make fun content if it’s controversial to your brand voice.

Educational and swipeable stories

As you know, educational and swipeable content is not going anywhere on Instagram. It was a trend last year and it will in the future. So why not post it on stories as well?

Try to come up with ideas of educational content of your brand’s niche. Bring up some problems and show your audience how to solve them. Provide valuable information your audience may not know or something they are interested in. You can find them by asking them directly in the post (Like Q&A post) or in the Facebook groups of the same niche.

Here is an example of an educational/poll story that not only makes followers interact with the story but also learn new things about solid state drives.

Instagram story idea educational post

Instagram story idea educational post

So after generating Instagram story ideas, divide them into days. Consider what and when you should post the educational stories. Then, divide one idea into 5 or 6 parts and put each part in one story slide. Don’t forget about the AIDA (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action) principle. So, keep it interesting, short and insightful. The more interesting the content is the higher is the chance they will keep swiping till the end and that will increase the engagement rate of your stores.

With all of these great Instagram Story Ideas, you don’t have any more excuses to stop growing your channel. Start implementing these easy tips to engage your followers and increase the variety of content to keep them interested.

Mushegh Hakobyan

SMM specialist


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