Your Strategic Guide to Instagram Stories

As an organisation, you now have an array of options when it comes to publishing content on Facebook and Instagram. This is mainly due to the implementation of stories on both these platforms.

Think of both the timeline view and story mode as tools for the deployment and publishing of your corporate messages.

Below we have profiled what each is and how your organisation can make use of these tools. Welcome to your strategic guide to Instagram stories.


The Basics: About Stories

Stories on Facebook and Instagram comprise updates that are made public for only 24 hours. Following this initial published time, they are then removed from your profile and are no longer accessible by your audience or followers.

This is how SnapChat works as a social media platform. Stories were deployed by Facebook and Instagram to compete with SnapChat. Basically, they copied the main feature of SnapChat in an effort to entice some of their users to their platforms.


The Basics: The Timeline

Originally implemented, on a large scale by Facebook, the timeline was one of the early innovations on the Facebook platform that made it into one of the world’s largest platforms. Before this social media platforms, such as Myspace and Bebo, only allowed users to view profiles that were navigated via friends lists.

The timeline is a space that is allocated to list updates from connections on a specific social media platform. Timelines now make up the home page of Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.


5 Killer Strategies for publishing on Story Mode

Users need a reason to seek out your updates on the timeline and in story mode. With this in mind, you have to ask yourself, why should someone view your updates? What is the value for them?

The strategies below have been developed to help you answer these questions. This will help you develop content and then publish it to the right location; be it on the timeline or in story mode.


Formal Vs Informal

This is a simple strategy that helps you categorise the content you can publish. Think of the timeline as the formal voice and the story mode as the informal voice of your organisation.

If your organisation was at a really important meeting, presenting to leading dignitaries or on a major TV production how would it portray itself? This is the way you manage your timeline. Official, high quality and well planned.

Social media give you a huge opportunity to connect with users on a personal level. This is where the story mode comes into use. Imagine your organisation’s manager is at an informal network meeting, social event or chatting in the office. This is the tone your content can take on story mode.

It’s a killer tactic. The official message on the timeline. All shiny, professional and high grade. The insider story on your story mode. Much more informal and readily connectable to the average user.


Promotion of recent updates

The story mode is, in essence, another timeline to publish content. Although different in deployment and usability it is another channel on which you can deliver messages to your audience.

So, why not cross-promote? You may see this often. Organisations promoting a recent timeline update on their story section.

Many organisations struggle to publish additional content to the story section resulting in less competition than you may find on the average timeline. Therefore, this gives you another chance to make sure they have seen your latest update.


Secondary Messaging

A timeless marketing tip is to publish consistent messages across different channels. This applies to the timeline and stories.

If you are taking the time to publish content to the Facebook or Instagram timeline why not rework the same content to appear in your story? Both then serve to reinforce each other and also double the chances your message will be seen.

Take it to the next level and adjust the secondary message to expand upon the other. Over time this can become a profoundly powerful strategy to fully inform your audience.


Directing traffic to other location

Stories are immediate. A viewer only has 15 seconds to view an update in story mode before it cycles to the next. Therefore, if you hit them with a compelling message and a call to action that sends them to a location, they have to act immediately.

Unfortunately, you cannot link to websites via Instagram stories but you can still ask people to look at your profile or other profiles within the update.


Asking questions and polls

Expanding on the above point, why not use the story mode to double down on audience interaction. Asking questions and conducting polls is a great way to get users clicking and engaging with your stories.

This is helped by the fact that Facebook and Instagram have features built into their story mode to facilitate both questions and polls. To take part users simply need to click a button.



Whatever your business is doing you have a huge amount of options when it comes to publishing content on social media. Used strategically, story mode can really add to the average update via the standard timeline.

What strategies does your organisation use? Are there any we need to add to this blog? Thank you for reading and don’t forget to check us out on Facebook and Instagram for more inspiration.