It’s no secret that Instagram, like so many of the major social sites, has been making adjustments to better cater to videos and to the people who make and watch them. That’s why it’s quickly become such an important platform for video producers and marketers.
For some basic tips, check out this recent post, Tricks to Get Your Videos to Be More Effective on Instagram, but today’s post isn’t about the basics but one new feature in particular: the stories feature.
We’ve been in video production in NY and NJ for a long time, so trust us when we tell you that, these days, it’s all about telling your story and ensuring that you make a real connection with viewers when doing so. Instagram’s new feature is making it easier to do that. Read on to learn how.
What’s the new Instagram Stories feature all about?
You can read the official announcement on the Instagram blog here, but the new Stories feature essentially allows you to share all the memorable moments that make up your day, the highlights, rather than just those you want on your profile.
And as you share your various videos and photos, they’ll appear together in a slideshow. That slideshow is your story, a story which will disappear after 24 hours and won’t appear on your profile or feed.
This new feature basically allows you to share as much content as you want throughout the day without having to worry about posting too much. It also provides text and drawing tools which allow you to get a little creative with how you go about unraveling your story.
The stories themselves will be visible in a bar at the top of your feed and a colorful ring will appear around the profile picture when something new has been added to that particular story. Then, to view the story, the user simply taps the profile photo. People can send private messages pertaining to the stories as well, but there are no public comments or likes, unlike regular posts.
From there, the stories will follow the privacy settings of the accounts they’re a part of, and creators can hide their stories or choose specific parts of them to post on their profiles.
What’s it all mean to you?
First of all, anyone who’s trying to connect with people via video knows how important it is to find the right balance of you-focused and them-focused content. Your videos need to be relevant and relatable to the viewers themselves while still telling them something about yourself and what you do.
Instagram’s new Stories feature, more specifically the text and drawing tools mentioned above which it provides, present a great way of establishing and enhancing your and/or your brand’s identity, style, and attitude.
That way, you can focus the content itself completely on the viewers and their specific needs, interests, expectations, preferences, etc., while still infusing your videos with your own distinct personality using the tools available.
The new feature also allows you to unravel your content in a series of connected posts rather than as individual posts while, at the same time, allowing you to continue to provide your audience with content throughout the day.
It’s the best of both worlds, and you can bet that if you do what it takes to hook viewers in with an early video installment of your story, they’ll be far more inclined to check out the content you add to the story later on.
From there, because the new feature prohibits likes or public comments, there’s a lot less pressure in terms of listening, responding, and reacting to that kind of information. Again, that allows you to keep your focus on creating genuinely bold and compelling content.
Also, as a result of the colored ring which appears around the profile pictures of anyone who adds any new content to their day’s story, you and your videos will have the chance to remain in a prominent position in the feeds of the people you’re trying to connect with. That is, as long as you continue to steadily add new content to your story as the day goes on, of course.
Some things to keep in mind…
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to, at the very least, strongly consider utilizing the new Instagram Stories feature, especially if you’ve already done what it takes to realize that the social platform is one worth pursuing for you.
But take it from us as longtime NY / NJ video production pros, if you do decide that the feature makes sense for you and your mission and audience, then you need to be mindful of the fact that you can’t just plan on posting any old videos up there and expecting any real results.
Any new platform or tool usually requires a somewhat unique approach, and when it comes to this new feature, for starters, you may want to think of your Instagram stories closer to highlight reels than in-depth examinations.
That obviously depends on what you do and your specific objectives with your video(s), but the general nature of the feature lends itself to the highlight approach, in which you tell your story through a series of connected stand-out moments rather than moments which require some context to understand.
No matter how you approach it, though, the viewers need to come to feel that each video you add to your Instagram story is can’t-miss content, and that they must keep tuning in to see how the story ends.
Just try to tell the right stories.
The bottom line is that the new Instagram Stories feature is a serious weapon for videomakers and marketers everywhere, no matter what they do or offer, nor the kinds of viewers they’re trying to reach.
If they’re on Instagram, then utilizing the new feature is a virtual no-brainer. You just need to ensure you use it in a way that aligns with your overall identity and attitude, and you need to use it to tell the right stories, the ones that showcase your true value and have the power to inspire.
About Us: KVibe Productions, a full-service film & video production company in NJ / NY, can handle every aspect of the production process. Whether it’s a corporate video, a commercial, a feature film, etc., at KVibe, we create to inspire.