Learn how to use Instagram Stories to build your brand, your Etsy store and your handmade business. There are many ways to tell the story behind our brand and products. The launch of Instagram Stories gives us another fun way to give followers an insight into our business. Instagram Stories is very similar to Snapchat. It’s a way of presenting a series of images together – in a story. Like Snapchat the Instagram Story slideshow disappears after a day. This is a neat way to show people a little more about you, your brand and your making process.
If you are wondering how to use Instagram Stories in your business, think about it from your target market’s point of view. What will they want to see?
How to Use Instagram Stories in Your Etsy Business
One of the best ways to make Instagram Stories really work for you is to use it to give people an insight into something which is best illustrated using a sequence of images. Creating a product from start to finish is obviously a great place to start. You can use Instagram Story in your Etsy business to show other things too. Perhaps a Story showing getting items ready for dispatch or some other behind the scenes activity.
One of the huge benefits slideshows and videos offer the Etsy seller and handmade business owner, is that it really allows you to set yourself ahead of the crowd. In a market which sometimes seems increasingly full of resellers, demonstrating the handmadeness of our products is paramount. And this is where something like Instagram Story comes into play.
Build Your Brand Authority
Another way Etsy and handmade sellers can use Instagram Stories is to help build your brand authority. This is part of building your brand which is very important and is another way to demonstrate why your brand is different. Depending on your target market, you could create regular mini Instagram Story tutorials, showing how to do something that relates to your target market and your brand. However, before you invest too much time in this strategy, watch it closely and see how much engagement you get.
But a Word of Caution…
Like many things on social media, it’s important to think about how you are going to use it and what benefit you want to receive. It’s very easy to jump into every new and interesting initiative because it’s there, without really thinking through your end goals.
Any social media activity should dovetail with your target market. If your target market is unlikely to embrace Instagram Stories, it’s best not to invest too much time in it. Admittedly, you can create an Instagram Story in very little time, but if no one is going to see it, it’s probably time not well spent (although you can save the photos, which is always a good idea).
Remember that Instagram Stories, like Snapchat, are only live for 24 hours. Therefore don’t invest lots of time perfecting a Story which will only disappear the next day. Remember to download the images you take via Instagram Stories onto your phone for future use – really make it work for you!
How to Make Your First Instagram Story
This is very simple to do. First, make sure you have the latest version of Instagram installed (go to the home page and see if you can see the icon in the left-hand corner (the circle with a plus sign).
Click on this and you have a choice of either taking a photo or using a photo you’ve already posted. To use one you’ve already posted swipe the screen down and it will show you your recent posts. Tap the one you want.
You will see you have the option to add text or to doodle on your photo:
When you’ve finished, just tap the white button and this will be added to your story.
And it’s as simple as that!