11 Creative Ways to Use Instagram Stories for Business [e-book included!]

We’ve been all over Instagram Stories for business since they launched back in August. We tested them the day Instagram Stories rolled out, sharing a full Instagram story highlighting the pros + cons. I hopped onto Facebook Live in our private Socialite group to share my first thoughts AND we compared Instagram Stories to Snapchat Stories in this Socialite Newsletter sent the day after the launch. Phew! We were busy social bees, to say the least...

At this crazy time, it was crucial for us to be on our game as our inboxes were flooded with questions and our community wasn’t sure how to handle this new update (and to be completely honest, we weren’t sure either!). Thanks for sticking with us through what we so lovingly refer to as, “the Insta-apocalypse” – wink!

facebook post

I’ll be the first to admit, I too was not a fan of this update in the beginning but after only slightly freaking out– I’ve since seen the light! Now that the dust has settled and our brains have had time to process accept this new feature, we’ve been able to experiment with creative ideas for Instagram Stories for business and I can’t wait to share them with you!

Instagram stories are here to stay (sorry, Snapchat - we still love ya), so why not utilize them for your business? We've put together 11 of our favorite creative ways to use Instagram stories to grow your audience and attract new business. Click to read more!

Share Industry Tips + Tricks

When Instagram’s new “Save Draft” feature launched, one of the first places we shared about this new update was on our Instagram Story for the day. We walked our Socialites through the process of saving drafts on Instagram, which devices this feature was available on and how our community could use this as a free way to “schedule” their Instagram posts.

share tips and tricks

Pro Tip: Before sharing a tip or tutorial on Instagram Stories, make sure to storyboard your idea! Map out what your story will look like visually from beginning to end. This will help you uncover any holes in your Story (places where your community could get confused) before it’s published.

Promote a Giveaway

If you’ve taken our course on How to Run Successful Giveaways on Social Media, then you’ll know the importance of promoting your giveaway, e v e r y w h e r e  to get the best results! Using Instagram Stories to announce a giveaway can be a fun way to get your audience extra excited about what you have to offer. This can also be a great opportunity for you to showcase what you’re giving away (like Ashley did below) and also give you another platform to remind your audience that time is running out and they better hop on it, real quick! Urgency is key in hosting a successful social media giveaway.

promote a giveaway

Promote an Event

One way to get your community excited about attending your event, is to share about it on Instagram Stories. You can do this leading up to the event, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the setup, interviewing attendees during the event and follow up with a fun little “thank you” to those who attended. This way, even if someone can’t come– they feel like they’re part of the party anyway, just virtually!

I love how personal and playful these videos are that Lizzy shared! Super fun!

Showcase a Product

Sometimes, it’s not enough just to see a pretty image of something you might want to buy. Watching a product in-action has so much more impact in a customer’s buying decision. Using Instagram Stories as a means to showcase your products in real life can make all the difference in converting your followers into loyal customers.

Birchbox Instagram Story

Pro Tip: Like Birchbox strategically did, use your Instagram posts to get more eyes on your Instagram Stories!

Promote Your Newsletter

Grow your email list by using Instagram Stories to promote your newsletters! Let your community know that you have a newsletter, what they can expect to find in your emails, if they will receive any reward for signing up (like a free grocery list, bronzer tutorial, favorite resources, etc.), how often they can expect to hear from you and how/where they can sign up.

promote your newsletter

via Shaw Simple Swaps

Pro Tip: Use a trackable link like bitly to measure how many sign ups your Instagram Story produced.

Ready to find out even more creative ways to use Instagram stories for your business? Download our free e-book!

jessica howell social studio shop