Guest Blog Post — Jim Luff from Chosen Payments | Telling Stories On Social Media

What is the best “story telling” site?  Snapchat and Instagram both allow users to “share their story”. 

When Instagram introduced Stories in August 2016, many people rolled their eyes at the blatant copying of Snapchat.  However, that was only temporary since Instagram is now dominating in the story telling arena.  Brand wars have always been a thing.  Think of Pepsi and Coke.  They are the two most popular sodas in the world and have been nipping at the heels of each other since the late 1800’s.

When viewing either the number of actual posts or the number of users, it is clear that more people are quickly switching to Instagram to tell their Stories.  Why does this matter?  Because, more businesses are taking to social media to share their own stories and build their brands through social media.  Nobody is watching television commercials anymore.  They speed through them with the click of a remote.  Nobody is listening to radio commercials anymore.  They stream their own music in their cars.  So, you have to advertise your brand where the people are hanging out.  That’s social media.

If you're thinking about joining the current trend, consider the "Three “F”s of Instagram Stories: That is, Followers, Features and Funds.

Followers

You might be producing great Snapchat content, but, does it really matter if there is nobody viewing it?  The steps of entry for users to follow a brand or posts on Snapchat is much more difficult than it is for viewing Instagram stories.

Have you already tried to run an Instagram campaign to increase followers?  The same users who followed that campaign with see your Instagram Stories.

Instagram Stories already has over 150 million users, and 70% of Instagrammers follow at least one business, underlining the potential reach.  Additionally, 60% of Instagram users have indicated that they have learned about new products and services via the app.  Then, there are the usage statistics:  According to an Experian study in 2016, 45.4% of all people living in the United States used Facebook.  22.2% used YouTube.  4.8% used Twitter.  1.32% used Instagram and less than a half a percent used Snapchat.  Do the math.

Features

While Instagram has mimicked many of Snapchat's storytelling features, it also added its own spin, with additional capabilities.  In addition to the popular looping video generator, Instagram allows brands and users to tag other profiles in a Story. This is a great feature if your goal is to place your brand in front of influential people.

Instagram also allows you to swipe up from a Story to load a website of your choice. Utilize this feature if you want people to go straight to your website and showcase a product, a special or simply to encourage new orders.

Funds

While posting an Instagram Story to your brand's page is free, the platform is also rolling out an in-story ad program. This service is not available yet but it is coming!  Instagram Stories ads are full-screen, which will ensure they generate maximum impact. They’re currently being tested with 30+ clients such as Captial One, Buick, Netflix and Nike.

You also get more bang for your buck using Instagram Stories compared to Snapchat. Instagram utilizes the same targeting capabilities as Facebook does, so your brand can take advantage of the custom audiences that you have already set up.

According to TechCrunch, "Instagram also plans to provide business accounts with analytics on the reach, impressions, replies and exits of their Stories.  You will be able to check analytics on your stories through the Insights button on your profiles page.

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Posted on Mar 30 2017

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Guest Blog Post — Jim Luff from Chosen Payments | Telling Stories On Social Media

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