Instagram Stories Launches

4th August 2016

Social media advertising is a growing marketing tool, so it is always interesting to see the progress of sites and the exchange of ideas across platforms. One of the most startling changes, however, has been to the picture sharing service, Instagram.

In early August the site introduced a new feature known as Stories. This allows it’s 500 million worldwide user base to create slideshows of still and video images that vanish after 24 hours. The function is rather similar in both concept and execution to the existing stories function present within the popular social media application, Snapchat. The function is present in both iOS and Android versions of the Instagram app.

 

Instagram Stories: What You Need to Know:

  • Coloured rings around profile pictures of friends, celebrities, and brands signify the presence of a story. Tapping a ring will show the story in full screen.
  • Stories appear in upload order and must last 10 seconds or less.
  • Text and drawings can be added to the images and photos.
  • Stories can be shared publicly, privately, or to a selected audience.
  • Users can’t like or comment on the stories they see.
  • After 24 hours, stories will no longer appear on a user’s profile page or in the feed.

 

What Could This Be Used for by Marketing Companies?

Many brands are already active on Instagram as it is a popular way to engage with a fashion conscious and visually focused female-led audience. The time-limited nature of social media advertising on Instagram makes it ideal for the announcement of flash sales and deal of the day promotions to this audience. It can also be used to publicise time-limited discount codes that are a perfect antidote to a lull in sales.

The feature will for the time being be free of advertising, meaning that retailers will be unopposed in the space, should they take advantage of the technology.