How Businesses and Brands Can Leverage Instagram Stories Highlights

Jan 2018

Instagram is visual storytelling at its best – and your brand’s profile is a narrative woven together one picture at a time. Instagram Stories was initially introduced as a response to Snapchat but has since grown into a powerful tool for marketers to leverage and continue a brand’s storytelling.

Since debuting, Instagram Stories has skyrocketed to over 250 million users, all of whom spend an average of 20 – 30 minutes per day surfing the chronologically logged slideshow. And with the ability to add swipeable links and monitor conversions through Instagram Stories’ analytics, marketers can now drive and track traffic more effectively!

The sign of a cutting-edge content marketer, though, is keeping up with the most dynamic practices and ways to utilize Instagram’s growing reach. Recently, the app introduced a new feature – Instagram Stories Highlights.

So…What are Highlights?

Highlights is Instagram’s answer to a Stories’ album where anyone can fix specific Stories to their profile. Any Story, or series of Stories, can be made into a highlight album by tapping the “♡ Highlights” or by creating a new album on your profile (which allows you to access your Stories’ archive).

You can pin your Instagram highlights as long as you want and give them a name up to 16 characters long. (But your album name will be cut off with “…” after just a few, so try and keep your titles short and sweet!)

So…Why should marketers take advantage of that?

Highlights enable marketers to prolong the life of their Stories content – whether it’s giveaway rules, swipeable links, or ongoing offers/sales. If your goal is to drive a certain amount of traffic using a swipeable link, it is worth pinning a Story to your highlights for some boosted spotlight. It’ll be the first thing your audience will see when they go to your profile, right underneath your bio. Anyone who visits for the first time might be curious enough to take a peek – and any peek is a potential conversion…or future customer!

So…What are marketers’ best practices to leveraging highlights?

Highlights can be used in a number of ways! On the surface, the go-to best practice is extending a swipeable link’s value, but it’s more than just that!

Your Stories highlights can be used:

  • To spotlight behind the scenes content to humanize your business.
  • To promote special events or seasonal offers.
  • For brands with multiple products, marketers can create specific albums to spotlight each individual product for added personality.
  • To explain lengthy giveaway or contest rules broken down in an easy to follow album format.
  • To build brand credibility through tutorials and “tips-and-tricks” Stories.
  • To share important updates valuable to your audience.

The good news is that the number of albums you add doesn’t exactly matter (as you can add over 20). However, your list will be the most visible for the first four highlights, so marketers should prioritize their focus toward the content they most want to feature.

Want to learn more about how your business can take advantage of Instagram or other social platforms? We’re here to help! Read about how you can boost your reach over on our blog, or sign up for our Social Media Bootcamp.



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