18 Instagram Story Engagement Ideas That Your Followers Will Love
If you’re an avid Instagram user, you probably know that there are few tools as innovative as the stories feature. It’s possible the feature’s explosion in popularity has happened for the same reasons we love limited-time offers. When we know we have only a short window in which to take action, we’re much more likely to take a leap!
It’s no surprise that brands across the platform have made the same connection, harnessing a wealth of Instagram story engagement ideas to create a sense of urgency and a drive to interact.
However, if you’re looking for ways to earn your brand a piece of this success, it might be hard to figure out where to start. With so many possibilities, how can you tell which ones are right for your needs?
Fortunately, we’ve got you covered! Check out the list below for engagement strategies your followers will love.
1. Ask and Answer Questions
Everyone loves a fun interaction with their favorite brand, and there’s no easier way to start one than by asking and answering questions. List out some icebreakers, get to know your followers, and invite them to ask you questions in turn! To go all out, consider launching an “AMA session” to let your followers find out everything they want to know.
2. Design a Poll
Instagram makes it easy for users to design and launch simple polls, so why not take advantage of them to engage your audience? You can use polls to quiz your readers on their preferences, hopes, and needs to make sure they feel heard, or you can ask for their opinions on your products as a quick and easy way of conducting audience research.
3. Post a Quote
Quotes are everywhere on Instagram, and for good reason: they can be a great way to boost audience engagement with little effort.
Finding the right quote, of course, means knowing your audience well. Some brands swear by inspirational quotes, while others add a healthy dose of humor to the quotes they post. Don’t forget that adding a quality image can ramp up your engagement on Instagram even further!
4. Promote Freebies
Everybody loves a freebie, so it’s no surprise that posts boasting free products tend to perform well across a variety of platforms. Whether you’re offering free samples of your latest product, a free trial of your service, or a downloadable resource, the right freebie can encourage plenty of interaction.
Make sure to include clear instructions on what the freebie is and how to get it, and consider driving traffic to your website by hosting the details there.
5. Go Live
It’s no surprise that we’ve seen more and more brands going live since the start of the COVID pandemic—but there’s no reason to believe that this trend will recede now that lockdowns have slowed. Broadcasting live on Instagram allows you to share real-time insights and answer immediate questions, a novelty that many viewers love. If you’re hoping to start a dialogue, you can pair this with a full question-and-answer session or try using one of the tricks below instead.
6. Do a Shout-Out to Other Accounts
If you’ve stumbled across an account you think your followers would love, share the good news with them!
This tactic allows you to bring valuable info to your followers, and it also gives you an easy way to boost engagement on Instagram by using someone else’s content! All you’ll need to do is share feed posts from the accounts you follow to spread the word. Better still, you might find these accounts sharing your posts with their followers as well.
7. Announce an Upcoming Event
Got a virtual or in-person event coming up? Shout it from the rooftops to get your followers excited about it! Users who see the announcement can find registration details from your swipe-up info and share it with friends, which can help you grow your Instagram following fast.
8. Create a Content Schedule
Posting certain content on a set schedule can help you increase engagement, especially once your followers realize that they can come back for new updates on a specific day. Consider sharing your favorite product solutions every Tuesday, for example, or showcasing a customer success story each Sunday.
9. Add a Story Sticker
Stickers can be a great engagement tool, as they allow you to capture your users’ attention with unique icons and text. Whether you want to add some pizzazz to your poll or add a fun emoji to your latest post, the right sticker can make a difference. For more insights on how to make the most of Instagram’s stickers, check this link for more.
10. Start a Countdown
Instagram has a built-in countdown clock, allowing you to generate plenty of anticipation among your followers. Many brands use this feature to get some buzz going around their latest sale, launch, or release—but you can also use it for some engaging fun as well! Consider adding a countdown to an upcoming holiday, movie release, or pop-culture event.
11. Promote a Blog Post
Are you creating killer content on your blog? If so, it’s time to share it on Instagram as well! You can share the details in a simple text post, or you can promote it with a snappy video to score even more views.
12. Celebrate a Milestone
Everyone loves celebrating successes, especially when we can see the before and after. If your company has passed any major milestones, be sure to share the details of that improvement with your followers! Consider contributing to popular relevant hashtags like #throwbackthursday to join in on the trend.
13. Hold a Contest
If you want to drive your engagement through the roof, encourage your followers to participate in a contest. You can ask users to like your post, tag you, or do other simple actions within a set time limit. From there, it’s time to pick a winner—either randomly or according to certain conditions—for a prize!
14. Spotlight a Customer
Ever had a customer share touching details about how your brand has changed their life? These kinds of details are great content to share with your Instagram followers. Whether you screenshot a product review, share part of an email, or reach out to get a video testimonial, these can show followers how your brand can help.
15. Launch a Staff Takeover
Staff takeovers can be a fun way to show your followers a day in the life of your team members. Pick an employee who will share a behind-the-scenes look at your brand’s workspace, your meetings, and the ins and outs of the job. As an added bonus, there’s no need to plan content during your employee takeover: your team will share their voice on your behalf!
16. Promote a Deal or Discount
If you’re hoping to both ramp up engagement and find an easy way to generate buzz around a product or service, consider promoting a deal, discount, or special coupon on Instagram. Best of all, thanks to the short lifespan of Instagram stories, these promotions naturally carry an exclusive flair: only followers who pay close attention to your brand will be able to grab them in time!
In terms of Instagram story engagement, this is a straightforward but tried-and-true tactic: share your expertise! Users crave valuable content, and showing that your brand provides that content goes a long way. Offer up simple how-tos, easy tips and tricks, and helpful checklists to bring your followers up to speed on a regular basis.
18. Do a Video Tutorial or Product Demo
Want to get a little more in-depth? Whether you offer a breakdown of one of your most popular products or share a video tutorial about your favorite meal prep strategies, users love seeing how things work. The video itself doesn’t have to be complicated: users react just as well to casual chats as they do to slick video edits.
Try These Instagram Story Engagement Ideas
If you’re hoping to both wow your followers and boost your audience stats, these Instagram story engagement ideas are just what you need. From simple polls and promotions to in-depth video tutorials and employee takeovers, there’s something for every brand. Don’t hesitate to test out a range of tactics until you find the ones that work best for your followers!
Want more of the tips you need to make the most of your business? Be sure to check out our other posts for tech guides, advertising tactics, and more.