Snapchat was a pioneering new way to use social media with its content disappearing after 24 hours on a story timeline. Instagram quickly got in on the action and rolled out its own story function to great success. With more than 500 million Instagram Story views per day and competition from TikTok rising; Instagram is adding new functionality and benefits for posting stories.
It isn’t only Instagram that’s rolled out a story function, the same is true for Facebook and in the not-so-distant future, Spotify. Last year Spotify dropped the news they were testing a new story functionality which will add extra value to an album or single release, offering the ability to attach the process of making the music or the influences surrounding it. So, a fan could be listening to your new release while checking out additional content you’ve uploaded too. Cutting out the clicks of fans having to leave the Spotify app, search your name on Instagram and click your profile to view more of you. Onboarding new fans will become that bit easier.
Instagram Feed vs. Instagram Story
While it is unlikely that Spotify’s Story function will outreach Instagram, it’s important that musician’s understand the sheer power of stories on whichever platform and utilise them. The traditional Instagram feed has taken on a new form in that everything is a lot more polished and displays the end product of brands – i.e. your new release. All the while Instagram Stories have developed into a more behind the scenes view of the process, the people behind it, the genuine side to a company or artist. This is how brands are building trust with their fans and creating a more approachable spin on the marketing of their products. Giving the polished, clean look of content on their feed while showing you the ‘Instagram vs. Reality’ effect on stories.
2. A Story With Music
Instagram’s Story functionality connects with Spotify allowing users to attach a song from the music platform to play on their Instagram Story. Your music can be used on anybody’s stories and this shouldn’t be ignored. Messaging content creators and asking them to use your song on a story is a great way to broaden your reach to new audiences. Of course promoting your own music on your own story is great as users can click a link directly to your Spotify. You can earn money when your music is used on social media by other users, it’s worth checking out cdbaby. 80% of stories with sound performed better than those without when creating a sponsored story, so it’s worth adding music to your stories often.
3. Engagement Tools in Stories
With a long list of tools available to add to your stories, you’re able to create engaging content easily. Having users engage with your story keeps them around for longer and is an invaluable resource for finding out about your audience. Using a poll sticker to ask your fans’ opinion on a section of a new song or find out if they like the lyrics – there’s so much you can do to actually get engagement. Instagram rewards engagement and 9 out of 10 times an engaging story lead to more video views, so it’s a no-brainer to start using these stickers to your advantage
4. Geotagging, Hashtagging and Tagging
Posting a geotag of your location opens you up to a wide range of users who are perusing the ‘explore’ page of Instagram. Now that stories have been added in to the the results display users get shown story content in their current location too. Adding a relevant hashtag will also guide audiences to your content if they’re searching that particular tag. Tagging another account on your story will notify that person and ask if they want to repost your story to their own account – with the ability to add more content over the top of yours. All of these tags open up your story well beyond your followers and out into the internet sphere of 500 million active daily users (on Instagram, anyway).
5. Sell Your Merch
Creating a product sticker to attach to a story post allows users to click the sticker and purchase the item through Instagram. Over 70% of shopping enthusiasts use Instagram to explore brands to find new purchases. Instagram charges a selling fee but with the potential power of this shopping functionality it could be very worthwhile taking the time to set it up if you have a merch line.
6. Share Twitter Snapshots
A trend that is showing no signs of slowing down is the Twitter snapshot. A simple screenshot of a tweet with a subtle background that’s shareable is an easy way to create content. Inspiration, comedy, trending topics and so much more can be screenshotted and shared on to your Instagram. It’s also a great way of advertising your own feed if you use both.
Sending out a Q&A on a story and answering the questions through multiple other stories is a fantastic way to connect with your fans, create content and engage your community. There’s no stopping what you can find out – utilise this to get intelligence on your people and calculate a plan of how to do more of what they like.
8. Share Lyrics
Everybody loves lyrics and it’s an easy way to get some content out there and share your work.
9. User Generated Content
Having your followers create content with your music in, similar to how viral trends sweep across TikTok, is a great way to get content with little effort. Have them tag you in their post which in turn you share to your story. Another method of this would be to do a video on a story and ask for followers’ reaction videos. You can get really creative here and reap some nice content which also acts as a trust building mechanism whereby new followers can see you’ve got a loyal fanbase.
10. Countdown to Releases
Creating a buzz around a release can be done through stories. Using countdown timer stickers on your posts and share little snippets of the upcoming music. Content is content and this is another easy way to keep a consistent flow of visibility.
The story is growing at an exponential rate across social media platforms and it’s usage will continue to grow for the foreseeable with many new functions likely to be rolled out as the year goes on. It’s a good idea to get to grips with a consistent posting plan with valuable, engaging content that you can use to your own advantage to spread your music and message. Keep an eye out for the Spotify roll out of their own take on stories to ensure you’re on the pulse for these new updates.