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How Brands Are Using Instagram Stories and Their Benefits [Infographic]

By Shandia Drummond-Butt

How Brands Are Using Instagram Stories and Their Benefits [Infographic]

In August of 2016, Instagram did the unthinkable…or so we thought.

The visual social platform saw direct competitor Snapchat’s popular 24-hour Stories and created Instagram Stories.


It was a bold, but genius move in my opinion, especially now that Instagram Stories have surpassed Snapchat’s in daily active users.

Instagram Stories, much like Snapchat Stories, are super engaging with their variety of facial filters, and location tags. Personally, they can be really time-consuming, as I get lost in scrolling through multiple stories.

WHAAAA, where has all my time gone?  



This may seem like just another glorious opportunity for most to capture cute and funny photos and videos of basic everyday happenings, but brands are using this as an opportunity to their advantage as well. and shared a few reasons why Instagram Stories should be a part of your social media strategy:

  1. As of 2018, there were more than 400 million daily active Instagram Stories users.
  2. The average reach rate for Instagram Stories is around 7.2% of your Instagram following.
  3. Instagram Stories are discoverable; You can add Hashtags and mentions to Instagram Stories to get found and viewed by more people.
  4. One in four  Gen Z-ers and millennials actively seek Stories of the products and services they’re considering buying.

Still not convinced?

Let’s dive a bit deeper.

Why Use Instagram Stories for Business?

As mentioned above, Instagram Stories are a great way to open new pathways to increase engagement and brand awareness.

With hashtags, mentions, and public access, people who are not even following you can “discover” them, without even clicking onto your profile. This isn’t possible on Snapchat.

Instagram Stories can also add a personalized touch to how you engage your audience.

You can use them to show what your office is like on an average workday, share photos or videos from team events, or speak directly to your audience by going live.

Instagram Stories are usually real-time and lower production value which helps them feel even more authentic, human, and candid.

Instagram Stories also let you share more creative, out-of-the-box content by linking music, taking polls, using stickers, and so much more.

Even better, they have a number of features that help you engage your audience.

Many people on social media are just passively watching, but Instagram Stories have features that help you elicit an action or verbal reaction out of them. These features include:

My Favorite Top 3 Brands Doing It Right!

We have gone over the benefits of using Instagram Stories for your marketing strategy as well as how to utilize it in the best way possible.

Here are my favorite top three brands that are absolutely crushing Instagram Stories!

1. Sephora

Not only are they my all time favorite beauty brand…because I mean, come on, it’s SEPHORA, but they were one of the first brands to utilize Instagram Stories.

They engage their followers with amazing behind-the-scenes tutorials on makeup looks, polls, as well as offer exclusive promotions and deals to their followers.  Every makeup junky’s best friend.


2. Whole Foods

With its acquisition by Amazon, Whole Foods is currently dominating the digital space, in the grocery and health food store industry.

They create a unique, community-like experience for their viewers by featuring shoppers Instagram Stories: 


Whole Foods also shares snapshots of items for sale weekly:   



If you have children (raises two hands), you know the struggles of buying toys online;

Trying to know what kids are really into these days and purchasing items that are going to give you more bang for your buck.

For me, LEGO has been a lifesaver here.

Each month they feature their #ICYMI (In case you missed out) highlights, as well as what other LEGO fans are building.  They even educate their viewers with mini-tutorials by leveraging Instagram’s Canvas Format within Stories.


Not only are they enabling viewers and consumers with an amazing experience and helping them bring their creations to life, but they are also increasing awareness that will, in turn, drive sales and traffic to their site.

I love the fact that I can now sit with my boys and watch YouTtube or their Instagram Stories to see new sets being unveiled or how-to’s.


Tell Your Story!

However you decide to capitalize on Instagram Stories, whether it be using engaging polls, DIY tutorials, or campaign ads, the benefits still remain the same -- reaching a new or your existing audience in a more engaging, memorable way.

So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and tell your story!

Here are some more awesome case studies that 99Firms put together in the infographic below.

Check it out!


Free Assessment:

How does your inbound marketing measure up?
Take this free, 5-minute assessment and learn what you can start doing today to boost traffic, leads, and sales.


Instagram Marketing
Published on June 22, 2019

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