Having talked about the power of the Instagram Stories campaign, InstaBF also started a free guide to planning out your first Stories campaign. Ready to go on?
Figure Out Your Strategy and Creative
Deciding on the creative direction you will have a Story campaign totally different from your ordinary stories content. And if you feel uncertain about the strategy and creative direction, we offer to your attention four basic elements to pay close attention to.
Define Your Campaign’s Concept
Whatever concept lies in the basis of your Insta Stories campaign, it must be closely tied to the campaign goals. For instance, if you aim at promoting a new product line, the concept must be driving sales and the creatives to use should include product stickers, clicks on the link in the bio, swipe-ups to your brand’s website, and so forth.
Designate the Visual Style of Your Stories Campaign
Just as it’s important to have a brand voice, building a Stories banding kit is a must. It includes inspirational imagery, a static color palette, a design style guide, fonts, defined filters.
Draft the campaign message and editorial style of your campaign
Having schemed a campaign message you will feel sure about introducing, explaining and even selling your product as long as the campaign is consistent. Hence, draft a couple of words that you’re going to weave during every campaign asset.
Distinguish with the Stories features
It’s definitely a good idea to establish particularly what features of Stories you’re going to use in promoting the campaign. In case it’s built around a giveaway, which is time-sensitive, a countdown sticker will create interest around it the best.
And don’t neglect Spark AR effects! You can always create and promote AR effects related to your own brand to drive more traction.
Get a Storyboard for the campaign
A storyboard is a visual representation of your campaign that will help you foresee how it will unfold right from the beginning. It will help you determine how to convey your message most effectively.
Create the Assets
Now it’s time to get down with your Stories Campaign Assets, i.e. the content you’ll post including images, videos, GIFs, graphics, etc. Depending on the scope of the campaign, the assets will drastically differ. For instance, in case if you plan to promote a giveaway or a contest, lifestyle shots, illustration, UGC might work well as assets.
Schedule the Campaign
Now just combine all the components and create your Instagram content calendar. It’s not necessary to have the official launch day of a product/event identical to the timeline of Instagram. Besides, think about the lifespan of the content you’ll share and the frequency.
Promote the Campaign
The basic goal of any Instagram Stories campaign is to reach as many people as possible. For its promotion, draft a strategy. Create hype around it with a countdown sticker, partner with compatible influencers to build excitement, create a campaign hashtag, etc.
Go Live on Instagram on the Campaign Launch Day
Besides getting ready to answer questions, monitor the excitement and engage with your community on the launch day of the Stories campaign, there are several other points to perform. Here are they:
- Update your bio;
- Be quick with DM responses;
- Reshare the content your followers share;
- Go live for Q&A.
How successful the Stories campaign was, can be determined through Instagram metrics. Track your brand awareness KPIs (engagement rate, impressions, signups, e-commerce purchases, etc.).
In the beginning, brands weren’t sure about how Instagram Stories could help in promoting their campaigns. However, those days are long gone and today Stories are a major help for any Instagram business and perhaps every brand has found a way or several to exploit the feature to their benefit. If you feel enthusiastic about all this, InstaBF, your faithful guide in the world of Instagram and IGTV, will gift you with top tips concerning how to plan an Insta Stories campaign. Let’s get to work right now!
An Instagram Stories Campaign: What Is It?
Just like an ordinary Instagram marketing campaign, a Stories campaign aims at achieving a certain marketing objective by means of posting Instagram Stories. That objective can be as broad as building brand awareness, or as specific as generating sales for the new product release. Regardless of it, the key to running it successfully is creating top-quality and interactive content that inspires viewers to comment and share.
How to Plan a Stories Campaign
So, now when you fully acquire the importance of a Stories campaign, let’s see how you can plan it efficiently step by step:
Pick the Goal
The first step of your Stories marketing campaign should be defining the goals since the latter determines what type of campaign you need to run and what metrics will be required to track it. So, spend enough time picturing what you are going to achieve when it comes to an end. After this, think about KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). Whatever your goal is, it must be tied to numbers. For instance, if you aim at promoting a new product, think about how many units you want to sell. Actually, the more your Stories campaign is tied back to measurable results, the more palpable they will be.
Additionally, don’t forget about the metrics. How many likes, comments, shares, and views you gather still matters a lot.
Aim at the Target Audience
Once you have your goals set, it comes to determining the target audience. Depending on the purpose of your campaign pursues, your audience can include only the narrow subset of your current followers or it can be a broad one with Insta users who are not your followers, yet. To get on track easily, base on the following points:
- What type of content your ideal audience should engage with;
- Whether they prefer photo or video-based stories;
- What stickers they give preference the most;
- In what communities they take part;
- What hashtags they mostly follow.
Only after completely nailing down your Instagram Stories campaign goals and target audience, you can courageously pass to scheming the rest of the campaign.
Set the Timeline
The goals your Stories campaign has, influences its timeline, too. For instance, if the campaign is tied to a real-life event (an in-store sale, a master-class, etc.), the timeline of the Story completely depends on the event and usually stretches to a week at most. If the campaign is tied to a larger event (a Pride Month, for instance), you can set a longer timeline. Just be cautious not to let it go for too long or you run a risk of losing the steam.
Here are the parts to be based when setting the timeline:
- Pre-campaign hype (teasing it before the launch);
- The launch day (the day you post the main campaign content);
- Post-campaign follow up (continuing the conversations once the initial excitement has fallen by UGC, customer reviews, and so forth).
In one of our previous posts, we started such a useful topic for startups and small business owners as to how to start an Instagram ad campaign for the first time. We introduced the first step and everything concerning the preparation. And now it’s high time to see how a simple ad campaign can work efficiently by the example of Jenny McCoy. This is how she started.
McCoy’s simple strategy started with two campaign goals – site traffic & load generation, and conversions. She assigned a 60-40 split ratio of the budget between the two objectives. She started the campaign with qualified audiences including site visitors and subscribers while also using lookalike audiences in order to get to the site traffic. The expert tested only two options in terms of the creative. Such an ad campaign is a wonderful starting point for most startups and small businesses.
#3: Instagram Ads Make a Full-Funnel Impact
Social media ad specialist Jenny McCoy finalizes everything by the statement that Instagram ads (and social media ads in general, too) are capable of making a full-funnel impact. However, social media shouldn’t be acquired as an all-mighty platform. And if you can’t detect any impact on your sales after having run an Instagram ad campaign, look for other impacts. Social media ads can make it really valuable and at the same time easy to amplify impacts.
Nevertheless, it’s also recommended to look far beyond metrics related to Instagram such as likes, follows and post engagement, and reach to site visits, email leads, etc. so that to find the best way an Instagram ad can work for improving your business.
How Much an Instagram Ad Costs
Now, when you have a clear image of how to start an Instagram ad campaign for your new small business, most probably you’d like to find out how that will cost you. Generally, different ads have different prices. Yet, there are average costs set you can orientate on. For instance, the cost-per-click price for an ad on Gram is about $0.70 – $0.80 on average based on the analyses of around $300 million of ad spend. This price can appear higher or lower depending on a number of aspects including the ad placement, the age of the target audience, and the time of the year. Ads are always the cheapest at the beginning of the year and the most expensive in the last quarter.
Types of Ads
Instagram has become a fertile platform for all businesses whether small or mega-popular giant ones. Here you can choose various types of ads to promote your business including Stories ads, photo, video, carousel, and collection ads. No matter which ad format you choose as a creative to include in your ad campaign, it will be woven into your users’ Stories and Feeds so a non-disruptive user experience can be expected. Don’t forget to include an appropriate call-to-action to collect more leads. Here are a few examples of CTAs to use:
- Apply Now;
- Book Now;
- Get Directions;
- Get Showtimes;
- Contact Us;
- Learn More, etc.
Are you a beginner in the sphere of Instagram advertising and can’t make out how to start? We agree that Instagram advertising is an intimidating thing especially if your budget is limited and you have no experience. But, on the other hand, a well-schemed ad campaign can drive impressive results. So, you see that it’s important to learn how to draw an efficient ad strategy for an Instagram account. And InstaBF, a popular Instagram and IGTV provider will share with you three crucial takeaways that promise to be effective irrespective of your budget and business size.
Take Small Tests
Those who are going to run a social campaign for the first time are recommended to implement a small upfront test campaign. Working out around $500 on it you will get a ton of learning to use on bigger campaigns with larger budgets. Besides, you will see if your current assets work or you need to think of others. Let’s see what specialists imply by saying a small test.
- Determine the goals you pursue. Are they to drive purchases or to generate new leads? In the beginning, take up only one goal – the one that’s likely to have the biggest impact on your business.
- After this, pass on figuring out the necessary budget. The bigger your ambitions are, the more money you will to invest, remember this. For instance, such upper-to-mind objectives as video views, impressions, or link clicks, a minimal budget (around $100) and a couple of days will be totally enough. A purchase-focused campaign, meanwhile, will require at least 3x the cost of the product it’s designed for.
- Placements come next. Instagram should be your priority, yet other platforms can bring you the expected results, too. Feel free to test across all available platforms and see which works best for you around the current campaign.
- One of the most significant components of social advertisement campaigns is the audience. Actually, you can test only three types of audiences including custom audiences (site visitors, email list, your followers), lookalike audiences (those who look similar to your existing audience and are built automatically with the first-party data of your account), and interest-based audiences (created from your user data and activity on Instagram).
- And finally, there comes your creative. Specialists recommend testing at least two creative options (a carousel post against a video or image, etc.). You can always start with various copies of CTAs if you feel uncertain.
Simple but Profitable
As numerous tests show simple ad campaigns can be quite profitable if planned and implemented correctly. Surely, there are cases when a complicated media plan is required, but most of all, simple things can work well, too. Just focus on one most valuable goal at first.
If you own a small business or a startup and want to promote it through a social media ad campaign while your primary goal is the purchase, there is a bright example by the founder of social ad agency Good Help Jenny McCoy to follow. What does it include? We shall find out it in our next post. Just stay tuned to InstaBF, your true guide in the giant world called Instagram.
Instagram has been increasing its popularity during the past several years at an incredible speed. And even though this social network hasn’t managed to exceed the number of users that Facebook has, it is definitely ahead of as Facebook, so Twitter and any other remarkable social media in online retailing. Besides the tons of selfies, photos of cute pets or sports cars, this platform is fantastic for independent online store owners. Additionally, Instagram creates a huge army of tastemakers and influencers. The engagement rate that Instagram posts gather is simply mind-blowing! And right now, InstaBF is going to reveal the extent of Instagram’s power on online retailing! But prior to that, we would like to introduce the easiest and quickest way of increasing your Instagram account engagement and your number of followers. We are offering several packages of likes, comments, and followers at an affordable price. All the profiles are real-looking and won’t cause any doubts among your natural followers.
Now, let’s bring out the four main steps that will help you build your own Instagram Empire!
Advertising Products in Lifestyle
The first reason why Instagram retailing business is so effective is that all the products are shown as a part of one’s lifestyle. They look real and promise to bring the same emotions and colors to a customer’s life. So, if you are on your way of building your Instagram retailing empire, sell a lifestyle to sell a product! You needn’t explain what product you are offering, just show your possible customers how the product may affect their life!
Have you ever noticed how motivating Nike’s Instagram feed is? This brand shows its products in motion, worn by as sportsmen so ordinary people while training. That’s why both the photos and products look reliable and real!
Using Your Customer’s Photos
Another reason why Instagram retailers are so successful (so can become you) is that many of them post real pictures of real users. First of all, this is an effective means of saving the brand’s funds. Not all retailers, especially beginners, can afford to hire professional models. And then, this activity reacts with people. If a customer sees the product on another customer, he/she relies on the retailer more and will have an idea how the product will look on him/her.
The popular online Instagram store Nasty Gal, for instance, asks its customers share their photos with the bought product on. After collecting those photos (marked with a certain hashtag), these photos become highlighted on their website. Why not do the same?!
Using Sponsored Posts
We have referred to the efficacy of making use of Instagram influencers in our past posts, yet it’s worth reminding about it right here and right now, too. If you are a starting retailer, apply to less popular influencers with 100k followers who won’t charge thousands of dollars for a post. Be sure, shortly afterward, your online store will be “attacked” by customers wishing to look just like their favorite celebrities do.
If you are planning to take your Instagram online small store to another level, you need to turn from a simple seller into an effective tastemaker! Don’t offer your customers anything you can find around, but concentrate on the taste, style, and fashion. You can also post your own photos in wonderful and what is more important, your unique attire style. Help your customers get inspired by you, too!