How to sell with Instagram Stories

How to sell with Instagram Stories

In March 2020, many businesses began to “cover”. Catering has suffered greatly, and since I love and know well about coffee, I am familiar with some coffee shop owners and roasters. They turned to me to recommend them “how to develop Instagram and attract real customers.”

Since the recommendations were repeated several times, I decided to share them with you. I am sure these recommendations will perfectly fit into other niches as well.

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Plan when Stories come out

Instagram Stories is the territory of “fast” content. Photos and fifteen-second clips are easy to create, even easier to watch, and after 24 hours they will self-delete.

However, this does not mean that Stories do not need a content plan. It is enough to understand what and when you will publish, you will also have to make a commitment to keep the rhythm of the posting.

The rhythm of posting. Publishing posts three times a week is more useful than publishing 12 posts in 6 days. It has been noticed that accounts that practice uniform posting gain more account reach in a month and they have a larger core of loyal audience. However, just posting uniformly is not enough, what you post should be interesting enough for your subscribers.

The core of a loyal audience is a group of subscribers who constantly follow your content. It is believed that these are the most loyal subscribers who help distribute content, they constantly watch Stories, like, comment.

Team synchronization. When several people are working on an account: targeting specialist, sales manager, content manager, the content plan helps to coordinate actions. For example, the targeting specialist prepares in advance for the promotion of posts, because he knows what is coming out and when.

Feedback. A content plan helps you predict feedback and understand what your audience really needs. Suppose we have nothing, and we make the assumption that subscribers will like the Stories “tour of the factory”, “our team”, “unboxing”, each heading is assigned a certain day of the week and at the end of the month, after everything planned has been published, study which days were the best targets.


The content plan can look differently, I prefer google tables. Understandable. Simple. You can work remotely.

Plan what Stories will come out

An important task of the content plan is to regulate the categories that appear in the account. There are no rules, you can test different ideas, formats, attachments and interactions.

Formats: photo, video, Story in author mode, boomerang, stop motion, cinemagraph. Content can be created in advance and then published when you see fit or by scheduling publications in SMMplanner.

Headings are a classification of content according to meaning, many divide the content “by products”, in the case of a coffee shop it will be “drinks that are in the coffee shop”, “what can be ordered and bought at home”, “desserts that are in a coffee shop ”and so on.

For each account, depending on the audience, promotion goals, you need to develop your own headings, however, there are universal headings from which you can start: selling content, reputational, humorous.

I recommend starting with a content plan: my products; frequent questions from clients; reviews; themed jokes. Add variety to each heading with the help of formats: photo, video review, unboxing, talking head. Once you’ve got your hands on it, you can test other categories and formats.

The more people are involved in creating content for the community, the more detailed and detailed you should be dealing with the regulations, content formats and rules by which you publish this content.

Рубрики A document for SMM professionals so that we do not confuse names when discussing a content plan. A similar document can be given along with the TK to freelancers to get posts with fewer errors

I recommend posting videos more often

In my experience, videos in Stories are more interesting. This content is more dynamic, so viewers trust it more. Long videos that are uploaded to IGTV and repost in Stories look good. For all videos, it is useful to make subtitles, or at least attach a text explaining what you are talking about in the video, because not everyone watches stories with sound.

You can try these video formats:

  • Backstages – what your work looks like “behind the scenes”. What does the workplace look like, how do suppliers work, how are products created? The coffee shop will show how desserts are prepared in the kitchen or how the roasting workshop works.
  • Q&A – shortly answer popular questions. Just talk to your clients and put together on a separate list what they ask. If many people ask “How to properly prepare coffee in cezve? Do I need to lift my hat three times? ”, Shoot a video“ How we cook in a coffee shop and why so. ”
  • Interview with the team, blitz polls. Take the barista on shift and write down the answers to 5 prepared questions, 3 seconds each for a question and an answer.
  • How it’s done – Interview your production and show “how it’s done”. This format works well with photo slideshows if you’re not ready to shoot video.
  • Tips from the master – in format it looks like an interview or a blitz, that is, you record a “talking head”, but this time you give life hacks, tips, and recommendations on how to handle your product.

видео From left to right: video “how we learn” from the coffee shop “Lobotryasy”, the photo “how much does coffee cost” from the roasting brew roaster and “we have delivery” from the coffee shop ” Birdie “

People buy from people, and these videos allow you to create an image for your brand. Now it is not just a “coffee house around the corner”, but “a coffee house where Alice and Ibrahim work”.

Include more characters in the Story: employees, management, suppliers, opinion leaders and, of course, customers.

Interact with influencers

Influencers is a capacious word for bloggers and opinion leaders.

Bloggers are big, with millions of subscribers, there are very small ones. There are bloggers who seem small. For example, there is @ coffee3orro , baristas are subscribed to it, such an account for some advertisers is much more valuable than others. There are opinion leaders – these are people who may have few subscribers, but they influence the opinion of the masses, for example, many know pop stars, but only a few know the producers, those who created these stars, but everything that the producer says on Instagram will be “heard” all the stars, and then ordinary people.

The scheme is as follows – find an influencer and come up with a suitable interaction: “direct advertising”, “collaboration”, “mutual PR”, “double broadcast, and then answer questions in stories.”

  • Direct advertising – the influencer makes content that talks about your product. For example, he can go to a coffee shop and make a whole story out of it.
  • Collaboration – most often this means co-creation of content, for example, a coffee shop together with an influencer creates a series of videos “how to make cold drinks from coffee”.
  • Mutual PR – you find an influencer who wants to develop his page on Instagram, agree with him that he makes a publication about you, and you about him. Usually they try to find an influencer with similar reach and mutual PR is done to attract subscribers.

The effectiveness of such interaction depends on many factors:

  • Reach – obviously, the more people see your interaction, the more people will take the targeted action, such as subscribing or buying.
  • The quality of the audience – “who exactly” sees your ad is of great importance, for a small Voronezh coffee shop, there is no need to buy an ad from a well-known All-Russian blogger if there are a couple of hundred people among all the subscribers from Voronezh.
  • Audience loyalty – often bloggers’ ads are perceived as a blogger’s recommendation, if the audience believes the blogger, then they will pay attention to advertising, if the influencer makes ads for different coffee houses every day and says “this is the best coffee house in the world, now I will go here! ” – there is much less trust in him.
  • Interaction quality – I mean here all sorts of things that have an impact on ad conversion. One audience should be told “this is the best coffee in the world”, the other “from a mug of this coffee, sleepiness disappeared and I wanted to work for 6 hours in a row!”.

Пример работы с блогерами On the left – the brand reminds of the drawing, in order to attract more participants to the competition, the competition was promoted by influencers. On the right, an influencer is collaborating with a coffee shop using a low-value prize as a prize.

Sometimes prizes are involved in contests where you need to subscribe to an account. These are people who are practically professionally involved in participating in contests, they create dozens of fake accounts to increase their chances, the prizes they win are then sold on Avito. To make fewer prizes participate in your contests, use prizes with little value, but at the same time significant for the target audience, or something that does not make sense to sell – merchandise, with a personal signature, for example.

Instagram Stories Stickers

Stickers are tools for creating interactive content in Stories. They can be used to build a loyal audience core and to attract new audiences to your account. Let’s look at how to do this using polls, a question, a slider, and a quiz.

Our task is to get a reaction from the viewer using stickers – to press the sticker button, write from Stories to direct, transfer it to our profile, scroll back to the Stories slide. We need to increase the number of reactions and the frequency of reactions from the same people. In this case, Instagram receives a signal “this segment of people is interested in this kind of content, it is necessary to show this content to similar people.”

Interactive Stickers

Interactive sticker with two buttons. Usually they are used as a monosyllabic yes-or-no vote, even this is better than no stickers at all.

интерактивные стикеры Stickers can be rotated, emoji, ambient space to make stickers more interesting Use polls to adjust content plan or learn subscribers’ opinion on your content

In fact, all stickers can be used in about the same way. With the help of a sticker slider, you can find out the opinion of subscribers about the quality of content, joke, find out memes, and so on.

пишу лично

Instagram stores the responses, so you can see who and how responded to your survey and use that information. I like to use a two-stage scheme of “engagement → target action”. First, I create a slide with a survey, in which I segment the viewers of Stories into two parts, the first one needs my product, the second does not need it, the second slide I give a discount on the product or open the answers and write to them personally.

Putting together a slide Stories, in which I propose to give a promotional code as a gift, for those who answer “need” – I will write personally

In these articles for more ideas on how to use interactive stickers:

Spread Stories

There is no point in creating interesting Stories and planning content in them if only a few people see them. Take care of the promotion

Targeted advertising. Launched from Instagram, if you have a business account or from a Facebook business manager, in the latter, advertising can be configured more precisely and in more detail.

You can use various schemes to promote your products:

  • Promote existing content to an automated audience – it’s useful to additionally remind subscribers about your products.
  • first promote the video to a potential audience, and then launch special ads for those who watched this video for more than half, this is how it turns out to attract customers.

Influencers . Typically used to get more followers, I recommend starting with this, but remember that they can be used to get customers right away.

Guerrilla methods of promotion. I like to use the term “guerrilla”, many use the same meaning “budget-free” methods. These are methods that help spread the content you make through other means, using the features of Instagram or coming up with wow ideas:

  • Encouraging reposts – people share some content categories more often than others, usually jokes, life hacks, instructions, promotional codes, creating such content you get additional coverage due to reposts. Effectiveness depends on understanding “what the audience is sharing with friends.”
  • Massfollowing, massliking, masslooking, mass commenting, etc. – can be manual or automated, we simulate our own activity in order to attract the attention of a potential audience. The effectiveness depends on the nuances of the settings and the selected audience.
  • Hashtags – some people use Instagram when they are trying to find something, if you attach hashtags to posts that are looking for something, there is a chance to attract an audience. Effectiveness depends on understanding “what they are looking for” and on the relevance of the selected hashtag to your content.


Instagram is an excellent social network with a lot of people, and where there are a lot of people, there is always an opportunity to promote your business.

  1. Plan what content you will publish and track your post performance.
  2. Use delayed posting to channel your energy and energy into more useful things.
  3. Use various stickers to engage your audience in viewing content on a page or following a subscription.
  4. Save the best Stories to albums.
  5. Spread your Stories to target audiences.

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