If you find yourself reading this, you probably know what Instagram Story Highlights are, and how to add them to your Gram (if not, give this a quick read). So, you’re obviously using IG Highlights to their max capacity and squeezing every lil last drop of value out of them for your brand and business… right?
Building your brand on Instagram can be scary stuff, especially if you’re relatively new to the whole sh’bam and feel about as confident as one of us trying to describe the rules of NRL to someone (which, considering we just had to do a quick Google to double check that NRL was indeed rugby and not some other sporty nonsense, is not at all confident). Luckily for you, we know much more about social media than we do rugby (phew) and have put together a list of some of the most effective ways to make the most of your IG Story Highlights.
Whether you’re an individual or a company, having a Highlight that gives an overview of yourself of your team is a great way to quickly show new visitors what you’re all about. Use this section to showcase your personality, say hi to some team members, and generally give an indication of the purpose of your Instagram page. Don’t be afraid to have fun and let your brand personality shine through to the audience; unless you’re running a more formal show (professional services/corporates) in which case this section could express what the company does with a few neat graphics.
Top Aussie retailer Showpo does this nicely via their Showpo HQ Highlights, which show off the fun office culture and allow you to see where everyone works and what they get up to.
SHOWCASE PRODUCTS & SERVICES
If you’re on Instagram with the ultimate end-goal of selling your products or services, then it would be silly to waste the opportunity of showcasing them front and centre in your IG Highlights. Just think, if it takes a few scrolls of your Instagram profile for potential customers to discover what you’re selling (which it usually does, as you don’t want every single photo on your wall to be screaming ‘sales sales sales’), then having a product/service Highlight is a good way to ensure the opportunity for converting a customer is constantly present.
Get creative! The Australian skincare lords at Go-To (@gotoskincare) use Highlights such as Q&A, Skin Tips, and Reviews to showcase their products and how they work.
Brands on Instagram were previously stuck with only one link option (URL in their bio), which forced a choice for which page to link visitors to, and therefore focus on – a new blog, a new product, the homepage. With an IG Story Highlight for updates and offers, you can maintain the bio link for your website homepage, and use the highlight to give attention to the latest products and services available, or any other kind of updates. Even better, if you have a verified profile (i.e., the elusive blue tick) or a business profile with over 10,000 followers, you can add a link to your stories, with the ‘Swipe Up’ feature.
Anthropologie makes sure no one misses out on the latest product drop via their ‘What’s New?’ Highlight, which is updated weekly with latest styles.
BEHIND THE SCENES
Similar to the Highlights which focus on the ‘About’ the team, behind the scenes shots are a great way to show visitors what you or your company gets up to, and show off your personality. If your page is focused on selling product this might be showing BTS shots of the design or fabrication process. If services are your thing, behind the scenes is a great way to remind customers that there are people behind every company, working to make them happy.
NASA (@nasa) ensures none of their knowledge goes to waste, using behind the scenes footage to share information about new space products and people in the industry.
Want to make sure your customers know exactly how to get the most of your product and service? Get interactive! Make a tutorial! Create a quiz! Show them how using your product and/or service will change their lives for the better! Tutorials and how-to’s are a seriously easy and effective way to please your customers.
The beauty bosses at Glossier (@glossier) give you plenty of reasons to never want to leave their IG page, with makeup tutorials, skin-care 101 how-to, and quizzes so you’ll not only hang around and probably purchase something, but you’ll want to return to keep getting the inside tips.
If you’re a global jetsetter who is building their brand with travel content (you lucky thing!) then IG Highlights are an amazing way to keep track of all the beautiful places you visit. Don’t let your content go to waste, and create a Highlight for each city or country you visit. This means that new visitors can catch up on all the drool-worthy vacays you’ve been on, and existing followers can re-live your travels when planning their own trip. Win win!
Travel duo Selena and Jacob from Find Us Lost (@finduslost) do this really well, also writing blogs for each place and linking them to the relevant Highlight.
Having Highlights front and center of your IG page gives you a great opportunity to cross-post from other channels, such as your blog, website, or other social media channels. Keep followers up to date with Stories focused on new blog posts, social media forums and YouTube videos. Confused about how a blog can be shared via a Story? Post the blog cover image (or related image/graphic) with a text overlay, and a ‘swipe up’ link to the post. If you don’t have the ability to implement the swipe up feature, you can always swap out the link in your bio for your latest blog or channel update!
Popular blogger/influencer Lauren Bullen (of @gypsea_lust) makes sure follows don’t miss a beat, keeping her IG Highlights updated with her latest blog posts and YouTube vids.
- Story Highlights are chronological, meaning you’ll need to be sure to post them in the right order the first time round, as you can’t rearrange them once they’re in the Highlight section.
- Don’t overload! It’s great to be so proud of your brand that you want to show everything off, but have mercy for your followers who are going to be tapping through your Highlights – do they really need to see 100 different stories of you and your puppy? OK maybe puppies were a bad example. You can never have too many puppies. But seriously, keep Highlights concise, and do an audit every month or so to make sure they’re still relevant.
- Make the most of the Highlight’s cover – choose a relevant and beautiful/sleek/snazzy cover image word or icon for that Highlight category. Bonus points if the cover fits in with your overall brand aesthetic. Need some of these? We offer IG Story Highlight Cover packs here.
Now, if THAT didn’t inspire you then we don’t know what will.
Actually, maybe this will.
We got sick of seeing our clients and others struggling to create their own beautiful IG Story Highlight Covers. So, we decided to make it easy for everyone and create our own custom Highlight icons, perfectly sized and ready to go. They’re pre-grouped by categories including Beauty, Fashion, Food, Lifestyle, Occasions, and Business, and available in a range of colours. Check them out here or contact us for custom options here.