Social media platforms are constantly evolving and adding new features that brands can use to strengthen their marketing strategies. In March 2017, Facebook launched a new feature - Facebook Stories - after launching Facebook Live.
The number of monthly active Facebook users has surpassed 2.2 billion while over 1.4 billion people use it daily, and Stories and Messenger comprise of 300 million daily active users. With that kind of potential growth to reach new audiences, Facebook Stories is the next big thing for brands to amuse, impress, and connect with their customers. Before we explain how you can make the most of this feature, let’s take a look at why brands should include Facebook Stories into their marketing strategy.
There’s no doubt that Facebook is one of the best social media platforms for marketing. More than 95% of marketing experts believe that Facebook generates the highest ROI compared to other social platforms.
It’s no wonder, as Facebook provides advanced audience targeting capabilities, audience and persona analysis, and various content formats such as Live video to engage audiences. Adding Facebook Stories to social media marketers’ tool chest offers another great way to connect with audiences in a more authentic way. In Facebook’s F8 2018 conference, Stories were claimed to be one of their most popular services. In fact, Facebook envisages that by 2019, Stories will become the most popular form of social sharing.
This forecasted trend mirrors the reaction we’ve seen in the market since Snapchat launched Stories back in 2013, which quickly became a user-favorite, and was adopted by other social media channels later. Today, many brands use storytelling to promote their services and products because they realize that it’s a much better strategy to win the trust of their customers than through blatant promotion. Storytelling can increase brand awareness, brand visibility, and build stronger relationships with customers. It’s a cost-effective method that can also help to drive greater organic traffic.
Let’s take a look at 5 reasons why Facebook Stories are so important for brands and marketers.
Facebook Stories are visible at the top of the Facebook app. This means that Stories are the first thing a user is likely to notice when they open the app. On the desktop version, Facebook Stories have a prominent position at the top right of your page. Facebook Stories give you an opportunity to showcase your brand with the best location in the app – and on the desktop site. They are an easy and effective way to get the attention of Facebook users.
The Facebook Stories feature offers creative built-in tools such as effects, video masks, and filters. Without investing in any other tools, you can create attractive, compelling, and engaging Stories. There are so many possibilities to help you craft creative Stories to help you stand out and
grab the attention of your audience.
It’s not an easy task to gain the trust of your target audience. Authenticity is a key factor in gaining your audiences’ trust. Facebook Stories allow you to showcase the human side of your brand and win the trust of your community. You can use Facebook Stories to show behind-the-scenes footage or share interesting use cases of your products or services. You can also introduce your employees to your audience so they get to know the talented people behind your organization.
Facebook is a great platform for analyzing and improving your audience targeting, which can help you get better results from your marketing campaigns. Facebook lets you track who is viewing your Facebook Stories. This can help you analyze your audience sets and improve your strategy to target relevant people.
Be it on Snapchat, WhatsApp, or Instagram, the number of Story users increases every day. As of June 2018, Instagram Stories has over 400 million daily users, and there are 450 million daily active users of the WhatsApp Status feature. In just 14 months, Facebook Stories surpassed the 150 million users mark. It’s safe to say that Stories have gained immense popularity and the number of users will only continue to grow. So we strongly suggest that brands start to leverage Facebook Stories for their benefit.
As we mentioned earlier, storytelling can help brands attract customers and gain their trust effectively. Facebook videos can grab the attention of audiences and increase engagement. So storytelling and videos are a powerful combination that makes Facebook Stories immensely popular. Let’s take a look at how you can make the most out of Facebook Stories.
Always remember that an effective social media strategy involves much more than just promoting your brand. You need to think beyond promotion and actively engage your audience. Some people might want to know more about your products, offers, and discounts. However, you can engage them better by helping them get to know your brand on a more personal level.
You can create Stories that can help you connect with your audience. For example, you can create Stories to announce the launch of new products or services. Or you can create Stories to share your achievements or celebrate milestones. You can even share photos and videos of your amazing team and provide your audiences with a sneak-peek into your company culture.
Facebook Stories offer many effects and filters to make your Stories more engaging and eye-catching. You can use them when you create your Stories or when you edit your content before you post to Facebook. You can add filters by simply tapping the effects icon on the bottom left of your screen. You can make your Stories more fun by adding stickers or changing the font.
However, when you use these components, make sure that they align with your brand’s image. Use filters, font, colors, and themes that are relevant and consistent with your brand’s image.For example, UberFacts developed by Kris Sanchez is an app/web service that provides random facts. The facts are well-researched, are extracted from relevant sources, and published on Facebook Stories. As you can see in the screenshot, they use different fun stickers on every post. This makes even more eye-catching and engaging.
Even though you can cross-post your Instagram Stories on Facebook, try not to use the same content on both platforms. Each platform is unique and have their own set of characteristics – and advantages. Some people in your audience might be following you on both the platforms; so publishing the same content on both platforms might be off-putting. It’s better to create a personalized marketing approach through content which is customized, and based on the platform your target audience is on. For example, ModCloth is a very popular American online retailer. The brand is famous for its vintage-styled fashion for women, and they use Facebook’s new Stories feature to their advantage. ModCloth creates unique content to talk about their new clothing collections.
Here you can see their Halloween themed content that share their new spooky collections in a creative way.
A great customer experience goes a long way to boost customer loyalty and retention. So you should create Stories that provide a great experience for your audience. What’s better than videos to leave a lasting impression in the minds of your audience? When done correctly, videos can create a deep impact and enhance the experience of your audience. Facebook Stories give you the ability to produce exceptional videos, experiment with your marketing strategies, or announce an event. You can even feature your speakers or distinguished guests from your events in photos and videos.
Collaborative Stories can be effective and impactful as well. Collaborate with social media influencers or industry experts and upload those videos or images to your Stories. When done correctly, collaborative Stories can increase your brand’s reach significantly. When done correctly, collaborative Stories can increase your brand’s reach significantly.
The content on Facebook Stories is short-lived – it only exists for 24 hours. While some might think that Stories can’t do much to help their marketing strategies, this is what makes Facebook Stories fascinating. With Facebook Stories, you can create a sense of urgency and leverage people’s fear of missing out (#FOMO). Your audience follows your brand on social media because they want to stay up-to-date about any new products and offers. By creating urgency with time-sensitive content, you can successfully get the attention of your customers. You can create Stories with limited-time discounts or offers. You can also organize giveaways or competitions to engage your customers and give them a chance to win.
Are You Ready to Use Facebook Stories? Videos and storytelling are immensely powerful in marketing. They can help you get the attention of your audience and increase engagement. Facebook Stories combine these two powerful tools in a single feature. People love to see the human side of a brand. So, capture a few candid moments, create Stories, and share them with your audience. Use Stories to create urgency and offer limited-time rewards. Through Facebook Stories, you can make your audience a part of your journey, organically.
Understand your audience, create more effective content to engage and grow your customer base, and measure social media’s impact on your business goals.