How to Use Instagram Stories to Sell Products or Services

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Instagram Stories is one of the best tools at the moment to get customers and clients. So how to use Instagram Stories to sell?

If you’re wondering how to make sales with them, you’re on the right article. I’m going to tell you what you have to do to promote your service/online course/product through Instagram Stories.

Difference between Posts and Stories

How should the content you post in Stories differ from the content you post on your grid?

There’s always some confusion on the way to use Posts and Stories on Instagram. When should I publish on my newsfeed? And what should I post on Stories instead?

I had this same question when I started using Instagram for my business, and the answer lies in the distinct characteristics of posts and stories.

Posts are your virtual portfolio. They’re the first content that people will see once they follow you, and for this reason, they should have a consistent aesthetic (i.e. they use the same brand fonts and colors).

Stories instead are volatile content, even if Instagram now gives you the possibility to save them.

They’re more about short, lighter content that you can share and forget.

Ideally, you should use your posts to share cured content in line with your business industry. On the other side, you should use stories to show the behind your business’s scenes and make flash sales. Since stories last 24 hours before disappearing, they’re ideal for creating urgency and scarcity.

How to find the right hashtags

There is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to do it, but I suggest you create stories without stressing too much about them. Spend more time on your posts, using a coherent style and choosing the right hashtags.

Talking about hashtags, if you struggle to find the right ones that bring new views to your posts, I suggest you use a tool called Flick.

It has many features to empower your Instagram account. Still, the one I love the most is writing a keyword and letting the tool find for you related keywords with low, medium, and high competition.

If you want to try it, you can start a 7-day trial with Flick clicking here. That will be enough to understand if it’s useful for you or not.

What makes an engaging Instagram Story?

Not many people on Instagram understand the real meaning of stories, and the clue is in the name: Story.

A story has a narrative thread, with a beginning, a middle, and an end.

One of the false assumptions about a story on Instagram is that it’s an individual piece of a 15-second video. Although you can create an engaging video of 15 seconds, Stories work a lot better if they include “chapters”.

And obviously, a good story needs a catchy beginning, or people will skip it. I suggest you start with a question that tackles your audience’s problem and produces a conversation with them.

For example, I can ask, “Are you thinking of starting an online business in 2021?” or “Are you interested in affiliate marketing to generate side revenue?”.

You can use the question, poll, or quiz function but keep it simple. If people have to think too hard, they’ll be far less likely to respond.

If our goal is to sell a product or a service, use these questions to see who’s interested in them.

How to sell in your Instagram Stories

Suppose I create a poll with the question “Are you interested in affiliate marketing to generate side revenue?”. In that case, it’s because I want to see who could be interested in my online course “The affiliate marketing academy”.

Most of the people who click on “Yes” on the poll are probably interested in my course. 

Marketing is all about starting conversations with your viewers about their problem, and show them how you can fix it. 

Polls on Instagram stories are a great tool to identify who could find your product/service worthwhile cause they already have a desire for it.

When I have a good list of the people who clicked on “YES” in my Instagram poll, I can send them a DM, informing them that I have a product related to the question.

And if I want to grow your sales, I can offer a coupon code for my product.

In case you have more than 10k subs or a verified account, you can use the swipe up feature in the following chapter, sending followers to your sale page.

That is just one way to use stories to identify your potential clients and start a conversation. But the more you use stories as a narrative object, the best results you’ll get.

If you use a few chapters to create curiosity and present your poll question, you’ll see a better interaction.

How to automate your pitch on Instagram Stories

Although Stories disappear in 24 hours, you can save them in the highlights section. The highlights will be visible right below your profile picture and bio.

If, for example, you have testimonials from clients who already bought from you, you can add them to stories and then save them in the highlights.

Another way is to film a couple of chapters where you introduce a problem, and then you explain the solution through your product or service. You’ll soon realize how your viewers will be the ones sending you a private message to have more info about what you offer.

Stories are flexible tools that allow you to pitch smartly, without being too pushy. If you can create curiosity around your offer, you’re not selling anymore. You’re advising your viewers about a new possibility.

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