Guest Post By John Haydon
Instagram Stories create an extra layer of visibility for your nonprofit – whenever you want that visibility.
Like Snapchat and Messenger Stories, Instagram Stories last for 24 hours. And like Snapchat, stories are told in a series of pictures and videos.
Users who’ve published Instagram Stories within the past 24 hours appear at the very top of the home screen (as shown below). Tapping on a user allows you to see their recent stories.
Users with recent Instagram Stories appear at the very top of the app home screen.
What are the benefits of Instagram Stories for nonprofit communications and fundraising?
Let’s dig in!
1. Get on the marquee with Instagram Stories
When you publish a story your profile picture appears at the top of the home screen (as shown above), giving your brand extra visibility. Once your stories expire (after 24 hours), your brand will no longer appear in the marquee.
In other words, the simple act of publishing Instagram Stories creates more visibility your brand!
2. Content with an expiration date:
Before Snapchat, social media content was assumed to be permanent on the Internet. In fact, Facebook updates, Twitter tweets, and Instagram posts all have a unique URL called a permalink – a permanent link to a piece of content. No expiration date.
But with Instagram and Snapchat stories, social conversations can have a shelf-life. An expiration date helps you:
- Create a sense of urgency: If your people are going to act, they have to act now. The story won’t be there tomorrow.
- Get and keep their attention: The stories only last seconds, pay attention, or you will miss out.
- Inject more “human” into your brand: People seek to engage with people, not brands. Brands are fiction, people are everything. Instagram Stories allow you show supporters the people behind your brand – immediate, transparent, and spontaneous.
3. Highlight stories for longer-term engagement:
Highlights is a feature for business accounts that lets you feature sets of Instagram Stories on your profile page (as shown below). When users tap you a specific highlight icon, they are able to see each story within that highlight.
For example, when users tap NEA’s “Baby Fish” highlight, they can view hand-picked stories from their archive. Users can also learn about visiting and becoming a member by view the “Visitors” highlight.
Note: To add stories to highlights you must have “Save to Archive” activated within your Instagram Story Settings.
5 Creative Examples of Nonprofit Instagram Stories
Want inspiration? Check out how these nonprofits are using Instagram Stories in strategically creative ways.
1. Do Something
Do Something engages users in a creative and fun mini-campaigns to grow and engage their mobile supporter base.
2. Stand Up To Cancer
Stand Up To Cancer invited Instagram followers to a live Q&A with Sharon Jones to discuss her new documentary.
PETA invited Instagram followers behind the scenes to film a new PSA about the dangers of leaving your dog in a hot car.
4. Pencils of Promise
Pencils of Promise invites followers to tap through a series of pictures that promote #BacktoSchool. Fun, interactive, and creative!
5. Monterey Bay Aquarium
Monterey Bay Aquarium entertains with cool facts and bad puns… Hovercraft!
What other creative Instagram Stories have you seen? Share in the comments.
This post originally appeared on John Haydon.com and we reprinted it with permission.
John is one of the most sought-after digital marketing experts for nonprofits and charities. He has helped hundreds of nonprofits realize their best marketing and fundraising results. John has spoken at the Nonprofit Technology Conference, New England Federation of Human Societies, New Media Expo, BBCon, Social Media 4 Nonprofits, AFP New Jersey, and various regional conferences throughout the United States and Canada. He is is the author of Facebook Marketing for Dummies and Facebook Marketing All-In-One, and is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post, Social Media Examiner, Social Media Today, and npEngage.