Social Media MarketingSocial ListeningFacebook MarketingInstagram MarketingTikTok Marketing
Try Mandala For Free

40 Instagram Story Ideas to Boost Engagement [With Examples]

40 Instagram Story Ideas to Boost Engagement [With Examples]

In today’s era of social media, while traditional Instagram posts may be dwindling, there’s still one feature that keeps us hooked: “Instagram Stories.” It’s the go-to spot for catching up with friends or even keeping tabs on that special someone.

What began as a simple way to share fleeting moments has blossomed into a powerhouse tool, boasting over 500 million daily users. From staying connected to exploring new products, Instagram Stories has become the ultimate hub for networking and social commerce.

With this in mind, we’ve curated 40 Instagram Story ideas, from the simplest to the most creative, that brands can use to their advantage.

40 Instagram Story Ideas for 2024

1. Showcase Brand’s Key Offerings

If you’re unsure what to post on your brand’s Instagram Stories, consider showcasing your standout offerings. Just like on other social media platforms, Instagram provides various options to highlight what makes your brand special.

You can feature your top-selling products, new collections, and seasonal specials, or share informative content like infographics or brief videos highlighting product features.

Be sure to save these highlights in one of your Instagram Highlights so they’re easily accessible on your profile for your audience to revisit.

2. Product Promotions

In today’s digital age, people are growing weary of traditional sales tactics, yet they remain enticed by deals and promotions. For brands, striking a balance between showcasing promotions and maintaining a visually appealing Instagram Gallery can be easily achieved with the help of Instagram Stories.

These Stories allow brands to update ad-hoc deals and promotions while not disturbing the visual of your Instagram Gallery — ultimately keeping the audience engaged without bombarding them with overtly sales-focused material.

Moreover, Instagram Stories offers a plethora of features, such as the ‘link’ sticker and ‘get orders’ button, providing viewers with convenient ways to make purchases instantly. Incorporating these features presents excellent opportunities to drive more sales in a short period.

3. Product-Related How-to Content

Let’s explore a more creative approach for our third Instagram Story idea: product-related hacks. Instagram Stories aren’t just about showcasing products; they’re also an opportunity to demonstrate how versatile your products can be in users’ lives. These stories can include how to use your products, practical tips for product maintenance, or inventive hacks for alternative uses.

However, it’s essential to keep your videos concise and straightforward, considering Instagram Stories have a time limit of up to 90 seconds (though 15 seconds is often best). With the platform’s fast-paced nature, it’s easy for viewers to lose interest, so aim to grab their attention quickly.

4. Trendshopping

Instagram Stories offers a platform for real-time updates, providing a valuable opportunity to showcase the freshness of your brand. When trending topics or significant world events stir conversations among social media users, consider joining in and adding your unique twist.

Trendshopping instagram story for business

Take Heinz, for instance, a globally recognized dipping sauce brand. Last year, when the Barbie movie premiered, Heinz swiftly leveraged the buzz by creating a clever graphic featuring “Kenchup & Barbeque” and shared it across various platforms. 

5. Q&A with Followers

While we’ve spilled some cool Instagram story ideas for raising brand awareness and driving sales, it’s crucial to prioritize fostering relationships and engagement with your audience. Instagram Stories provide an excellent avenue for this through the ‘Questions’ sticker. 

This feature allows you to initiate conversations with your audience, inviting them to ask questions about your brand, and products, or simply engage in casual chats.

Hosting Q&A sessions once a month is recommended to keep you and your followers updated with each other. You can also gather these Instagram Stories and create ‘FAQ’ Highlight where audiences can easily find, and that potentially reduces your hard work on Inbox kinds of stuff too.

6. Throwback Photo or Memory

As Ed Sheeran sings, “We keep this love in the photograph,” emphasizing the significance of treasuring memories. Sharing recent or past events on Insta stories provides an excellent opportunity to showcase the enjoyable side of your brand to new followers. Furthermore, candid photos or videos of people at events can spark engagement and interest in your story.

By sharing moments from events, whether recent or from the past, you not only demonstrate the lively nature of your brand but also invite followers to participate in the excitement with a personal touch, humanizing your brand and making it more relatable to your audience.

7. Repost On-feed Content

Introducing one of the simplest yet often overlooked Instagram Stories ideas: showcasing your recent posts. Not all your followers are guaranteed to see your new content, especially with Instagram’s algorithm prioritizing posts from users’ most engaged followers. Utilizing Instagram Stories to highlight your latest post is a great way to increase visibility for your content.

By sharing your recent post on Instagram Stories, you ensure that more of your followers are aware of your latest content. This strategy not only boosts visibility but also encourages engagement as followers swipe up to view the full post.

8. Share Fun Facts About Your Brand

In today’s world, people love indulging in entertainment and TMI (Too Much Information) from others. As a brand utilizing Instagram Stories, you have the perfect opportunity to uncover fun facts about your brand that your typical audience may not have known before. Presenting these facts in a fun and engaging way will keep your audience captivated and eager to watch your Instagram Stories.

9. Be Funny & Engaging With Memes

Not only are people tired of overly salesy content, but they’re also seeking relief from overly serious material. As we mentioned, today’s social media users crave entertainment, which is why platforms like TikTok have become havens from the flood of commercial content on more established platforms.

For Instagram Stories, sharing memes presents a fantastic opportunity to humanize your brand and resonate with consumers. By finding memes that relate to your audience’s lifestyle and adding your product-related twist, you can inject humor and relatability into your brand’s content.

10. Share Good News From Industry

Sharing industry news or the latest updates on your Instagram Stories is a smart idea to demonstrate your expertise and leadership in your field. It’s a simple yet effective way to show your followers that you’re actively engaged in your industry and staying informed about relevant matters. Not only does it keep your audience informed, but it also helps build trust and credibility with them.

You can start by reposting content from reliable sources and adding your brand’s perspective to make it more relevant. Additionally, creating your news updates with proper source citations can further establish your brand as a credible source of industry insights.

11. Repost UGC Content

To keep your audience engaged and turn them into loyal customers, it’s important to share real-life experiences with your products and services from actual customers. By sharing these genuine customer experiences, you not only provide social proof of your brand’s value but also show appreciation for your customers’ support. 

Whether it’s posts featuring your branded hashtags that customers shared for reviews or tagging your Instagram handle directly in Stories, you can easily repost them with a heartfelt thank-you message. This approach also complements your Instagram Highlights dedicated to showcasing user-generated content (UGC).

12. Share Brand’s Favourite Playlists

Music has a special way of bringing people together and reminding us of our humanity. That’s why incorporating music into your Instagram Stories is a great idea to show the human side of your brand and connect with your audience. This personal touch adds a lifestyle element to your content, making it more relatable and engaging for your audience.

With Instagram Stories, you can easily add music to your posts, whether it’s sharing your favorite playlists or creating a “Song of Today’s Mood” that reflects the vibe of your brand, products, or team.

13. Show Off Your Real-life Working Scenarios

Don’t hesitate to give your audience a peek behind the curtain with your Instagram Stories—it’s another straightforward yet effective way to humanize your brand. The next Instagram Story idea suitable for businesses of all sizes is sharing glimpses of your working environment. 

This approach provides a behind-the-scenes look into your daily operations, showcasing your company’s culture. By featuring your teammates, you demonstrate that your company values its employees while reflecting your brand’s innovation and freshness through your workspace. Ultimately, this helps shape customers’ perceptions of your products or services.

14. Daily Recipes

For FMCG brands, this idea should be noticed. Customers don’t just buy your products or follow your Instagram for promotions or the aesthetics of product launches. You can also share engaging content like “daily recipes” featuring your products. 

These recipes can be simple cooking ideas or detailed videos demonstrating how to use your products in cooking. Everyone enjoys watching cooking videos, so engagement with these Stories is practically guaranteed!

Here’s an example from Chobani, the popular American yogurt brand, that’s really acing it on social media. They regularly share recipe ideas in simple infographic images and detailed reels on their Instagram account, making it fun for consumers to use their products!

15. Promote Your Instagram Reels

When you post Reels, it can sometimes be tricky for your audience to find them since they’re mixed in with regular Instagram posts. But there’s a simple way to make them more visible: share them on your Instagram Stories.

Instagram Stories makes it easy to share Reels. You can add stickers, text, and other elements to introduce and invite people to watch. You can even include a link to encourage viewers to take action.

By using Instagram Stories to promote your Reels, you can increase visibility and engagement, leading to more views and interactions. Ultimately, when your Views get more engagement, Instagram algorithms prioritize your content and push for further viral visibility as well!

16. Promote Upcoming Live Stream

Not just Reels or regular Instagram posts, but events like ‘Live Streams’ need a good number of viewers to succeed. When you have an upcoming live stream on platforms like Instagram LIVE, Facebook, or TikTok, share it on your Instagram Story.

Informing your audience in advance through Instagram Stories helps create anticipation and excitement. This ensures more people are aware of the live stream and ready to tune in when it starts.

17. Teaser of Product Launch

Instagram Stories are perfect for sharing exciting news, such as a new product launch. Giving your followers, especially your loyal supporters, a heads-up beforehand can build anticipation and excitement. It’s also a good idea to keep reminding your audience about the upcoming launch. You can do this by posting a series of teaser IG stories or sharing sneak peeks of the new product. Additionally, don’t forget to cross-promote on other platforms to maximize reach and engage followers from different platforms too.

18. Share About Your Membership Programs

When people start following your Instagram account, it shows they’re interested and might be ready to become customers. But not everyone knows about your membership program. Sharing details about your membership program via Instagram Stories, along with a link to register, is a good way to attract more members.

Let your followers know about the benefits they’ll get and create a sense of urgency to encourage quick sign-ups. This could include limited-time offers or exclusive perks for early subscribers.

19. Exclusive Discounted Codes for Instagram Followers

Let the world know that following your brand on Instagram comes with exclusive perks! Give out unique discount codes to your followers, making them feel valued and special. This strategy not only fosters brand loyalty but also makes conversion easier.

Instagram Stories is an excellent platform to start with. Its highly visible format and 24-hour shelf life create a sense of urgency and FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) among users.

20. Showcase Brand’s Values & Philosophy

In 2024, branding is more than just logos and colors. Instagram Stories are a great way to ensure your audience remembers your brand’s values and offerings, setting you apart from competitors. For this type of content, creating visually engaging videos or aesthetically pleasing story cards is recommended to keep people interested in your brand.

By using Instagram Stories to showcase your brand’s values and offerings in a visually appealing way, you can effectively communicate your message and leave a lasting impression on your audience. This can strengthen brand recognition and loyalty in a competitive market.

Showing brand's value on IG stories

21. Brand’s Milestones

When good things happen, it’s important to share the joy. Whether it’s an employee getting promoted, celebrating a company anniversary, receiving an award, or expanding into a new market, share these milestones with your followers on Instagram Stories. 

This not only highlights your achievements but also fosters a sense of community and appreciation among your audience. Don’t forget to acknowledge the people who contributed to your success, including stakeholders, customers, and especially your employees.

22. Highlight the Customer’s Success

If you run a B2B business, it’s vital to regularly showcase customer success stories or testimonials. These stories, featuring customer quotes, and ratings, and presented as a series of testimonials for each product or service line, help attract new leads and maintain trust among existing customers.

By sharing real-life experiences and feedback from satisfied customers, you validate the effectiveness of your offerings and provide valuable insights to potential customers. This builds credibility and trust, making it easier for new audiences to learn about your brand and make informed decisions.

23. Quiz Your Audiences

When it comes to social media, as mentioned earlier, the main goal is to build engagement. Fortunately, Instagram Stories provides the ‘Quiz’ feature, allowing creators to ask audiences multiple-choice questions. Audiences can immediately see if their answer is correct.

Using quizzes on Instagram Stories is another idea we strongly recommend, especially if you’re aiming to increase awareness and affinity for your products. This can encourage brand recognition and affinity among your followers through easy and fun experiences.

24. Run A Poll 

Another neat feature on Instagram Stories to boost your brand engagement is the ‘Poll’ sticker. It’s a fun tool that lets you ask your followers for their opinions or votes on different things.

Successful brands today are all about listening to their customers. Whether it’s about launching new products, teaming up with others, organizing events, or just getting feedback for improvement, being in tune with your audience is important. Using the Poll sticker is an easy and enjoyable way to encourage interaction and make your followers feel heard.

You can also use polls for lighter topics, like asking which product line your followers prefer. It adds a playful touch to your brand while giving you useful insights into what your audience likes.

25. Job Opportunities 

Using Instagram Stories is a smart way to spread the word about your upcoming job openings. Since most of your Instagram Story viewers are already interested in your brand, it’s a great platform to reach potential candidates.

To make it easy for people to apply, include a direct link to the job description and application page. This way, interested folks can apply without any hassle. 

Make sure your Instagram Stories are shareable so that your followers can pass along the opportunity to potential referrals too.

26. Promote Affiliated Content

Affiliate marketing has become a popular way for brands and content creators to earn income. Using Instagram Stories to promote affiliate content benefits both parties leveraging the authenticity of content creators to connect with their audience and boost sales.

Creators often provide a more genuine perspective on products compared to brand-generated content. Their posts reflect real-life experiences, which builds trust and credibility among followers.

27. Brand’s Announcement 

Announcing important updates for brands is key, but it can disrupt the nice look of an Instagram feed if it’s too long. Instagram Stories provides a solution by offering a space to share announcements without cluttering the main feed.

You can post announcements on Instagram Stories and save them to your highlights for future reference if needed. This way, you can keep your main feed clean while still sharing important information with your followers.

28. Showcase Brand Partnership

Don’t forget to share your exciting brand collaborations and partnerships with your audience! Whether it’s through fun videos or a series of posts showcasing your collaborations, keep your followers in the loop by regularly posting on your Instagram Stories.

And if you’re hosting collaborative giveaways, Instagram Stories are the perfect place to promote them. Use the available tools to make your giveaway details clear and appealing, encouraging more people to join in on the fun.

29. Influencer Takeovers

Influencer takeovers are another engaging idea to jazz up your Instagram Story and keep your followers interested. Although this trend started during COVID-19, it’s now super popular as influencers gain more influence on social media.

Look for an influencer whose followers vibe with your brand. Let them take charge of your Instagram Stories for a day, giving your audience a sneak peek into their life while using your products. This offers a fresh angle and shows your brand through the influencer’s eyes.

For example, a beauty blogger could take over a cosmetic brand’s account to share her “Get Ready With Me” routine using their products. It’s not only exciting but also creates genuine connections with your audience.

30. Seasonal Content

In industries where holidays drive big sales, your brand needs to create content that people can relate to. This applies to Instagram Stories and other social media platforms too. Your seasonal posts should show how your product or service fits into people’s lives, and maybe offer a special deal to attract customers.

For instance, if you have an online store, it’s a good idea to make posts for major holidays like Amazon Prime Day or Black Friday. These occasions let you connect with your audience in a fun way while showcasing what your brand is all about. By jumping into the holiday excitement, you can increase sales and make customers feel more connected to your brand.

31. Link to the Main Official Website or Other Sales Channels

Remember to keep driving traffic to your main website—it’s where most lead generation and conversions happen. On Instagram Stories, you can easily add link stickers that guide users to your website. This feature offers various options, whether you want to boost sales, gather leads through forms, or simply introduce your new website to your audience in a visually appealing way.

32. This or That

Expanding on the Instagram idea of running polls, ‘This or That’ is another fun activity many brands, especially in beauty or fashion, use to engage their followers. Unlike quizzes, there are no right or wrong answers here—just a chance to interact and build a closer bond with your audience.

Pro Tip: Make your ‘This or That’ content even more exciting by turning it into a giveaway. Have your followers guess which collection your brand will launch new products from, and randomly select winners from those who guessed correctly. It’s a great way to encourage participation and reward your followers.

33. Sharable Bingo

You might have noticed Instagram’s ‘Add Yours’ sticker feature, allowing users to share templates on Stories with their own content. 

For brands on social media, this presents a pleasant opportunity to get noticed. One idea is to create fun bingos that match your audience’s interests and feature your products—or make all the choices about your products. 

To keep things exciting, consider offering giveaways or rewards like coupon discounts to encourage people to join in, especially since some users may not be as into branded content.

34. Advertise Your Instagram Stories

If your brand’s Instagram account has only a few followers and you’re not reaching enough people, consider boosting your Instagram Stories with paid advertising. With over 500 million daily active users, it’s a great way to get noticed.

Instagram offers different options for boosting ads, like Reach, Traffic, Profile Visits, and Video Views. You can do this right in the Instagram app or use Meta’s Ads Manager for advanced options. Unlike regular Instagram Stories, paid ads let you choose how long they run, who sees them, and what actions people can take.

However, there are two things to remember when running Instagram Story Ads: First, you can’t use stickers, tools, or music like you can in regular Stories. And second, with many advertisers now using Instagram Ads, your budget will affect how many people see your ad.

35. Showcase Brand Story Videos

In the world of social media, especially on platforms like Instagram, brand story videos can grab people’s attention and spread awareness, almost like TV commercials during popular shows. We believe it’s important for brands to invest in quality videos that show what makes them different and how they’re making strides in their industry. When sharing your brand story videos, make sure they’re in a 9:16 ratio for the best visual impact.

36. Encourage Users’ Feedback

Besides neat tools like polls, Instagram Stories also let us ask open-ended questions. Audiences can respond directly using the same Question Sticker feature we talked about with the Q&A ideas. It’s a great way to gather detailed feedback. Plus, you can reply to each answer via direct message, which fosters more conversation. This not only engages your audience but also helps your customer support team spot issues more efficiently than cold calling.

37. Countdown Sticker

The countdown sticker on Instagram Stories is a refreshing feature we haven’t touched on yet—as it’s great for building anticipation around your brand’s upcoming projects or new releases. With the sticker, you can set a countdown for the big day, which adds a sense of excitement and get your audience engaged and talking. To add up your creative juices, try to pair your countdown with teaser images or even fun games to keep the buzz going until the event.

38. Add Location Tag

For businesses with shops or venues, getting online followers to come to your place is key, just like drawing in folks who walk by. On Instagram Stories, you can tag your location, just like in regular posts. This lets people check out what’s happening at your spot with a simple click. 

Especially for restaurants or services, using location tags often helps potential customers get a feel for what you offer, nudging them to drop by.

39. Virtual Tour Your Place

Here’s another neat way to promote your location on Instagram Stories: the “virtual tour.” This feature lets your followers see all your Stories before moving on, making it great for showing off your place’s special spots. 

You can create a series of virtual tours, highlighting each unique spot, and add location tags so people can see different perspectives from others. This interactive approach not only grabs followers’ attention but also gives them a sneak peek into what makes your location special, possibly making them want to visit.

40. Share Real Experiences from Real-time Customers

Besides sharing curated visuals and user-generated content, brands can also capture real-time customer experiences themselves. Instagram Stories is an ideal platform for showcasing these moments. For example, you can film the lively atmosphere of your restaurant during busy hours, capture influencers or notable customers visiting, or highlight your team providing excellent service. Just remember to ask for permission before filming individuals for online media and ensure you have their consent.

Boost More Views and Engagement Today!

As you’ve reached this point, you may now realize the vast potential of Instagram Stories. They offer more opportunities for brands to enhance reach and visibility compared to other Instagram formats. Instagram Stories are easier to appear at the top of users’ feeds, providing a prime opportunity for engagement.

We hope our 40 Instagram Story ideas will inspire your creative juices for upcoming content plans!

Mandala Free Trial
Subscribe to our Free Marketing Content

We will email you the new content on a weekly basis.

This email is already subscribe.

Related Articles