Instagram stories has been around for a few years now and you can’t open the app without having new stories to watch. Some people seem to have understood what Instagram stories are all about and made it their own, creating interesting series or using it in an entertaining way. I may not be one of those people, but I will try to show in the post below how you can make your Instagram stories better and make something unique.
1. Edit your footage.
A first way to up your IG story game is by making sure you post quality stuff. Instead of snapping a photo and just adding one of the layers, I always edit my photos first. Every photo I post goes through Lightroom on my Mac or is edited on Lightroom Mobile on my phone. This allows me to edit and finetune the image and make it stand out in quality. I’m a little slack when it comes to video, but I try to run that through a video editing app of sorts. Usually I use InShot because I can just throw a filter on it and make some basic changes like brightness and contrast. Using video is the way to go, but I don’t do it nearly enough…
Another way that I try to post better quality stories is by shooting the photos and video on my camera instead of using my phone. I mostly just post when I did something worth mentioning and on those occasions I usually have my camera with me. Afterwards I transfer the files via the built in wifi to my iPhone and I run the files through one of the above mentioned apps.
2. Make sure you have something to tell and tell a story.
There are many things that annoy me when I endlessly swipe from story to story and one of them are stories of people who posts a pictures of him/her having a lunch and then the next post is made 5 hours later and they are somewhere completely different. There is no context as to why or how this person has moved from one place to the other. There is no context as to why he or she is there. There is no connection between any of the posts. The name of the game is Instagram Stories. So please tell one.
Set the scene or let people know what you’re up to. Follow that up with actual posts of what you’re doing and finish with the end result or a final thought. Or just show your day from start to end, but in a cohesive way, focussing on the important parts and leaving the things that no one cares about.
Always ask yourself the question if it’s worth posting and if anyone will care. I used to post the most random shit no one cared about. In July, while on a flying trip in England, I started to post more of a real story (see video above) Since then the numbers of viewers have tripled, going from 100 views to 300 to 400 views per story.
Also make sure to give some context. I often find myself posting photos with only a short caption while I should be posting videos or photos with enough text to explain what I’m showing or what is happening…
3. Use apps
Last, but not least: use apps to make your stories stand out visually.
The most known is Unfold because everybody is using it now. Unfold lets you create stories by providing designs in which you can add your photos and videos. They have a couple of free packs of designs and they also have a couple for sale.
The designs are very minimalistic and make your work pop out. Of course it’s difficult to stand out with an app that everyone is using, but at least, as a photographer, it allows me to post basically any photo the way I want, no matter if they are square, 4×5, 2×3, 9×16, …
In the video below you can see how easy it is to make a story.
Another app I often use is Adobe Spark. Spark is an app and website where you can choose between hundreds of free templates for your social media posts. It allows you to change basically anything and really make the templates your own. I don’t really like them to make a series of posts because it’s a little over the top designwise, but they come in super handy when I want to make a post to promote my blogposts or prints. They really stand out from all other stories. You can also edit videos and webpages with spark and make everything consistent over multiple platforms. All visuals that I make for this blog and for the related sociale media pages are made with Spark.
I can’t guarantee any succes with these 3 tips, but it’s what works for me. I don’t consider my posts as a big succes, but using these tips has allowed me to make better posts and get way more views than before.
Thoughts, comments, questions? Let me know in the comment section below!
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More of my Instagram stories: https://www.instagram.com/gielsweertvaegher/