How To Create Effective Instagram Stories To Promote Your Brand

Macleay Graduate Amelia Dingle shares tips and tricks on how to create effective Instagram stories to promote your brand. 

Instagram stories are a powerful way to cultivate and nurture relationships with your followers.  However, with a million options of how to fill that story space it can often be overwhelming. 

Just as with other media space, we first need to determine who we’re talking to, when we’re talking to them, where we’re talking to them, why we’re talking to them and what we want them to do.  Let’s break that down…



Macleay Instagram story in the making.


Who we’re talking to

Who are our customers?  What do they have in common? What are their pain points, their wants and their needs? These are the people we’re creating our stories for. It sounds obvious but it can be so easy to get caught up with the creative side and forget. Analytics and research tools help us with these insights.


When we’re talking to them

What time of day are your followers viewing your posts?  It’s important to focus on the followers who are potential customers. If the brand is a bricks and mortar store in Sydney then our focus is on when the Sydney followers are active on social media.

When we have determined when our followers are viewing our stories we then look at what they are doing while they are viewing it. Are they traveling on public transport to work?  Are they laying in bed first thing in the morning while their partner is asleep next to them? If that is the case then we would look at posting content without sound or with subtitles. Simple insights like these will make your posts instantly more effective.


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Where we’re talking to them

Do our followers actually watch Instagram stories? If they’re not, even the most beautiful creatives won’t be effective. So we would look at repurposing the creative for another medium where the target audience will see it.


Why we’re talking to them

What is the objective of this post? Is it to give insight into the brand and build relationship? Is it to promote a new product or service? Does it inform followers about a feature or benefit? Does it give insight into how a product is made?


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What do we want them to do?

Do we want them to simply view the story or should they respond in some way? If the post is to inform or give insight they may only need to view the Instagram story. Other times we may want them to click a link, vote, reply or share. Polls, questions, quizzes and emoji-sliders are a great way to encourage interaction.


When we have determined the answers to these five questions we have the perfect foundation and everything else begins to fall into place. Que the creative! These are some of my favourite apps to help give your Instagram Stories that creative pop:



Unfold is perfect for giving stories a cohesive look; adding multiple images/videos, text and that neat creative touch with minimal effort. There’s also an option to view a series of stories within the app to see how they all look together.





There’s not always time to colour correct images and videos in Photoshop or Lightroom on the go. A quick edit in Colourtone is a wonderful way to keep a cohesive colour palette across a series of images in a matter of minutes.


Colour Tone-15


Huji Cam

If we’re real, sometimes we need to capture a moment when the lighting is far from perfect. In these situations I’ve found this film look by Huji Cam to be a lifesaver!


Huji Cam-17



When photos and video are getting a bit boring, DSCO mode on VSCO is a fun and aesthetic way to capture content. It’s also great for a quick edit or colour correction.




Advertising and Digital Media at Macleay College

Every product, service, organisation and social cause needs talented people to create effective strategic communications to get their message to their audience.

Macleay College’s Advertising and Media courses teach students how to develop and manage creative campaigns across a range of job roles and mediums from print, to TV, radio, podcasting, online, digital and social media.  

Macleay College’s Digital Media courses train students to create content such as digital photos, online videos, digital marketing campaigns, social media projects, interactive websites and mobile apps for a range of digital and social media platforms.

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