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Instagram Stories 10 tips to get the best out of using feature

Use these few handouts to get the best out of telling your story and feeding it to as many eyeballs as possible.

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Instagram stories are a cool way to sell your brand and have fun at it too. play

Instagram stories are a cool way to sell your brand and have fun at it too.


Instagram stories have become a trendy way to share random and planned moments with your audience.

Many are still trying to get a grasp of the feature, some for the fun of it and others for work.

These tips as inspired by a photojournalist’s Instagram stories playbook should help you be better at using the photo and video sharing feature.


Take images and videos on vertical mode

Shooting your videos or taking shots of images on horizontal mode could easily become a hassle for your followers when they scroll through their feeds.

So except it’s going to be looking super attractive in horizontal mode, stick to the vertical format when recording videos and taking photo shots.

Position your captions wisely

This is almost a no-brainer, you should place your photo/video captions where it doesn’t obstruct the picture or video story. Don’t place your caption too high or too low, it may get cut off in Instagram’s playback.  And you really don’t need to put captions in all your clips, let the video and photos do the talking in a sequential order.

Take advantage of external editing software

Instagram is limited with its image and video editing package. So for the creative and adventurous folks, try out new font styles for your captions and other edits to spice up your stories. PicMonkey or iMovie should be easy to use for the non-geeky guys who may take say an Adobe Premier or Photoshop for example as advanced.

Before uploading, using the crop feature on your phone is also advised if you want a certain angle of your photo to be at the center of the frame. The Instagram in-app camera doesn’t allow for such flexibility.

Upload old photos, videos from your editor apps to give some time perspective

You know how Facebook brings about some nostalgia with that Memories feature, you could apply similar stuff on your Instagram stories as you upload old pics and videos, with some new meta data description to tell a story dealing with time change, and evoke some nostalgic story along the way.

Use your phone’s native camera to capture images and videos

The resolution of your native phone camera all things being equal should have a better resolution than the in-app camera of Instagram. You also get limited edit features when you snap in-app. Downside of this however is the tendency to run out of memory quickly, and need to back up more often.

Download and save everything captured

Well, this might be talking to those who use photos and videos for work, like the photojournalist, who may need to re-use that shot as evidence or for a related work. To ensure this, under Stories settings turn on the “Automatically download all images and videos” option which appear as “Save shared photos and videos”.

Edit and upload images with good connection

This tip comes in handy particularly when you are in a weak internet connection spot or remote area where uploads fail and are likely to scatter the order in which you intend to arrange a planned photo or video album post.

So best bet if it can wait is to get to a strong internet connection spot before uploading our edited photos.

Uploading all at once helps your audience appreciate the story of the photos/videos especially if you are aiming to narrate a sequential event or seeing one slide without much context.

Keep your videos between 5 to 10 seconds long

Too short or too long won’t cut it. An educated guess says 5 to 10 seconds is ideal to keep your audience engaged. Use your phone’s trimming feature to cut the video to appropriate length and get the best part of your clips. Shooting 15 to 20 seconds clip at a time should help create enough video to sort through and shorten later.

Make your captions short and sweet

As much as you can, let your texts for captions be brief and straight to the point. You don’t want to make it too wordy. Be mindful of flooding the caption with hashtags.

Have fun by involving and tagging family, friends in your stories

In a case of casual storytelling, make your friends and family the center of the show. Goof around in the moment. This makes things more interesting with more interaction than a one-way monologue show.

The art of tagging is also cool to show the spirit of community and friendship as long as it’s done aptly.

ALSO READ: Instagram Stories has emerged as a clear favorite for marketers over Snapchat

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