Instagram stories: what they are and how to do them like a pro

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Instagram Stories can drive a lot of engagement, whether you’re sharing a story from a business account or your personal profile.

From their launch in August 2016, a total of 250 million Instagram users have started sharing content in Instagram Stories, contributing to the huge jump in in-app time each day from 24 minutes to 32.

Whether they’re looking to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to videos or newsletters outside of Instagram o share sponsored content, brands flock to Instagram to post fun “self-destructing” content (even if it can be saved as highlights) that conveys the brand’s personality without taking up too much user time, as the average concentration rate is decreasing more and more, favoring content of shorter and shorter duration.

How long do instagram stories last?

Instagram stories last 24 hours on your profile before disappearing, but a video within your story can last up to 15 seconds before moving on to the next piece of content. You can also use a third-party app to segment a longer video into fractions of 15 seconds to add to your Story.

If you add a video to your Instagram Story, for example, it will play for a 15 seconds maximum, regardless of the length of the original video.

Here are some useful apps you can use to break up long videos to insert into stories:

How to view Instagram stories

Instagram stories are located at the top of the screen when you are in the Instagram mobile app. Because these are often the first content users see when they open Instagram, these stories can get a lot of engagement and help you increase the followers of your instagram account

1. Open Instagram and go to the main screen.

To start viewing Instagram stories, open your Instagram mobile app and tap the home icon in the lower left corner of the screen. Instagram Stories are not available on the desktop site.

Once you’ve gone to the main Instagram screen, you’ll see a series of circular icons across the top, each representing Active Stories posted by users that follow.

2. Touch a circular icon to view the user’s Story.

Each circular icon you see at the top of the main screen shows you a small preview of the Story that the user has posted. Tap it to expand the user’s Story: it will be a photo or video and the latter will be played automatically after touching the Story.

3. Touch to browse the photos and videos of a Story.

An Instagram story can contain numerous photos and videos combined in the order in which the user posted them. The first content you see will be the oldest. Tap the screen of your mobile device to jump to the next photo or video that the user has posted in their Story.

4. Swipe to navigate from one Instagram story to another.

Swiping left and right while viewing an Instagram story will allow you to move between stories. When you open an Instagram Story for the first time, you will see the following menu:

storie instagram

How to make an instagram story

Let’s see the basics of how to share a story on instagram.

1. Open Instagram and tap the camera icon in the top left corner of your phone.

2. Share a photo or video you’ve already taken by swiping up on the screen to browse your gallery.

3. Or, choose the camera to take a photo or video from the app.

You have several options to choose from:

1. Live

If you turn the screen to the “Live” option, you will start filming and broadcasting live on Instagram. Like Facebook Live, friends can follow you and leave comments, and once the broadcast is over, you’ll have the option to make the video disappear, save it or share it on Instagram Stories for another 24 hours.

2. Normal

Tapping once will take a photo and, holding down, a video will be recorded. Instagram Stories can be 15 seconds long, so if you want to share a longer video, shoot 15-second video or use one of the apps I showed you at the beginning of the article to split the longest clip into 15-second segments.

3. Boomerang

The boomerang mode records a 3 second looping gif clip

4. Superzoom

Superzoom is, essentially, a video recording lens that magnifies the subject more and more and turns up the volume, you can use Superzoom to create a dramatic soundtrack to accompany your video.

5. Rewind

You can use rewind to record video in reverse

6. Stop motion

Use this lens to shoot stunning stop-motion videos – several still images intertwined into one seamless video. Think of it as the video version of a flip book (as in the example below):

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