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Instagram Tips & Resources

25 Instagram Stories Ideas to Level-up Your Social Strategy


By Jessica Worb

Updated on April 21, 2022

11 minute read

You're going to want to bookmark this 📌

Published February 2, 2017

Stay on top of the biggest social media marketing trends!

Instagram Stories are a major community-building tool for anyone on Instagram.

With over 500 million Instagram users watching Stories every single day, they’re the perfect place to be creative and share content with your audience. 

They’re informal, easy to create, and are perfect for promoting audience engagement.

You can use Stories to host Q&As, poll your audience, drive traffic to your website, take your community behind the scenes, and so much more. And we mean, so much more.

PSA: Later is a social media scheduling tool trusted by over 4M businesses, creators, and social media managers. Plan and automatically publish your Instagram posts with Later – sign up for free today:

25 Instagram Stories Ideas to Try on Your Account 

Here are 25 engaging Instagram Stories ideas to try on your account:

  1. Host an Ask Me Anything (AMA).
    Let your audience get to know you by hosting a Q&A series on your stories (using the question sticker). Share your answers alongside relevant images or videos for a more engaging experience. 

    baileyjst answering questions on stories
  2. Ask Your Audience What They Prefer.
    Dig into the details with the Poll Sticker. Ask your audience whether they would choose "this" or "that" in a series of stories. Tea or coffee, spring or fall, beach or mountains...the options are endless! 

  3. Take Your Community Behind the Scenes With Vlog Style Clips.
    Pick a morning, afternoon, or a full day and film clips showing your followers what a day-in-the-life is like. 

  4. Share Posts You've Been Tagged In from Your Community.
    Have a scroll through your tagged stories, mentions, and photos and collect the posts. Then, share a roundup of tagged posts on your Stories alongside relevant captions and stickers.

    brands reposting ugc on stories

  5. Encourage Your Audience to Reply to Your Stories With an Emoji.
    This tactic is the ultimate engagement hack. Share content to your Stories about whatever you please and ask your followers to DM you a specific emoji if they want to see more of that content from you. You'll learn what your audience wants more of AND you'll increase engagement — win win! 

  6. Release a Promo Code Exclusively on Stories.
    Offer a 24-hour sale and run it exclusively on your Stories. Promote the sale on your feed and Reels leading up to the launch, and then on the day of, only provide the promo code and sale details on your Stories.

  7. Promote Your Lineup of Products.
    If you have an Instagram Shop, the Shop sticker is a great way to sell products on Stories. Give your audience a rundown of your latest releases, walk them through specific styles, or as mentioned above, host a Stories sale. 

    brand using instagram stories product sticker

  8. Create Hype Around an Upcoming Event.
    Use the Countdown or Scheduled sticker to hype up future events or livestreams. You can use the countdown sticker for anything, whereas the scheduled sticker is linked to your “Add Reminder” posts.

  9. Share a Teaser from a Recent Blog Post.
    Use the link sticker to generate clicks to your website. Use call to actions like “Read the full article here” or “Click to read more.” 

    later using the instagram stories link sticker

  10. Ask Your Audience for Suggestions and Feedback.
    Similar to an AMA, you can use the Question sticker to ask your audience for business, product, or social media-specific feedback. Collect their answers and use them to improve your strategy.

  11. Build Excitement For An Upcoming Launch.
    Use the Countdown sticker and encourage your followers to subscribe to your countdown so they’ll get in-app notifications and reminders leading up to the big day.

    starface sharing countdown sticker

  12. Pass the Mic and Host an Instagram Story Takeover.
    Let an educator, leader, or member of your community take over and run your Instagram Stories for the day. For this tactic, we recommend asking the creator to send you Stories content for you to upload, rather than handing them the reins to your Instagram account.

  13. Share Exclusive Content With Your Close Friends List.
    This underrated tactic is a solid way to build deeper relationships with your biggest fans. Take note of the followers who are consistently in your DMs and engaging with your content. Add these fans to your Close Friends list and provide them with early access and exclusive content. 

  14. Host an Employee Takeover Stories Series.
    Build transparency and pass your Stories over to one of your employees for the day. 

  15. Highlight Your Video Content by Re-sharing Your Instagram Reels.
    The lifespan of an Instagram Reel can live beyond the original share date. Share previous Reels on your Instagram Stories to give them new life. Remember, each Reel view on your Story counts as a view!

    three brands sharing instagram reels on stories

  16. Give Your Audience a Sneak Peek Using Stickers or the Draw Tool.
    Have a new product in the pipeline? An exciting interview guest? Share a photo or video, pick a color, hold down the screen, and then use the eraser to reveal certain parts of the screen. Add in a Question sticker and ask your audience to guess the reveal.

    instagram stories gif sticker

  17. Put Your Audience to the Test With the Quiz Sticker.
    Test your audience’s knowledge of your product in a series of stories. You can quiz them on when you started your business, which outfit you picked, how many locations you have, which product is best for certain occasions… you can have fun with this!

    influencer using the instagram stories quick sticker

  18. Talk to the Camera and Be Candid With Your Followers.
    This is one of the best ways to build a human connection with your audience. Hop on your Stories and talk to the camera! When doing so, remember to use the Instagram Stories Captions sticker.

  19. Start a Viral Trend or Challenge Using the Add Yours Sticker.
    Let the chain reaction begin with your very own Add Yours sticker challenge. Ask your followers to showcase something related to your brand. For example, if you’re a photographer, ask your followers to share their favorite photoshoot.

  20. Share a Roundup of Memes or Pop Culture Reactions.
    Have a scroll through Instagram, save a few memes and Tweet treatments, and share them to your Stories with accompanying relevant text. You can pair this with a poll or an emoji slider for an extra engagement win.

    creator sharing kim kardashian meme

  21. Share a Quick Video Tutorial.
    Hop on Stories to teach your audience something and use Instagram’s “Green Screen” effect to enhance your tutorials. 

  22. Encourage Engagement by Sharing Your Instagram Feed Posts.
    An easy way to take advantage of Stories is to use them as a means to promote and encourage feed post engagement. Add your feed post to your stories with a GIF and an enticing call-to-action to encourage your audience to click the post. 

  23. Raise Awareness About a Social Cause.
    Use the Donation sticker and select a nonprofit from Instagram’s catalog of organizations, set a goal, and encourage your audience to donate with the easy donation sticker.

  24. Answer FAQs and Save Them As An Instagram Stories Highlight.
    Make information easily accessible to your followers and save all your most frequently asked questions right on your profile as your first Stories highlight.

    instagram stories highlights

  25. Share a Roundup of Must-follow Accounts in Your Niche.
    Are there accounts you think your audience should follow? Give them a shout out and tag them on your stories. Plus, those accounts may repost your story to their page.

Every Instagram Stories Sticker You Should Know in 2022 

Now that we've covered the ideas — here's a quick recap of the engagement-driving Instagram Stories Stickers that should be on your radar in 2022. Nine of them, to be exact. 

#1: The Link Sticker

The Instagram Stories link sticker is the only place on Instagram, other than your link in bio, where you can drive traffic out of Instagram.

brands using instagram stories link sticker

Instagram Stories link stickers can be added anywhere on your stories — with a maximum of one per story. You can use a pinching movement to resize the sticker, or tap them to change the color combination for greater contrast. 

You can also now edit the text that appears on your link sticker. To do this, paste your link in the URL space and select “Customize sticker text.”

paste link into instagram stories sticker

TIP: Use a clear call to action in your link sticker text to drive as many clicks as possible.

#2: The Poll Sticker

Poll stickers do exactly what they say: They allow you to poll your audience.

They’re a quick-win engagement feature and a way to gather instant feedback from your community.

creator using instagram stories poll sticker

Whether you want to collect feedback on your products or ask a “this or that”, poll stickers offer a fun and interactive way to engage with your audience.

Once your Instagram Story is live, you can check the results of your poll by swiping up on the published story and selecting the eye icon.

#3: The Quiz Sticker

The quiz sticker lets you share trivia-style multiple-choice questions with your followers and track the results.

Give your quiz a name, write out your own question, and customize the answer choices — you can add up to four (or as few as two) possible answers. The “correct” answer will be highlighted green. 

instagram stories quiz sticker

You can also customize the color of your quiz by tapping the color wheel at the top of the screen.

FYI: You can plan and schedule your Instagram Stories in advance with Later.

It's the best way to strategize your stories, as you can visually storyboard your content. 

When it's time to post, you'll receive everything you need delivered straight to your mobile (so you can still add engagement-driving stickers and tags directly within Instagram). 

Ready to improve your Instagram Stories strategy? Sign up to Later today. 

#4: The Add Yours Sticker

The Add Yours sticker is perfect for creating viral chains of content on Stories — making it a huge opportunity for driving community engagement.  

Select it from the sticker tray lineup, write a prompt, and share it.

Then, watch the chain reaction unfold. Some Add Yours stickers get hundreds of thousands of participants. 

#5: The Question Sticker

The Instagram Stories question sticker is a fan favorite. It’s up there as one of the best ways to communicate with your followers directly. 

You can ask your followers anything you want in a question sticker, or even ask them what they want to know about you. 

influencer using the instagram stories question sticker

Lots of creators and influencers regularly host "ask me anything" series using the question sticker. 

And the great part about it? You can re-share the questions you receive with your community in new stories that respond to them. It's a great way to create engaging content that shows you're listening and replying to your audience. 

#6: The Emoji Slider Sticker

The emoji slider is a visual way of polling your audience. 

It’s perfect for surveying your Instagram audience about their interests, likes, dislikes, and more.

To use it, ask a question, place the emoji slider on your story, and encourage your followers to drag the slider to the left or right.

brand using instagram stories emoji slider sticker

At the end of the 24 hours, you can see a breakdown of where each viewer landed, as well as the overall average.

#7: The Countdown Sticker

If you’re sharing a story about an upcoming special occasion (like a sale, product launch, or event), you can add a sticker that counts down to a set date and time.

how to add instagram stories countdown sticker

Your followers can then subscribe to your countdown event, which will send them an in-app reminder when the time is up and the countdown is complete!

#8: The Captions Sticker

The captions sticker automatically generates closed captions for your Instagram Stories.

Whenever you have any dialogue or talking in your stories, you should include this handy sticker. 

Just tap on “Captions'' in the sticker tray and that’s it — Instagram does the work for you.

You can adjust the text, change the font, color, and size of your closed captions. 

#9: The Scheduled Sticker

The Scheduled sticker is an extension of Instagram’s Add Reminder and Live Scheduling features — giving you another way to promote future events or livestreams.

new instagram stories scheduled sticker

Viewers can tap the sticker to set a reminder for the upcoming event. 

Even with all the new and incoming Instagram features over the years, Instagram Stories still reign supreme.

They’re still one of the best Instagram features for connecting and engaging with your audience in an unfiltered and transparent way.

Even though Stories disappear after 24 hours, you can keep them alive by saving them to your Instagram Story Highlights.

Story Highlights have prime real estate on your Instagram profile. Take advantage of them and use them as a way to give your followers a quick way to look into who you are and what you offer. 

And that's it —all of the Instagram Stories stickers you need to know in 2022. Plus, 25 Instagram Stories ideas you can use to level up your social strategy.

Later is a social media scheduling tool trusted by over 4M businesses, creators, and social media managers. Plan and automatically publish your Instagram posts with Later — sign up for free today:

Plan, schedule, and automatically publish your social media posts with Later.

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