My friend and I were texting each other the other day about Emma Hill’s Instagram Stories. She is stylish, friendly, warm and absolutely hilarious on camera – and we are both transfixed with everything she says.
And she’s not the only one that I’m currently hooked on watching. I love catching up with my favourites at the end of a busy day and seeing a little glimpse into their lives. People, who I may not have been too obsessed with before Stories was launched, but now their personalities are really winning me over.
Which got me thinking about this new media and its increasing popularity.
Instagram itself has been a popular social media channel for many years now. As a result of it people have made good friends, learnt things, built businesses, joined communities – and the bubble is yet to burst. Stories is only adding more dimension to the app.
What I think has worked so well in Instagram up to now (in my genre of 30 + 40 something women particularly) is that, visually, within a few scrolls you can find out so much about someone/their life/home/clothes. If you do find another woman that you can relate to – or aspire to – then you can totally ‘get lost’ in their Instagram feed. Plus usually they’ll respond to comments, which makes it WAY more personal than following celebrities.
Stories however, has taken that concept even further; we can now see much more than a still image. It feels as though a friend is chatting away to you. They are welcoming you into their lives and sharing their thoughts with you.
I’m 38 – I therefore didn’t grow up in the YouTube generation (I still go to ‘google’ everything instead of looking on YouTube). I’m also a really busy Mum-of-two and I don’t have time to watch several 10-minute videos per day of people chatting to me. Nor did I download SnapChat when it came out (I don’t know why, I just didn’t feel compelled to). Stories therefore works so much better for me. I was already on Instagram so I didn’t have to ‘get to know’ a new platform, plus it’s snippets. It’s dip in, dip out. Which suits me just fine. And I know a lot of my friends feel the same.
From a personal blogging perspective I’m finding myself getting more confident on Stories and sharing more. I like it and I’m feeling better about my content. It’s VERY weird hearing your own voice and seeing your face so close up…but it’s growing on me too. I generally like to upload about 4-6 Stories in 24 hours and share my day, the twins antics and anything I’ve bought/seen.
I predict (for what it’s worth!) that it’ll continue to rapidly grow this year and it will be a media that a lot of influencers use far more. Especially now that you can directly link to products, blog posts and other accounts. Brands are already realising these benefits and building it more into their strategy when working with influencers. I therefore think it’ll be ‘one to watch’ over the next 12 months.
So what do you think about Stories? Who are you enjoying watching?
Love, Jess x