✨Insta Stories are now even more magically delicious✨

This week, we’re coming to you from 38k feet in the air as we wing our way toward the MUST Fermenting Ideas conference in Portugal.

And because I’m headed off to learn and be social, I thought I’d share some recent developments and insights that MUST impact YOUR social media practices and expectations (see what I did there… clearly, feeling witty this week.)

Say it with me: “Social is for Sharing, not Selling.”

First up: Sprout Social (a leading social media mgmt app) has released their 2018 report, which suggests that brands are struggling to measure social media ROI. Yes, I agree, this is a problem, one that stems from a major disconnect between the business and the customer, that being the perceived role of social media in consumer behavior. Sprout Social reports that 41% of marketers surveyed say that generating sales is one of their primary goals on social. Which would be great if consumers’ primary goal on social was BUYING things, but it’s not. Social media falls into the Awareness and Consideration categories, providing customers with a window to brand placement, personality, and priorities. Social media is how they discover your brand and decide if they want to give you their hard-earned dollars.

If you are a winery asking if social media can help you sell wine, read on!

Insta Stories are now even more magically delicious.

Gonna admit something shady here: my teenagers and their friends are some of my best indicators of marketing trends. And they are generally about three months ahead of “official” research. Which is why I have been watching their defection from Snapchat to Instagram stories. To any business, I say, “Ignore Instagram Stories at your peril.”

A bit of stats to get us started: Instagram has 500 million daily active users, and Instagram stories have 300 million daily active users. Insta is now more popular than Facebook, and our own agency data consistently shows wine content on Instagram outperforms wine content on Facebook.

I know many of our wineries have struggled to embrace Insta Stories, because let’s face it, we’re old and just posting pics regularly is enough of a hassle. But stories have some super features that make it a safe, dynamic place to make friends with potential and existing customers:

1) They go awayyyyy. You know how we talk about scarcity of product? Stories take this a step further with scarcity of time. The only people who are ever gonna get that information are the ones who watch your story in the 24 hours in which it’s live. The corollary to this is that stories are a great place to try stuff without fear of the internet living forever. Ask questions, run polls, share quirks, and, poof, tomorrow it will be as gone as Kaiser Soze.

2) They sit right up there at the top of the page, beckoning to be watched. Oh, and how often have you opened them by accident, am I right? Instagram wants this feature to kick the pants off Snapchat, and therefore they have made Stories doubly-visible, with in-your-face placement AND a special indicator on a user’s posts if they have unwatched stories on your feed.

3) They are meant to be low-budget. In fact, you get the feeling Insta WANTS them to be low budget! Big colors, inelegant fonts, emojis galore…these are NOT meant to be refined or overthought.

AND, the reason they are in the Must Read this week: Insta has just made it that much easier with us to fill our stories with posts that share our values, demonstrate our personality, and promote our brand.

“Add Post To Your Story”

How many of you have noticed that you can now add anyone’s posts to your story? The feature is hiding in the message-paper-plane icon beneath the post image. THIS IS BRILLIANT AND YOU NEED TO LOVE IT! I can’t confirm this, but my theory is that this is Insta’s strategy to compete with reposting apps, which are a mega-pain. How might you use this?

  • User-generated content, oh yeah. Has someone showcased your wine, winery, or people?
  • Highlight upcoming events. Are you/your wine attending a local wine event?
  • Show what’s happening within the industry. Did you win an award? Has there been an exciting announcement or decision that improves your part of the industry?
  • Share news. Did a staff member just get married or have a new baby? Or, maybe the weather is actually worth mentioning (for good OR bad!).

To each of these, I say, Share someone else’s post! It’s faster, easier, more collaborative and more credible.

Remember, social is for building awareness and helping the customer decide…and it’s laborious. Sharing posts to your Insta Stories is a spectacular way to overcome these challenges.

With that in mind, be sure to head over and follow @5forests on Instagram, where I will be posting pics from Portugal!