How to Use Facebook Stories: The Ultimate Guide

How to Use Facebook Stories The Ultimate Guide

Facebook Stories are an effective and interactive way to engage with your audience.

Believe me or not, however, Facebook Stories with 500 million of daily viewers are beating Snapchat.

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So, as you can reach such a huge audience why not to start using Stories feature and, consequently, build a community around your brand or even drive sales?

Keep reading and in this article you will find everything you need to know about Facebook Stories including what they are, the reason why you should use them and tips how to use them.

Let’s get started!

What are Facebook Stories?

Facebook Stories is a feature that allows users to share photos, videos and animations. In other words, Facebook Stories are collections of vertical visuals that have a 24-hour expiration time.

What is more, Facebook Stories appear at the top of users’ news feeds.

Actually, they are very similar to Instagram and Snapchat Stories.

Facebook Stories don’t have a function of likes and comments. Alternatively, when audience responds to a Story, these interactions are sent directly to Facebook Messenger.

Why should you use Facebook Stories?

Since Facebook has made its news feed to an algorithm based, organic reach and engagement became not easy nuts to crack for the brands. Due to this, many businesses began looking for more effective ways to grow their profiles.

Fortunately, there is a feature called Facebook Stories! They provide brands with an opportunity to boost their engagement rate, build brand awareness and make stronger relationships with their audience.

First of all, it was mentioned before that Facebook Stories show up at the top of people’s feeds. In this case, they are the first thing that people notice when they log in to Facebook app.

It means that by uploading Stories you will be able to grab an audience’s attention more effectively and encourage them to visit your Facebook profile page. 

Secondly, keep in mind that the number of people who are using Facebook Stories is still small enough. Thus, if you start implementing Stories into your Facebook strategy, you will have a chance to stand out from other pages and increase your organic reach.

Thirdly, as Stories are an informal, funny way of sharing content, your Stories will not look like an annoying advertising. The audience will perceive them more like useful and valuable advice from a friend.

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How to use Facebook Stories?

Now as you know what Facebook Stories are and why they can be efficient, it’s time to figure out how to apply them. Actually, creating a Facebook Story is an easy process and takes just a few steps. Let’s see!

Step 1. Open up the Facebook app on your mobile phone.

Step 2. Go to the Stories section that is at the top of your news feed and tap on the “Create a story” icon.

Step 3. Once you have clicked this icon, you will be moved to the window where you can choose the type of your Story, add visuals from your camera roll or even press on the camera button and take a photo or a video.

You will have an opportunity to select from five different types of Facebook Stories:

  • Text. Allows you to create a text Story by writing a text and choosing a background you like. This Story type is a great choice when you want to ask your audience a particular question.
  • Boomerang. Allows you to create an animation similar to GIF, however, it is repeatedly playing forward and backward.
  • Mood. Allows you to create a GIF-centric Story frame to convey a chosen feeling.
  • Selfie. Allows you to take and share a picture of yourself.
  • Poll. Allows you to collect feedback from an audience about your brand, its products or services.

However, if you want to snap a quick photo or record a video, then you need to tap the camera icon in order to open it. The first time you use the Story camera, Facebook will ask you to enable access to your camera and microphone.

As soon as you have enabled access, on the appeared camera window you will be able to use front-facing or rear-facing cameras.

Keep in mind that when you open the Facebook Story camera, the Normal content format will be automatically applied. You may use this setting in order to take a photo by just pressing the large white circle button. A video can be taken on Normal setting as well, but you need to hold the button to keep recording.

However, there are other content settings, like Video, Boomerang and Live. For example, if you want to record a video Story, it is better to use the video setting because in this case you don’t need to hold a thumb on the white circle button. Remember, Facebook Story videos can be up to 20 seconds in length.

Secondly, you will have a possibility to choose from two lighting settings, such as flash on (the lightning bolt icon) and flash off (the lightning bolt and x icon).

What is more, while taking a photo or video for your Facebook Story, you can apply AR filters. In order to find them, just tap the smiley face icon in the bottom right-hand corner and different AR filters will appear on the scroll bar. 

Step 4. If you already have your image or video recorded or uploaded from a camera roll, then it’s time to get creative and make the finishing touches to your Facebook Story, like insert stickers, GIFs or emojis, write a text, add effects or even draw.

Although Facebook Stories don’t have as many tools to suggest as Instagram Stories, but there are still lots of options you can choose from in order to create eye-catching and engaging content.

For instance, you can add a name sticker to mention other Facebook user, a location sticker to inform your audience where the Story is taken, a feelings sticker to show people what your mood is or a poll sticker to collect information from your followers.

Step 5. Once you are satisfied with your Facebook Story design, tap the “Share to Story” button to publish your Story and it will appear on your audience’s news feeds.

However, before sharing your Facebook Story, don’t forget about your privacy settings. In this case, press the gear icon in the bottom-left corner of your screen and choose whether you want to make your Story public, show it only to friends, display or hide from the particular users.

Moreover, if you haven’t set Facebook to automatically save your Stories to your camera roll, you shouldn’t worry! You have an opportunity to save the Story before uploading to Facebook by tapping the “Save” button in the bottom of your screen.

Step 6. Another important step is to keep track of how well your Facebook Stories are performing using Stories Insights.

In order to see your Stories stats, go to your Facebook page, select the “Insights” column and in the sidebar menu click the “Stories” section. To begin gathering your Facebook Stories data, you need to press the “Turn on” button.

In the Facebook Stories Insights section you will be able to see the data, like:

  • Story opens (the total amount of people who viewed your Story).
  • Exits (the number of people who left your Story just after opening it).
  • Forward taps (the number of people who taped to skip to your next Story).
  • Backward taps (the number of people who taped to go back to your previous Story).
  • Forward swipes (the number of people who swiped to skip to the next Facebook page’s Story).

Keep in mind that although Stories disappear after 24 hours, but Stories Insights are visible for 14 days.

Overall, by tracking your Facebook Stories’ metrics, you will be able to figure out what type of content resonates with your audience.

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How often to share Facebook Stories?

Actually, there is no a common rule when it comes to the frequency of publishing Facebook Stories. Some Facebook profiles can receive great results from uploading a dozen Stories per day, while for others it is better to post their Stories just a few times a week.

Remember, everything depends on your content and your audience.

If according to Stories Insights you see high exit rates, then it can be a sign that you are uploading too much and the audience is bored of your content.

However, if the results show that a big amount of users view your Facebook Stories until the end, it most probably means that the audience likes your content and wants to see more.

So, in order to understand how often you need to share your Facebook Stories, it is advised to experiment with frequency and at the same time monitor the behavior of your audience.

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5 Content ideas for Facebook stories

Generating interesting and fresh content ideas for your Facebook Stories can be a tough task for some users.

Below are several content ideas that may help you to create engaging Facebook Stories.

1. Show how your brand looks behind the scenes

In fact, there is nothing more honest and interesting than showing your audience how the work behind the scenes looks like, how many people are involved in development of your brand’s products or services.

So, keep in mind that you can show this kind of content in your Facebook Stories and, consequently, earn people’s trust and gain new customers.

2. Inform about your brand’s new product

To successfully launch your brand’s new product, you need to show your audience its design, features and colors.

Just use Facebook Stories that will let you display your product in all of its glory and make people look forward to your new product’s release. Thus, by demonstrating your brand’s products in Facebook Stories, you will have bigger chances to turn your followers into customers.

3. Share moments from your event

While organizing an interesting event, don’t miss a chance to use Facebook Stories in order to share the atmosphere of your event.

If this content idea doesn’t seem effective to you, then think about your followers who cannot attend your event. Undoubtedly, they will like an opportunity to see your event online.

4. Display the feedback of your customers

Nothing creates so strong social proof as a positive feedback from your clients.

In this case, check the testimonials you have received about your brand, select your customers’ statements that are strong and impactful, and show them in your Facebook Stories. Consequently, you will not only be able to boost trust of your brand, but also drive more sales.

5. Announce about a contest

If you are planning to run a contest, it will be a great idea to announce about it in your Facebook Story before it goes live.

So, create a Story where you tell your audience about an upcoming contest’s entry criteria and prize in more detail. Consequently, you will keep your audience excited, focus their attention on you and make them to look forward to the contest. 

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To sum it all up, Facebook Stories are considered as a powerful method to connect with your audience and grow your brand.

So, if you are planning to get started with Facebook Stories, then do it immediately by applying the tips discussed in this article.

Because there will be no better time to begin establishing a stronger relationship with your Facebook audience!

What do you think about Facebook Stories? Do you implement them into your Facebook strategy? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

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