Instagram Stories are a powerful way to engage with your followers and potential clients. Now we have Instagram Stories Highlights to add to the mix.
Highlights are an exciting feature for Instagram Stories that lets you combine multiple Instagram Stories into a playlist or album of content for your followers to watch at any time.
The Highlights appear as a series of round icons or albums that sit just below your profile information, like these:
Adding your story to a highlight is easy. Stories (or part thereof) can be added to highlights as soon as they are published (even while they are still active for 24 hours on your account).
It’s as simple as clicking the highlight button at the bottom of your story, and choosing to add the story or story segment to your highlight of choice, as follows:
Each highlight for Instagram Stories can have a short title. You can have up to 16 characters in your title but it’s best to keep it to 10-11 characters so that the complete title shows on your profile and doesn’t get cut off.
When somebody clicks the icon for a particular highlight album they can watch the story content that you allocate to that album.
- The content you add to Highlights is evergreen. You can keep Instagram Stories Highlights on your profile for as long as you want – they don’t expire after 24 hours so long as you set your settings to archive all Instagram Story content within Instagram.
- You can add many Story Highlights (at least 20 or more according to Social Media Examiner’s research).
- You’re able to add a story (or part thereof) to one or more highlights.
- Your Instagram Stories Highlight title can be up to 16 characters. Make sure it’s succinct and intrigues people enough to watch!
Instagram Story Highlights is a great opportunity to repurpose your content, add calls to action (if you have over 10,000 followers or you have a verified account you can add links to your stories).
If you have this function then the more highlights you add, the more links you can add! If you don’t have this function then you can still direct people to your feed or to the link in your bio.
Instagram stories highlights provide the untapped potential to get your content seen on Instagram. Here’s why you should take them very seriously:
- Once someone watches one story highlight, Instagram will automatically play the next item in your Instagram Stories Highlight “playlist”. This means more of your content being seen!
- It allows you to share more of your team and your business on your profile – not just your feed and your disappearing Instagram Stories. If there is content that resonated with your audience in an Instagram Story, add it straight back into your Highlights.
- You can get super creative with what you add to your Instagram Stories Highlight Icons. It could be behind the scenes content, product launches, storytelling, or a special offer. You can also showcase a special occasion, or do a series of how-to stories or tips. There’s no limit to what you can use Highlights for!
Put simply, if you use Instagram Stories, then you should be adding them to Instagram Story Highlights. It’s a no-brainer.
So, now that you have set up your Instagram Stories Highlights and people can watch your content in Highlight playlists, how can you get people to click on them?
The answer is to add stunning Instagram Stories Highlights Icons to your cover image for each album!
You will need to:
- Choose your Template for Instagram Stories Highlights below in Easil. Each template is designed to position the icon in the right place to showcase it perfectly as a cover image.
- Add your branding to the template – by changing out the text, icon color, background color or fonts. If you need more icons, search in Basil’s Graphic Elements library. Or, upload your own icon (see below for some awesome icon libraries you can access).
- Change the highlight icon if you wish. Search in Basil’s graphics library or download an icon from one of the libraries below ready to add to your highlight template after you upload it into Easil.
- Add the template (and icon) to your live 24-hour Instagram Story. Once the icon image is included in your story it will be available in your story archive to add back into Highlights as a cover image.
- When you create a new Story Highlight, add the images and videos you wish to include. Make sure you include the icon image that will become your cover image.
- Add your chosen cover image, to your story highlight. Don’t forget to let people know they can find the content in highlights!
Try these tips to get the most out of Basil’s Instagram Stories Highlight Icons:
1. APPLY YOUR BRAND COLOR TO THE BACKGROUND OF EACH ICON
These keep a consistent look and feel to your icons. Having a consistent cover image for your Highlight albums encourages users to keep watching multiple albums (and more of your content!).
2. USE OUR ‘INVERT’ FILTER TO CHANGE BLACK PNG ICONS TO WHITE WITH A SINGLE CLICK.
Did you know that you can easily switch from dark to light icons in one click with Easily? As you create your custom Instagram Highlight cover, click on the icon and choose “invert” from our filter options. You will need to click “Show More” to open up the extra opens, then switch the toggle to “invert” to check the resulting inverted icon color. This is a handy way of opening up your options for icon designs!
3. CUSTOMISE YOUR HIGHLIGHTS WITH A HUGE RANGE OF FREE ICONS.
Your choice of icons to add to our Instagram Story Highlight templates is huge if you access the icon libraries below. Here are a few icons libraries and websites that we love. Remember to always check the license of the image you are downloading (ie if you can use it for commercial use). Also, credit the creator of the icons in your story or post if the licensing requires you to do so.