Instagram Stories have become traffic drivers for publishers and influencers

Instagram Stories have become traffic drivers for publishers and influencers

Digiday

Tim Peterson

Facebook’s algorithm change earlier this year highlighted that the audiences that publishers and influencers cultivated in these walled-garden platforms are not their own. But increasingly, publishers and influencers are using Instagram Stories to convert those audiences into ones they do own.

On May 16, twin YouTube stars Brooklyn and Bailey McKnight will release their own line of mascara called Lash Next Door. They can promote it by posting to YouTube, where they have 4.9 million subscribers, and Facebook-owned Instagram, where they have 3.1 million followers. But on those platforms, their marketing would be at the whim of algorithms.

So the McKnights produced an email newsletter, which they promoted by attaching links in their Instagram Stories to a sign-up form. To date, 1.67 percent of their 3.1 million followers have signed up for the newsletter, said Adam Wescott, partner and co-founder of Select Management Group, a talent management firm that works with influencers such as the McKnights.

“I would be willing to say, since it’s online-only for the initial window, that probably 50 percent-plus of the sales will come from Instagram Stories,” said Wescott.

On average, only 2 to 5 percent of impressions on linked Story posts lead to swipe-ups, per Wescott. But often, those swipe-ups lead to sign-ups, which is leading more publishers and influencers to use Instagram Stories as an audience acquisition tool.

Having someone sign up from a swipe-up on an Instagram Story is worth more in lifetime value than sign-ups from people who came across an article on Facebook, said Yuval Rechter, head of digital at First Media.

Read more: https://digiday.com/media/publishers-influencers-using-instagram-story-links-audience-outside-walled-garden/