Establishing a strong presence on Instagram has never been more important. According to a recent Birdeye survey, 60% of businesses consider Instagram to be a mission-critical social media platform for their growth. So, if you want to compete with your peers, it is vital to explore all formats and that includes Instagram stories. 

The short, engaging snippet you share on your Instagram stories can help you connect with your audience like never before. There are many features you can leverage to share your brand’s story with your followers via Stories. But deciding what to post and which popular Instagram story idea to choose can be challenging. 

That’s why we’ve carefully selected the top 34 story ideas for your Instagram account to significantly enhance your presence on the platform. 

How to post a story on Instagram? 

The process to post Instagram stories is simple enough and can be done with the following steps: 

  1. Open the Instagram app on your mobile device. 
  2. Tap the “+” icon or swipe right on your screen to go to Stories. 
  3. Use the shutter button to click a photo or record a video to share on your Instagram story. 
  4. Or, you can upload images and videos from your gallery. 
  5. Edit your story using the “Draw”, “Aa”, or “Sticker” or “music” buttons. 
  6. Click on “Your story” to post the story on Instagram. 

Note: This feature is only available on the mobile app.  

34 Instagram story ideas for businesses in 2024 

Curious about boosting your presence and achieving greater engagement on your Instagram stories? We’ve got you covered. This section is dedicated to offering you the top strategies for your business to better connect with your audience. 

1. Introduce your brand 

Instagram Stories is an ideal channel to post content that can incite engagement and humanize your brand for the audience. And a brand introduction on Instagram stories can definitely do that. 

Businesses have the opportunity to share stories that highlight their mission, values, unique selling points, management team, and areas of expertise. The benefit of using Stories for this purpose is the ability to create Instagram highlights from the content. This ensures that visitors to your profile can easily find and learn more about your business at any time.

Related read: 5 social media tips to boost brand awareness 

Take inspiration from how the Born Good brand utilizes creative images in their stories to captivate and inform their audience.

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories for brand introduction

2. Repost reels with new post sticker

Just shared a post or Reel on your profile and looking to generate momentum amongst your followers? Head to Instagram Stories and reshare your new post with an engaging sticker. 

Customers are more likely to interact with your Stories if they have an engaging element like a “New post” or “Just dropped” sticker. This makes them stop and take notice of your stories instead of heading to the next. 

We often see this Instagram story idea in action on the Wendy’s account. Here’s an example:

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to promote new reels

3. Reshare UGC content 

User-generated content lends authenticity to your brand and helps you gain customer trust. When businesses are transparent, engage with their customers online, and repost their stories, it shows that they truly listen to feedback and customer experiences. 

Adding user-generated content to your Instagram stories also allows you to showcase a unique perspective to your services. For example, a customer may tour your store and appreciate a particular product you have never promoted actively. But now that you have added this content to your stories, potential customers may see that and connect better with your brand. 

Take a look at how Ikea uses user-generated content in their stories.

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to reshare UGC content

4. Hold polls

Anything that stands out from the usual photos or videos generates a higher engagement rate on Instagram stories. When you add gamification to it, you have one of the best Instagram story ideas – Polls. 

Businesses can conduct polls to understand customer opinions, generate excitement, and interact with their followers. 

Customers also see the result when they answer the poll, which adds to the appeal for polls in Instagram stories.  

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to conduct polls

5. Conduct quizzes

Another gamified Instagram story idea would be to conduct quizzes to interact with your followers. Businesses can leverage this feature to check their followers’ knowledge on their products, services, industry news, or general trivia. 

You can also use this feature to conduct informal customer surveys on Instagram.

It is important to understand what would resonate with your audience and choose the best time to post these stories on your Instagram account. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to conduct quizzzes

6. Celebrate follower increase 

Every milestone is important on Instagram, especially when it comes to your follower count. While most businesses create a post to celebrate the big numbers like 100k or 200k, they can’t do so for every small increase. 

But you can post these achievements on stories to celebrate your growth, thank your followers, and add a quick introduction of your brand/business for the new followers on your account. 

Such positive content generates high engagement, boosting the reach of your Instagram account. 

7. Add a coupon code 

Almost every business runs flash sales, clearance sales, and discount sales where a limited product range is available for a special price. While frequent clearance sales don’t need a place on your Instagram grid, they can be a valuable asset for your Instagram Stories. 

Posting the products with a linked coupon code can generate tremendous traffic for your sales campaigns. Also, as you post them regularly, customers know to periodically visit your profile and look for the coupons. This automatically makes you a very popular account on Instagram. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to share coupon codes

8. Post product links

We often crowd Instagram stories with music, stickers, edits, emojis, and whatnot. You can stand out by delivering what your customers want without any of the frills – simple, aesthetic product photos with easy-to-click links. 

Businesses can promote their popular products on Instagram Stories, making it easy for their followers to explore the product range without having to navigate the website. 

This improved customer experience definitely makes this Instagram story idea a winner! 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to promote new products with direct links

9. Post aesthetic product shots

Looking to take your Instagram stories to the next level and appeal to the younger demographic in your target audience? We suggest speaking to the Gen Z or Millennial audience in their language and posting a few aesthetic product shots on your stories. 

Businesses can gain the attention of their target audience by capturing their products in specific aesthetics like Retro, Y2K, Minimalism, and so on. You can also use built-in preset filters to design such creative Instagram stories. This builds a connection between the audience and the business, strengthening their brand value on the platform. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to promote products with aesthetic shots

10. Promote inspirational content 

Not everything you post on Instagram Stories needs to be about your brand; this is a place to be a bit informal and connect with your audience. You can reshare content that reflects your values, brand personality, or mission. This can be from other accounts, too, as long as it fits the brand guidelines and resonates with your audience. 

Just as Puma celebrates the win of a sports team without necessarily talking about its brand or product offerings. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to post inspirational content

11. Use interactive stickers

As we mentioned earlier, stickers and emojis are staples in the world of Instagram Stories. These are not just decorative elements; they are powerful tools that can significantly enhance the impact of your stories, boosting clicks and engagement. Interactive stickers, enabling your followers to react with just a tap or a click, are especially effective in expanding the reach of your content.

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with interactive stickers

12. Launch countdowns

Countdowns have to be one of the most exciting and effective Instagram story ideas. It works for many scenarios and allows businesses to generate engagement for their content. You can add a countdown to your story to announce live streams, offline/online events, post announcements, sale announcements, and so much more. 

Instagram sends a notification to all those who clicked the countdown button. This way, you can ensure your content instantly reaches a larger audience. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to promote events with countdowns

13. Show unboxing videos

Instagram users love unboxing videos. These videos have been trending on Reels, Stories, and most other content formats across social media platforms. So, why not leverage these to generate engagement for your Instagram business account? 

Businesses can create their own unboxing videos to display the experience customers can expect or repost a creator’s or customer’s unboxing video on their Instagram stories. 

14. Record packaging videos 

If you think that unboxing ideas have saturated Instagram, you have a unique opportunity to differentiate yourself by showcasing the packaging process through your Instagram stories. Captivating your audience with aesthetic videos reveals your dedication to customer satisfaction, sets clear expectations for potential buyers, and enhances your brand’s appeal.

15.  Play this or that 

You can engage your followers on a slow day by running a “This or That” competition on your Instagram stories. Use the poll feature and have your followers choose between products, popular trends, product shots, and more. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with "This or That" games

This earns you taps on your Stories and elevates the engagement on your Stories. 

16. Share behind the scenes content 

Everyone loves a good sneak peek, making it a favorite among Instagram content formats. 

Customers really appreciate when businesses transparently share what goes on behind the production, design, packaging, and delivery of their orders. Businesses can secure a strong reputation and trust-worthy connection with their followers by regularly sharing behind-the-scenes content on their Instagram stories. 

This approach not only fosters anticipation for the product but also deeply engages the audience. For instance, if customers see the meticulous effort your business puts into carving each door frame, their excitement for the launch skyrockets. This effect is clearly demonstrated by Little Green Studios’ Instagram story, where their behind-the-scenes content captivates and excites their audience. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to post behind the scenes content

17. Announce contest or giveaway winners 

Contests and giveaways are some of the best ways to generate engagement and grow your Instagram followers. While you need an Instagram post with the rules and guidelines, you can promote that contest on your stories. 

Better yet, you can announce the winners of your stories on the decided date. For the best results, tag your winners on your stories. This way, they can repost on their account and engage further with your content. 

18. Use the ask me anything! Sticker 

This is one of the most popular features of Instagram Stories. You can add a sticker that allows your followers to share their questions, doubts, feedback, and more with a simple click.

Businesses can use this feature to clarify product doubts, conduct an informal chat with their followers, have their CEO/Department heads communicate with customers, and more. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to conduct AMA sessions

Amazon leveraged this feature to dispel customer doubts surrounding packaging and shipping by having an employee interact with followers via this sticker. 

19. Ask for anonymous feedback

Do you want to know what your followers really feel about your business? You can try this Instagram story idea of collecting anonymous feedback via the NGL sticker option. This sticker allows your followers to use a third-party app and share their feedback without sharing their usernames or other personal details. 

It is a fun feature and can help businesses understand what their followers feel about them. 

20. Start a themed spotlight 

A recurring theme in your content provides a sense of continuity to your followers and lets them know what to expect from your Instagram account. In addition to doing themed content in posts and Reels, you can also explore this in your Instagram stories. 

Businesses can periodically create a spotlight on their products, services, customers, or latest projects, etc. This will also help businesses to organize their content via Instagram highlights. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to post themed spotlights

Themed spotlights also function as mini-Instagram blogs, allowing businesses to explore a topic in depth. 

21. Reshare mentions 

Businesses actively monitor brand mentions on Instagram to gauge customer sentiment, solicit feedback, and understand overall brand perception. So why not make the most of this activity by resharing appropriate mentions on your Instagram story? 

Resharing mentions makes existing customers feel heard, showcases happy customers to the rest of the followers, and boosts overall engagement of your account. 

22. Add buying guides 

If there’s a holiday approaching and you have a sale on the horizon, you can elevate your customers’ shopping experience by crafting and sharing buying guides on your Instagram stories. These guides can help your customers navigate through the plethora of choices without feeling overwhelmed, simultaneously spotlighting your bestsellers to drive sales.

Take inspiration from Best Buy, which has effectively utilized Instagram stories for its buying guides.

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to post buying guides

Publish Instagram stories to multiple accounts with a simple click

Work with Birdeye to ideate, create, schedule, and publish content for multiple social media accounts from a single dashboard.

23. Introduce your team

Instagram stories are also a great place to introduce your followers to your employees. It helps humanize the brand and also displays your expertise in the industry. Some of the ways to use Instagram stories for team introduction are:

  • Employee-wise stories
  • Department-wise stories
  • Stories during a team activity 
The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to introduce their team

24. Explore fun graphic ideas

Having a slow day and wondering what to post on your stories? We have a great Instagram story idea for your business – fun graphics. You can post wallpapers, deconstructed images, puzzles, and more to engage your audience by appealing to their aesthetic sense. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with fun graphics

25. Share “Add yours” sticker 

Did you know that while Instagram stories are a great place to repost user-generated content, you can also collect content via the same feature? Yes, Instagram recently launched an “Add yours” sticker that allows users to share images, videos, and more under a specific prompt. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with "Add yours" sticker

Anyone clicking that sticker can instantly view what each of your followers has posted for that prompt. Businesses can use this idea to inspire customers to send in their entries showcasing their products, feedback, and more. 

26. Promote live streams/webinars

Do you regularly conduct webinars, seminars, or live streams for your audience? You can now repurpose that content and promote registrations for event recordings on your Instagram stories.

Businesses can add a few clips from the event, reshare important quotes, and add customer feedback for the events on Instagram stories to generate interest in the events again. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to promote webinars

27. Conduct story takeovers 

Hand the mic to someone to bring variety to your Instagram stories. You can experiment with story takeovers by allowing employees, collaborators, influencers, creators, or subject matter experts to handle your Instagram stories. 

This is almost like conducting an event or a webinar but on stories, making it much more special and exclusive. You can have your followers send in their questions, requests, and doubts to truly make it a value for their time. 

The Johns Hopkins university allows its student volunteers to regularly take over their Instagram stories and showcase the true side of life at the university. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with story takeovers

28. Share customer reviews 

Every social media account must constantly share social proof to boost your online reputation, and Instagram is no different. But if your Instagram grid design doesn’t allow you to share customer reviews as often as you want, hop on to Stories instead. 

Sharing customer reviews and testimonials on Instagram stories also allows you to display them above your feed via highlights. This way, when an Instagram user visits your profile, reviews are what they see first, improving your conversion rate instantly. 

29. Post event images/recaps 

When everyone is capturing every moment for Instagram, why should businesses be left behind? The next time you have an event at your store, office, or other physical locations, click away and post on your Instagram stories. 

Such stories generate excitement, show followers what they can expect from your events, and also make your attendees feel happy by being on your account.

30. Use the space for holiday announcements

On social media, there are too many holidays to celebrate, and not every holiday announcement will reach your Instagram grid. And that is where Instagram stories come into play. If you’re running a flash holiday sale or have a limited offer for the next 24 hours, posting them on your Instagram stories makes sense and will bring a bigger impact. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with holiday announcements

31.  Curate industry news

Content curation is one of the most effective strategies to engage your followers without having to create original content. Curating industry news also allows you to bring a fresh perspective to your content and spread awareness on important topics, events, and concepts. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to engage audience with industry news

Just like how Penguin Random House curates news on the latest book deals, movie announcements, and more on their Instagram stories. 

 32. Promote collabs 

Instagram recently unveiled the collaborator feature, which allows you to create a joint post with another Instagram account to reach both your followers simultaneously. You can also give it an additional boost by resharing the post on your Instagram stories. 

Collab posts generate higher engagement, and you can also tag your collaborators on your stories so that followers can easily explore the other accounts too. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to promote collabs

33. Announce career opportunities

Instagram stories are perfect for announcing career opportunities as they allow you to also link the webpage that carries the job description and other details. Most job aspirants follow the businesses they wish to work with on social media, so announcing job opportunities here can help you land the right talent. 

The image shows how businesses can use Instagram stories to announce career opportunities

34. Share how-tos and tutorials

Improve customer experience by leveraging the Instagram Story space to demo your products, and upload website walkthroughs, how-to videos, tutorials, and other informational content. Uploading this information on stories and saving them to your highlights can help customers easily access it and reduce the burden on your customer support team as well. 

FAQs on Instagram story ideas 

How do you make a catch story on Instagram?

You can make a catchy story on Instagram by using graphic stickers, adding music, and adding interactive buttons. 

How do you post an aesthetic story on Instagram?

You can post an aesthetic story by capturing/uploading an image and then using the preset filters to choose the style you wish to display your story in. 

What kind of stories do well on Instagram?

Generally, Instagram stories like AMA, collecting feedback, videos, or exclusive content such as behind-the-scenes content, coupon codes, and special announcements with high-performing Instagram hashtags do well on the platform. 

Manage your Instagram account with Birdeye 

As you explore the various Instagram story ideas presented in this blog post to take your business to the next level, focus on creativity, understanding your audience, and delivering engaging pieces of content. It is also important to monitor Instagram story viewer information via analytics to understand what works for your business.    

Instagram stories can be a helpful space to humanize your business, captivate your followers, and truly forge a connection. However, generating content ideas, keeping track of the content schedule, and monitoring the impact can be too much work. Especially if you are managing multiple Instagram accounts for your business. 

Birdeye Social simplifies managing social media accounts, enables businesses to use generative AI to come up with content ideas, post in bulk across all the accounts, schedule Instagram posts and track your analytics from a single dashboard. 

With these tasks out of the way, you can focus on the creative side of social media management and create a lasting impact on the platform.

Watch demo