How are Instagram Stories Performing for brands and businesses heading into 2019?

Buffer and Delmodo, the Facebook and Instagram media solutions partner, analyzed 15,000 Instagram stories from 200 of the world’s top brands. This was one of the largest Instagram stories research studies since the first launch to Instagram story analytics in summer 2017.

Key findings:

One to seven stories are the optimal for posting length.

This was calculated through the completion rate: determined by calculating the number of times your stories were watched from the first frame all the way to the last in a 24hr period.

It is still important to experiment and see what works best for a specific brand or business. Top accounts that post 20 or more stories still see 55% greater completion rates, which emphasizes how engaging stories are.

The best times to post Instagram stories is outside of work hours.

It was found more people watched early morning, early evening and exactly at midday, times people are usually not in work, including lunch breaks and when they leave the office.

Best times to post:

4 am-6am ET

8 am-10am ET

12pm-2pm ET

8pm-10pm ET

More Content leads to greater median reach and impressions.

Since stories disappear in 24hrs that gives more room for fresh content. The actual feed only has a certain number of pictures it will show at a time which means it is harder for one company or brand to post a large amount of picture consecutively.

Instagram stories research benchmarks for specific verticals.

The industry verticals are described in these criteria:

  1. Brand: consumer related products
  2. Entertainment: TV and movies
  3. Media: newspapers, news organizations, and news websites
  4. Sports: Sports, eSport teams, leagues, and events

All four verticals see 65% or greater average completing rate with Instagram stories. The average reach and impressions rate is 5.82 for all verticals. For the average posting frequency per month most verticals post between 8 and 10 days per month. We are not at a point where brands are posting daily to Instagram stories

Best practices for posting Instagram Stories

  1. Post your best stories content first
  2. Post consistently for stories
  3. Calculate your own data

The Guardian found their stories with simple static graphics and quick explainer videos outperformed their videos that were produced professionally.

It’s important to keep a close eye on your completion rate, reach and impressions, exit rates according to story form, stories post timing, and stories length among other important elements.

Simplicity is important, this means there is better response to using a background image to quickly tell a story, adding a short copy to convey your story, and decorating with minimal graphics and logos.

To read more about these findings visit, https://blog.bufferapp.com/instagram-stories-research.