Community Challenges

Instagram Challenge #2: Make a Video for Stories

Lucas Killcoyne


For the second installment in our Instagram Challenge Series, we’re creating videos for Instagram Stories. There are a couple of ways that you can use Animoto to create your stories, which we’ll cover below. Then, keep reading for our best practices for telling stories that stand out to your followers.

If you’re an iOS user:

If you haven’t already done so, start by downloading our app. Check out the video below for a step-by-step guide to creating your story, and check out this blog post for more ways to get the most out of the app.

If you’re not an iOS user:

You can still create stories using our web app, just follow these steps.

  1. Create a square video project
  2. Center your text, images, and video clips, and produce your video
  3. Download your video to your camera roll.
  4. Open Instagram and select your video to share to IG Stories
  5. Pinch your video to expand it to fill the full vertical frame
  6. Share the video to Stories!

Stories GIF

Instagram Story Best Practices

Whichever approach you use, here are our best practices for Instagram Stories to engage and excite your audience.

Save the best for first

Social audiences are fast-moving and quick to move on. Hook them with a catchy opening such as a question, interesting stat, or eye-catching visual. That said, even once they’ve started your video, you can’t count on them to stick around for the entire thing. If you’re trying to impart a particularly important bit of information, don’t wait until the end for the big reveal. Start with the most crucial takeaways and provide context throughout the rest of your video.

Optimize for sound-on viewers

Unlike in the Instagram and Facebook feed, where you can’t assume that viewers will unmute your videos, 70% of Stories are watched with the sound on. There are a couple of ways that you can take advantage of that difference.

First, choose a song that adds to the experience of your story, perhaps even one that starts with a bang and helps to grab your audience’s attention.

Second, consider experimenting with talking directly to your audience. Don’t worry too much about the production value of your clips, your smartphone camera will do just fine.

Feel free to be more informal

While you’re speaking to your audience, don’t be afraid to be a little less formal than you might be in the feed. Stories are your followers’ window into your world. Reward them for tuning in to your story with more access than they would expect.

Incorporate Stickers

There are all kinds of stickers that you can add to your Stories in the Instagram app itself. Some are fun animations and illustrations that add some additional personality to your content, and some, like polls and quizzes, directly invite engagement with your story.

Ready to get started?

Feeling prepared and inspired? Click that button below to download the app and get started on your Instagram videos. And don’t forget to share them in our Facebook group, The Animoto Social Video Marketing Community, when you’re done.

For more about Instagram Stories, head to our Getting Started Guide. If you have any questions about anything we covered here, feel free to leave a comment, or bring them back to the community as well! Happy video making!