4 rules to make good Stories Ads on Instagram

David Brami
January 8, 2021

What makes video stories successful is authenticity, not the format. Here's how to make your own secret sauce for catchy stories.

1#. 📀 Stop posting for posting, it's boring for your audience (and for you).

Are we still in 1996? Looking at trending video Ads in 2021, it seems we are. When Bill Gates proclaimed his famous "content is king" adage in 1996, there were 257,601 websites globally; we now exceed 1,8B websites. "Content is king" was already true when the internet market looked like a neighborhood grocery store. In the age of Amazon, Youtube and Instagram, how many sponsored stories catch your eyes, seriously?You can publish as much video content as you want. If it doesn't reach your target in the heart, you will only enrich marketing agencies, advertising platforms (and the freelance growth hacker you encountered thanks to your LinkedIn Premium Account.)

💡 Seeing most of today's video ads, Bill Gates would probably say something like: "Only great ad is king."

2#. What is a great video ad in 2021?

SMA, Display, UGC ...Times have changed, but marketing wasn't born with the internet (let alone with Facebook ads). Growth hackers willing to share their secrets for a LinkedIn like and comment are the new apostles of marketing who have understood one thing: they can sell you the same recipe a hundred times without ever giving you the ingredients to make it succeed. And there is nothing wrong with that because the recipe is important. But if you really want to skyrocket your audience, you must also - and above all - have the content fuel that matches your product or service to propel it through marketing tools. Buyer persona identified, funnel defined and lever chosen, all planned in a publication calendar plus a little bit of growth hacking to boost everything and go! But stop for 5 minutes to compare the time spent developing the strategy versus creating your content. It takes so much effort to put together a marketing strategy that the creativity part is sloppy most of the time. Today's marketing toolkit is so vast and addicting that it blurs your vision and goal: Great video in 2021 is this portrait video whose first 2 seconds grab your attention, not how you did it.

💡 Take away: quality content is your engine driving fuel. Everything else is just the car around it, and to win the race you mostly need a super engine.

3#. Find your tone & universe: it's your DNA.

Photo by Ali Ossayran on Instagram

Like a song or whatever need a creation process, all contents are not greats. Good ideas are not enough and what makes a great artist - or a great content creator - is his tone and universe. You know, the universe is this remarkable signature when you listen to a record, watch a movie, or a good ad. A good hallmark signature always makes the difference with "a good idea." Why? Because we are not a jury evaluating ideas but sentimental crowds searching for connections with others. The universe is the DNA of a creator. The audience can appreciate a good idea but what will touch them is an identity they can identify to connect and thus communicate.

We spend so much time on methods and tools that, once mastered, we only have one desire: publish any content until intoxication.

💡 Do not reverse the priorities: creating your content universe is the priority because it's the driving force that inspire an entire successful campaign.

4#. How to create your own video ad secret sauce?

In 2021 your audience will be raid even more with advertising. You have two choices then: go unnoticed by posting the beautiful Hi-Fi video of your product/service (which cost you dearly) or focus on your target to find the right video and language to catch his attention. But how?The first step is to find inspiration. Even knowing your subject and its audience, we all need others to inspire us. Unfortunately, this step is often sloppy and even avoided because finding inspiration can take a lot of time and human resources. This is one of the main reasons for the failure of campaigns.

Good news for once, you won't find any best practice advice here, but straight access to seek inspiration through different content to create your own secret sauce. (It's here and free). Pictalio is where you can download free authentic stories thanks to a community of real amateurs. Once downloaded, you are free to personalize them as needed to make your own secret sauce of brand video content.

We created Pictalio because we love stories and the magic they convey. This mix of the unexpected made of good times in the right places with the right people just as real as we are. Stories are both personal and generic treasures to whose you can make say what you like while maximizing your SEO rankings. We wanted this service to be free because stories exist and are an available resource in a "natural state." We made Pictalio allow their exchange quickly thanks to an open-access platform and a simple but efficient search system adapted to your needs, whatever they are.

Why it works :

  • True amateur videos made by true people

As mentioned in my previous article, today's best-performing video content look like your audience. We are all tired of ads that we immediately recognize. If amateur stories and UGC videos are among the most effective formats, it's because they don't look like commercials and reassure your target audience. Fresh content produced by real people: it's your audience.

Tools to go further :

  • The story editors

Engagement generate by stories became so huge that it is now expanding beyond the mobile landscape to cover all other display formats. Google allowed spreading the phenomenon of stories wherever you need to thanks to his AMP stories format. Once you find the video you need on Pictalio, you can easily customize it and publish it anywhere you want to without coding just by using tools like MakeStories or Join Stories.

  • Test your content before spreading it

As I said, best marketing practices are no longer enough. You need to know what your audience likes. It is no coincidence that services such as Dash Hudson are so successful today. Thanks to their AI, this kind of SAAS allows you to predict which of your photos and video content will perform the best before spreading them to the web.

💡 You know your product by heart, so let your intuition guide you to find the video content that will hit your mind and spirit. This will be my one piece of advice: people are fed up with commercials, so be yourself using the videos they created themselves!

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Join our growing community of story makers, we know you can make the difference here.
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