Tapping your way through a prolific Instagrammer’s stories can be like writing a message in Morse code. But thanks to a recently unveiled update, those segmented stories are a thing of the past. IG has been testing longer, uninterrupted stories for the past year, and as of September 2022, the whole world can enjoy ‘em. No longer will your stories be broken up into 15-second increments!

So what does this mean for your social media strategy?

The good

On the plus side, you can create stories without worrying about squeezing important info into those 15-second blocks or worrying that someone will click away before they get to your CTA or link. You also have room to delve deeper into topics and deliver more value. Plus users won’t get overwhelmed when they see a hundred dashes at the top of your story…and then skip to the next user in their feed. And look, Instagram has been pretty clear about their goal of becoming a video-focused, TikTok-like experience, so it’s definitely not going to hurt your discoverability to create longer, video-type Stories. 

Worried about the serial skippers? 60-second vids could actually work in your favor – it’s better for your stats if someone skips one 60-second story once rather than four 15-second stories in succession! The algorithm will read this behavior as one negative interaction rather than four.

The bad 

A minute is a long time in Instagram land – so longer content has to be worth the investment. Longer content also blurs the line between Stories and Reels (which are prioritized by the algorithm), so if you’re working on something longer, it might be worth making it a Reel instead – or at teaser for a Reel. Finally, users have been trained to see Stories as quick, tappable content, so in these early days at least make sure that any critical info is right up front. 

The strategy

The move to 60-second Stories is going to result in changes in fan behavior, so be patient as people come to terms with the new change. When creating your Stories, keep your content snappy and sharp, with key info right up front. Bookend your video Stories with recaps and links so that anyone who taps past still lands on the right takeaway. Think about how you can direct fans from Stories to Reels (which are still the algo’s fave) with teasers or recaps – or about how you can repurpose Reel, or even TikTok vids, for use in your Stories. Outtakes, bonus content, or links and CTAs are all great options to explore. But remember that Stories still disappear after 24 hours (unless you save them to your feed), so store that content elsewhere for later repurposing! Our number one tip here? Test, test, test! 

Let us know: will you be trying 60-second stories on your Instagram account? Head on over to Instagram and share your thoughts!