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3 Easy Instagram Story Ideas You Can Do Today

The struggle is real.

Keeping up with your social media presence requires a lot of planning and content development. The more social platforms and brands you have, the more ideas, posts and messaging you have to deliver. While developing a well-thought-out plan for your social platforms is critical to brand awareness and consistency, it can leave you looking rigid and artificial if you aren’t paying attention to trends and news that tend to overtake social media. The reality is that social media is meant for people to be exactly that…social. So, businesses using these platforms must find ways to blend in and build relationships and engagement with followers in order to be successful.

Leave room in your social calendar to produce easy, engaging posts that make your brand seem real and relatable. For example, Instagram offers multiple options for users to publish content, including posts, stories and Instagram TV (IGTV). Here’s a quick breakdown of what each of those can accomplish.

  • Posts are great for building brand awareness and publishing content you want to remain visible on your page. 
  • Stories are 24-hour posts that offer tons of options to interact with your audience.
  • IGTV is a newer option that allows users to post longer, more immersive videos.

Today, I want to share three easy Instagram story ideas that you can implement quickly to boost engagement with your audience and make your brand more relatable to users. 


Conduct a poll.

Stop your followers before they swipe past your story with a quick poll. Instagram polls allow you to hear directly from your audience. There are two poll sticker options you can add to your stories, including the classic poll and an emoji slider. Both are extremely easy for you to set up and for users to interact with. Use polls to get feedback on new product options, popular trends and more. 





Ask a question.

Similar to a poll, Instagram offers a question sticker that allows you to get more open-ended responses. Use this to ask your followers for feedback, requests or to flip the script and ask your audience to submit questions for you to answer.




Run a pop quiz.

While the poll sticker is great for true/false, yes/no or this/that questions, you can use the quiz sticker to ask multiple-choice questions. This option works great for testing your followers’ knowledge or requesting feedback. It gives you more options than the poll but offers more control than the open-ended question sticker.



There are so many ways to interact with your followers on Instagram stories, so this is just the tip of the iceberg. But the key is to engage. Ask questions, get feedback and have fun. If you can do that, you can build a successful community of loyal customers and increase your audience and customer base.


Hardware Retailing, published by the North American Hardware and Paint Association (NHPA) offers nearly 34,000 readers with how-to management and new product advice every month. Hardware Retailing offers a range of digital and print advertising options to help you get your message to key buyers in both the retail and wholesale markets. And, the revenue generated from advertising is reinvested to produce education and research for the independent home improvement channel. Download our media kit for more information.

Author avatar

Whitney Daulton

Whitney has spent more than a decade at NHPA, beginning as a graphic designer fresh out of college, then moved into art and creative direction before landing her current role as Executive Director of Marketing and Communications. She is passionate about building content and tools to help independent retailers succeed. She is instrumental in helping the association build strategies and brand awareness behind its products and services.

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