One of the most frequent questions I get asked is, “How can I get more views on my Instagram stories?”

And I get it. Instagram stories are where your clients get to really know you.

If you’re struggling to get IG story views, it’s definitely something you’re going to want to fix.

It’s so important to optimize our stories so that we maximize engagement and warm our audience.

In this video I discuss 6 valuable insights into fostering engagement so that you get more views and more clients.

Prefer to read? Here’s a (rough) transcription:

Hey everybody, Maria Wendt here and today I’m going to show you how to get more views on your Instagram Stories.

Let’s get right into it. I don’t need to tell you that the more views you get, that means the more ideal clients are seeing your stuff.

And the more potential ideal clients see your stuff, the more clients you actually end up getting.

So it’s really a good use of our time for us to just talk about what you can do to get more views on your Instagram Stories.

And the first way you can do that is by properly utilizing engagement.

There’s going to be a couple of different ways you can do that, but really shortly put, simply put, the more you get people to engage with your content, with your Stories, the more Instagram will send you viewers, will show your Stories to other people.

And so a big part of our strategy as we talk about specific ways is to keep in mind that the big overarching thing that we want to do is we want to create engagement.

We want our viewers to go from being passive onlookers, to actually engaging with our content. And it can be a slight, subtle engagement.

It doesn’t have to be huge.

They don’t have to be saying “Yes, I want to work with you. Sign me up.”

But just little indicators that they’re watching and they’re participating is what we’re looking for.

#1: Strategically use Instagram Polls.

And so obviously a really great way to do that would be utilizing Instagram polls.

But I’ve noticed that most entrepreneurs, most content creators, most people that use Instagram, they don’t use Instagram polls the right way.

And so they get very little response on their Instagram polls.

What I have found works the best is asking questions that everybody can answer.

I like to do is not so much yes or no, although you can, but more like this or that, because everybody has a preference and that’s a poll that anybody can answer.

When I create Instagram polls, it’s everybody participating.

Not only to my views on that story itself go up, I get better views on that story, but my Stories get more views in general immediately following a really popular poll.

And if you think about it from the Instagram platforms perspective, it makes sense.

The more people that engage with your story, that’s telling Instagram, oh, this is a really popular content creator, people want to see her stuff.

So they’ll show it to more people because they want people to be on their platform. They want people to be enjoying the content.

So don’t just do polls, but make your poll something that everybody can participate in. That’s tip number one.

#2: Use secret Instagram hashtags.

Second thing that you can do is use secret hashtags.

Now not many people know about this, but it’s a really great way to get more views on your story. What I do is I find relevant hashtags that are related to my industry that my people would be searching for and I add it to my Instagram Stories.

And now some people may not want hashtag all over their Instagram Stories and I get it, I’m the same way.

So what I do is I put my Stories behind stickers.

You all know the sticker feature on Instagram. I put my hashtags behind stickers.

So it still gets the views, it still gets people seeing my Stories, but they’re not visible.

They’re super subtle. It looks like I have like a little, I don’t know, kitten jumping up and down or whatever it might be. It makes sense for the story that I’m doing.

But this is the way for me to get more views without having to clutter up my Instagram story with more hash tags.

You could also do the exact same thing for locations.

So find a location that’s sort of close to your area, but I like to go a little bigger. So back when I lived in Delaware, I would do, instead of doing Newark Delaware where I lived, I put in Philadelphia PA because that’s a bigger metropolitan area, close to where I live. And a lot of people were clicking on that and doing that.

So locations work as well, but I have found better results personally from hashtags, because you can get really targeted with your hashtags and make sure that the people, the extra people that are viewing your Stories are actually related to who you are and what you do and what you offer. So that’s tip number two.

#3: Ask the right questions using the Instagram story question box.

Third thing that you can do to get more views on your Instagram Stories is to ask good questions. So a lot of you will know that create feature where you could ask me a question.

What I found is a lot of people use those incorrectly, or they use them in a way that doesn’t necessarily foster engagement.

People like to talk about themselves.

And so instead of having people ask you questions about yourself, I’ve actually seen more success when I use those boxes, that question box, to ask people questions about themselves. Like, why did you start your business? Or, what are your goals for 2021? Or describe yourself in one word?

I have seen much greater engagement when I make it about them.And I think that’s just a general principle of engagement is if you’re struggling to get engagement anywhere, if you’re struggling to get views anywhere, make sure that you’re making it about other people, not about you.

It’s an old quote from Dale Carnegie, but he says something like, I’m paraphrasing, but it’s something like, you’ll worked so much harder trying to get people interested in you. Be interested in them first.

It’s kind of like our mom would say, if you want a friend, be a friend.

And so if you want engagement, if you want people to pay attention to you, if you want more views on your Stories, give people an opportunity to talk about themselves.

So use that question box. You’ll get more views on your story.

And if you also get to know more about your community, about your followers, I really enjoy that question box one. I love it when it’s time in my content calendar to do that because it’s a way for me to get to know my people more. I get to know a little bit more about them. They get to tell me more about themselves and has the added bonus of getting more views and more engagement.

#4: Only post 6 stories a day.

Tip number four is to keep your story short. The ideal amount of Stories, you know how you have those little bars at the top, the ideal amount of Stories is six per day, no more. And if you think about it logically, it makes sense.

When you go to somebody, some content creator, and we see that they have just so many Stories, we kind of get overwhelmed and we click through it really fast or we exit. But if people only have a few, up to six of those little bars, we’ll put it on the screen so you know what I’m talking about.

If they have six, the rumor is that people will actually go through it and they’ll finish watching all your Stories.

And that’s really good.

That tells Instagram that this content creator, people consume all the Stories they create, they’re really popular.

So the more simple way of thinking about this is don’t have too many Stories on your Instagram story.

It’s just too much people get overwhelmed and they’ll click away and that’s really bad for your stats with the algorithm.

With any marketing, with any tips like this, the key thing is take it and try it. I know tons and tons of creators that have tons and tons of content.

#5: Do lots of shoutouts to your Instagram stories.

The next thing that you can do to get more engagement, to get more views, is to tag people, to shout people out.

Now, this is also a great tip for building relationships, increasing the amount of people you know, building out your network.

But it’s also really good thing to do from a getting more views standpoint, from an engagement standpoint, it’s a fantastic way to increase the amount of people watching your story. And the reason why it works is a couple fold.

Number one, you’re utilizing a feature on Instagram, they always like that, number two, people will typically reshare your story to their profile.

And it’s a fantastic way to frequently, if you’re shouting out people around the size of your audience, you can get double the amount of eyeballs on your story because they will reshare it to their profile and then you’ll have more people tapping back and viewing your profile.

So we like to do, for me, I like tagging people and I do it mostly from a networking standpoint because I love shouting out people.

I love utilizing my platform to just shout out other people, but it does have the added benefit that I do end up getting more followers and I do end up getting more views on my Stories. But I do it primarily because I want to connect with people. I want to shout out awesome people that I’ve found or profiles I’ve binged, but it’s also a really good way to get more views on your story.

#6: Take a break (believe it or not.)

All right. So the final thing that you can do to get more views on your Stories is to take a break.

And again, this is one of those things where it could work for you, it could not, but something that I’ve noticed is whenever I notice my story views going down a little bit and they’re less than I normally would get, I take a break for 24 hours.

I just let the whole algorithm reset and then I make a new piece of content that typically has a poll or answer a question, and my engagement always goes way up.

And I think what’s happening is I get into the cycle where I get into this rhythm, I get into this routine and it can get a little repetitive, it can get a little tedious if I don’t pay attention.

And so by resetting and giving the algorithm a break, I noticed my Stories go way up.

So if you’ve been posting a lot and you’ve been consistent, first of all, good job, I like that. Give yourself a break. Give yourself 24 hours and then come back right around the same time and ask a poll. Ask a question, put up a poll.

Do something to make the first story that you put up after your 24 hour break, have it be something that people will likely engage with. I like to keep the polls relevant.

So for example, one of the ones I did was, is your Christmas tree up or down? At the time of filming it’s like end of January so a lot of people are going to say, “Yes, my tree is down.” And some people are like, “I need to get it down.” Everybody for the most part is going to answer that question.So take a break.

If you’ve noticed that your story views have gone down over a bit but you don’t exactly know why, take an intentional 24 hour break. I wouldn’t go longer than 24 hours, just a 24 hour reset and then make your first story an Instagram poll. That’s what I would recommend doing. And you should see your story views go way up.

Hopefully, you found these story hacks helpful.

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Written by

Maria Wendt

Maria Wendt is a highly sought-after business coach who specializes in helping ambitious female entrepreneurs get clients online.

Published and interviewed in many different places, including Forbes & Business Insider, she mentors her community of 150,000+ business owners, teaching them exactly how to build a profitable online business.