The Ultimate Instagram Stories How-To Guide

If your business uses Instagram, you’ll have probably used the Stories function once or twice. Swiped from Snapchat (more or less), it’s an instant way to share thoughts and boost your visibility on your followers’ feeds.

If you’re not a confident Instagrammer, it’s also another confusing feature to feel intimidated by.

Some businesses hammer Stores all day every day, and some barely use it at all. This ultimate Instagram Stories how-to guide has been created to help you get the most out of this quickfire feature, no matter how you intend to use it.

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So let’s get started!

Create a Calendar

If you’ve been running your business for a while, you’ll already be familiar with the concept of an editorial calendar, whether you know it or not.

Your editorial calendar is a foolproof guide, created by you, to help you create and post the right types of marketing content, advertisements and offers at ideal moments throughout the year.

Whether you drill right down to the hours and minutes or you simply keep track of your busier times of year, your editorial decisions are based around these timings. It sounds difficult, but it isn’t: think about how you plan campaigns around Christmas, or summer holiday season, or even in the run-up to the weekend. It all counts!

Creating a calendar for your Stories content will help you out because it means you won’t be left stranded without content on a busy day. It also means you can really take advantage of my next tip…

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Schedule Your Stories

Creating your Stories content in bulk and scheduling them across the day, week or month is a fantastic way to keep on top of your Instagram Stories and ensure you’re not leaving your followers drawing a blank when they want to see content from you.

There are apps and scheduling platforms that allow you to do this easily, such as Tailwind and Later. Use their tools and let technology do the hard work for you.

What content should I share on Instagram Stories?

Good question. Every Instagram account is different, and it depends on what you use the platform for as to what you’ll be publishing on Stories every day.

Your main options to choose from are:

●      Photo

●      Video

●      Boomerang

●      Sharing posts.

With photos, you get a static picture, but you can add gifs and other adornments to them in the editing process.

Using video is great to share news or product releases in a personal way, and you can choose to have volume on or off.

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Boomerang is a more compelling way to share a relatively dull image – think shots of packaging – but it can eat into your users’ data and become annoying if used too much.

 You can also add to your story by sharing posts from your main feed or from any other feed you choose. This is really useful for highlighting review posts, or drawing people to your main feed for your latest post.

Use Stats

If in doubt, follow the numbers. If you’re not sure what types of content your followers are enjoying, take a quick look at Instagram Insights to see what’s been playing out well and what’s been flopping.

Armed with the facts, you can head back to work and create content you know will hit your targets.

See, Instagram Stories are easy once you get the hang of it! But if you’re really struggling, ping me an email. I’d love to talk to you about how I can help boost your Instagram game.

Until next time…

Will copywriting ever be automated?

It sounds like something out of Black Mirror or Bladerunner (or Fifth Element…did you see that? One of the best films ever made, seriously) but one day, automation is going to affect our lives. Big time.

In some cases we already trust automation to take care of things in our everyday schedules. If you’ve got an Alexa taking down your shopping lists, or a Hive switching off your heating while you’re out for the day, you’re already enjoying the advantages of an automation-led future. How exciting is that?!

But what if computer programmes could help streamline your workflow? Would you use a robot to make your copywriting tasks easier?

Hyperspeed Headlines

You might not know this, but there are already programmes out there that are used regularly to write basic news reports for news agencies. The odd thing? You can barely tell the difference between a short court report written up by a human and a traffic update composed by AI. Ouch.

This technology has been used to create advertising copy, too, using Google’s ‘cost-per-click’ system to train tech to make ads that play it safe, thereby encouraging more clicks while driving costs down.

However, marketing corporation Dentsu Aegis Network decided this wasn’t ground-breaking enough for them. As advertising giants, they knew that creativity is what drives the best marketing campaigns. So, they set off on a journey to teach their algorithms how to ‘think’, ‘feel’ and ultimately, get funny.

According to a fascinating news story about the project on BBC.co.uk, managing director of Dentsu Aegis Network Audrey Kuah said: "Our ambition is to train this AI copywriter to learn how to inject a little bit of that human creativity.”

The robots are coming…

The robots are coming…

The Human Touch

Does this spell the end of the road for creative copywriters?

I honestly don’t think so. While algorithms can be trained to write snappy, empirically interesting copy, the only creativity they can offer is learned.

In that respect, a human element has to exist, in order to push the creative boundaries.

I love writing heartfelt, engaging copy that informs, attracts and moves readers to act. I can’t deny that the idea of having an AI assistant I can send repetitive tasks to is actually a dream come true, for both me and my clients. Imagine all the time I could dedicate to producing thoughtful, creative content! Imagine how much more efficient the processes involved in setting up a website – for example – would be?

 I’m not concerned that robots will take my job. Well, let’s hope not; I quite like doing what I do.


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At the end of the day, creativity comes from your lived experiences, your personality, your likes and dislikes and your own personal hunches. What works for one agency might not work for another. Ads that bring home thousands of pounds in revenue for one company might fall flat for others. That’s why humans, with our amazing adaptability and problem-solving skills, could never really be replaced.

I’m actually excited about where AI might take the creative marketing industry. How about you?

Until next time…

Why You Should Hire a Copywriter in 2019

If you’ve been hesitant to hire a copywriter, I can sympathise. Making the decision to outsource your web content, social media posts or ads can seem like a daunting process. After all, your company is your pride and joy - and handing over the creative reins to an outsider involves a lot of trust.

You needn’t worry. Professional copywriters are experts, and we exist to help you. If you need a simple press release writing, that’s what we can do. If you need a full website’s worth of content creating, you can count on us to deliver exactly what your brief describes.

A relationship between a copywriter and our individual clients is all about communication. We trust you to give us all the information and support we need to create exceptional content – and in return, you can trust us to work hard to deliver content you need that goes above and beyond your expectations.

Here are some more compelling reasons why you should hire a copywriter in 2019, and why I think the job I do can help out businesses of all kinds all over the world.

A copywriter knows exactly what you need - even if you don’t.

You might be unhappy with your web content and need an overhaul. You might be working on a brand new website for a startup. You might have heard about Instagram ads and want to get involved.

You might know this, but you don’t know what next steps to take.

This is what we copywriters do. We can talk through your options, and together we can work out the best possible plan of action. Then we get to work. Simple as that!

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Copywriters only do what you ask us to do.

If you’re afraid that hiring a freelance copywriter will somehow start a chain of events that leads to you paying for content and fees you didn’t want to pay, don’t be.

Good copywriters can send a clear contract to you for every job you ask us to complete. If we think more work needs to be done – for example, keyword research or a spot of competitor analysis – we’ll flag this, but ultimately it’s your call.

If a copywriter is charging you more than you can afford, it only takes a conversation to rectify the situation. After all, we work for you, not the other way around.

Freelance copywriters have experience - and lots of it

Believe it or not, most freelancers don’t have one, specific niche. This is a good thing. It enables us to flex our mental muscles, turning copy into well-rounded, well-informed information.

We might know everything there is to know about your particular industry, but in the background we might also be experts in retail management, extreme sports and professional cleaning services. They don’t feel connected, but a wide spectrum of reference points helps our writing feel less robotic - and that’s what you want.

A copywriter understands how important your content is

If your team doesn’t have time to give your content the precision and care it needs, your business could suffer for it.

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A copywriter understands how vital your content is, and will work hard to ensure it is perfect before sending it back to you for your comments. We are also great at making amends, sometimes several times, so that the content you want is the content you get. We understand. It’s important to you, so it’s important to us.

A copywriter gives you space to achieve

 Whenever I speak to potential clients, I want to make sure that they are making the right choice for their business. I also want to convey that by handing over this work to a professional copywriter, they will be freeing up headspace, time and resources. It makes a huge difference to be able to pass work over.

The most common comment I receive from my clients is that I’ve given them time to think, and to work on important projects that in turn have helped their business to grow.

In that sense, copywriters offer two things in one: a chance to turn your mind to more important matters, and the truly essential resource of a professional who can write content that takes your business higher.

If you’d like to chat about how we could work together this year, please get in touch. I’d love to hear from you.