Your online is in the works and you’re almost set to launch—now it’s time to promote your course and sales page. Naturally, you head over to Instagram to post about your upcoming launch. We all know how tricky things can get in terms of your audience seeing your content on Instagram, specifically for in-feed posts. While your most highly engaged followers may see your post the minute it hits the timeline, it can take days for some other folks to see it. This is a key reason why your Instagram Story is an essential tool to use when promoting your business or online course.

We know you may have deadlines for sign-ups or special deals running, so you need to provide those details to your audience, fast. We caught up with one of our favorite creators and social media marketing experts. Kate Steckly, to lay out some of the advantages and disadvantages to using Instagram Story to promote your business.

Kate reminds that not only do more people browse their Stories than their feeds, but that Stories more timely. So, if you’re launching a course and you’re trying to provide a sense of urgency, Stories are going to be a lot more effective than a feed post, which may or may not be seen by your followers in time to meet the deadline.

But remember: There are limitations to Stories. You might not have as much time to provide info about your course when utilizing Stories. A long caption on a feed post has the potential to be an entire pitch in itself. Usually, with Stories followers tend to have a bit less patience for that amount of text in a video. So short and sweet is the name of the game.

The essentials of promotion

And if you don’t know where to start with promoting your online course on your Instagram Story, we’ve outlined some tips to help you get started sooner than later.

Clearly explain to your audience the value of your course

This may sound like a no-brainer, but it’s sometimes hard to explain information to others when it comes second nature to you. When promoting your course on your Instagram Story, be sure to explain what your course is about, who it’s for, when it will take place, and how one can go about learning more information and signing up. Those 5 Ws (and one H) that you learned some time ago as a kid are indeed a fundamental part of relaying important information, especially when selling is involved.

Pro-tip: If you have testimonials to share, whether from a previous course, client or follower, don’t be too proud to share it on your story. Make it anonymous if need be.

Don’t be afraid to show your face on camera when pitching your course via IG Story

Personality sells. Whether you’re a boutique owner or course creator, people love to know the genius behind the brand. Most importantly, people feel more comfortable investing in products and services launched by people they identify with.

Get comfortable being on camera so you can make an authentic connection with your audience. Kate credits this as one of her top tips for promoting your course on your Instagram Story and seeing positive results. She shares:

“I would always recommend showing your face on your story! Record yourself speaking authentically about why your offering is valuable, how it’s helped others, and how you think it will help your follower. Whenever you’re speaking to your camera on stories, try to imagine you’re talking just to one person – like you’re sending a Snapchat video to your ideal client. That will make the pitch feel more personal, and therefore have a better chance of converting.”

Use graphics and use the tools embedded into Instagram to relay your information

It’s no secret that whether you’re a visual learner or not, graphics are a great way to relay information for people to soak up, so don’t be afraid to use graphics in your Instagram Story promotions. Use embedded tools such as the countdown sticker, polls, questions sticker, etc., to engage with your followers. Make sure you’re having a two-way conversation with your audience.

Pro-tip: You want to be short but concise. Don’t overload your stories with text but hit the key points that your audience needs to know. Direct them to a place to learn more if needed.

Create a Story Highlight that encompasses all Stories related to your course

Those Instagram Stories may only live for 24 hours, but you can create an archive that your followers can access at any time via your Story Highlights. Create a highlight for your course and save all your promo Instagram Stories to it. And, don’t forget to remind your followers that they can view the Story Highlight for updates on anything they may have missed relating to your course.

Last but not least, keep track of the stats on these promotions Stories

From sticker clicks to profile visits, you need to keep track of what’s working at what’s not. This can help you shift gears if needed and, of course, serve as a template for promoting future courses. If you set up your Instagram profile as a business, you’ll have access to Instagram Insights to help you decode the data, better target your audience, and strategize your online course promotion.