Facebook’s prioritizes local news and connections between friends and family in the newsfeed to keep users happily engaged in their platform. Posts from business pages are rarely seen without paying for a boost or ad making it even more important to consider alternative ways to reach with your audience. With few people using them right now, Facebook Stories may give business pages a better chance at visibility.

Not many businesses are aware of this feature despite its prime real estate. According to Facebook, your story will appear in the stories section at the top of your followers’ News Feed on Facebook for 24 hours. Any photos or videos you add to your story on Facebook will also appear in your story on Messenger. Adding updated and relevant Stories to business pages provides another opportunity to showcase your brand and increase your Facebook engagement without having to pay for it.

Facebook Story Characteristics

The “Story” was a format rose to popularity originally with Snapchat. The novelty of this format and the additional privacy considering the content was eliminated after 24 hours made this a preferred social media channel with a younger audience. Here are key characteristics of the Facebook Story:

  • Facebook Stories are created through your smartphone camera.
  • You can use photos or create a video or a combination of both.
  • Stories are only visible for 24 hours after publication.
  • You can add filters and stickers to make them more interesting.
  • You can add text overlays.
  • Viewers can reply via private message through a platform specifically designed to answer Facebook stories.
  • Viewers can react to your story quickly, sending animated emoji to give their opinion.
  • You can add location tags.
  • You can see who saw your story.

As with Instagram Stories or Snapchat, Facebook Stories are visual rather than text-based. They disappear in 24 hours and can contain multiple photos and videos to communicate a message. Stories with higher engagements have a behind-the-scenes feel with less of the crisp, corporate professional feel and more informal or raw feel.

Facebook does offer the option to create ads in stories and with fewer competitors in this space, CMP and conversion rates are better than other Facebook advertising options.

Facebook Story Planning

Creating Facebook stories for pages is time-consuming but right now its worth the time and just might be the best way to re-engage a passive audience. A good story includes video, imagery, text, decoration and a decent amount of planning. As with any good story you want to guide your audience from start to finish through a journey.

First, you need to decide what story you want to share with your audience. What is the purpose of your story?

  • Do you want to share a behind-the-scenes glimpse of your business?
  • Do you want to educate your audience about your expertise? Facebook Stories can be a great way to deliver quick tips or tutorials.
  • Are you trying to learn about your audience? Ask for your fans’ feedback about new products or services.

After you decide on an overall theme/idea and include a combination of video and images to keep the Story visually appealing and decorate the Story with filters, stickers, and text to keep viewers watching til the end.

Now that you have your idea/theme, use a storyboard to sketch out the main elements. Don’t worry about getting it perfect. This is just a plan/map so you know where you’re headed and have some ideas about the direction once you get started. Your Facebook Stories do best when they are created in a more informal or familiar way than a normal post. This style can help humanize your brand and bring it closer to your audience.

Here’s a storyboard template from Wikimedia you can use to get started.

How to Share Your Facebook Story

To share your Facebook Story use the Facebook Pages app on your mobile phone:

  • Tap the camera icon or swipe right from anywhere in News Feed to use the camera.
  • Tap the round record button at the bottom of the screen to take a photo, or tap and hold to record a video.
  • Add all the special effects and scenes you want with the tools in Facebook’s app.
  • Tap Next, then tap to select Your Story.
  • Tap Share.

Using the app you can start a live video, take looping photo bursts, use masks or other camera effects, draw in 3d and change your story privacy settings. Here are complete instructions from Facebook.