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6 Types of Emotional Stories To Generate 10X Engagement on Instagram

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Boosting engagement on Instagram is one of the top goals for any social media marketer. Among the best ways to draw in the eyes of your audience is to take advantage of emotional advertising. By taking on this new approach, you can humanize your business while building a deeper relationship with your customers.

This guide explores how emotional stories help engagement and lists a few fantastic examples of stories you can integrate into your marketing plan. As an added bonus, you’ll learn some industry-leading tips and tricks to help you get started.

What Is Emotional Advertising?

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Emotional advertising is a unique avenue of digital and print marketing in which you use emotion to increase brand awareness. Through short videos or written snippets, you’d be able to attract more engagement using different emotions to engage your audience. You might find a heartwarming story to increase shares or a happy event to draw in more likes.

Another massive benefit of emotional advertising is that it helps generate better brand loyalty. As a company, having a loyal base of customers is something that small and large businesses need. The more loyal your consumers are, the more they’ll engage with your posts and turn into leads.

Loyal customers are the ones who continually make purchases, recommend your products and services, and leave positive reviews. They’re a target demographic that you should always reach out to because they help ensure you meet your sales targets.

How Do Emotional Stories Help Engagement on Instagram?

There are several unique ways that emotional stories can help with engagement on Instagram. Let’s look at a few of the largest benefits it offers.

Influencing Buyer Habits

The largest advantage of emotional stories in your marketing strategy is that they help influence buying habits. In fact, you might find that the backstory to your ads means more to consumers than the ad itself. A great example is to look at the advertisements that played during the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

The ads with a more emotional backstory were watched and shared more often than others. Many of the top brands focused on emotional appeals, such as mental health and feminism. As a result, their ads performed significantly better than traditional ones that simply showed products and discussed their benefits.

Building a Brand Reputation

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Emotion advertising is undoubtedly one of the better ways to get prospective customers interested in your company. By telling an inspirational story, you’re helping your audience develop a subconscious emotional connection to your brand. For example, a happy ad about a puppy finding a family is a great way to encourage customers to consider pet adoption services.

When customers have an emotional link to a brand, they’ll be more enticed to learn about what the brand offers. What’s more, it can sway someone’s opinion about a specific company. Take Nike, for example. If they post an advertisement about feminism, there’s no doubt it will draw more women into their product line.

A unique aspect of building a brand reputation through emotional appeals is how it helps customers remember your company. By telling a story, you’re engaging the dopamine center of the brain, which processes emotionally-charged events. When this area of the brain is active, the watcher will most likely remember your advertisement with greater accuracy.

Enhancing Your Conversions

As you can tell by now, companies that harness the power of emotional advertising typically generate higher leads. Helping their customers remember their brand over others makes them more likely to have a higher ROI (Return on Investment). The more you affect your audience with your Instagram ads, the more likely they will return to your brand page.

There’s nothing better than increasing your leads when it comes to boosting your engagement. Not only can leads translate to sales, but they can also increase the number of likes, followers, and shares your social media posts get. Over time, you’ll notice your follower count increasing drastically.

How To Integrate Emotional Marketing on Instagram

Now that you have a good idea of how emotional marketing works on Instagram, it’s time to put it to good use. Instagram is one of the best platforms that open the door to multiple marketing opportunities. Whether you post Instagram Stories, regular grid posts, or direct DMs to customers, the options are endless.

Let’s take a look at some of the best ways you can start integrating emotional ads on Instagram.

Boast About Inclusivity

One of the essential facets of being a human being is the desire to be included and belong to a group. As a business, a fantastic way to generate more engagement on your posts is to focus on inclusivity. You’ll want to ensure all prospective customers will become a part of something greater through your products and services.

There are a few key ways you can bring inclusivity to your brand, including:

  • Establishing a family-like environment on your social media pages

  • Posting content that’s relatable to your target audience

  • Reflecting positive and warm emotions through your ads

  • Writing captions that capitalize on belonging to a family when becoming a customer

Take Advantage of Thrill

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Even the most anxious couch potatoes have a little piece of them that wants to experience some thrill. The thought of booming adrenaline when doing a new activity of having a novel experience is something everyone should have. That said, using your advertising to drive purchases through excitement is a great option.

Through your advertisements, you’ll want to express overwhelming pleasure and excitement. The subjects in your photos should look ecstatic or ready to take on an exciting venture. The more positive emotions you can bring through in the photos and caption, the better.

Focus on Local Business

Customers purchasing from a company will be far more likely to consider local businesses. Consumers have a sense of local pride, but they also want to ensure small businesses succeed. This is an interesting aspect of marketing that even some of the largest companies try to put to good use.

If you’re able to post homegrown stories from your employees or even brand owners, you can attract new customers. You’ll want prospective buyers to feel like they’re shopping where they live, contributing to their local economy. This process is also a fantastic way to build a loyal audience in your hometown, making your content more sharable in your immediate area.

There are a few great tips to follow to make your marketing more local-friendly.

  • Using Local Hashtags

Using local hashtags is a great way to establish that you know insider details about the area you’re looking to target. For example, if you use local terms in your hashtag, it will help establish your authenticity. You can also link your customers to hidden gems only locals know about.

  • Using Local Events

Along with hashtags, using local events is a great way to boost engagement on your posts. Not only will you be bringing a larger audience to a small event but also target your local audience. For example, selling books and posting about a local farmer’s market where your items are available for purchase can benefit both you and the market.

Work With Motivation

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Fear is one of the largest emotions that prevent people from doing what they’ve always wanted. Something as large as being afraid of heights can stop someone from ever skydiving. On the other hand, something as small as getting nervous before interviews can prevent someone from pursuing their dream career.

As a brand, you must take the fear and use it to work for you, as it’s one of the best motivators. By twisting fear, you can create motivation by showing your clients that anything is possible with your products and services. All they have to do is try them for the first time and see how your brand can change their lives forever.

This type of emotional marketing is unique because it works on two levels. Firstly, you attract more eyes through relatable scenarios where prospective customers experience fear. On the second level, you’re providing your audience with a solution, motivating them to overcome what they were afraid of.

When you use motivation, you’ll create an emotional connection with your audience. Also, if your products and services work, you can guarantee your audience will recommend them to friends and family.

Examples of Great Emotional Ads To Boost Engagement

Finding an emotional ad is likely one of the simplest things you can do online, especially as corporations and small businesses understand their benefits.

If you’re interested in designing emotional ads for Instagram, there are plenty of examples. Below, you’ll find some of the highest-performing emotional ad campaigns from various industries.

1. Monster

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Monster is one of the web’s most popular platforms that connect job seekers with employers. You simply create a profile, upload your resume, add employable skills, and begin job hunting. That said, it’s a company that can use several emotions to get more people to sign up for its services.

In this Instagram advertisement, they used humor to draw in their audiences. The quick snippet shows a fictional person typing up their resume to explain a gap in their employment history. Using content from the popular movie “Castaway,” the job hunter turns being stranded on an island into employable skills.

2. Headspace

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Headspace is a great app that helps people manage symptoms of mental illness, primarily anxiety and stress. They have plenty of avenues to establish emotional marketing on their Instagram. Undoubtedly, each of their posts uniquely relates to their followers, from offering motivational pick-me-ups to letting people know they’re not alone.

As someone searching for an app like Headspace to manage anxiety and stress, it’s easy to get drawn into their advertisements. Their Instagram page uses an assortment of color palettes to make their content more appealing. The bright and warm color profiles are ideal for creating a feeling of energy and courage.

3. NyQuil/DayQuil

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We’ve all experienced a sick day or two in our lifetime. NyQuil/DayQuil knows this, considering they create medicine to help alleviate cold and flu symptoms. This Instagram ad focuses on the frustration you might feel from being unable to handle the day-to-day when sick.

The photo is perfectly arranged, ensuring the DayQuil capsules are the focal point of the post. However, emotional marketing is strongest in the caption. Not only is the brand suggesting you use their medicine to handle daily tasks but also to get outside and explore.

It capitalizes on thrill while also offering an extra ounce of motivation. It leaves followers feeling like if they don’t take DayQuil Severe, they’ll be stuck in bed while missing out on great outdoor experiences. All in all, it’s a highly effective presentation that reaches out to the FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) you get from being sick.

4. MeUndies

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MeUndies is a brand that has always been about inclusivity for men, women, nonbinary individuals, and so on. The company understands that underwear and loungewear are for everyone, and you can easily see this foundation in their advertising.

As explored earlier, one of the best ways to use emotional marketing is to have your audience experience a sense of belonging. In this Instagram ad, MeUndies used an adorable photo that shows they are Pride allies. They also used witty humor in their caption by saying, “*loses 600 followers after posting this*.” This sentence in itself expresses the importance of showing same-sex couples in marketing.

It’s a multipurpose advertisement that helps draw in a larger target audience by being bold and transparent. Moreover, it’s also a phenomenal way to ensure their products get into the right hands. That said, as you take a closer look at the Instagram post, you’ll see there are a few other ways they use emotional marketing.

By using terminology such as “Fam,” “Inclusivity,” and “Equality,” they’re eliciting an emotional response from followers. This incredible emotional ad creates a deeper connection with their audience. It also conveys a clear message while offering a heartwarming, relatable picture and a witty caption.

5. Bumble

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Online dating can be challenging, especially for people and women of color. Acknowledging these struggles is one of the primary ways Bumble developed this emotional advert on Instagram. For Muslim Women’s Day, Bumble created an inclusive post using a quick, easy-to-read quote and an in-depth caption.

The boldness of the Instagram photo is what captures your attention at first. The caption provides more information about the collective experience they want their audience to read about. By the end of the ad, you’ll find yourself wanting to learn more about dating as a minority.

This advertisement, much like MeUndies’ Instagram ad, reaches out to several emotions. It captures the attention of marginalized communities while opening the eyes of the majority. The advertisement also opens the comment section for engagement, helping followers connect with one another.

Above all else, this method of emotional advertising leaves the audience with something more than a quick emotion. Bumble also links to the quoted individual, making learning more about dating struggles in marginalized communities easier. In the end, it allows the audience to educate themselves further on an important topic.

6. Ellevest

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Finance is an industry that has been a traditionally male-led field for years. However, more women are beginning to make their impact, as you can see with Ellevest. This emotional ad is a great motivator to help their followers feel like they can take on the world.

The Instagram post looks intriguing and relatable, but the caption is where most of the emotion is drawn. Ellevest uses truth and transparency to draw in the reader, leaving the audience with positive encouragement. As a company that focuses primarily on female investment, this is the perfect type of emotional advertising for its audience.

One of the more unique aspects of this post is that they also use an emoji to make the post more relatable. It helps add another layer of happiness and joy to the post, making it easier to engage with. By motivating their audience, Ellevest is capitalizing on the emotions of the hard-working, everyday woman.

The Beauty of Emotional Advertising

There’s no doubt that emotional advertising is one of the keys to boosting Instagram engagement by at least 10X. When you post an emotional ad, you’ll draw in a larger audience and entice your existing list of followers on Instagram. Also, emotional ads are a phenomenal way to establish brand identity and spread awareness, benefitting your bottom line.