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How To

Instagram Music Stories & Promotion

Photograph of the blog post author, Carla Johnson

Carla Johnson


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Did you know you can now add a soundtrack to your Instagram Stories? There are more than 500 million users on Instagram Stories every day, and in 2018, Instagram announced that the ‘Music Sticker’ can work for videos and photos. Stories and social media are fantastic ways for artists to share updates with fans from promoting a new music video to a gig night to a look at life backstage! They give your followers an authentic view of your musical journey. In this article, we will look at how you can use music in your Instagram Stories with music streaming services such as Spotify, SoundCloud and Shazam, as well as marketing music and promotion on Instagram.

taking picture on mobile phone

What Is An Instagram Story?

Instagram Stories are one of the key platforms on Instagram both for personal and marketing usage. Users can upload up to 15 seconds worth of video in stories, and the right 15 seconds part of your song can effectively engage your fans.

Instagram Stories are really easy to use. If you want to make it entertaining, you’ll need to put some thought into it. Luckily, Instagram has a number of options to help create stories which are fun. You might have amazing photos or videos, with some great filters, but what is your story missing? Music! Instagram has a selection of tunes from its own library as well as music streaming services, such as Spotify, SoundCloud, and Shazam.

Here’s what you need to know about adding music to Instagram.

How To Add Music To An Instagram Story

woman listening to music with headphones

Get ready to start adding soundtracks to your next Instagram Story.

It couldn’t be simpler. All you need to do is download the latest version of the Instagram app. Open the app and go to Instagram Stories by selecting the camera icon. Take a photo or video, then select the stickers button and tap the music sticker. This opens a music library to thousands of songs. Look for a specific song, or search by genre or what’s popular, and tap the play button to hear a preview. When you have chosen the song you like, select which part of the song you want to appear, then upload.

When your followers watch your story, they will hear the song playing as well as see a sticker showing the song title and artist name. Your selected song appears as a sticker in your story, choose where the sticker is placed by moving it around the screen with your finger.

Adding Music To Uploaded Media

Add music to a current photo or video that you want to use in a story. Tap the camera icon, swipe up to view your photo library. Select the photos or videos you want to add to your story. Add music by tapping the sticker icon, then select the Music sticker.

Adding Songs From Spotify

Open your Spotify app and pick the song you want on your Instagram story. Tap the ellipses icon and then Share. You’ll see an option to share on Instagram Stories. Select that, and you’ll be taken to your Instagram story. The selected song will appear as cover art. Then add text, stickers, or other effects. Select the Your Story icon to post the story with the song you selected. When your story is posted, there will be a link back to Spotify.

Adding Songs From SoundCloud

Go to your SoundCloud app and choose the song you want to add to your story. Tap the Share icon for that song and select Share to Instagram Stories. Publish to your story which will also have a link back to the song on SoundCloud.

Adding Songs From Shazam

Shazam is slightly different, as it can analyse songs you’ve listened to. This can be useful if you can’t remember a song title or artist. Go to the Shazam app. If there is music playing near you, let the app recognise the song and select the song in Shazam. Use the More icon, Share, and tap the option for Instagram Stories to import to the Instagram app. Once imported, you can go back to the Shazam app through Instagram.

Which Countries Use The Music Sticker?


At the moment, the music sticker feature is available in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, France, Germany, Sweden, the UK and the US.

What Type of Music Is There?

Instagram’s music library is filled with thousands of songs from popular artists from Dua Lipa to Guns N’ Roses. Thanks to Facebook’s recent partnership with record labels, it is easier than ever to find a song to suit the mood of your story.

Marketing Music On Instagram Stories

creating instagram story

The potential for Instagram stories marketing and general promotion through Instagram is huge, especially for artists. With over a billion active monthly users, it is worth investing some time in your Instagram profile. Plenty of musicians and influencers have built a career off the back of Instagram.

Ideas For Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories have great features to encourage fans to interact with you. You can spark a debate by using the ‘poll’ and ‘ask me a question’, or use the ‘countdown feature’ to announce your next gig or new release. Stories link to your direct messages so that fans can reply to your story. This is a great way to build relationships with your fanbase, so it’s a good idea to message as many as you can. You could also share snippets of your music video or behind the scenes footage of filming, as well as making short videos to put your tracks over on your stories.

Adding Stories To Highlights

It is important to know that stories only last for 24 hours. After that, they disappear. However, you can find them in your archive and create highlights. So, why not categorise your highlights for new fans to see your previous stories? Highlight what might be interesting to fans such as a tour, studio sessions or rehearsals.

Links In Instagram Stories

taking picture on phone

Depending on where you are in your career, you might be able to add links to your story. This is available if you have a business account and over 10,000 followers. Fans can ‘Swipe Up’ while watching your story to open a link. To add a link, click the link icon on the top while editing your Story. 

Instagram Ads and Sponsorship

You can pay for Instagram ads and sponsored posts as a way of engaging new fans. Although it is worth trying out to see if it makes a difference to your following/engagement, you don’t need to spend too much. As Instagram is owned by Facebook, you can create Instagram ads with Facebook Ads Manager. Firstly, you need to firstly think about your aims/goals. The most beneficial for musicians are Brand Awareness, Engagement and Video Views. Then set aside a budget. You don’t want to spend too much at once especially if you are new and figuring out how to use sponsored posts/ads.

Depending on your goals, you can decide to pay by cost per thousand impressions, or cost by click. Instagram ads are like an auction, the price of them is determined by the level of competition for the audience you want to target. There are many options for creating audiences in Ads Manager, with regards to location, gender and interests.

All that is left to do is to create and upload your ad. Instagram ads use photos, videos, carousels and stories. Research Instagram’s design requirements and recommendations to ensure your ad is accepted. Ad Manager will let you know if anything is wrong, finally, once your ad has gone live, make sure you track its performance.

Instagram Profile

Instagram logo on mobile phone screen

Making your Instagram profile and bio is fairly easy. However, there are a couple of things you need to consider to ensure its optimised and you use it to its full potential

It is important to have a profile picture which represents you, it should be aesthetically pleasing as well as to portray your brand identity. It could be a band photo, a logo or unique graphic of your latest album.

Then make sure your bio is catchy. With 150 characters, you can say what you want and update it as you please. It is also key to include a link. Although Instagram doesn’t use links, your bio is the exception, so you can share one with your followers. Whether you want to link to your latest release or upcoming gig, make sure you reference ‘link in bio’ when you post about it.


It is obvious that to keep your fans engaged, you need to post some interesting content. Keep it authentic. Whether you want to post backstage photos, live set clips, promotional graphics, funny memes or inspirational quotes, there are plenty of content options available. The most important factor is how your fans respond to it. Think about your audience, what they like and what content they will enjoy.

If you are still finding it difficult to come up with some original content, then don’t be afraid to check out what similar artists are doing. Don’t copy them, but you can take inspiration to see what types of content your fans might like. Spend some time honing your graphic design skills so your album art looks professional and eye-catching.


For your Instagram feed, it could be useful to plan ahead and schedule some posts. Impromptu content can also work very well, but this isn’t always the case, particularly when you’re posting content to your stories. It is good to think ahead to ease the pressure. Especially, when you have a single/album launch or a tour announcement coming up, you will be able to post relevant content without having to put time aside every day. You may want to consider creating and planning some posts in advance and arranging them to go live at a particular time.


Hashtags are a great way to reach potential fans from your Instagram posts. If you are just starting out and wanting to build a strong following, then make sure you use hashtags. Many users will still use hashtags in order to find accounts which have a similar interest in what they like to follow. So, it is worth still putting hashtags in. The maximum you are allowed to use on one post is 30, but it is probably better to use around 10 while building a following. You need to make sure you are still authentic and not spam.

It is important to use hashtags that align to your music, e.g. if a punk band could use #PunkMusic #PunkRock #LiveMusic. You can also hashtag nearby locations, other similar musicians and whatever is relevant to you and your music.  

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woman listening to music dancing

There are plenty of methods you can use in order to promote your music, especially through Instagram and Instagram music. It is clear to see that Instagram is an incredibly versatile platform in which you can engage with current and potential fans. It can also be used to respond to fans who interact with your story.

Keep in mind, it is also very important to promote your music through a variety of methods and focus on all aspects of your music career. Instagram can help you reach new fans, engage current ones and will help you to grow as a brand and an artist.

If you have songs that you want to share with the world – we want to help boost your career and get them noticed, including marketing, promoting your music and improving your streaming presence! Also, check out our Sync opportunities page to get your music in TV and Film. Try it out for free today by signing up or clicking the button below.


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