Why Instagram Stories are taking over the news feed

After attending Social Media Week here in Bristol at the beginning of June, DeskLodge have become inspired by ‘The Death of the newsfeed’ event held at The Engine Shed with the Social Media Agency, Social Life.

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This inspiring talk took us through the importance of using Instagram stories and how video is taking over social media and indeed the newsfeed!

Originally inspired by snapchat, (that favorite social media platform and longtime obsession of millennials and now Generation Z) Instagram stories have taken off in a big way.

Never before has there been such a dramatic shift in the way we use Instagram, moving away from the perfect (and often unrealistic) images from our newsfeeds / Instagram walls to a more honest and instant form of video and interactive content, that grabs peoples attention and is more than just a selfie.

Like snapchat these images & one-minute vids disappear after 24 hours with the opportunity to save your favorite stories in Instagram Highlights and save longer videos in IGTV.

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So, why should we all get involved with Instagram stories? What makes it different from a newsfeed and why is it so important to get involved right now?

Well, studies have found that the next generation, known as Generation Z (basically anyone born between 1995-2010) are using stories over newsfeeds, and are the very audience you will be wanting to attract in the very near future.

Why are Generation Z so important to the change?

For starters 98% of them have a phone of which 40% are addicted to their phones and 80% claim to be distressed without it.

Anyone who is a parent to a Generation Z kid knows that they love watching videos on their phones and this may or may not shock you to know that they are connected for 10 hours a day and can stream over 23 hours of video a week!

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Still unsure video stories are the way to go?

According to Social Life, there are now over 400 million Instagram story users (that’s 80% of all users) compared to 191 million stories users on snapchat, with Facebook stories catching up with 150 million stories users. Interestingly only 10% of Facebook users are using stories, possibly linked to Facebook’s older demographic – come on whose Mum and Nan, isn’t on Facebook these days?.

The main thing that has made video Stories so popular and a separate entity from YouTube is that stories are filmed using a phone vertically (not horizontally) Gen Z are not interested in having to turn their phones sideways to view a video, they want instant results and, like snapchat, Instagram stories and IGTV have adapted to being used in this, more practical and natural, way.

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How can Instagram stories help build your business?

You may be interested to hear that 1 in 5 stories gets a direct message and 1/3 of all stories viewed on Instagram come from business accounts. This is good news and a big reason why you should be using Instagram stories now!

The amount of video stories being used in sponsored ads has also been rising over the past few years too, even more reason to save your stories and reuse them to attract new followers and most importantly new customers!

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What is so great about content that is so short-lived?

These quick glimpses into what is happening with your business, as it happens, recreates the feeling of a natural conversation, like catching a fleeting moment in your day; this intrigues people and draws them to your brand.

A video seems truer and more honest than a staged and perfected newsfeed post. Stories don’t have to be perfect, which puts less pressure on users too, moving away from the fakeness and need for perfection, that has clouded Instagram for too long.

The filters are still there for those of you who think that having an angelic rabbit face may endure users to your brand but it less about the filters now and more about using your own imagination to create content!

It may interest you to know that Gen Z users are on Instagram to have fun, not to make friends, they are not trying to impress anybody, they just want to be entertained and meet like-minded users. The whole ‘how many followers do you have?’ obsession could finally become a thing of the past.  Which can only be a positive thing!

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Gen Z are not direct messaging each other to ask about their day, they use DM to share video links and content. Most people use their phones to fill up spare time, browsing through newsfeeds, but Gen Z are there for the entertaining, and often funny, content.

They have grown up with social media and fully understand branding marketing, it doesn’t bother them, but it needs to be fun, interactive and rewarding to get them interested.

 So, how can we make our stories more interactive and fun?

Social Life recommend AMA (Ask Me Anything) live stories that features a team member or indeed a character (for those feeling creative) who are available to answer questions live in a group video chat, that any user can join. Once set up this is easy to run as the audience leads the conversation and everyone actively engages in the Q&A with like-minded people, who can leave the conversation whenever they wish.

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For the more creative among us who have the resources and talent to take things further you can use the different options within stories to create polls and games for your stories with fun graphics and films.

We recommend experimenting with the different tools to get you started. See what works for your brand and have a look at what other users are doing in their stories and get inspired! The ideas for games and interactive content are limitless!

Another great and easy interactive tip from Social Life is to create fun wallpapers that users can save to their phone, just add them to your stories and your users can screen shot your amazing designs (that might also have your logo on it somewhere….).

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It looks like Instagram stories are here to stay, you can make your stories unique to your brand, whilst attracting new followers, all you need is a little imagination and a penchant for fun!


Check out Social Life’s recommended Instagram Stories for some inspo and make stories work for you!

The New York Public Library @nypl  

Pablo Rochat @pablo.rochat

National Geographic @natgeo

asos @asos  

Glossier @glossier  


Follow DeskLodge on Instagram




Useful links:

Social media week link - @smwbristol

Social Life link -  @hellosociallife

The Engine Shed -  @engine_shed 

Company Profiles – DotLabel

After using our spacesat DeskLodge for meetings and hot desking, UX agency DotLabel decided to take the plunge and set up office at DeskLodge Basingstoke.

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With a broad range of clients under their belt from independent companies to corporate giants including Airbus and Hendricks Gin we spoke to Matt Oxley, the Co-Founder and Director of DotLabel, about their business and how Desklodge works for them.


What does your business do?

We are an award-winning creative user experience (UX) agency.

We help solve business challenges by creating effective, user-driven digital experiences that get results.  

We design and develop websites, mobile apps, bespoke web applications, portals, intranets and unique digital experiences based on expert research and user insights. We also provide specialist digital marketing services such as SEO and PPC.

Our range of clients include large brands such as Airbus, Hendricks Gin, Moet Hennessy, Barclays, Ordnance Survey, right through to independent owned businesses such as Licence Bureau and Chester Student Lets. 

How long have you been at DeskLodge?

We moved the business into Desklodge about 4 months ago. However, we had been using Desklodge for hot desking as well as client and team meetings for 6 months before that.

How do you use our space?

We have an office space on the second floor and also use the hot desk design space downstairs (The Atrium) as well as the meeting rooms for internal and client meetings.


Why did you choose DeskLodge and a co-working environment?

There is a much more fun, vibrant working atmosphere here at DeskLodge compared to our old office location. We love the flexibility to have a central base for our office yet still hot desk around the building in some great colourful locations.

Although we’ve only been here a short while it’s lovely to meet a wide variety of people from different companies.

The management team at DeskLodge have been great as well. They are always friendly and helpful and really made us feel welcome.

The free pastries on a Friday morning are also a big hit with the team!




Desklodger of the month Basingstoke – Daryl Mitchell from Imagesound

Meet Daryl, business development manager with audovisual heroes Imagesound and a hotdesker at DeskLodge Basingstoke. Daryl likes golf, binge watching box sets and used to be a child chess champion!

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What do Imagesound do?

Imagesound partner with some of the biggest brands globally from the retail and hospitality sectors, by providing background music and digital signage solutions. Our aim is to create an engaging environment for customers by creating on-brand music playlists and screen content.

If you’ve heard yourself humming along to music whilst out shopping, eating or drinking or caught yourself working out to the soundtrack at your gym, then there’s a very good chance that’s from us.

My main responsibility is generating new revenue for the business


How long have you been coming to DeskLodge?

Six months


What is your favourite thing about your job?

I’m in sales, so the hunt for new opportunities and winning new business is what I’m passionate about. Once I get a foot in the door, I make it my mission to deliver the highest levels of value and serve customers the best I can, by significantly improving their current state. It’s great meeting new clients and sharing insights and ideas that will radically transform their customer experience and lead to greater revenues


What is your favourite thing about DeskLodge?

Firstly, our Head Office is in Chesterfield, so DeskLodge provides me with an ideal place to work, that’s less than a 10-minute walk from my house. Secondly, it’s great being able to move around the venue and not staring at the same four walls every day, like you’d find in most other offices.

When I need to make calls, I can nip into the phone booths for privacy and when it’s admin or email time I can relax on the sofa under the canopy… all that’s missing is the swimming pool and bartender service!


What do you do in your spare time?

My son is about to become a one year old, so he’s taken up all my free time over the last year, which has been amazing! However, when I do manage to get a moment to myself, I like to play golf and binge watch box sets


Tell us something funny or unusual about yourself.

The funny stuff will have to wait until I’ve had a few drinks, so let’s go for the unusual… I was Surrey Chess champion at the age of 10 and my favourite supermarket aisle is household cleaning products. There’s nothing better than stocking up the cupboards with the latest innovations from the cleaning industry


Thanks Daryl, Happy cleaning!

DeskLodger of the month - Harriet Yates-Smith 

Meet Harriet, project manager at Mindfully Wired Communications and a hotdesker at DeskLodge Old Market. Harriet likes cycling, pubs and trampolining!

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What do Mindfully Wired Communications do?

MWC is a unique, creative and flexible, non-profit communications consultancy with a focus on environmental and marine-focused projects. We specialise in insightful communications built around stunning imagery and compelling, human stories. We do everything from writing communication and social media strategies to storyboarding films and live streaming conferences! 


How long have you been coming to Desklodge?

It will be coming up to a year.  


What is your favourite thing about your job?

Apart from speaking about fish all day?! (Sorry if you’ve heard us). I love finding creative ways to help our clients tell their stories! We’re currently working on a series of six films for WWF UK Seas and the North Devon Biosphere, where we’re following the journey from the source of a river in Dartmoor right out to Lundy Island in North Devon.  

MWC has been involved in the whole process, from tendering for the contract, to concept development, film scripting, finding characters and shooting the film! It’s an adventure and I love being a part of it. 


What is your favourite thing about DeskLodge? 

The friendly and energetic atmosphere! 


What do you do in your spare time?

Cycling around Bristol, finding excellent pubs to relax in with friends and the odd bit of trampolining when I need to get some exercise in! 


What is you favourite summer vacation past or present?

I am going to Greece at the end of August to celebrate the big 3-0, I am pretty excited about that, less excited about turning 30! 


Thanks Harriet, have a great 30th birthday!

DeskLodger of the Month - James Rutherford from Envelop Risk

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Meet James, Head of Engineering at Envelop Risk, cyber underwriting specialists who combine insurance expertise with AI-driven cyber risk modelling and residents at DeskLodge House. James likes running and making bread.

What do Envelop Risk do?

We are an insurance firm that embraces advanced data analytics and uses advanced modelling capabilities to build the next generation of insurance products.

How long have you been coming to DeskLodge?

Since March 2019.

What’s your favourite thing about your job?

Working with smart people that come from a great range of backgrounds.

What is your favourite thing about DeskLodge?  

The staff!

What do you do in your spare time?

Running, baking bread and amateur woodworking.

What is your superhero power?

My hollow legs allow me to eat an unlimited amount of food (or so my mum told me when I was a kid).

Thanks James


Bridge24 - Toby's Review

Inspired by our Top 10 Productivity Apps for 2019 blog post, Bridge24, a tech company who have developed a time saving tool that works alongside other productivity apps (including Trello and Asana) wanted to collaborate with DeskLodge on a tried and tested review.

DeskLodger, Toby Beresford is a hotdesker at DeskLodge Old Market, founder of rise.global and Head of Client Engagement at Magic Freebies.  As a keen Trello and Asana user, Toby was kindly up to the task of reviewing this new time saving tool.  (Thanks Toby!).

Find out Toby’s thoughts on productivity apps and what he really thought about the Bridge24 tool below.

Toby’s Review

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The slow gradual demise of Excel is being heralded by an emerging crop of reporting and dashboard tools that convert data from real time sources into useable management reports.

Most tools are specialised in a specific area, for instance Google Analytics has a suite of reports that most Desklodge businesses will be using to track activity on their websites.

Some, however, are more general. These tools fall into the category of “Business Insight” tools. Their role is to give business managers the power to slice and dice their data to create reports useful for running the business.

The leaders in the category are Microsoft’s Power BI and Tableau (sold this week to Salesforce for $15bn). Also rans include specialised single visualisation tools like my own rise.global which outputs leaderboards and scorecards for individuals.

In 2011 I created a generalised task management tool where you moved team tasks between buckets – it was called Pailz. It died a death when a year later both Trello and Asana launched backed by Silicon Valley entrepreneurs.

Interestingly, while both tools have matured in terms of ease of user experience, neither has really added the enterprise features that bigger organisations need to turn a useful tool into an effective software platform to run the business on. Monday.com is a more recent entry to the market (formerly Dapulse) but it too lacks automated reporting.

While all tools allow export, assuming perhaps that the granddaddy of report making, Excel, will do the job for most use cases, there is perhaps a gap in the market for automated reporting – you connect up the data source, define the report structures, and let the software do the rest.

This is the space that Bridge24 is looking to fill. Bridge24 is a project of Web Systems, a Quebecois company that provides Ace Project. The tool provides reporting functionality on top of other cloud project management software (Asana, Trello, Basecamp and of course Ace Project).

At rise.global we’ve used Asana for years so we’ve got lots of tasks that certainly could do with some tidy visualisation. I plugged in Bridge24 and after a bit of crunching managed to output a few useful charts...

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For a $12 / month tool, Bridge24 does what it sets out to do – provide a simple reports interface for project management tools.  I’m still not entirely sure how useful this is on generalised project management tools like Asana – the tasks are just so disparate in nature. It’s a bit like trying to make sense of someone’s daily task list transcribed from their paper notebook.

I can see the tool being useful in more defined scenarios – such as when Asana is being used just as a CRM or support desk. I’d like to see connectors for dedicated CRM’s that lack their own reporting suite. Pipedrive springs to mind.

Overall a good start but still some way to go before it becomes a necessary part of the project management stack.

DeskLodger of the Month - Richard Lowe

Meet Richard Lowe, Director of Training and Digital Learning Solutions at Hewlett Rand and Virtual office user at DeskLodge House. Richard likes travelling, eating out and keeping fit.

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What do Hewlett Rand do?

We’ve been delivering bespoke training and digital learning solutions to meet the needs of local, national and international clients, since 2006. We design bespoke training programmes and e-Learning content to meet the needs of your business. We can help with enhancing leadership, management or sales team skills to improve performance and productivity or creating tailored e-Learning content for product or compliance training.


How long have you been coming to Desklodge?

Ever since DeskLodge House launched (January 2019). It also happens to have been my old office when I headed up Training for Unum!


What is your favourite thing about your job?

Seeing the transformation from our work with our clients. Supporting businesses to develop their people to adapt to change, so they can thrive in an ever more, fast paced world.


What is your favourite thing about DeskLodge?

The service, the warm welcome, the creative and comfortable working environment.


What do you do in your spare time?

Travelling, eating out and then burning off the calories at the pool and gym.


Who is your biggest celebrity crush?




DeskLodge Company Profile - Vlog Series

Modular Digital

We are really excited to share the first in a series of vlogs for our DeskLodge Customer Profiles.

First up is one of our long-term residents at DeskLodge Old Market - Emma Millington from Modular Digital.

Find out why Modular choose to work from DeskLodge, how they use our spaces & what keeps them productive in our Company Profile vid!

If you are a DeskLodger and would like to get your business featured in our Customer Profile Vlog series, please speak to emma@desklodge,.com and get involved!


Company profile - All Interactive

Creative digital designers All Interactive have been regular hotdeskers at DeskLodge Basingstoke, as one of our longest standing DeskLodgers since we opened two years ago!

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With an impressive set of clients including the BBC, Channel 4 and Legoland, we caught up with the All Interactive founder James Goadby, to find out more about his business and how coworking at DeskLodge works for him.

What does your business do?

To provide digital design for companies, attractions, football clubs etc. Our aim is to use creativity to help improve fan and visitor engagement which increases ticket sales and put bums on seats.


How long have you been at DeskLodge?

Around 18 months, I think I have been here pretty much since it opened.


How do you use our space?

I am a hot desker usually. Due to what I do I don’t need a fixed office, and hot desking is much better for me as I love the flexibility of it.


Why did you choose DeskLodge and a co-working environment?

I came from a very corporate company before coming to DeskLodge, it was nice but very boring. I prefer DeskLodge as there is a good atmosphere and it is conducive to productivity. It is an inspiring workplace and a lot more comfortable in comparison to a generic office.


How does DeskLodge work for you and are there any successes?

Clients love the space and are impressed by all of the different rooms. DeskLodge has lots of good facilities and is in a great location. It is all round, a really enjoyable place to work. I am looking forward to meeting the new companies that are joining the DeskLodge Basingstoke site!


DeskLodger of the Month - 1TW - May

Meet Sam Daly, Lead Host at DeskLodge Old Market. Sam has been at DeskLodge for 3 years, likes; finding absurd news stories online, talking and going to the gym.

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What is your role within the company?

I am a Lead Host but I also class myself as the “odds & ends guy”, as I go all the way from admin and spreadsheets to using power drills and fixing bits around the place! I also like to think I hold great (and sometimes completely ridiculous) conversations without a lot of our DeskLodgers here, which I like to think inevitably keeps everyone happy, including myself.


How long have you been coming to Desklodge?

I have been coming to DeskLodge far too long.. just kidding. I have worked here for coming up to nearly 3 glorious years and I’m still enticed by what is to come next! It’s the people in DeskLodge that I see every day and my team that keeps me put, and so far it’s the most positive place I have ever worked.


What is your favourite thing about your job?

I love that my job is so eclectic. One moment I can be hidden in my little cave staring deep into spreadsheets and figures but then within moments I can be up on my feet doing more physical tasks - and of course my favourite job… ordering the sweets.


What is your favourite thing about DeskLodge?

The people, 100%. Don’t get me wrong, the environment and décor is amazing as we all know and it’s a big reason why we all are here BUT it’s not as easy to find as many great people all in one space.


What do you do in your spare time?

I find I go from hobby to hobby, indulging into things and giving it my all (usually spending lots of money on whatever it may be), but usually for short bursts of time and then find something new and exciting! Blame the internet folks! At the moment, what has really stuck for me is going to the gym as much as possible and watching my health/diet – again, maybe blame the internet!


What would your perfect holiday be?

A permanent one.