Creating high-quality Instagram content can be time-consuming and resource-intensive. But there’s a way to engage your audience without having to pump out a never-ending schedule of original posts. Reposting stories, photos, and videos from your customers and other accounts is a great way to boost engagement and grow your following without creating fresh content every single time.
Instagram is fully aware of this - its new cross-posting functionality has brought reposting to the forefront of users’ minds, leading to more interaction and a wider variety of content. In fact, engagement increases by 28% when users can interact with a mixture of user-generated content (UGC) and brand messages.
However, there are some limitations and rules about reposting on Instagram. It’s important to get it right so you don’t burn any bridges or violate any legalities.
- How to legally repost user-generated content on Instagram
- When to share a feed post to Instagram Stories or repost a story
- How to repost a story on Instagram
- How to repost a story on Instagram when you haven’t been tagged
- How to repost an Instagram photo or video post as a story
- How to repost Reels on Instagram Stories
- Bonus tips: how to generate engagement with Instagram Story reposts
- Make Instagram Story reposts a part of your social media strategy
How to legally repost user-generated content on Instagram
The biggest worry when reposting third-party content is knowing how to correctly get permission and credit the author. Instagram’s Community Guidelines say you should only share content that you have taken or have the right to share, which is why it’s crucial to ask for permission if the content doesn’t fall into those two brackets. To avoid falling foul of these rules, give proper credit with your caption and tag the original creator in the post.
If you’re encouraging your audience to share their content under a branded hashtag, as Sta Travel does, it’s still good practice to ask permission before you go ahead and repost the content to your own Instagram Story.
The best way to reach out to a creator is to direct message them (avoid leaving a generic comment on their post). Here’s a template you can use:
Hey [creator name]! We dig your post about [product] and would love to share it with our followers with your permission. We’ll give you a hat tip and a tag! Would you be interested?
When sharing stories from influencers and its customers, Sephora makes sure to clearly tag creators.
When to repost a story and share a feed post to Instagram Stories
Timing is everything, and choosing the right posts to share is key in building a reposting strategy that gets results. Here are some occasions where you might consider sharing a feed post to your Instagram Story or reposting a story from another account:
- When you’ve partnered with an Instagram influencer and want to share their post on your story
- When you want to share a post from another brand that might resonate with your audience
- When you want to promote a new feed post (this is a good opportunity to reach even more followers, as a lot of people prefer viewing stories first and then scrolling their feed)
- When a customer has created a piece of UGC, whether they have tagged you or not
Bonus tip: Instagram’s new Collabs feature allows users to tag collaborators and share the same Instagram post on both feeds. It requires a bit of pre-planning but is a great way to share UGC before the partner posts it.
How to repost a story on Instagram
Instagram makes it really easy to share stories you’ve been tagged in. You automatically get a direct message including the story you’ve been mentioned in, and then it’s simply a case of:
- Opening the story
- Clicking the “Add to Story” button
- Customising or personalising the post by adding your own text, GIFs, and emojis
- Sharing the post to your Story
But what if you haven’t been tagged in a post that you’d like to share?
How to repost a story on Instagram when you haven’t been tagged
Under Instagram’s rules, it’s important to get written or verbal permission to share the post first. Use the sample message above to make sure you’re getting all the right information from users. Once you’ve got permission, there are two ways you can repost a story:
- Record the screen using your phone’s record screen feature and upload the recording to your story
- Use a third-party app like Repost It
How to repost an Instagram photo or video post as a story
It’s not as important to get permission when sharing a feed photo or video to your Instagram Story because the platform automatically tags the original creator.
When you’ve found a photo or Instagram video you think your audience would enjoy, take the following steps:
- Click the “Share” button (which looks like a little paper aeroplane) below the photo or video
- Edit your story to include any extra texts, GIFs, or emojis
- Click “Add to Story” button
Pro tip: To make your feed-to-story reposts more interesting, share the feed post along with some additional content, like photos from the same day but from a different angle, background music, or GIFs to reflect your thoughts on the photo or video. Bonus points if you make it extra engaging for the audience and ask them if the feed post was truly the best out of the bunch.
How to repost Reels on Instagram Stories
Instagram Reels are a hit with users, allowing them to discover new brands and accounts directly from the Explore page. If you’ve seen a Reel you love and want to share it with your audience, simply follow the steps above for sharing a feed post or video to your story.
Bonus tips: how to generate engagement with Instagram Story reposts
Ready to include Instagram Story reposts in your social media strategy? Here are some top tips to bear in mind to make sure you’re getting the most out of resharing content.
- Get the best image quality
- Curate user-generated content
- Acknowledge accounts that have mentioned you
- Add your stamp to reshared stories
- Create Highlights of your reposts
Get the best image quality
Reposting content can often result in less-than-stellar image quality-especially if you’re screenshotting or screen recording the posts you want to reshare. If you find that the quality is suffering, try requesting the original files from the creator. This works particularly well if it’s someone you’ve worked with or collaborated with in the past.
Curate user-generated content
There are so many masterful content creators out there that are probably posting about your brand. Most of the time their photos look professional, as they take them from incredible angles and retouch them with filters like Instagram Photoshop actions. This is why having a wealth of user-generated content to tap can help plug the gaps when your own production levels are low. Curate customer-created posts by:
- Using a hashtag
- Creating a category in Saved posts to build out your own library of UGC content
- Sprinkling UGC posts in between brand-created content
Acknowledge accounts that have mentioned you
“You rub my back and I’ll rub yours” has never been a truer statement when it comes to reposting on Instagram Story. Ensure your followers and customers feel valued by acknowledging profiles that have mentioned you in their stories and sending a quick thank you - every little helps!
Add your stamp to reshared stories
Instagram Stories has a bottomless library of fun GIFs, emojis, music, and additional features like polls, check-ins, and tags that can level up your reshares. Try adding your own stamp to posts, videos, and stories you repost with text and visuals in your brand colours and voice.
Here’s a tutorial for inspo:
Create Highlights of your reposts
Instagram Highlights feature is there to group together your stories and keep them on your profile longer than the standard 24 hours. If the stories, photos, and videos you’re reposting to your Instagram Story are particularly useful or follow a similar theme, why not group them into topics under their own Highlight? This makes it easy for your followers to find relevant content and browse through curated content for a more engaging experience.
Make Instagram Story reposts a part of your social media strategy
Reposting to Instagram Story is a great way to increase your following, share customer-created content, and boost your Instagram engagement. But it’s important to get it right. Give credit where it’s due and make sure you ask for permission if you need it before you share to your Instagram Story.
Otherwise, get creative!
Curate user-generated content, add your own stamp to your reposts with a sticker, text, and GIF, and create Story Highlights to immortalise shared content on your profile.
Use our Instagram Audit Checklist to uncover optimisation opportunities on your profile and find the best ways to incorporate reposts in your social media strategy.