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Last Updated on 29th January 2017 by Sophie Nadeau

Now, more than ever, it’s becoming easier and easier to interact with people from halfway across the globe. Now, more than ever, you can reach people from all four corners with the touch of a button. And the newest way to do this? Live Instagram stories…

I don’t think that when my Latin lecturer advised me to ‘practice public speaking’, he had Live Instagram stories in mind, but that’s exactly what I did a couple of hours ago. Earlier this afternoon, I did a live video (10-15 minutes worth) for the first time on my Instagram account (@sophieannenadeau). I’ve been wanting to try it out ever since the feature was rolled out on the app a couple of weeks ago. I have loads of ‘live’ story ideas. However, before trying out other stuff, I thought I’d start with a simple question and answer video.

To start with, I was super nervous about being live on camera, but I needn’t have been. The nervousness probably wasn’t helped by the two cups of coffee I’d been chugging back earlier this morning…

How to do Live Instagram Stories:

#1 If you’re not sure what kind of live Instagram story to go for, start with something simple like a Q&A. Set your phone up somewhere you can use it hands-free and with good lighting. I set my phone up on my windowsill as it has good natural light and was the right height for me to sit on a chair in front.

#2 If you’re doing a Q&A, have props to hand so that you can begin talking while people think of questions to ask. I brought my camera!

#3 Open the app on your phone. 

#4 Click on the little camera icon in the top left hand of the screen.

#5  Swipe the screen across until it says ‘live‘ at the bottom of the screen.

#6 Press ‘Start Live Video’. Wait a couple of seconds and the video will start (there’s a 3,2,1 countdown).

#7 A few seconds later, people will start tuning in. Don’t panic in the beginning if you see the number as ‘0’, it takes a little while for the real number to show up. 

At any one time, there were between 40-60 people watching my story. Overall, 426 people tuned in to watch, at least a part of the video- which is kind of insane. People can send you comments and questions at the bottom of the screen. I answered questions such as where I’m from and how I edit my Instagram photos. It was pretty fun to interact with people in such an ‘in the moment’ way.

So, if you’ve been debating whether to take the plunge and do live Instagram stories, then go for it! Live Instagram Stories are a great way to engage with people and show them more of the ‘face behind the camera.’

Of course, I forgot to take actual screenshots during the live stories (I’m so forgetful, sometimes). But this is a screenshot of my story from after my ‘live’ story and how the simple setup and lighting of my story worked.

live instagram stories

About Author

Sophie Nadeau loves dogs, books, Paris, pizza, and history, though not necessarily in that order. A fan of all things France related, she runs when she's not chasing after the next sunset shot or consuming her weight in sweet food. Currently based in Paris after studies in London, she's spent most of her life living in the beautiful Devonian countryside in South West England!

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