Instagram Stories are easy to make, but they can require a lot of thought if you want to make them truly entertaining. Thankfully, Instagram offers a number of tools to help make your stories as fun as possible.
Maybe you’ve got some great photos or videos, and some cool filters and stickers to layer on top, but your story is still missing one important factor—music. Instagram offers you a selection of tunes from its own library and your favorite music streaming services, like Spotify, SoundCloud, and Shazam. Here’s everything you need to know about music and Instagram.
First, we’ll add music directly from Instagram. Tap the camera button or the Your Story icon to start your story. At the camera screen, snap your photo or video. Apply whatever filters or special effects you want. When you’re ready to add a tune to your story, tap the Sticker icon at the top of the screen. Then tap the Music sticker.
At the Music screen, use the search field at the top of the screen to look for a particular tune. You can search by song, artist, or album. Spot a song you like? Tap the Play button to hear a short clip. If you don’t have a particular song or artist in mind, browse through Popular, Genres (rock, pop, jazz, classic, cinematic), or Moods (fun, upbeat, romantic, mellow).
When you’re ready to make a selection, tap the song you want in your story. If you’re using a static image for your story, the music will run for a max of 15 seconds. If you’re working with a video, which Instagram cuts into separate 15-second segments, the music will play for as long as the entire video runs.
With a photo, you’ll now have the opportunity to determine what portion of the track plays in your story. Move the slider bar until you find the section of song you want added. Tap the photo thumbnail to change its image.
Some songs offer multiple images from which you can choose, and some even offer lyrics that appear on the screen as the music plays. When you’re happy with the image you’ve chosen, tap Done and the song is added to your story in the form of a sticker.
Once you’ve finalized your music selection, the song appears as a sticker in your story. At this point, you have a few options. You can choose where the sticker will be placed in your story by moving it around the screen with your finger. Change the size of the sticker by pinching and expanding two fingers. Use two fingers and twist to change the orientation of the sticker. Double-tap it to return to the previous screen, which changes the appearance of the sticker, and then tap Done to return to your story.
If you’ve recorded a video, you can do even more with your sticker before you post the story. Hold down on it and you’ll be able to pin the sticker to a specific person or object in the video. This means the sticker will move along with the object as it moves in the video.
When you’re done tweaking the music, tap the Your Story icon to publish your story with the music selection. Alternatively, if you want only specific people to see it, you can either tap Close Friends to send it to a custom group of people, or tap Send To and select which users should get it.
To view your story, tap the Your Story icon. Your story appears with the music automatically playing. Tapping the song label pauses the music and brings up a music player with a play/pause button and other options. Your followers can view your story and play the music in the same way.
You can also add music to an existing photo or video that you want to use in a story. Tap the camera icon in the upper left. Swipe up to see your photo library. Select the photos or videos you want to add to your story and tap Next. To add music, tap the sticker icon in the toolbar at the top of the screen, then select the Music sticker.
From this point, the process is the same as adding music to a photo or video you snapped within the Instagram app. Find the music you want and select it. Then choose what part of the song will play. Tap Done to place the Music sticker into your story.
Adding music from Spotify, SoundCloud, and Shazam requires you to first open the app for that service and choose a song. Make sure you have the mobile app for Spotify, SoundCloud, or Shazam, depending on which one you want to use. Let’s check out each of them.
Open the Spotify app. Rev up a song you want to share through an Instagram story. Tap the ellipses icon and choose the Share option. Among the share options is one for Instagram Stories. Tap that one and you’re taken to your Instagram story, where your selected song appears with its cover art. You can add text, stickers, and other effects to your story. Tap the Your Story icon to post the story with the song you selected.
Once your story has been posted, it will serve as a link back to Spotify. Tap Your Story to view it, then tap Play on Spotify and then Open Spotify to open the song in the app. Anyone who views your story will also be able to open the song in Spotify this way.
Open the SoundCloud app. Select the song you want to add to your story. Tap the Share icon for that song and select Share to Instagram Stories to import the song and its associated image into the Instagram app.
Once the story has been published, it will serve as a link back to the song on SoundCloud. View the story, tap Play on SoundCloud, then Open SoundCloud to open the song in the app.
Different from other music services, the Apple-owned Shazam analyzes a song you’re already listening to and identifies it for you. It’s particularly helpful when you don’t know who performed a song or can’t remember the song title. You can also get the app to play music and send it to Instagram.
Open the Shazam app. If there’s music playing near you, allow the app to recognize the song, then tap the song in Shazam. Tap the More icon, select Share, and then tap the option for Instagram Stories to send the song and its artwork to the Instagram app.
After the story has been published, you can travel back to the Shazam app through Instagram. Open the story in Instagram, tap More on Shazam, then tap Open Shazam to play the song in the app.
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