August 12, 2016
Instagram, the popular social media platform owned by Facebook, just released its latest update — and it’s making people think twice. The new update is called “Instagram Stories,” which allows users to share photos and ten-second video clips that last for no more than 24 hours. The update is a big change for the platform and could cause a major shift in the way people and businesses use social media. However, the concept of Instagram Stories is certainly not revolutionary, and has caused a lot of controversy over its similarity to other existing platforms.
How it Works
In order to post an Instagram Story, open your app and click on the “plus” icon in the top left corner of the home page. This will open your phone’s camera and allow you to take a photo or video from within the Instagram app. After you take a photo or video, you can draw on the image and add text or filters before clicking the check mark to post it. Once your Instagram Story is posted, your name and profile photo appear at the top of the traditional Instagram feed. In order to view your story, followers must first click on it. This is a new concept for Instagram, a platform which has always been focused around a feed of embedded photos that appear without having to click on them. Although followers are not able to like or comment on your Instagram Story, you can see who views it.
Sound familiar? That’s because this new Instagram feature has a striking resemblance to Snapchat Stories. Snapchat a competing social media platform that Facebook previously tried to buy— was founded on the idea of short, disappearing photos and video clips. Instagram Stories is so similar to Snapchat Stories (even its name is practically the same) that some might say it is a carbon copy. The differences are slim to none, with the only true contrast being the lack of the popular Snapchat filters. Could there be a lawsuit coming Instagram’s way? Perhaps. Despite it’s startling similarity to Snapchat Stories, Instagram Stories has a lot of potential. The combination of the traditional Instagram feed and the “stories” feature might just be genius. Snapchat and Instagram have a lot of overlap among their users, who tend to be the younger generation. Is it possible that users who currently use both platforms will start to solely use Instagram since it now offers the best of both worlds? Only time will tell.
Using Instagram Stories for Marketing
Who is likely to benefit from Instagram Stories the most? Businesses! Instagram Stories offers businesses the chance to do exactly what they would do on Snapchat, but with a much greater level of engagement. Not only does Instagram have a larger network of users than Snapchat, but the platform is already much more business-friendly. Instagram makes it easy for businesses to gain and interact with followers using hashtags, searches, and more. Snapchat, on the other hand, makes it much more difficult for businesses to build a following because it requires the use of an exact username to add followers. So for businesses, Instagram Stories offers a great opportunity to attract a younger audience. It allows them to share fun, casual snippets of their daily brand experience, like they would on Snapchat, but with a much larger audience. Not a bad deal.
If you’re looking for new ways to increase your visibility, our team of marketing experts can help. To learn more about the services that our South Florida marketing agency offers, call us at Keenability today.